International Wrestling Legend Masa Saito Dead at 76

masa saito dead dies passed away

Masa Saito, a wrestling champion in both Japan and the United States, lost his battle with Parkinson’s Disease over the weekend and passed away at the age of 76.

According to a statement from his wife that was released to Sports Hochi, the legendary performer passed away Saturday.  The statement said Saito battled Parkinson’s Disease for 17 years.

Saito wrestled for just about every major promotion during his more than 30-year career.  He was an AWA World Heavyweight Champion and two-time WWE Tag Team Champ alongside Mr. Fugi. Saito also worked for the NWA, All Japan, and WCW.

Saito famously took part in a 2-hour “Island Death Match” against Antonio Inoki on the deserted Ganryujima Island. The two battled across the small island with Inoki eventually picking up the win.  You can see a portion of that match below.

He retired from the ring in 1999 — one year before being diagnosed with Parkinson’s.