Low Ki

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Low Ki
Kaval.jpg
Birth name Brandon Silvestry[1]
Ring name(s) Kaval[2]
Kawal[3]
Loki[4]
LoKi[1]
Low Ki[1]
Quick Kick[1]
Senshi[1]
Billed height 5 ft 8 in (1.73 m)[5]
Billed weight 174 lb (79 kg)[5]
Born (1979-09-06) September 6, 1979 (age 34)[1][6]
Brooklyn, New York[1][6]
Billed from Brooklyn, New York[5]
Trained by Homicide[3]
Jim Kettner[3]
Debut October 10, 1998[1][6]

Brandon Silvestry (born September 6, 1979)[1][6] is an American professional wrestler.[7] He is best known under his ring names Low Ki and Senshi in Total Nonstop Action Wrestling, and Kaval in World Wrestling Entertainment.[7] He is a former two-time TNA X Division Champion, one-time PWG World Champion, one-time ROH Champion and a three-time NWA World Tag Team Champion. In addition, he has won a number of tournaments and other championships on the independent circuit, and was the winner of the second season of WWE NXT in 2010. Silvestry has also worked extensively in Japan, most notably for New Japan Pro Wrestling, where he was a three-time IWGP Junior Heavyweight Champion, and Pro Wrestling Zero-One, where he was a one-time NWA/UPW/Zero-One International Junior Heavyweight and NWA International Lightweight Tag Team Champion.

Professional wrestling career[edit]

Early career and training[edit]

Silvestry began wrestling in late 1998 under the ring name Low Ki, which he derived from the lyrics of the song "No Diggity". He began wrestling for Jersey All Pro Wrestling (JAPW) in 1998, challenging Homicide and Kane D for the JAPW Tag Team Championship.[8] The following year he challenged for the JAPW Light Heavyweight Championship twice, unsuccessfully, but defeated Crazy Ivan and Judas Young to win the second Best of the Light Heavyweights tournament.[9]

In 2000, he began making several appearances in the World Wrestling Federation on their programs Metal and Jakked, where he competed against the likes of Raven, Crash Holly, Christian and Essa Ríos.[1] The following year he made it through to the finals of All Pro Wrestling's King of the Indies tournament, losing the crown to American Dragon.[10] It was also during 2001 that he defeated Nick Berk and Homicide in separate matches on the same evening to win both the JAPW Heavyweight and Light Heavyweight Titles; he would successfully defend both titles in separate matches at their Fourth Anniversary Show later that month in July. He lost both titles in a Three Way match the following month to Homicide, with Xavier as the other competitor.[11]

Ring of Honor (2002–2006)[edit]

Low Ki in the ring in 2008.

Low Ki made his Ring of Honor (ROH) debut at its first show, The Era of Honor Begins, on February 23. In the show's main event, he defeated Bryan Danielson and "The Fallen Angel" Christopher Daniels.[12] On July 27, 2002, at Crowning a Champion, he became the first ever ROH Champion by defeating Daniels, Spanky and Doug Williams in a Four Way Ironman match.[13][14] On August 24, Low Ki successfully defended his title against A.J. Styles.[13] On September 21, at Unscripted, he lost the title to Xavier, who, after winning the title, became a member of Daniels's faction The Prophecy.[13][15] Low Ki then faced Samoa Joe on October 5 in what was Joe's official ROH debut in a "Fight Without Honor". In what resembled more of an MMA fight, Low Ki won the match and they shook hands after the match.[1] Low Ki left the promotion in 2004 due to the Feinstein incident, but he returned on July 17, 2004, during a match, where Samoa Joe and the Briscoe Brothers fought against The Rottweilers (Homicide and the Havana Pitbulls).[1] It looked like Low Ki would save Samoa Joe from a beatdown by The Rottweilers, but instead he spat on the ROH Championship, which was then held by Joe, and joined The Rottweilers.[15]

At Weekend of Thunder Night 2 on November 6, 2004, he started a feud with Bryan Danielson, who was Low Ki's partner in a match against Samoa Joe and Jushin "Thunder" Liger. Low Ki and Danielson lost the match and Low Ki blamed his partner for that, so The Rottweilers started a beatdown on Danielson.[16] On December 4, at All Star Extravaganza II, Danielson defeated Homicide of The Rottweilers.[17] In that same event, Low Ki wrestled Austin Aries in a number one contender's match to determine who would face ROH Champion Samoa Joe for the title. The match ended in a draw. Officials extended the match, but Low Ki refused to wrestle, so Aries was declared the winner.[17] Instead of facing Joe at Final Battle 2004, Low Ki wrestled Danielson, but got himself disqualified and then attacked the referee.[1] This was enough for ROH officials to suspend him indefinitely as a result.[15]

