Misawa  & Kobashi 

Their Longstanding Rivalry

There are some wrestling rivalries that are defined by how well each  wrestler can insult one another. Others are defined by how vicious the  brawls are or how personal each side makes it.

It’s one that’s based on excellence inside the ring. It forgoes the  in-your-face obviousness that some wrestlers put into their matches and  replaces it with subtleties added on over time.

Kenta Kobashi and Mitsuharu Misawa met in All Japan Pro Wrestling (AJPW). By the time Kobashi debuted there in 1988, Misawa was making  waves as the second iteration of the Tiger Mask character.

Both of them worked for Giant Baba, the promoter of AJPW who had a  relatively unique wrestling and booking philosophy called ‘King’s Road.’

The important things to note are that the King’s Road style was built on  both incredibly physical matches and long-term, nuanced storytelling.

For Kobashi and Misawa, they began as partners. Between 1990 and early  1993, Misawa had a feud going with then-company ace Jumbo Tsuruta..

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