- "Man, this is one hell of a cheer. Can't even a couple of you root for me?"
— Okubo Naoya, moments after Kanoh Agito made his appearance
Okubo Naoya (
Naoya is an extremely muscular, powerful-looking man of great height. His shoulders, back, and arm muscles are massive, befitting his wrestling background. He has a plain round face, with subtle tear-troughs, and a shaved head.
During bouts he wears only shorts with black and red vertical stripes. Outside of that, he wears a combination of t-shirts and trousers, with the occasional baseball cap and chains that Ryo likened him to a rapper. During the Merger Tournament, Naoya dressed as Kuidaore Taro, the mascot of the Osaka area from which he hails. He eventually removes his hat and glasses, and then his boots once it was his turn to fight.
Naoya is a goofy, light-hearted man, considered by many to be less than intellectual as evidenced by his stubbornness in playing Shogi to the point of losing composure. His personality is quite like Lihito, with the two getting along with one another mainly predicated on their shared perveted and lecherous interests.
That being said, all this bellies an extremely intelligent and analytical fighter. Naoya, despite being considered to be a flip-flopper in his choice of sports, has dedicated himself fully to fighting, not missing a single day of training and being driven to win, to the point of not losing his fighting spirit after being defeated by Agito Kanoh, when not many others whom have been defeated by the Fang can lay claim to the same feat. He also displays a more impulsive and hot-blooded behavior whenever something goes wrong.
Initially a baseball player, with dreams of joining the big leagues, Naoya joined the wrestling team in his first year of middle school where he soon distinguished himself as a talented Wrestler in the blink of an eye. While in middle school, he placed in the top 4 Wrestlers nationally and in his senior year he won the national championships, earning a spot in the world championships. However, Naoya soon quit wrestling and took up boxing, which he participated in for two years (becoming a national team member) before quitting and he joined MMA, many believed that he would soon quit MMA as well, given his history, however, he has stayed in MMA and even then, has not missed a single day of training for both Boxing and Wrestling.
Having just signed a contract for "Ultimate Fight", Naoya appeared in a documentary where he dropped his "infamous bombshell", a series of inflammatory remarks about Japanese defeatism, declaring that "If you can't get anything done yourself, then just shut up and watch me, dumbass!" His incendiary statement took the world by storm but, despite the backlash it got him, Naoya finally ended up becoming the first Japanese heavyweight of Ultimate Fight.
Naoya was first seen deep in thought while playing Shogi against Kaneda Suekichi. Quickly losing afterward, he cursed his inability to defeat Kaneda at the game. When Yamashita Kazuo stepped up to play Kaneda, Naoya cheered him on though Yamashita ended up losing as well. With Kaneda then suddenly leaving, Takayuki Chiba stepped up to challenge Naoya instead (and ended up beating him as well). After soon arriving at Ganryu Island, and seeing all the beautiful women around, he and Lihito dived right in.
On the day of the tournament, Naoya and the other three stooges observed the ensuing first-round fights together. Before Raian Kure's fight against Mokichi Robinson, the group had to calm down a raging Lihito after the latter had been accosted by Raian. In the final match of the first round of the Kengan Annihilation Tournament, representing Muji TV, Naoya faced Agito. While fighting Agito, he began to feel like he was at a disadvantage, causing Naoya to rapidly change his style of punching, throwing and grappling; as a result, Naoya began dominating as Agito couldn't keep up. But in the end, Agito "evolved" and defeated Naoya with his own MMA style. After the close of the first round, at the after an engagement, Naoya went up to Agito and told him he would defeat him next time they fought.
In the second round, Naoya watched the matches as they happened. After the close of the second round, Naoya helped to subdue Hayami Katsumasa's Guardians during the latter's attempted coup alongside Himuro Ryo.
On the final day, Naoya was tasked by Nishihonji Akira to take Imai Cosmo's position as an affiliated fighter from him by beating him in a sparring match. Despite having an overall advantage over Cosmo, Naoya ended up being taken for surprise and losing thanks to Cosmo's newfound Foresight ability. He then watched as Cosmo put up an impressive effort against Ohma Tokita. Naoya then watched the rest of the tournament unfold with the other fighters who had been knocked out.
Some time after the Kengan Annihilation Tournament, Naoya went to visit Tokita Ohma's grave with Himuro and Cosmo.
At Yamashita Trading Co., Yamashita Kazuo requested for Naoya to be one of the thirteen fighters representing the Kengan Association against Purgatory, which Naoya agreed to. When Naoya then asked about the other fighters to be selected, Kazuo explained why choosing the remaining ten fighters would be a difficult task.
