Ultimo Dragon vs Drago
The last student of legend Bruce Lee, vs the dead dragon back as an immortal being in lucha libre AAA. (WCW vs AAA) Ultimo Dragon is a wrestling legends and the man behind most students of the Dragon Gate promotion, there’s is no comparison to his success in the wrestling world. But what if, a dark dragon adversary were to come along? Drago, a less known and less achieved wrestler from Mexico’s AAA promotion recently made a name for himself in the US after playing various other characters in Mexico. Drago is a nunchuck-swinging, fire-breathing, slimy-tongue modern wrestling talent with a hybrid style and his own variation of “Dragon” wrestling moves. What would this rivalry look like? What a match that could come about. Does Ultimo Dragon know how to use nunchucks?
1987-1998: Último Dragón Yoshihiro Asai (Ultimo Dragon) graduated from the New Japan Pro Wrestling (NJPW) dojo in 1987, but left the promotion after he struggled to battle his way up towards mid-card status. He moved to Mexico where he joined the Universal Wrestling Association and subsequently won the UWA World Welterweight Championship in 1988. In March 1990, he joined the Universal Wrestling Federation in Japan. He also competed in the Universal Lucha Libre promotion founded by his mentor Gran Hamada. In 1991, he signed with the Mexican Consejo Mundial de Lucha Libre (CMLL) promotion. In CMLL, he adopted the Último Dragón (“Last Dragon”) mask and persona that saw Ultimo Dragon claiming to be the last student taught by legendary martial artist Bruce Lee, whose nickname was “The Dragon”. The gimmick was later dropped, but the name remained. Late in 1992, Misteriosito (a mini-wrestler) was turned into “Último Dragoncito” , a Mini-Estrella version of Ultimo Dragon. During the same period, Ultimo Dragon also signed with the Japanese WAR promotion, and due to co-promoting, he was able to wrestle for NJPW. In Japan, he became IWGP Junior Heavyweight Champion twice, and in Mexico, he held various titles. In later years, he wrestled for AAA.
He then made his American debut for the World Championship Wrestling (WCW) promotion in 1996 initially under the mistranslated name “Ultimate Dragon“. He was referred to by this name for several months in WCW until they reverted to using his Spanish ring name. He quickly was pushed into the lime-light of the WCW Cruiserweight division with Sonny Onoo as his manager. He was instantly a heel based upon the fact he was Japanese and Sonny Onoo was his manager. He made his WCW pay-per view debut in 1996’s Hog Wild against Rey Misterio Jr. for the WCW Cruiserweight title, and then faced him again at WCW World War 3 when he returned to WCW as the J-Crown champion. Ultimo Dragon won the WCW World Television title and the WCW Cruiserweight title one last time from Eddie Guerrero. From December 29, 1996 through January 4, 1997 Ultimo Dragon was the active reigning and defending champion of ten titles, a record which still stands today. Ultimo Dragon began training others from 1997 and opened his own wrestling school in Mexico and Japan called Toryumon, teaching the lucha libre style to Japanese hopefuls. (Toryumon would later evolve into the Dragon Gate promotion with the roster of wrestlers trained by Ultimo Dragon.) In 1998, Ultimo Dragon lost the WCW Cruiserweight title on the first WCW Thunder to Juventud Guerrera, and then suffered an arm injury that required surgery. The operation was botched, causing nerve damage. It was thought that this would force an end of his career and he announced his retirement.
1998-2008: Alan Meanwhile also in 1998, Victor Soto (Drago) made his professional wrestling debut in April of 1998 on a Lucha Libre AAA Worldwide (AAA) show, under the name Morfo and feuding with Arlequin. Later on his ring name was changed to “Jimmy Boy” and he was teamed up with Billy and Vangelis to form a Boy band inspired group called Los Spice Boys. (Drago had a number of different gimmicks marketed to women.) In 2001 Drago’s gimmick became Alan as he was made part of a group called Los Barrio Boys along with Billy Boy (formerly known as “Spice Boy” Billy) and Decnis. The group was a constant on AAA’s undercards for many years, often fighting the Black Family.
2002-2004: WWE In 2002, Ultimo Dragon underwent another surgery to repair the damage done to his arm in hopes of returning to wrestling. In late 2002 Ultimo Dragon was in talks with World Wrestling Entertainment for another shot at a United States run. To get back into ring shape he returned to action for his T2P and Toryumon Mexico promotions. In the spring of 2003, he signed with World Wrestling Entertainment as the Último Dragón, seeking to realize his two lifelong goals of competing in Madison Square Garden and performing at WrestleMania. He was brought in on the heels of the signing of Rey Mysterio on the belief that he would make as big of an impact as Mysterio did upon his WWE debut. Ultimo Dragon made his WWE television debut at Madison Square Garden on June 26, 2003 episode of SmackDown! in a match with Shannon Moore, where he debuted his finisher, the Asai DDT (a standing shiranui) to the American wrestling audience. Throughout the summer he competed in a tournament for the WWE United States Championship beating Jamie Noble but losing to eventual winner, Eddie Guerrero. He quickly rebounded by beating Kanyon in a WWE Heat match. He then wrestled on WWE Velocity for the next few weeks, leading to a match with Rey Mysterio on SmackDown. Dragon won the match only after Tajiri interfered and showed respect to Dragon due to their Japanese heritage. The next week Dragon teamed with Mysterio to take on Tajiri and Nunzio. After this match, he was not seen on SmackDown! for several months until the build for the Cruiserweight Open at WrestleMania XX. At the event, Dragon participated in the Open. Dragon’s WrestleMania resulted in one of WrestleMania’s most famous blunders, tripping as he entered the arena from the backstage area. The trip was edited out of the WrestleMania XX DVD. After the open, he faced Chavo Guerrero and Nunzio in his last WWE matches. On April 22, 2004, WWE announced that Ultimo Dragon was released from his WWE contract after Ultimo Dragon asked for his release from WWE to go back to Japan immediately.
