On the inaugural episode of WWE Chronicle, WWE cameras followed SmackDown Live's Shinsuke Nakamura from WWE Royal Rumble 2018 till the final SmackDown Live before WWE WrestleMania 34. Among other things, Nakamura explained 'Strong Style', talked about how his MMA experience helped his pro wrestling career, and not being ready to be IWGP Champion during his first reign back in 2003.
According to Nakamura, many people misunderstand the term 'Strong Style'.
"A lot of people misunderstand what is 'Strong Style'." Nakamura explained, "hard hit, stiff, I don't think so. So, 'Strong Style' came from the Japanese wrestling founder Rikidozan. 'Strong Style' is a kind of philosophy, expression of emotion. I say something by wrestling. I express my emotion, like, what I think, what I feel by wrestling using real technique."
With respect to his MMA experience, Nakamura said it helped him come up with his KINSHASA! pro wrestling finish.
"I only had just five matches in MMA, but every fight gave me a great experience, especially [my] first match against Belarusian fighter Alexey Ignashov." Nakamura recalled, "I couldn't do anything because [it was] too much pressure. [I was] too nervous. [I] couldn't control myself. But I did a shoot tackle, maybe 10 times. But one time, he did a counter, knee to my face. Everybody thought, 'oh, Nakamura [is] dead. [The] match is over,' but I didn't [die]. I [stood] up. I still wanted to fight, but the referee stopped, the company stopped. Then, I [decided] I need this. I need the most dangerous finish. That's why I use knee to face."
Also during the show, Nakamura shared that he felt he was too young to be IWGP champ the first time around.
"The first time I got [the] IWGP [championship], I was the youngest IWGP Champion." Nakamura continued, "that time, I hold the belt [and] I felt, 'oh, this belt's too heavy, so heavy' because I didn't have experience. I felt just a responsibility."
YEAOH! If you use any of the quotes from this article, please credit WWE Chronicle with an H/T to WrestlingINC for the transcription.
Source: WWE Chronicle