Low Ki returned on May 7, 2005 and immediately attacked Jay Lethal and Samoa Joe at Manhattan Mayhem with his fellow Rottweilers, Homicide, Julius Smokes, Monsta Mack and Rocky Romero.[18] The impromptu tag team match was made: The Rottweilers vs. Samoa Joe and Jay Lethal. Low Ki and Homicide won the match and injured Lethal with a Ghetto Stomp/Cop Killa combination.[1] The feud continued on June 18 at Death Before Dishonor III, where he and Lethal faced each other in a singles match, but it ended in a no contest.[1] They had a rematch on August 12 at Redemption, but the ending was the same and Rottweilers beat Lethal down after the match.[1] Finally, on September 17 at Glory By Honor IV, a "Fight Without Honor" between the two ended with Low Ki getting a pinfall victory over Lethal.[1] After Samoa Joe went on to save Colt Cabana from a beatdown by The Rottweilers, Lethal came out to even the odds and said that he wanted yet another rematch with Low Ki, which Lethal won this time, ending the feud.[1] Later in the year, Low Ki helped Homicide in his feud against Colt Cabana.[1] On December 17, 2005, at Final Battle 2005, he challenged Kenta for his GHC Junior Heavyweight Championship, but came up short.[1] Low Ki left ROH once again in January 2006 due to a "disagreement in business arrangements".[1] He won his last match on January 28 against Jack Evans.[1] ROH covered his leaving by having the ROH commissioner Jim Cornette ban Low Ki from Ring of Honor for life after it was discovered that he was the one who knocked Cornette's tooth out at that show.[19] He was also used as a focus point (in name only) in the Cornette/Homicide feud in the summer of 2006, with Cornette refusing to reinstate Low Ki as Homicide's "third wish."[19]

Total Nonstop Action Wrestling (2002–2004)[edit]

Low Ki's first stint with Total Nonstop Action Wrestling (TNA) was for its debut show on June 19, 2002, in a six-man tag team match alongside A.J. Styles and Jerry Lynn against the Flying Elvises.[1] On June 26, he attempted to become the first X Division Champion, but was beaten by Styles. He would, though, eventually go on to win the title from Styles on August 7, but lost it three weeks later to Lynn.[1] He would later form the Triple X faction with Christopher Daniels and Elix Skipper that year and hold the NWA World Tag Team Championship twice, once each with Daniels and Skipper.[1] When Daniels's greed for the X Division Championship initially forced Low Ki out of Triple X, Low Ki would go on to battle Daniels in Ultimate X, but his pursuit was unsuccessful.[1] He left TNA in July 2004 and made his return to ROH.

Japan (2002–2009)[edit]

Low Ki wrestling Kenta Kobashi.

Low Ki made his first trip to Japan with Pro Wrestling Zero-One in 2002. On September 16, he wrestled Leonardo Spanky and won the International Junior Heavyweight Championship from him.[1] He held the championship until August 31, 2003, when he lost it to Wataru Sakata. During 2003, Low Ki also made several appearances for All Japan Pro Wrestling (AJPW).

Low Ki left Zero-One in mid-2004 to join Pro Wrestling Noah, where he was instantly given a title shot against Global Honored Crown (GHC) Junior Heavyweight Champion Yoshinobu Kanemaru, which he was unable to win.[15] During this period, he represented Pro Wrestling Noah in MXW Pro Wrestling's Gaijin Battle Series. He later joined New Japan Pro Wrestling (NJPW) and joined Shinsuke Nakamura's stable RISE, replacing the injured Milano Collection A.T. In his first match back, he suffered a knee injury, which required surgery. Low Ki returned to the promotion in September, defecting from RISE to join New Japan's main villainous faction, Great Bash Heel (GBH).

After joining GBH, he captured the International Wrestling Grand Prix (IWGP) Junior Heavyweight Championship from Tiger Mask on September 21, 2008 on NJPW's Circuit 2008 New Japan Generation tour. He subsequently lost it back to Tiger Mask on NJPW's Wrestle Kingdom III show in Tokyo on January 4, 2009. After losing the championship, Low Ki made several appearances for Hustle.

