Recently The Two Man Power Trip of Wrestling was able to welcome for a very rare interview former Orient Express and Bad Company member, Pat Tanaka. Known as a tag team specialist in the AWA and WWF, Tanaka's size and moves were deemed innovative for the time he competed and he retells the stories that helped mold his career and overcome a lot of adversity during a "big man" era. We also get amazing insight into the famed Royal Rumble 1991 opening match between the Orient Express and The Rockers where the four men competing turned three minuets into an all time classic. The full episode can be downloaded at this link.
Being paired with Sato as The Orient Express:
"I didn't mind it at all. I am Japanese for real but I'm not from Japan. I was born in the States and heck I didn't mind it at all and it is apart of my third generation. I am Japanese and I didn't mind playing Japanese and it is cool with me because what better character to give? People would have had plastic surgery to look oriental to take my place. How could I say no?"
"I was just like wow. I couldn't believe it was so awesome. I remember knowing it was so different for me because you have to remember that there was no small guys back then. I was 5'8'' and I weighed 170lbs and I remember our first team we worked with was the Demolition and they were looking at me as to say yeah right. They were upset and were saying that they were not working with us, it was bullsh*t and that they were not putting over “those” guys. When you walked in that dressing room it was intimidating because you've got all these big guys and they were asking what are you doing Vince? It was horrible how it was to us but I just did whatever they asked me to do and I know Vince had to tell them that either you work with us or you leave because he didn't want anything happening to us when we are in the ring. After a couple of matches everybody knew we were okay and they got to know me and they knew that I worked my ass off and that I would bump my ass off for them and do my job. I wasn't out there to be a star, I was there to make them look good that was my job."
For this and every other episode of The Two Man Power Trip of Wrestling and The Triple Threat Podcast featuring "The Franchise" Shane Douglas please subscribe to them on iTunes, Spotify, iHeartRadio, Podomatic, and Player FM. Also follow them on Twitter @TwoManPowerTrip & @rasslinpal. Thanks to them for sending the transcript.