Welcome back to Rotten Ink Arena, the place that we come to talk about Pro Wrestling and enjoy celebrating the legends of the sport that we all love. Today’s “R.I.W Wrestling Legend” update is going to be killer, and by that I mean it will be about one of the biggest, meanest foreign heels in wrestling through the 1980’s, the one and only Killer Khan, a man who broke the ankle of a giant and would challenge for the WWF World Heavyweight Championship several times terrorizing opponents and fans from America, Canada, Mexico and Japan. So let’s find our seats and order a drink or two as this update might get crazy and who knows what Killer Khan will do, and here he comes now so let’s get this update and matches started.
Killer Khan started his pro wrestling career in 1971 and was working for Japan Wrestling Association as well as New Japan Pro Wrestling and was going under the name Masashi Ozawa and was making a name for himself as he was booked strong and was becoming a draw for New Japan as he was put into many big matched with many names that would go on to become legends of the sport. He would leave Japan in 1978 and headed Mexico for a brief sting and would have matches against the likes of El Santo and Mil Mascaras. During his time in Mexico, he was going by the name Temojin El Mongol. In 1979 he would head to America and work for Championship Wrestling From Florida and start using the name Killer Khan, and he would be put in a tag team with Pak Song, the two would even win the companies tag team titles. Khan was also being booked as a singles wrestler and was racking up the wins, gaining attention and was hated by the fans becoming one of CWF’s top heels. After his run in CWF he would head to Georgia Championship Wrestling and Universal Wresting Federation and would have good quick runs at each, and while in GCW he would have his first run in with Andre The Giant. In early 1980 he would also do a run in Mid-South Wrestling circuit and by now Killer Khan was one of the top most hated heels in wrestling as he would have wins over many popular heels and his aggressive style made fans fear and hate him. In late 1980 Killer Khan was brought into the WWF for the first time and was made a monster heel that from the start was getting wins over names like Dominic DeNucci and Rick McGraw. By early 1981, he was already getting a WWF World Heavyweight Title shot against champion Bob Backlund and would even make an attempt at the WWF Intercontinental title held by Pedro Morales. And from there his first major long feud in WWF was against Bob Backlund as the pair would square off a number of times in title matches as well as stipulation matches like a Texas Death Match. After his feud with Backlund ended, Killer Khan would stick around striking fear and gaining wins and having a match even against the likes of Bruno Sammartino and Dusty Rhodes. But in late 1981 he set his sights on Andre The Giant and the biggest feud of his career was about to start as this was a legendary as Killer Khan would break the ankle of Andre and take him out of wrestling for a short time, the heat from the fans that Khan got locked him in as one of the companies top heels at the time. And once Andre The Giant returned from his injury the two would have an epic feud and would have even a “Mongolian Stretcher Match” and in the end Andre The Giant was the winner of the feud and it was so epic that in 1981 it won the Wrestling Observer Newsletter’s feud of the year!
After his feud with Andre The Giant came to an end, Killer Khan would stick around the WWF and have matches with names like Tony Atlas and would still try in failing attempts to capture the WWF Heavyweight and Intercontinental Gold. And in 1982 he would leave the WWF and head back to New Japan Pro Wrestling for a stint and then would end up back in America working for Mid-Atlantic Championship Wrestling as well as Houston Wrestling and Mid-South Wrestling once again. In 1983 he would head back to New Japan Pro Wrestling before heading to Stampede Wrestling in Canada where he would have a feud with The Mongolian Stomper, and then he would head to World Class Championship Wrestling out of Texas and work against The Von Erichs as well as The Freebirds, that later he would later team with and teach member Terry Gordy the Oriental Spike finishing move. In 1985 Killer Khan would spread terror back in Japan this time working for All Japan Pro Wrestling and would have matches against Giant Baba as well as Giant Haystacks and The Road Warriors. Killer Khan would stick around in All Japan until 1987 and then would return back to America and work once more for WWF for a short run and this time around he was managed by Mr. Fuji and would be pushed once more as a major heel and would even take on WWF World Heavyweight Champion Hulk Hogan for the title at House Shows. His run in 1987 would be over by the end of that same year and while booked as a big heel he never was as big of a threat as he was his last run. During this stink in WWF he would have matches against many of the companies top baby faces including Outback Jack, SD Jones, Ken Patera, Tito Santana, Hillbilly Jim, Junkyard Dog, Paul Orndorff and George “The Animal” Steele to name a few. And after this run Killer Khan would quietly step away from full time work in wrestling and would retire from the sport shortly after and would open his own restaurant in Japan that he is still running to this day.