Days after, he and the rest of the Four Stooges found out Ohma Tokita was alive and when they met him again he quickly hugged his friend crying. The they all celebrated with other fighters and he and the other representatives left for the tournament when the day arrived.
After Naidan Mönkhbat's death in the fifth match, Naoya entered the ring with Kure Raian, Akoya Seishu and Tokita Ohma to reason with an enranged Liu Dongcheng and the other gladiators. After reprimanding Raian for trying to pick up a fight Naoya witnessed with Tokita as Lu Tian took up the stage to fight. After Kanoh's victory he and the other fighters met the Purgatory gladiators in the middle of the ring to explain how the Worm was acting behind the scenes of the competition. As Rolón Donaire reminded everyone that also the Kengan side could have Worms among them, Naoya and Wakatsuki observed at Hayami Masaki with a inquisitive look.
After Tokumichi Tokuno'o's loss to Liu Dongcheng, Naoya attempted to cheer up Tokumichi. He then entered the ring as the eleventh fighter, against Terashi. Throughout the match, Naoya's wariness of Terashi's unsual qualities limited his options to striking. Eventually figuring out Terashi's ability to rapidly shiver as a means of dispersing damage, Naoya struck Terashi's head; the only place he cannot safely protect. The resulting attack shattered his mask, revealing both Terashi's face and the other ability that he keeps in check: his artificial kinetic vision.
With this ability, Naoya had all his jabs didged and countered, who then succeeded in downing Naoya for the count. Figuring that out as well, Naoya baited Terashi him to the edge of the ring to fake a grapple and hit him with an uppercut to the chin, mocking him for looking down on a real martial artist. Refusing to end the fight with "something cheap like a ring-out" Naoya struck Terashi outside his visual range, eluding the Emperor's Eye. As Terashi got up one more time and prepared himself to ram into him with his head guarded, Naoya waited for Terashi's cool down period to start in order to ground him with a tackle and then finishing the match with a submission, praising Terashi's skills and toughness despite being an amateur.
Once Terashi regained consciousness, Naoya offered him is clown glasses since Terashi's mask fell apart, which he refused bluntly. Acknowledging Naoya's superiority as a martial artist, the two of them shook hands and parted ways. Naoya then celebrated his victory with Lihito and the others.
Power & Abilities
Naoya's base martial arts are Boxing and Wrestling, making him an all-rounded, powerful Mixed-martial-artist. He is the first Japanese Heavyweight Champion in the Ultimate Fight, with a strong record of 26 wins out of 26 and not a single opponent making it to the final round against him and being recognised by Tokita Ohma as the most powerful of the Four Stooges (beating out Lihito, Himuro and Kaneda). His body's physical capabilities on its own is immense with high strength and endurance. Other powerful fighters such as Akoya Seishu, Mikazuchi Rei, Kure Raian, Kuroki Gensai and Rolón Donaire also recognized Naoya's strength.
Even then, his martial arts vocabulary and technique cannot be understated with him having a full arsenal of holds, throws, locks, and strikes. His natural specialty is grappling, from his first martial art of Wrestling, the one with which he has the most experience. His proficiency in boxing allows him to deliver clean powerful strikes commended even by former heavyweight boxing champion Carlos Medel. Naoya's jabs are so fast, only world-class boxers are capable of surpassing that speed. His true strength, however, lies not in flashy techniques or secrets but a fluid synthesis of basic moves which he alternates to confuse and overwhelm the target, nearly allowing him to beat Kanoh Agito before his Evolution set in.
Notes & Trivia
- During high school, Naoya became the boss of his school after entering. Not long afterwards, he became the top dog of all the delinquents of Osaka.
- He is well acquainted with Murobuchi Gozo and they co-starred in a lot of sports programs before the athlete's retirement. The two have had dinner every so often ever since.
- Naoya sings enka at karaoke.
- His favourite show is Yoshimoto Comedy Theatre.
- Naoya is a baseball fan with his favourite team are the Kintetsu Buffaloes.
- He has a slight fear of needles.
- Naoya's theme in the anime is The Fall by ALICE IN HELL.
- The epithet "The Rocky of Osaka" is a reference to one of Sandrovich's inspirations for Naoya, Hidekazu Akai, who was known as "The Rocky of Naniwa".
- Naoya makes a couple of cameos in Sandrovich's other series Danberu Nan-Kiro Moteru?.