Bison Smith - Career - Independent and Japanese Promotions

Independent and Japanese Promotions

Smith toured in Japan first in July 2001. On June 7, 2003, Smith won the Pro Wrestling IRON Heavyweight Championship, by defeating Bart Blaxson, and held the title for nearly two years before he dropped it on April 28, 2005 to California wrestler Malachi. He competed for the International Wrestling Association (IWA) in Puerto Rico, where, on November 1, 2003, he defeated Glamour Boy Shane to win the IWA World Heavyweight Championship, which he held for over a month, before losing it back to Glamour Boy Shane. On July 16, 2004, he defeated Slash Venom to win the vacant IWA Hardcore Championship. He lost it later that month to Chet Jablonski. On September 25, 2004, Smith won the New Breed Wrestling Association's top championship, the NBWA Championship, when he and Morgan defeated B.J. Whitmer and ODB in a tag team match, where the person who won the pin, won the Championship. He competed sporadically for the next few months, and won the IWA Intercontinental Heavyweight Championship from Glamour Boy Shane on November 20, 2005. He held the Championship for over a year, before losing it to Slash Venom on December 12, 2005 in a steel cage match.

He began competing for the Japanese promotion, Pro Wrestling Noah, in 2005, where he competed mainly in tag team matches. He made his Pro Wrestling Noah debut on May 29, 2005, where he, Akitoshi Saito, and Takashi Sugiura defeated Akira Taue, Takuma Sano, and Jun Izumida. In his next appearance two days later, Smith and Low Ki were defeated by KENTA and Kenta Kobashi. He teamed with fellow Americans, and his trainers, Michael Modest and Donovan Morgan in June to defeat Takeshi Rikio, Mohammed Yone, and Yoshinobu Kanemaru, which was followed by a defeat for his team, also including Akitoshi Saito and Masao Inoue, to Mitsuharu Misawa, Akira Taue, and Jun Izumida. Smith didn't appear again in Pro Wrestling Noah until he went on a tour with them in November 2005, where he usually teamed up with fellow "gaijins", or foreigners, most commonly Low Ki. He also teamed with Nigel McGuinness, Doug Williams and Scorpio on various occasions throughout November and December 2005.

At the start of 2006, Smith returned to the United States, where he began competing for New Wrestling Superstars. In August 2006, Smith began regularly wrestling for Fusion Pro Wrestling. He also wrestled for the American Wrestling Federation (AWF), and on November 11, 2006, he won the AWF Heavyweight Championship by defeating Steve Gatorwolf. In July 2007, he returned to the IWA in Puerto Rico, where he won the IWA World Heavyweight title for the second time by defeating Chicano on July 15. He later lost the Championship to Blitz on September 30, 2007. In October 2007, while touring Japan with Pro Wrestling Noah, he suffered a broken breastbone. In 2008, he returned to Pro Wrestling Noah, and, with Akitoshi Saito, won the GHC Tag Team Championship on May 23, by defeating Naomichi Marufuji and Takashi Sugiura. Smith and Saito also won the Global Tag League 2008. On April 14, 2010, Smith teamed up with Keith Walker to win the GHC Tag Team Championship from Takeshi Rikioh and Muhammad Yone. On August 31, however, Walker's father died. Walker later chose not to immediately return to Japan, and on September 10 both Smith and Walker were stripped of the GHC Tag Team Championship. On January 15, 2011, Smith unsuccessfully challenged Takashi Sugiura for the GHC Heavyweight Championship.

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