Minoru Suzuki was one of the first men to cross the Forbidden Door into AEW, crashing into the company in 2021.
The leader of Suzuki-Gun debuted in AEW at All Out 2021, attacking Jon Moxley and setting up a match between the two the following week.
Since his first appearance at All Out, Suzuki has wrestled in five matches in AEW, each varying in the story told and the quality of the match.
With the legend winding down his career, as he enters his mid-50s, we look at Minoru Suzuki’s best matches in AEW.
5. vs Eddie Kingston & Jon Moxley
In a match that would be repeated just a month later in New Japan, Minoru Suzuki cracked open the Forbidden Door for this match in AEW.
The Japanese legend teamed with fellow Suzuki-Gun teammate Lance Archer to take on the duo of Jon Moxley & Eddie Kingston in a “Lights Out” match in AEW.
This is basically a hardcore match, and all four men took that personally.
The bout was chaotic, with a wild brawl being on the menu. The match didn’t feature as much blood and weaponry as the usual Moxley match, but showcased the hard-hitting style of the four men involved.
It wasn’t the best match of the men had, and the crowd seemed rather apathetic toward the bout (understandable, giving how late in the day the match was), and showed how cold the feud between Moxley and Suzuki was.
4. vs Jon Moxley
The next match on the list of Minoru Suzuki’s best matches in AEW is his rematch against Jon Moxley on AEW Dynamite.
The pair had fought two years prior in NJPW, in what turned out to be one of the best and most unique brawls seen in years.
Fan expectations were high, but sadly the pair failed to deliver on the goods.
This was not soley down to Jon Moxley or Minoru Suzuki. TV time constraints meant that the pair did not have the time to craft a compelling match.
The rest of the show went so long that Suzuki’s entrance was cut before the famous “kaze ni nare” , and fans missed out on singing along.
The match was fine, but with very little to write home about. The most memorable part of the bout was the cut entrance, which became known online (and on TV) as The Suzuki Incident.
3. vs Samoa Joe
Samoa Joe and Minoru Suzuki wrestled in a great match on AEW Dynamite, although it failed to live up to the lofty expectations for both men.
The two legends of professional wrestling engaging in a Kobashi versus Sake style war. It featured hard-hitting action, each man throwing bombs at each other to set the stage for a match that evolved into a test of their respective submission prowess.
They pushed each other to their limits, although those limits are a lot lower than if this match took place 10 years ago.
The commentary was carried by Jim Ross, who gave this a “big fight feel” and put both men over as some of the best in the world.
It is still one of Suzuki’s best AEW matches, but fell slightly short of the impossible standards that the fans had in their heads, for the two men at their respective ages.
2. vs Eddie Kingston, Shota Umino & Wheeler Yuta
The second best match Minoru Suzuki has had in AEW was his match at Forbidden Door, when he teamed with Chris Jericho and Sammy Guevara.
It was a fairly standard six-man tag team match occurred at Forbidden Door, but executed to perfection.
The match was build, really, to showcase Shota Umino as the underdog babyface, building to his hot tag to clear out the ring and look like the star he is.
There is no one spot that typifies this match, but all six men did their job perfectly and made each look like top class wrestlers.
1. vs Bryan Danielson
Before an incredible episode of AEW Rampage went head-to-head with Friday Night Smackdown for the first time, Tony Khan decided to put on a pre-show like no other.
With matches including Bobby Fish vs Lee Moriarty, and Tay Conti taking on Santana Garrett, the main event of the “buy in” saw a dream match for many – Bryan Danielson vs Minoru Suzuki.
These two hard-hitters seemed perfect for one another, and managed to put on a very unique match in AEW.
Hardly any bumps were taken by either man. The bout mainly consisted of punches, chops and kicks, with the two fighters trying to show who could hit hardest, and take the hardest hits.
It was a real breath of fresh air, and something nobody had seen in American wrestling in years. It is one of AEW’s best matches, Minoru Suzuki’s best match in his brief spell with the company.
Hamish is a writer and podcaster and wrestling fan who is a key part of the Atletifo team.
After playing countless hours of WrestleMania X8 on the Gamecube, he discovered Rey Mysterio getting his head crushed by The Great Khali, and thus a love for professional wrestling was born.
He is also a Media Graduate, as well as writing for multiple sites about Premier League football and the culture of Wales – his home country.