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60. Jumbo Tsuruta

A superstar in the All Japan Promotion, Tommy “Jumbo” Tsuruta was the man who unified the three major champions in the promotion and was the first ever “Triple Crown” Champion.  As impressive as that was, it was just a portion of what he would accomplish in professional wrestling.

Jumbo Tsuruta won every accolade there was to accomplish in All Japan.  Tsuruta was an accomplished athlete who had an excellent amateur background (he represented Japan in the 1972 Olympics).  He adapted to the pro ranks quickly and could be counted to put on excellent matches.  Jumbo was large and fast and with a technical repertoire second to none, he had no discernable equals.  As such, he was able to transfer his skills into a major American promotion (the AWA) and become their champion.

As great as Tsuruta was, his massive Japanese legacy did not equate to American stardom.  Granted, he did win the AWA World Heavyweight Championship when it was still relevant but his run was largely forgettable.  Still, this could be a wild card possibility as the next Japanese grappler in.

Should Jumbo Tsuruta be in the Hall of Fame?

Definitely put him in! - 41.2%
Maybe, but others deserve it first. - 47.1%
Probably not, but it wouldn't be the end of the world. - 5.9%
No opinion. - 5.9%
No way! - 0%

The Bullet Points

  • Other Aliases: Tomoni Tsuruta (Real Name)
  • Billed From: Makioka, Japan
  • Key Championships Held: AJPW Triple Crown Champion (3)
    AJPW Unified Tag Team Champion (7) (5w/Yoshiaki Yatsu, 1w/The Great Kabuki, 1w/Akira Taue)
    AWA World Heavyweight
    NWA International Heavyweight (3)
    NWA World Tag Team (9) (6w/Giant Baba, 2w/Genichru Tenyru, 1w/Yoshiaki Yatsu)
    PWF World Heavyweight
    PWF World Tag Team (2) w/Tiger Mask
    Champions Carnival Winner (1980 & 1981)
    World Strongest Tag Team League Winner (5) (2w/Giant Baba 1978 & 1980, 2w/Genichru Tenyru 1984 & 1986, 1w/Yoshiaki Yatsu 1987)
  • Why they will get in: He was one of the all time greats in Japanese wrestling.
  • Why they won't get in: He may have competed for the AWA, but not for the WWE.
  • Five Greatest Matches/Moments: 1.  Match of the Year (Japan) against Rusher Kimura (3/28/76)
    2.  Match of the Year (Japan) against Harley Race (1/20/78)
    3.  Defeats Stan Hansen to become the first AJPW Triple Crown Champion (4/18/89)
    4.  Loses the Triple Crown to Genichru Tenyru in the Japanese Match of the Year (6/8/90)
    5.  Five Star Match against Mitsuhari Misawa (6/8/91)

Should Jumbo Tsuruta be in the Hall of Fame?

Definitely put him in! - 41.2%
Maybe, but others deserve it first. - 47.1%
Probably not, but it wouldn't be the end of the world. - 5.9%
No opinion. - 5.9%
No way! - 0%

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Last modified on Monday, 06 May 2019 16:57
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