Wrestling legend and eight-time IWGP Heavyweight Champion Hiroshi Tanahashi has slammed Brock Lesnar, claiming his style of wrestling is selfish.
On the latest Ace's High series episode, Hiroshi Tanahashi recalled how he was scheduled to face Brock Lesnar in 2006 for the IWGP Heavyweight Champion. However, the match was canceled at the last minute due to Brock Lesnar's visa issues. Tanahashi was stunned to find out that the match wouldn't happen, especially since fans were hyped.
“I go in there and (Riki Choshu) says ‘Lesnar’s not coming’. I was just stunned, like the world had gone into darkness in front of me. I never knew the real ins and outs of the contract issue, but I do know he had a really special money situation going on, and I would imagine that was what was at the heart of it. It was really an unprecedented set of circumstances when it comes to IWGP title matches," Tanahashi said.
“Back in those days, we would have this big lion mark flag at the venues for fans to write messages of support on. Going into this match, we ran out of space on the first flag and had to get a second. That was how hyped the match was with the fans in the venues. But all of a sudden it was gone.”
"He was just pounding people" - Hiroshi Tanahashi on Brock Lesnar's wrestling style
Hiroshi Tanahashi went on to slam former WWE Champion Brock Lesnar for his "selfish way of wrestling," claiming Lesnar didn't care where he was wrestling as long as he got paid.
"To be brutally honest, I could never get into any of what I saw of Lesnar. It was all one sided, a completely selfish way of wrestling. I saw him come up in the early 2000s, and he was just pounding people, you never got to see anything from his opponents. I just didn’t understand his deal at all... To be honest, Lesnar didn't really care about where he was wrestling as long as he got his payoff," Tanahashi said.
Brock Lesnar had a dominant run as the IWGP Heavyweight Champion. He even defended his title against current WWE Superstar Shinsuke Nakamura in January 2006.
Lesnar was ultimately stripped of the IWGP Heavyweight Championship due to visa issues, and Hiroshi Tanahashi won the tournament held to win the vacated title.