Akira Tozawa is a ninja no longer, with WWE finally killing off its worst gimmick on last night's episode of Raw.
The Japanese wrestler wasn't decked out in his usual black garb when he was featured on the show, nor was he playing up to his now-former character. Instead, Tozawa appeared at ringside looking a lot more like his old Dragongate self, having dyed his hair blonde and decked himself out in red and white wrestling gear for his cameo.
Tozawa's appearance came during Baron Corbin's match with Drew McIntyre. Tozawa, who appears to still be playing a comedy character, hit ringside to steal JBL's hat. This distracted Corbin (JBL's managerial charge) long enough for McIntyre to hit a Claymore and land the pinfall.
Akira first adopted the ninja character at Backlash 2020 (14 June 2020), leading a squad of similarly-gimmicked extras (including the future Omos) against The Street Profits and The Viking Raiders in their cinematic brawl. Amazingly, despite its aggressiveness, the gimmick remained onscreen until last week, when Tozawa lost to Corbin in his first Raw singles match since September 2019.
Considered among Japan's most charismatic wrestlers earlier in his career, Tozawa, 37, has been signed to WWE since 2016.