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Fumi Saito & Justin Knipper kicked off their latest deep-dive on the history of the Champion Carnival, AJPW’s annual Spring round-robin tournament, going over JWA’s World League tournament held from 1959–1972, then on to the first AJPW Champion Carnival in 1973 and past winners. They also spent a bit of time talking about appearances from Abdullah the Butcher, the Funk Bros., Prince Tonga/Haku, and more.
The tournament itself was retired for a brief time, from 1983–1990, when the Grand Champion Carnival took its place. It came back in 1991 and the event itself helped usher in the next generation of AJPW superstars like Mitsuharu Misawa, Kenta Kobashi, Toshiaki Kawada, Akira Taue, and others.
Part two will focus on the AJPW Champion Carnival in the ’00s and on, post-Giant Baba.
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