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Aaron Henare
Toa Henare.jpg
Toa Henare in March 2018
Birth nameAaron Henry[1]
Born (1992-08-05) 5 August 1992 (age 29)
Auckland, New Zealand[2]
Professional wrestling career
Ring name(s)A-Class
Aaron Henry
Henare[2]
Toa Henare[3]
Aaron Henare
Billed height180 cm (5 ft 11 in)[4][5]
Billed weight105 kg (231 lb)[4][5]
Trained byNJPW Dojo
Debut2012[6]

Aaron Henry (born 5 August 1992) is a New Zealand professional wrestler currently signed to New Japan Pro-Wrestling (NJPW) under the ring name Aaron Henare (アーロン・ヘナーレ). He previously wrestled under as Toa Henare (トーア・ヘナーレ, Tōa Henāre).

Early life

Henry was born in Auckland, New Zealand, and competed in both amateur wrestling and mixed martial arts prior to becoming a professional wrestler.[5] He is of Cook Islander/Māori descent with Ngāpuhi and Ngāi Takoto links.[1] His uncle is former professional rugby league player Richie Barnett, who captained New Zealand at the 2000 Rugby League World Cup.[7][8]

Professional wrestling career

New Japan Pro-Wrestling (2016–present)

Early beginnings (2016-2021)

Henare in 2017
Henare in 2017

Henare signed with NJPW in early 2016 and debuted in September of that year, losing to Pro Wrestling Noah's Quiet Storm at Lion's Gate Project 3.[9] Henare's first win in NJPW came on 6 September, when he defeated fellow young lion Hirai Kawato.[10] He appeared on his first major NJPW show, Destruction in Tokyo on 17 September, teaming with David Finlay in a losing effort against Roppongi Vice.[11] On 12 November, Henare returned to his home city of Auckland, New Zealand, defeating Hikule'o at a Bad Luck Fale produced show.[12] Henare entered the 2016 World Tag League alongside veteran Manabu Nakanishi. The two finished last in their block with zero wins and zero points. On 21 February 2017, in a match with Tomoyuki Oka, Henare suffered an Achilles tendon injury and the match had to be stopped. He was taken out on a stretcher. Henare returned in November for the 2017 World Tag League, where he teamed with Togi Makabe.[13] The two finished the tournament with a record of one win and six losses.[14] On the Wrestle Kingdom 12 pre-show on 4 January 2018, Henare debuted under the new ring name Toa Henare.[3] On 27 January, at the New Beginning in Sapporo, Toa received his first title shot when he teamed up with Ryusuke Taguchi and Togi Makabe to unsuccessfully challenge the Guerillas of Destiny and Bad Luck Fale for the NEVER Openweight 6-Man Tag Team Championship.

In 2019, Toa teamed with Hiroshi Tanahashi for the World Tag League,[15] finishing with 3 wins and 12 losses.

United Empire (2021–present)

On April 4, 2021, Henare, now going by the ring name Aaron Henare, was revealed as the new member of Will Ospreay's United Empire faction, turning heel in the process, as he teams up with new stablemates Great-O-Khan and Jeff Cobb to defeat the Los Ingobernables de Japón team of Tetsuya Naito, Shingo Takagi, and Sanada at the Sakura Genesis 2021 event. In joining United Empire.[16][17]


All Elite Wrestling (2022–present)

On the June 8th episode of AEW Dynamite, Henare along with United Empire stablemates Kyle Fletcher and Mark Davis of Aussie Open, made their All Elite Wrestling debuts, assisting stable leader Will Ospreay in attacking Trent Beretta and FTR.[18]

Championships and accomplishments

References

  1. ^ a b Wall, Jamie (1 November 2018). "The spirit of a warrior: Toa Henare, Kiwi pro-wrestler". teaomaori.news. Maori Television. Retrieved 9 July 2020.
  2. ^ a b "The World's Largest Wrestling Database : Henare". Wrestlingdata.com. Retrieved 2017-01-08.
  3. ^ a b ブシモ 5th Anniversary Wrestle Kingdom 12 in 東京ドーム. New Japan Pro-Wrestling (in Japanese). Retrieved 2018-01-04.
  4. ^ a b "New Japan Pro-Wrestling : Henare". Sp.njpw.jp. Retrieved 2017-01-08.
  5. ^ a b c "Henare - NEW JAPAN PRO-WRESTLING". Retrieved 22 April 2017.
  6. ^ "The World's Largest Wrestling Database". Wrestlingdata.com. Retrieved 2017-01-08.
  7. ^ @henarenz (November 24, 2016). "That would be my uncle, Richie Barnett!" (Tweet) – via Twitter.
  8. ^ @henarenz (May 3, 2018). "However I come from a rugby league family my uncle was captain of the kiwis circa 2000" (Tweet) – via Twitter.
  9. ^ "The World's Largest Wrestling Database". Wrestlingdata.com. Retrieved 2017-01-08.
  10. ^ "The World's Largest Wrestling Database". Wrestlingdata.com. Retrieved 2017-01-08.
  11. ^ "The World's Largest Wrestling Database". Wrestlingdata.com. 2016-09-17. Retrieved 2017-01-08.
  12. ^ "The World's Largest Wrestling Database". Wrestlingdata.com. Retrieved 2017-01-08.
  13. ^ "【『World Tag』出場チーム決定!】 "新顔"が続々登場! ジュース&キャラハン組! エルガン&ジェフ・コブ組!バレッタ&チャッキーT組! 復活のヘナーレは真壁とタッグ結成!". New Japan Pro-Wrestling (in Japanese). 2017-11-06. Retrieved 2017-11-06.
  14. ^ "鉄拳Presents World Tag League 2017". New Japan Pro-Wrestling (in Japanese). Retrieved 2017-12-09.
  15. ^ "411MANIA". Toa Henare On Learning From Hiroshi Tanahashi, Trying to Break Through in NJPW. Retrieved 2021-09-30.
  16. ^ NJPW. "Aaron Henare revealed as United Empire's X factor | NEW JAPAN PRO-WRESTLING". NJPW. Retrieved 2021-04-04.
  17. ^ NJPW. "2021.04.04 SAKURA GENESIS 2021 | NEW JAPAN PRO-WRESTLING". NJPW. Retrieved 2021-04-04.
  18. ^ "AEW Dynamite Winners & Losers: Moxley Wins Big, Will Ospreay Debuts, & A New AEW Title". 9 June 2022.
  19. ^ "Pro Wrestling Illustrated (PWI) 500 for 2018". cagematch.net. Retrieved September 19, 2018.