Return to TNA (2006–2008)[edit]

At Lockdown, Christopher Daniels's mystery opponent was revealed to be the returning Low Ki, who wrestled under the name of Senshi (Japanese for "warrior" or "soldier").[20] Following Lockdown, Senshi was not seen in action for several weeks. Instead, he was built up with a series of vignettes hyping his background, training, and desire to dominate the X Division once more, hinting at the possibility of challenging the X Division Champion, the undefeated Samoa Joe.

Senshi defeated Alex Shelley, Jay Lethal, Petey Williams, Shark Boy, and Sonjay Dutt at Slammiversary to become the number one contender to the X Division Championship.[21] Senshi went on to become X Division Champion again on the June 22, 2006 episode of Impact!, defeating Joe and Dutt after he pinned Dutt.[22] He defended the title on several occasions against various opponents while also remaining undefeated for six months until he lost the title to Chris Sabin at Bound for Glory.[23]

Senshi later feuded with Austin Starr. Their feud would continue until Lockdown in a Six Sides of Steel match, which he won.[24] At Slammiversary, he teamed with Rhino to defeat The Latin American Xchange (LAX).[25] At Victory Road, Senshi competed in a 10-Man Ultimate X Match, which he lost.[26] After the match, however, Triple X was reformed with Daniels, Senshi, and the returning Skipper.[26] They won their reunion match on the July 19, 2007 episode of Impact! against Serotonin.[27]

Triple X faced Lethal and Dutt and The Motor City Machine Guns at Hard Justice in a losing effort.[28] Skipper and Senshi also went on to face LAX at Bound for Glory in Ultimate X, ultimately losing.[29]

During December 2007, it was reported that Senshi had submitted his resignation to TNA and he left the promotion shortly after. In 2008, Silvestry helped TNA during the development of its first ever video game by providing both voicing and motion capture for the game's protagonist, Suicide.

Pro Wrestling Guerrilla (2007–2008, 2011)[edit]

Low Ki with the 2008 Battle of Los Angeles trophy.

Low Ki made his debut for Pro Wrestling Guerrilla (PWG) on April 7, 2007, defeating Davey Richards at All Star Weekend V – Night One.[30] On January 5, 2008, Low Ki won the PWG World Championship after defeating Bryan Danielson in an unannounced match.[31] He had one successful title defense against El Generico,[32] before a knee injury forced him to forfeit the championship just a month later.[1]

Low Ki returned to PWG at All Star Weekend 7 – Night One on August 30, 2008, where he was a part of a four-way match for the World Championship; the bout also featured Eddie Kingston, Necro Butcher, and defending champion Chris Hero, who retained by pinning Kingston.[33] On November 1 and 2 in Burbank, California, Low Ki defeated Roderick Strong in the opening round, Masato Yoshino in the quarterfinals, Nigel McGuinness in the semifinals, and Chris Hero in a non-title final match to win the 2008 Battle of Los Angeles tournament.[34][35]

After his World Wrestling Entertainment tenure, Low Ki returned to PWG on January 29, 2011, during the WrestleReunion 5 weekend, in a rematch from 2007, where he defeated Davey Richards.[36] In his next appearance on April 9, Low Ki defeated Akira Tozawa.[37][38] On May 28, during the second night of All Star Weekend 8, Low Ki unsuccessfully challenged Claudio Castagnoli for the World Championship.[39]

World Wrestling Entertainment[edit]

Florida Championship Wrestling (2008–2010)[edit]

Low Ki appeared on the November 7, 2008 edition of SmackDown in a dark match, losing to then-WWE Tag Team Champion Primo.[40] Low Ki then won a match against Trent Beretta at the Florida Championship Wrestling (FCW) tapings on January 8. It was later announced on his official website that he had signed a contract with World Wrestling Entertainment.[7] Initially, he wrestled under the name Kawal – "soldier" in the Tagalog language – in FCW, WWE's development territory, but later changed it to Kaval.[3][41] In January 2009 he took a hiatus from FCW due to a leg injury, which would keep him sidelined until late October.[42] On November 24, Kaval defeated Paul Burchill in a dark match prior to the SmackDown/ECW tapings.[43] At the December 8 tapings he was defeated by Goldust in another dark match. On the February 7 edition of FCW he defeated Bryan Danielson, for whom this was a debut match, after hitting him with Warrior's Way,[44] and on February 8 won a fatal four-way match against Alberto Banderas, Wade Barrett and Michael Tarver to become the number one contender for the Florida Heavyweight Championship.[45] Kaval received his title shot two weeks later, but was defeated by the defending champion, Justin Gabriel.[46] On July 15 Kaval and Michael McGillicutty defeated Los Aviadores (Hunico and Epico) to win the Florida Tag Team Championship.[47] Kaval and McGillicutty only held the championship for a single day before losing it back to Los Aviadores.[48]

NXT and SmackDown (2010)[edit]

Kaval (left) with Michelle McCool, his NXT mentor (middle), and Kofi Kingston (right) at WWE Tribute to the Troops in December 2010.

