Bobby Fish Comes to AEW: What to Know About Former ROH and NXT Star

Bobby Fish AEW Dynamite Debut

Late last month, All Elite Wrestling confirmed that Bobby Fish would be making his AEW Dynamite debut, Best known for his work in such organizations as Ring of Honor, New Japan Pro-Wrestling, and WWE NXT, Fish will attempt to make a splash in a big way. This Wednesday, on the AEW Dynamite 2nd Anniversary episode, Fish challenges the new TNT Champion, Sammy Guevara. “The Spanish God” has welcomed all challengers into the fold and there may be few hungrier to step up to the plate. Before the title match in question takes place, here’s what to know about the near 2-decade veteran of the squared circle.

Bobby Fish – What to Know

In the Beginning

Having learned under Tony DeVito and 6x NWA World Heavyweight Champion Harley Race, Bobby Fish made his professional wrestling debut in 2002. In the formative years of his career, he worked for such promotions as Tri-State Wrestling and World Xtreme Wrestling, even making sporadic appearances for one of the places would eventually call home, Ring of Honor. He continued to gain experience on an international scale, beginning with his first tour of Japan with Pro Wrestling NOAH in 2006. In his first Japan tour alone, Fish worked with such names as 2 Cold Scorpio and current NJPW star KENTA.

Admittedly, in his first few years in wrestling, Bobby Fish’s success was modest at best. In May of 2005, in Pro Wrestling Unplugged, he captured the PWU Tag Team Championship alongside New York independent wrestler Scott Cardinal. However, when Fish made his official debut for Ring of Honor in 2012, his momentum picked up considerably.

Bobby Fish ROH
Photo / Ring of Honor

Ring of Honor

Bobby Fish made his official ROH debut at Killer Instinct in October, where he picked up a victory over current AEW star QT Marshall. The following month, he formed reDRagon alongside Kyle O’Reilly. In March of 2013, at ROH’s 11th Anniversary event, reDRagon defeated The Briscoes to win their first ROH World Tag Team Championship. Fish and O’Reilly would defend the titles against a litany of opposing teams, including SCUM and Forever Hooligans. Later that August, at Manhattan Mayhem V, reDRagon dropped the titles to The American Wolves. Throughout their time in ROH, reDRagon became 3x ROH World Tag Team Champions.

This isn’t to say that Fish’s time in ROH lacked singles success. In 2016, one year before his departure, Fish defeated Tomohiro Ishii at Global Wars to win the ROH World Television Championship. Fish held the TV title for 194 days, successfully defending it against Dalton Castle, Katsuyori Shibata, Hangman Page, and others. His reign came to an end the following November, where he lost the title to Will Ospreay at an ROH event in England.

reDRagon
Photo / New Japan-Pro Wrestling

Continued Work in Japan

In terms of Pro Wrestling NOAH, Bobby Fish’s work continued through to 2014. He worked various tours with the company in different capacities, too. For example, in September of 2012, he competed in the NTV G Cup Junior Heavyweight League, where he was paired off with Eddie Edwards. Participating in Block A, Fish and Edwards secured 4 points. Despite a solid showing, they were unable to advance to the finals. The following year, Fish participated in NOAH’s Global Tag League; once again, he tagged with Edwards. They ended Block A with 2 points to their name.

Starting in 2014, via the business relationship between ROH and NJPW, Fish made multiple appearances for the latter promotion. In October of that year, reDRagon competed in the Super Jr. Tag Tournament, ultimately defeating The Young Bucks to win it all. From there, reDRagon captured their first IWGP Junior Heavyweight Tag Team Championship, which they would hold once more in 2015. Along with such duos as Roppongi Vice and The Time Splitters, Fish and O’Reilly became a staple of the junior heavyweight tag team scene in NJPW.

Not unlike his time in ROH, there were instances of Fish breaking away as a singles competitor in NJPW. In May of 2015, Fish participated in the Best of the Super Juniors. In Block B, Fish had a strong showing, defeating such names as Rocky Romero and Nick Jackson. He ended the tournament with 10 points, which was 2 points shy of tying Kushida with 12. On September 17, 2016, at Destruction in Tokyo, Fish challenged Katsuyori Shibata for the NEVER Openweight Championship. Though Fish’s efforts were valiant, he was unable to unseat Shibata in their 16-minute-plus encounter.

NXT
Photo / World Wrestling Entertainment

 

NXT and The Undisputed Era

Bobby Fish took the next big step in his professional wrestling career when he signed with World Wrestling Entertainment in the summer of 2017. He worked what was originally considered a one-off match with Aleister Black, though it was at NXT TakeOver: Brooklyn III in August when the proverbial pieces truly started to come together. Fish and O’Reilly reunited during the show, attacking SAnitY, who won the NXT Tag Team Championship from The Authors of Pain mere moments before. Fish and O’Reilly’s work wasn’t done here, though; alongside the debuting Adam Cole, the trio attacked Drew McIntyre, who just won the NXT Championship from Bobby Roode. As their theme song declared, they shocked the system.

O’Reilly, Fish, Cole, and later Roderick Strong, became The Undisputed Era. To say that this was a dominant group would be an understatement. The Undisputed Era held the NXT Tag Team Championship on a recognized 3 occasions, the most of any team in the promotion’s history. The group also saw 2 North American Championship reigns and 1 NXT Championship reign, not to mention a litany of Year-End Awards. From the group’s debut in August to their eventual disbanding this past March, they were a force to be reckoned with.

Bobby Fish’s NXT career wasn’t without its bumps in the roads, however. Time and time again, injuries would impede his momentum, leaving him to either take time off or participate on TV in a non-competitive capacity. This past August, it was announced that Fish, along with several other NXT and Performance Center talent, was released from WWE.

What the Future Holds for Bobby Fish

At 44 years of age, it doesn’t appear that the tag team veteran is slowing down anytime soon. In addition to his impending AEW Dynamite debut, Bobby Fish has already been making waves in different promotions. Case and point, late last month, it was announced that Fish would appear for Major League Wrestling at the promotion’s October 2 event, Fightland. He competed in the 2021 Opera Cup, defeating Lee Moriarty in the first round before falling to Davey Richards in their semifinal encounter. Despite this, one may expect Fish to make more regular appearances for MLW.

As far as Bobby Fish in AEW is concerned, his upcoming TNT title match against Sammy Guevara could be the very beginning. AEW has no shortage of veteran figures in the company; on paper, Fish fits the mold nicely. Whether he stays with the promotion long remains to be seen. Regardless, one detail remains certain: he aims to make the most of this opportunity.

Stay tuned to the Last Word on Pro Wrestling for more on this and other stories from around the world of wrestling, as they develop. You can always count on LWOPW to be on top of the major news in the wrestling world, as well as to provide you with analysis, previews, videos, interviews, and editorials on the wrestling world.  You can catch AEW Dynamite Wednesday nights at 8 PM ET on TNT and AEW Dark: Elevation (Monday nights) and AEW: Dark (Tuesday nights) at 7 PM ET on YouTube. AEW Rampage airs on TNT at 10 PM EST every Friday night.


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