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The story behind Shinsuke Nakamura's Bomaye becoming Kinshasa in WWE

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Somewhat lost in the feverish response to Shinsuke Nakamura vs. Sami Zayn at NXT TakeOver: Dallas on Friday night was Corey Graves and Tom Phillips' call... and specifically Graves' exclamations whenever Nakamura went for or connected with his finisher.

The running knee strike to his opponent's head was familiar to New Japan Pro Wrestling fans as the Bomaye. In WWE, the same move will, perhaps for trademark reasons, perhaps for PG reasons, be known as Kinshasa.

Either way, the names are tied to a Nakamura mentor (and WWE Hall of Famer) Antonio Inoki, and his famous 1976 mixed martial arts fight with the legendary Muhammad Ali.

If you've seen When We Were Kings, the Academy Award winning documentary from 1996, the 2001 Michael Mann/Will Smith biopic Ali, or any footage of the boxing match promoted as the "Rumble in the Jungle" between Ali and then Heavyweight champ George Foreman from 1974, you heard crowds of fans chanting "Ali Bomaye" in support of the iconic fighter.

When the Inoki bout occurred, Ali bestowed the phrase to the puroresu legend. Nakamura utilized it as tribute to the New Japan founder.

More than the fact that WWE doesn't own the word bomaye (I mean, it's also a hip-hop anthem from The Game), the problem is likely its meaning. Translated from Lingala, the Bantu language spoken in parts of Central Africa where Ali/Foreman took place (then Zaire, now the Democratic Republic of Congo), bomaye equates to "kill him".

The compromise is to rechristen the move Kinshasa (kin-shaw-saa), the capital of the DRC and city where the Rumble in the Jungle took place.

Not as direct an homage, but still covers it. The new moniker will take some getting used to, and isn't quite as satisfying to yell or chant as bomaye, but it'll do.

And we'll always have YeaOH!

H/T to Enuhito and Lady J for educating me!

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