It was announced on June 1 that Kaval would be a participant in the second season of NXT, with Team Lay-Cool (Michelle McCool and Layla) as his storyline mentors.[49][50] He debuted on the June 8 episode of NXT, but did not compete in a match.[51] On the June 15 episode of NXT, he was defeated by Alex Riley in his debut, and the following week he was defeated by Eli Cottonwood.[52][53] On the June 29 episode of NXT, Kaval teamed with Michael McGillicutty and Lucky Cannon against Riley, Cottonwood and Titus O'Neil, which his team won when he pinned Riley, giving Kaval his first win on NXT. Later that night, he was ranked first in the poll.[54] Four weeks later on July 27, he slipped down to second place in the second poll, behind McGillicutty.[55] On August 9 the rookies appeared in a six-man tag team match on Raw, which Kaval's team lost when he was pinned by Husky Harris. Following the match, he was attacked by Sheamus.[56] The following night on NXT, Kaval's team won a rematch when Kaval pinned McGillicutty. In the poll later that night, Kaval regained the number one ranking.[57] On August 31, Kaval won the second season of NXT, with McGillicutty ranked second and Riley in third place. Following the announcement of his victory, he was attacked by all the former season two rookies.[58]

Following his NXT victory, Kaval was moved to the SmackDown brand, making his debut during the September 7 tapings in a loss to Drew McIntyre, which aired on September 10.[59][60] On the October 15 edition of SmackDown Kaval lasted five minutes in the ring with Big Show and in doing so earned a spot on Team SmackDown at Bragging Rights. However, after the match, Kaval was challenged by Tyler Reks, who ultimately went on to defeat him for his spot at the pay-per-view.[61]

Kaval won his first match on the November 19 episode of SmackDown, by defeating the WWE Intercontinental Champion Dolph Ziggler in a non-title match. Following his victory, Kaval announced that he would be using his guaranteed title opportunity that he earned by winning NXT at the Survivor Series pay-per-view against Ziggler for the Intercontinental Championship.[62] At the pay-per-view Kaval was unsuccessful in his attempt to win the Intercontinental Championship.[63]

Kaval's final appearance in WWE was a loss to Drew McIntyre on the live December 21 episode of SmackDown,[64] as he was released from his contract on December 23.[65]

Return to TNA (2011, 2014)[edit]

On June 27, 2011, Low Ki returned to TNA at the tapings of the June 30 edition of Impact Wrestling, defeating Jimmy Yang and Matt Bentley in a three–way match to advance to a four–way match for a TNA contract at Destination X.[66][67] At the pay-per-view, Low Ki was defeated in the finals by Austin Aries.[68]

Low Ki returned to TNA on April 12, 2014, for a One Night Only pay-per-view taping, where he won an Ultimate X match to earn a future X Division Championship shot.[69] Low Ki returned to TNA at the June 25, 2014, tapings of Impact Wrestling, defeating DJ Z.[70] The following day at Destination X, Low Ki defeated DJ Z and Manik in a three-way match to advance to the finals of a tournament for the vacant X Division Championship.[71] At the June 27 Impact Wrestling tapings, Low Ki was defeated by Samoa Joe in the finals of the tournament, which also included Sanada.[72]

Return to NJPW (2011–2013)[edit]

Low Ki holding the IWGP Junior Heavyweight Championship belt in June 2012.

On May 13, 2011, Silvestry, under the name Low Ki, made his return to New Japan Pro Wrestling, during the Invasion Tour 2011, the promotion's first tour of the United States, teaming with Homicide in a tag team match, where they defeated Jushin Liger and Tiger Mask.[73][74] The following day, Low Ki unsuccessfully challenged Prince Devitt for the IWGP Junior Heavyweight Championship.[75] On the third and final day of the tour in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, Low Ki and Homicide unsuccessfully challenged Devitt and Ryusuke Taguchi for the IWGP Junior Heavyweight Tag Team Championship.[76]

