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Shinsuke Nakamura, who will make his in-ring debut on the main roster at Backlash tonight, is constantly referred to as the “King of Strong Style,” with this term being used on the air many times leading up to Nakamura’s debut against Dolph Ziggler. So what exactly is strong style, and what makes Nakamura the kind of it?
“Strong style” essentially refers to the idea of approaching professional wrestling like a combat sport, using martial arts tactics to take out your opponent and focusing on strikes and submissions. This was popularized in professional wrestling in Japan, largely by wrestlers with actual backgrounds in martial arts like Shinya Hashimoto, Keiji Mutoh, and Antonio Inoki.
In New Japan Pro Wrestling, around the time that Shinsuke Nakamura turned heel, his gimmick became the fact that he was going to bring back strong style, and he declared himself the kind of it. Nakamura, too, had a martial arts background in real life.
Tonight, viewers will get a look a strong style when Shinsuke Nakamura goes up against Dolph Ziggler.