Growing up Killer Khan was one of wrestling’s greatest foreign heels at the time as he always seemed like a major threat to any baby face that was in the ring with him, and I mean the guy broke Andre The Giants ankle! And yes I know that Andre really broke his own ankle by accident and they used Khan’s attack to write him off TV in order for the injury to heal. And in 1987 when he made his return to the WWF I can remember thinking it was a bigger deal then it really was as I always looked at Killer Khan with the notion in my head that he would one day be a major threat to Hulk Hogan and would try and take his world title away, plus adding the sneaky Mr. Fuji as his manager just made him even more of a heel in my young eyes. Something about Killer Khan made him scary to younger fans at the time, as you never seemed to know what he was going to do and if he was going to take out your favorite wrestler. It’s also very odd that Killer Khan never got a LJN WWF action figure in 1987 as apart of Series 4 as it would have been a cool one to get, but he did make it to the Topps WWF Trading cards at that time. Plus his move the Oriental Spike always seemed so devastating and was a great finishing maneuver for that time and era. And for kids of the 1990’s they might know Killer Khan for playing Ishikawa the bodyguard to Konga in the 1994 film “3 Ninjas Kick Back” and in 2006 he had a cameo on the Japanese series “Lion-Maru G”. And for fans of Killer Khan who travel he owns and runs a restaurant in Japan that is called “Killer Khan No Mise Izakaya Kanchan” and its said to be amazing food and that Killer Khan will take pictures with fans as well as sign autographs, and if I ever get the chance this would be one must stop for me if I ever get the chance to visit Japan. To sum this up I have been a fan of Killer Khan sense I was a kid and I am very much looking forward to watching his matches again as I want to see his brutal style again or see if its as brutal as I remember.
We are now at the point of this review were we will be taking a look at the DVD set and review some of the matches on the discs like always between 4 to 8. I want to thank Coliseum Of Wrestling & Boxing for having this set in stock and also want to thank Killer Khan for his hard work in the world of wrestling. I also want to remind you that I will only be breaking down randomly select matches from this set and will be breaking down the match and will be rating the matches on a 5 Star rating system. I also only choose from single matches, as I want to break down his matches that showcase his style. Here is what the stars mean ½ Means a really terrible match, * Means a bad match, ** Means a below average match, **1/2 Means a good average entertaining match, *** Means a good match, **** Means a great match, ***** Means an epic match. So if you are ready lets step into the ring with Killer Khan.
Best Of Killer Khan
Match 1: Killer Khan vs. Ray Candy
Killer Khan starts the match off in charge as he knees Candy in the stomach and then body slams the big man before using his knees more to knock Candy into the corner and continues the assault on Candy who is not given a chance to fight back yet as Khan is super aggressive and wants to hurt Candy as its clear as he take him to the ground and drops several jumping knees on him over and over as well as axe handle hits. And then he puts the Iron Claw onto Ray Candy’s stomach and forces him to quite the match and Kahn wins by submission. This is a total squash match as Ray Candy is destroyed by Killer Khan who beats the hell out of him, lands some brutal movies like the dropping knee over and over and then finishes him off with a claw to his stomach. Killer Khan looks just like his name says a killer as he is super aggressive and is looking to destroy his opponent. Meanwhile on the other hand Ray Candy looks like a total jobber and does a good job of selling for Khan and being enhancement talent. Not much else to say besides Khan really is a killer in this quick squash match.
Match 2: Killer Khan vs. Andre The Giant
This is a stretcher match were to win your opponent must be carried out on a stretcher. As the bell rings Andre stalks Khan and once he gets his hands on him he nails a big head butt and then starts unloading massive clubbing hits. Even as Khan gets out of the ring to try and escape the beating he is grabbed by the hair by Andre and forced back into the ring and his beating continues as Andre is fired up and is a very angry giant. Andre then takes Khan down with a big boot and then sits on him with his massive weight, crushing Khan, the referee calls for the stretcher and Khan shoves it away and the match continues and Andre hits Khan with a piledriver! But Andre misses a falling headbutt and this gives Khan a chance to stomp on the head of Andre over and over, and then gets Andre’s ankle the same one he broke tied up into the ropes and starts working it over. Khan then drops a knee on the head of Andre and the referee calls for the stretcher, and Andre pushes it away and then picks it up and hits Khan over the head with it and then starts beating on and sitting on Khan again causing the hated heel lots of pain and Khan once more fights off being placed on the stretcher. Andre then starts his attack once more of sitting on Khan over and over, and like before Khan fights off being put on the stretcher. Andre this time suplexes Khan before squashing him again with his sitting assault and then lands a big splash and then Killer Khan is placed on the stretcher and taken away given the win to Andre The Giant. This was a true battle between two big men and it was mostly a one sided fight as Andre dominated most of the fight and just pounded and squashed Killer Khan throughout the match. Andre is winded pretty early one and mostly just sits on and uses clubbing hits to take down Khan who does a great job of selling for The Giant. Andre does do some moves that later in his career he could not pull off like the piledriver and suplex and while limited even at this point the fans loved Andre and I found myself as well enjoying him in this match. Killer Khan pretty much only gets off one brief moment of taking the lead in the match and he gets the crowd hot as he goes after the ankle that he had broken some months back. While not a great technical match nor even really that great of a brawling one, the stipulation, the big match feel and the story telling of Andre wanting revenge is what made this a very entertaining match.