On April 21, 2012, Low Ki returned to New Japan Pro Wrestling, aligning himself with the Chaos stable and teaming with Gedo, Jado and Rocky Romero in an eight man tag team match, where they defeated Jushin Liger, Prince Devitt, Ryusuke Taguchi and Tiger Mask, with Ki pinning IWGP Junior Heavyweight Champion Devitt for the win.[77] On May 3 at Wrestling Dontaku 2012, Low Ki defeated Devitt to win the IWGP Junior Heavyweight Championship for the second time.[78][79] On May 27, Low Ki entered New Japan's 2012 Best of the Super Juniors tournament.[80] When the round-robin stage of the tournament concluded on June 9, Low Ki finished with eight wins out of his eight matches, winning his block and advancing to the semifinals of the tournament.[81] The following day, Low Ki defeated Prince Devitt in the semifinals, before losing to Ryusuke Taguchi in the finals of the tournament.[82] On June 16 at Dominion 6.16, Low Ki defeated Taguchi in a rematch to retain the IWGP Junior Heavyweight Championship.[83] On July 29, Low Ki lost the title to Kota Ibushi in his second defense.[84][85] Low Ki regained the title from Ibushi on October 8 at King of Pro-Wrestling.[86][87] On October 21, Low Ki and Brian Kendrick entered the 2012 Super Jr. Tag Tournament as "Chaos World Wrestling Warriors".[88] However, the team was eliminated from the tournament in the first round by Apollo 55 (Prince Devitt and Ryusuke Taguchi).[89] On November 11 at Power Struggle, Low Ki lost the IWGP Junior Heavyweight Championship to Prince Devitt in his first title defense.[90][91] On January 4, 2013, at Wrestle Kingdom 7 in Tokyo Dome, Low Ki unsuccessfully challenged Devitt for the title in a three-way match, which also included Kota Ibushi.[92][93] Low Ki wrestled the entire match in a suit, inspired by Agent 47 from the Hitman video game series.[94][95] The following month, New Japan removed Low Ki's profile from its official website, signaling the end of his run with the promotion.[96]

Return to independent circuit and AJPW (2012–present)[edit]

On January 14, 2012, Low Ki made his unadvertised debut for Evolve, defeating Ahtu at the final professional wrestling event in the Asylum Arena.[97] Afterwards, it was announced that Low Ki had joined both Evolve and Dragon Gate USA full-time.[98] Low Ki made his debut for Dragon Gate USA on January 27, when he defeated BxB Hulk in a singles match.[99] Among speculations regarding his retirement from wrestling,[100] Low Ki worked for Right Coast Pro's July 13, 2013, "Festivus" event, defeating Billy Bax in a singles match.[101]

On August 11, 2013, All Japan Pro Wrestling announced that Low Ki would be returning to the promotion the following month to take part in the 2013 Ōdō Tournament.[102] Low Ki entered the tournament on September 11, defeating Dark Cuervo in his first round match.[103] Five days later, Low Ki was eliminated from the tournament in the second round by Akebono.[104] Following the match, Low Ki was sidelined with an abdominal injury for the rest of the tour.[105][106] On October 14, Silvestry announced his retirement from professional wrestling due to All Japan supposedly not honoring their contractual obligation of medical care following his injury.[107][108]

On March 30, 2014, Pro Wrestling Syndicate (PWS) announced that Low Ki was coming out of retirement to work an event for the promotion on June 7.[109] The following day, he was also announced for Dragon Gate USA's April events.[110] On April 4, Ki was defeated by Trent Baretta in his Dragon Gate USA return match.[111]

In wrestling[edit]

Low Ki performing the Ghetto Stomp in Jersey All Pro Wrestling.

Championships and accomplishments[edit]

  • Future Wrestling Alliance
    • FWA Heavyweight Championship (1 time)[129]
  • Impact Championship Wrestling
    • ICW Championship (1 time)[130]
  • International Wrestling Cartel
    • IWC Super Indies Championship (1 time)[132]
  • Jersey Championship Wrestling
    • JCW Championship (1 time)[135]
    • JCW Tag Team Championship (1 time) – with Mafia[136]
  • Long Island Wrestling Federation
    • LIWF Light Heavyweight Championship (1 time)[1]
  • Premiere Wrestling Federation
    • PWF Heavyweight Championship (1 time)[141]
  • Pro Wrestling World-1
    • World-1 Openweight Championship (1 time)[1]
  • USA Pro Wrestling
    • UXA Pro Tag Team Championship (1 time) – with Xavier[1]
  • Other titles
    • ICW (New Jersey) Heavyweight Championship (1 time)[1]
    • MCW (Illinois) Tag Team Championship (1 time) – with Airborne[1]

1Low Ki defended the title with either Daniels or Skipper under the Freebird Rule.

References[edit]

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External links[edit]