INTERVIEW WITH: STEWART FULTON

In September of 2020, Pro Wrestling NOAH debuted on Fite TV. On partnering with Fite, the company was introduced to a whole new audience. Over the next couple of months I will be writing blogs to help new fans get to know a little more about the company.

Recently, I got the opportunity to interview Stewart Fulton, who provides English commentary for NOAH on Fite TV. Here he gives us his top matches for new fans to watch, his break out star of 2021, and his opinion on what Keiji Mutoh winning the GHC Heavyweight title means to wrestling as a whole.

STEWART FULTON

Q: For fans new to NOAH, how would you say NOAH differs from other Japanese wrestling promotions such as NJPW?

“NOAH has rebranded itself with a clever and appealing blend of strong nostalgic feeling and a fresh, new image. It’s bringing traditional strong style wrestling and various storylines playing out with the long game in mind, and with the combination of veteran and new star talent, there’s something fascinating for everyone.”

Q: For fans who want to watch NOAH matches from the past, which matches would you recommend fans to watch?

“Misawa v Kobashi 2003; Marufuji & KENTA vs Juventud; Guerrera & Ricky Marvin; Kobashi vs Kensuke Sasaki; anything from Kobashi’s two-year reign as champion.”

Q: Who are the 3 top names in NOAH that people new to the product should check out instantly?

“Assuming they are aware of Keiji Muto; Kobashi, and Misawa, then Naomichi Marufuji, Yoshinari Ogawa, Go Shiozaki.”

Q: For fans unaware of Keiji Mutoh’s history in wrestling, what in your opinion does a legend like him bring to the NOAH product  at the moment?

“Keiji Muto brings legitimacy and respect to the product. He has done so much in the world of pro wrestling and incredibly he’s still active. We are watching the final throes of his outstanding legacy in real time, and what happens with his title reign and eventual passing of the torch will go down in history.”

Q: How important do think Keiji Mutoh’s title reign is to wrestling as a whole and not just in Japan?

“Muto’s title reign to wrestling as a whole symbolizes unity, consistency, and determination. Nearly 20 years ago, Sakuraba told me that in order to find happiness, we must keep pushing forward, meaning that stagnating or hesitating is no way to live, and certainly no way to greatness. Keiji Muto is symbolic of the whole ethos of pro wrestling.”

STEWART FULTON WITH FELLOW COMMENTATOR MARK PICKERING

Q: For fans who want to learn more about the history of NOAH, how do you recommend they go about it?

“To learn about the history of NOAH, the Wrestle Universe website is great. Other than that, there are a few good blogs covering NOAH past and present very comprehensively.”

Q: Who is your breakout star of 2021 going to be, the one that fans must watch?

“Kaito Kiyomi’s star light is only going to continue to shine stronger this year, so I’ll be keeping a close eye on him. My personal hope is that Yoshiki Inamura evolves into the unstoppable force he is ready to become.”

Q: How much of a honour was it to be able to call Keiji Mutoh’s title win?

STEWART AND MARK IN ACTION

 “It was an incredible honor for me to call Keiji Muto’s title victory. It was even more of an honor to actually call his entrance to the Budokan over the venue microphone. To be part of such a historic production undoubtedly changed my career, and I’ll forever be grateful and proud of that.”

RELIVE KEIJI MUTOH’S GHC HEAVYWEIGHT TITLE WIN

Q: How did the opportunity come around for yourself to do commentary for NOAH on FITE tv?

 “The opportunity to commentate for NOAH came through AbemaTV which is owned by the same parent company as NOAH. Yuji Kitano knew me through my work with Pancrase on UFC Fight Pass since 2015 and RISE kickboxing on FITETV since 2018. He gave me a call and we talked. I liked what they had in mind bringing the product to the international audience, so it all went from there.”

Q: What do you do personally do to prepare for calling an event?

“I make sure I have the essential stats on the wrestlers first. Then I look back at their recent matches and look for results and patterns. From there I cross check previous matches with the same opponents they’re due to face, and that sometimes digs up older info that could be interesting for the viewer. The last thing I do is watch recent (sometimes old) matches of the wrestlers on the card again to look for patterns and evolution.”

I would like to take this time to personally thank Stewart for taking the time out to answer my questions and give us a great insight into NOAH, as well as his work as a commentator. Pro Wrestling NOAH’s popularity continues to grow since its partnership with Fite TV, and there’s no doubt that 2021 will be an amazing time to jump on board as a new fan of the promotion.

You can follow Stewart on Twitter here: @sfultonMMA

FOR ALL THE LATEST ON PRO WRESTLING NOAH:

YOUTUBE

TWITTER

FITE TV

WRESTLE UNIVERSE

AUTHOR: CRAIG SMITH

Published by One Stop Wrestling

Wrestling fan

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