Match 3: Killer Khan vs. Bam Bam Bigelow
As the bell rings both men show off and try intimidating one another and once they lock up its Bigelow that backs Khan into the corner, and once they break apart Bigelow stares down Khan. They lock up again and this time Khan backs Bigelow into the corner and this time when they break apart Killer Khan punches Bigelow in the gut and starts hammering him with punches, and then the two bounce off the ropes and clash in the middle and then they start slapping each other across the face and then Bigelow hits Khan with an atomic drop. Khan roles out of the ring to shake off the move and once back in the ring tries to shake the hand of Bigelow but of course this is a trick and Khan attacks him and even chokes him on the rope and this allows Mr. Fuji the manager of Killer Khan to hit Bigelow with his cane and Khan continues his attack and even gets a two count with a pin attempt. And Khan and Fuji continue to cheat behind the referees back. Bigelow is able to make a comeback and pull off a big clothesline, hits a body slam as well as a diving headbutt and gets a two count on Khan. As the match continues Khan is able to kick Bigelow in the face and goes for the green mist and it misses allowing Bigelow to hit him with a dropkick and a big splash and get the three count and the win. This is a match between to big guys that was just an ok match as Khan was on and hit many of his big moves and even went for the green mist spit, it was Bigelow who seemed a little off and was sluggish, looked like he was in a cocky mood and was just mediocre at best in the match. While Bigelow’s splash looked great as did a few of his moves it was clear he was not fully into the match. While Khan on the other hand tried to make the best of it and sold well for Bigelow and did what he could to get the match over. The fans in the arena seemed to enjoy it so that counts for something as Bam Bam Bigelow was a big baby face for the WWF at the time, for me though this was just an ok match between two wrestlers who have done better. And to be honest the more I think about it, Bam Bam seems like he is more worried coming off as a badass then he was getting a good match with Khan.
Match 4: Killer Khan vs. Randy Savage
As the match starts its Killer Khan who takes the lead and starts hitting Savage with big hits, but Savage is able to take over when Khan misses a knee in the corner and bounces off the turnbuckle allowing Savage to start landing some punches of his own and even hits a back elbow that hurts Khan, but Khan is able to land some knees to Savage’s gut when he backs him into the corner, and as Khan distracts the referee Mr. Fuji starts choking Savage with his cane and even hits him in the small of the back. Savage falls out of the ring and almost gets counted out, but makes it back just in time and Khan continues his attack working on the back of Savage and gets him into a backbreaker. Savage is able to get out of the hold by kicking himself off the ropes and then starts punching Khan in the face and drops him with a running elbow to the head. The Savage runs to the top rope and lands an axe handle hit and then goes for the pin, but Khan kicks out and uses his kicks to knock down Savage, and when Savage stands up Khan goes to spit the green mist in his eyes and misses as Savage dodges and then rolls up Khan to get the pin. This was a good match between these two as their styles work well together and while Savage gets the win Khan does not look weak in defeat as he puts a good beating on Savage throughout the match. The backbreaker that Khan puts on Savage looks painful and while it would have been nice to see Savage land is classic elbow drop finisher on Khan, the rollup win does protect Khan in defeat. This is a good match between two top notch WWF Superstars and their styles worked well together.
Killer Khan is an awesome heel from the 1980’s wrestling scene and was one that has always stuck with me mostly due to his feud with Andre The Giant and his brawling style always made him standout from the other heels of the time in the WWF. I think the greatest thing about Killer Khan is that he could have a great match against any company’s top stars from Hulk Hogan to Kerry Von Erick to El Santo and every baby face in-between. But as you can see, the Rotten Ink Arena is closing for the night as the matches are over and the cleanup crew is out cleaning up all the thrown popcorn so before we leave these arena doors I would like to let you all know that my next update will have us coming back to the Rotten Ink Arena and this time we will be taking a look at one of the WWF’s biggest tag teams from the 80’s and early 90’s and I am talking about Demolition! So let’s head on out and let the crew clean up and until next time watch a wrestling match or three, read a comic or two and as always support your local indie wrestlers. See you next time as Demolition shows us destruction in the ring.