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WWE, Zero-One Alumna Ryan Sakoda Passes Away

September 27, 2021 | Posted by Jeremy Thomas
Ryan Sakoda Jimmy Wang Yang Tajiri WWE

Ryan Sakoda, who spent time in WWE and was a performer in Zero-One, has passed away. PWInsider reports that Sakota passed away on September 2nd. No word on his cause of death at this time; he was 46 years old.

Sakoda is perhaps best known for his run in WWE, where he first appeared as a judge for a posedown between Triple H and Scott Steiner in January of 2003 before signing to a developmental contract in September of that year. He made his on-screen debut alongside Akio (Jimmy Wang Yang) at No Mercy 2003, where the two interfered in the Cruiserweight Championship match to help Tajiri beat Rey Mysterio. They would then be known as Kyo Dai, Tajiri’s henchmen, and worked against the likes of the Dudley Boyz and FBI. He was released from his WWE contract in August of 2004.

Before his work for WWE, Sakoda began his wrestling career training and working as a regular for UPW in California. He went on to work in Zero-One as part of Team Emblem alongside Shinjiro Otani and Masato Tanaka. He and Samoa Joe had a run with the NWA Intercontinental Tag Team Championships during that time.

After leaving WWE, he returned to UPE as a part-time trainer and returned to the ring for Wrestling Society X in 2007.

Sakoda was one of the plantiffs (along with Luther Reigns and Russ McCullough) in a 2015 class-action suit against WWE regarding alleged traumatic brain injuries suffered while working there. The lawsuit was one of many handled by Konstantine Kyros and, like all of Kyros’ other lawsuits, was eventually dismissed.

On behalf of 411, our condolences to the family, friends, and fans of Mr. Sakoda.

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Ryan Sakoda, Jeremy Thomas