Zenshi is a good wrestler. I could leave it at that, and that would be enough as to why Zenshi should win a match on MLW Fusion. But I understand the position he occupies on the roster, and I know its importance. He's the gatekeeper of Fusion: people show up and have a good match with him to show they belong here. Even Juice Robinson would win more often when he was NXT's gatekeeper as CJ Parker though, and even if they want to keep Zenshi in this role he needs some wins. The reasons why can be broken into his talent, his career, and his role.
As I said, Zenshi is a good wrestler, and he gets to showcase that. In recent matches with the likes of Daivari, Calvin Tankman, and Laredo Kid, Zenshi has been able to show his ability and that he is a very entertaining high flyer. His matches have all been very good, and when you see someone show something like that you want to see them succeed. His match with Laredo Kid especially was great fun, and for a few spots I genuinely thought he might win, picking up the AAA Cruiserweight Championship. Of course, he lost the match, and it would be Lio Rush who would pick up that title, but the important thing is Zenshi would have been believable as champion. Losing all the time but still being a believable winner is a sign of a good gatekeeper, because beating them means something. Another reason Zenshi works well for incoming talent is his experience. He has a decade of wrestling under his belt, and has wrestled places like Beyond, Chikara and GCW. He wrestled under various names like Charade and Shynron. This is an element of him that I think is downplayed on MLW, but he's kinda been everywhere. Pick a favorite from the 2010s scene and he probably fought them. He's fought just about every star of the indie scene from Eddie Kingston to Amazing Red. In the last few years though, apart from MLW, he's begun to vanish from United States shows. To find recent Zenshi matches I had to head south of the border, and then south a few borders more.
Zenshi has had wonderful matches lately in Peru and Chile. According to Cagematch he's originally from Atlanta but on MLW is billed from Chile. Despite being from the United States, he at this point certainly represents South American wrestling companies like LWA, GLL and CLL. I was able to find some matches from these companies thanks to Peruvianhero archive on YouTube, but these companies deserve to be seen on a wider stage, and that will only happen if people want to see it. The more people get excited about Zenshi, the more they look into him and find these companies, and the more they want to see full shows from them. Giving Zenshi some wins has the ability to help South American wrestling get more exposure, and it's about time. Before this article South America was the only continent(besides Antarctica) I hadn't seen wrestling from. Of course, it's unfair to put an entire continent's wrestling on one person, but the more people see these matches the more exposure others will get. I saw some very talented wrestlers like in the match above and below, and would love to see them representing Peru on a global stage. Giving Zenshi a few key wins can really go a long way in that, and I think seeing wrestling from more countries is always good!
Finally, not only does Zenshi's talent merit him winning, and it showcases an underseen region, it also benefits his role. As I said, he's the gatekeeper. Beating him is a good thing because he's respected. At some point though, he'll start to lose that sheen. If literally everyone beats Zenshi, and you show up and beat Zenshi, then you're just like everyone else. He needs a win to make sure beating him stays important. He's had many big wins through his career, again, including guys like Amazing Red; unfortunately though, many of those were under other names, so it’s easy to forget Shynron had so many big wins when Zenshi can't get a single one. The biggest problem though is that MLW only has one hour a week of programming. They have a large roster to showcase and not a lot of time to do it. As such, finding time to give Zenshi some wins could prove difficult. I’d like to propose a second hour of MLW: either a second hour of Fusion or another show. If it’s a second show Zenshi could become the ace of that show. It would solve the problem of him not winning while keeping the current pace of Fusion and establishing the second show as must see. If MLW wants to keep signing people to full time contracts, and they want to introduce a women’s division still, they will need more time, and Zenshi could lead that charge. Zenshi is a very talented wrestler, and while I understand the importance of someone of his talent fighting incoming talent like Tankman, Laredo Kid, and Daivari, he needs to remind the audience of why beating him is a big deal.
Zenshi is a great talent, and has been for a decade now. Whether it was in Chikara, Beyond, some of the companies in Peru and Chile, or MLW, he puts on good shows wherever he goes. He eventually needs a championship, just to say thank you for all his dedication, but right now let’s focus on the immediate picture, and I think it’s obvious that Zenshi needs a win.
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