2004: indie Ultimo Dragon One month later after being released from WWE, Ultimo Dragon quickly picked up a New Japan tour on May 1, 2004. He has occasionally wrestled for the Consejo Mundial de Lucha Libre. He also took part in the short lived Japanese independent promotion Dragondoor, ran by one of his students Noriaki Kawabata using mostly T2P and Toryumon X graduates. He would wrestle in matches against Último Guerrero and various other stars who wrestled in Mexico or Japanese based lucha libre promotions. Since the fall of Dragondoor he went back to Mexico to run another class of the Toryumon school, which has led to some standouts in Hajime Ohara, Kazuchika Okada and Pequeño Ninja. The rest of the Toryumon students along with Ultimo Dragon joined the Tatsumi Fujinami promoted Dradition promotion in Japan. In 2006, Ultimo Dragon began promoting the annual “Toryumon Mexico: Dragon Mania” wrestling show. He also wrestled at UWA Hardcore Wrestling based outside of Toronto, Ontario, Canada. He has wrestled against Sonjay Dutt, M-Dogg 20, Chris Sabin, Alex Shelley, Jyushin Thunder Liger and Black Tiger all in the UWA. Since then he has been working in Japan for various independent promotions such as Pro Wrestling KAGEKI and Michinoku Pro. He has also been to Mexico as well as in Spain, working for Nu Wrestling Evolution.
2008: Gato Drago began working as Gato Eveready, a masked character sponsored by a AAA sponsor Eveready Battery (Energizer Battery). Originally another wrestler worked under the mask but Alan took over, while occasionally working as Alan as well. In February 2011, Eveready Battery ended their sponsorship deal with AAA and Gato Eveready‘s ring name was changed to El Gato.
2011: Drago On April 20, 2011, a new character named Drago made his debut and given a major push as a face, fighting for AAA in the war against La Sociedad and Los Bizarros. Drago then joined forces with La Parka, Dark Cuervo, Dark Espíritu and Dark Ozz to form El Inframundo (“The Underworld“). Drag would become the leader of The Underworld.
2013: AJPW August 11, Drago and fellow AAA worker Argenis made their debuts for All Japan Pro Wrestling in Tokyo, facing Kenso (Kenzo Suzuki) and Sushi (Kiyoshi) in a tag team match. They were in contention for the All Asia Tag Team Championship but were unsuccessful. Meanwhile, Ultimo Dragon defeated Yoshinobu Kanemaru to win All Japan Pro Wrestling‘s World Junior Heavyweight Championship. In 2015, Ultimo Dragon and the same opponent would capture the same All Asia Tag Team Championship. Since December 2013, Ultimo Dragon has competed mostly for All Japan Pro Wrestling as a freelancer.
2014: Lucha Underground In August 2014, Drago was announced as one of five AAA wrestlers to star in Lucha Underground, a new American television series on El Rey, alongside Pentagón Jr., Fénix, Aero Star, King Cuerno and Sexy Star. Drago would form a new faction called The Reptile Tribe with Pindar and Vibora, managed by Cobra Moon and win the Lucha Underground Trios Championship. Lucha Underground would propel Drago into the US indies and in 2015 Drago made his debut for Pro Wrestling Guerrilla, Chikara, and other indies. In 2017, Drago made his debut for Global Force Wrestling/Impact Wrestling for the GFX Tag Team Championship and in the 2017 GFW Super X Cup Tournament. Meanwhile Ultimo Dragon lost the World Junior Heavyweight Championship to Atsushi Aoki in 2014, and in 2017 he regained the title by defeating Tajiri.
Tale of the tape:
|WWE, WCW, AJPW, CMLL||Known In||Lucha Underground, AAA, indies|
|Gran Hamada, Kotetsu Yamamoto, NJPW Dojo||Trained by||El Picudo|
|Asai DDT, Asai Moonsault||Signature Moves||Flip DDT, Running twisting moonsault plancha|
|“The Last Dragon”||Known As||“The Dead Dragon”|
Who would win this rivalry?
Can it happen?
Ultimo Dragon is not getting any younger past his 50s, altho Drago is only 8 years younger. It’s definitely possible to come about, somewhere, somehow, possibly in AJPW or in a Mexican promotion. However, it’s unlikely on a grand stage and at this point. Never say never!