Kenta Kobayashi or more popular for his ring name Kenta Kobayashi is a Japanese Professional Wrestler. He is currently signed to the American wrestling promotion WWE and competes in the cruiserweight.
Kobayashi had the ring name Kenta during his professional career at Japan but later switches to Hideo Itami when he was signed by the WWE.
Early Life of Hideo Itami
Hideo Itami was born as Kenta Kobayashi on March 12, 1981, in Soka, Saitama, Japan. He was very athletic since his younger days and has practiced in sports like baseball and kickboxing but later shifted focus to wrestling. He trained under Yoshihiro Takayama and Kenta Kobashi to perfect his style of shoot-style wrestling.
Professional Life of Hideo Itami
Hideo Itami made his professional debut in professional wrestling on May 24, 2000, facing Naomichi Marufuji, in All Japan Pro Wrestling competing (AJPW) in the junior heavyweight division. Itami did not stay in the organization for long as the acting president of AJPW seceded from the company to form his own company, Pro Wrestling Noah.
Itami joined Pro Wrestling Noah and started competing in for the Junior Heavyweight Championship. After being out of the game for 1 year due to injury, Itami returned to Pro Wrestling with the ring name Kenta. He began competing in the championship and was able to reach the finals defeating wrestlers such as Kotaro Suzuki and Tsuyoshi Kikuchi. However, he was unable to defeat Yoshinobu Kanemaru on the Navigation with Breeze tour.
With Hideo Itami's growing popularity due to his success at the junior heavyweight championship, he joined his mentor, Kenta Kobashi, in the faction Burning. He teamed up with Naomichi Marufuji to become the GHC Junior Heavyweight Tag Team Champions by defeating the junior heavyweight veterans Jyushin Thunder Liger and Takehiro Murahama. Itami tried to claim the GHC Junior Heavyweight title but was unable to do so in 2003.
Itami and Marufuji were able to hold onto their title of Tag Team Champions for almost two years until they were defeated by Kendo Kashin and Takashi Sugiura on their first Tokyo Dome Show. Itami was finally able to win the Junior Heavyweight title on July 18 defeating Yoshinobu Kanemaru. In two months span, he defended his title against Kotaro Suzuki and Suwa. He lost his Junior Heavyweight title on June 4 of 2006 to Takashi Sugiura.
Hideo Itami "Kenta" teamed up with Taiji Ishimori to defeat Marufuji and Kota Ibushi in the NTV Junior Heavyweight Tag Team Tournament in the finals. The two challenged Shingo Takagi and BxB Hulk for the GHC Junior Heavyweight Tag Team Champions and won but lost the title to Yoshinobu Kanemaru and Kotaro Suzuki. After the loss of the tag title, Kenta returned to singles competition and defeated Bryan Danielson for his second claim at the GHC Junior Heavyweight Championship.201
Hideo Itami wrestled for the Japanese promotion until the end of 2013. On January 27, 2014, Itami moved to America and entered the WWE's Performance Center in Orlando, Florida for a tryout. He was signed by the WWE and began working for NXT. He debuted on September 11 at NXT TakeOver: Fatal 4-way. Itami became one of the strong new coming wrestlers. His first defeat in the promotion came on January 15, 2015, when he was defeated by Finn Balor.
At the WrestleMania Axxess NXT tournament held on March 27, Itami defeated Adrian Neville and Finn Balor to get a spot in the Andre the Giant Memorial Battle Royal of WrestleMania 31. He was eliminated in the tournament by the eventual winner Big Show.
Itami is currently in the main roster of the WWE as part of the cruiserweight division on 205 Live. He made his main roster debut on December 18 of 2017 at WWE Raw. He has been involved in various feuds including with wrestlers such as Gentleman Jack Gallagher, Akari Tozawa, Ali, Murphy, and Cedric Alexander. He also challenged Cedric Alexander for the WWE Cruiserweight Championship which ended up in a defeat for him.
Personal Life of Hideo Itami
Hideo Itami is a father to two sons. His sons are named Ryuu and Osuke. He has brought his sons to a few of his wrestling matches and there have been many pictures of them circulating on the internet. Despite the knowledge of him having children, there is no information when it comes to the mother of his sons. He is very private in the matter and has never given any information about his wife.
Furthermore, there are also no details of his past love affairs and girlfriend either. He is of Asian ethnicity and belongs to Japanese nationality. He is currently aged 37 years old.
Net Worth of Hideo Itami
Hideo Itami found success as a wrestler competing in his home country of Japan. However, since moving to the USA, he has slowly been climbing the WWE ladders and finding success as a wrestler in there as well. He is currently signed to RAW but information regarding his financial contract with the organization have not been disclosed. Due to lack of information regarding his financial revenue, Itami's net worth remains a mystery for now.