WEEKLY OVERVIEW – NJPW (thru 10/31): Latest news including New Japan World classic content and new commentators, live event results, schedule of live events, next big show line-ups, noteworthy social media and YouTube posts, closing commentary

By Chris Maloney, PWTorch contributor


The following is the latest in a new series of weekly in-depth articles exclusive to PWTorch which will help put in perspective major wrestling promotions with a weekly overview, looking at news and roster developments, results, future line-ups, social media activity, key interviews, plus a timely commentary at the end. We will be featuring similar features on other promotions each week and each will be updated weekly.


•Top Stories of the Week

-Don Callis will return to the commentary booth for New Japan Pro Wrestling in the very near future. The official NJPW Global account on Twitter announced that Callis will call multiple events including Wrestle Kingdom 13.

-Speaking of commentary, NJPW announced that Lanny Poffo is one of the newest members of their English commentary team. Poffo recently called action for Road to Power Struggle: Super Jr. Tag League alongside Canadian sports broadcaster Mavs Gillis and “Eggshells: Pro Wrestling In The Tokyo Dome” author Chris Charlton.

-NJPW has released their financial results from August 2017 through July 2018 and the company came close to doubling their net income in the past year. You can check out the full report in English thanks to Wrestlenomics HERE.

-With Will Ospreay unable to take part in Power Struggle: Super Jr. Tag League 2018, Taichi will now defend the NEVER Openweight Championship against former champion Hirooki Goto. Power Struggle: Super Jr. Tag League 2018 takes place on Nov. 3 on NJPW World.

-Lion’s Break: Project 1 takes place on Nov. 10 & 11 at CharaExpo USA 2018 in Anaheim, California. With full cards announced for both days, feature matches will include Hirooki Goto vs. Jeff Cobb and Kenny Omega vs. David Finlay.

-While Chris Jericho’s Rock ‘n’ Wrestling Rager at Sea has concluded, the buzz surrounding the debut of a new promotion featuring Jericho among others is alive and well thanks to Jim Ross. After commenting on the rumor of the WWE and their attempt to block Rey Mysterio from taking part in the cruise, Ross stated, “Somebody along the way is going to create another company and they won’t have to worry about that bullsh–.”

– “Streaming for Vengeance” will air live at 8 p.m. ET this coming Saturday on FITE and HonorClub. The iPPV will feature matches from the “Sea of Honor” tournament as well as IWGP Heavyweight Champion “The Cleaner” Kenny Omega, “The American Nightmare” Cody & “The Villain” Marty Scurll battling Chris Jericho, and The Young Bucks in a huge six-man tag team match.

-Fans of classic New Japan Pro Wrestling will be happy to know that NJPW World has added a “Classic Matches in English” section to their website. Legendary matches include El Samurai vs. Chris Jericho, Hulk Hogan & The Great Muta vs. The Hellraisers (Road Warrior Hawk & Kensuke Sasaki), Black Tiger vs. Owen Hart, and many more.

After eleven nights of this year’s Road to Power Struggle: Super Jr. Tag League, here are your current standings:

  • El Desperado & Yoshinobu Kanemaru | Points: 10 Wins: 5 Losses: 2
  • Shingo Takagi & BUSHI | Points: 10 Wins: 5 Losses: 2
  • SHO & YOH | Points: 8 Wins: 4 Losses: 2
  • ACH & Ryusuke Taguchi | Points: 6 Wins: 3 Losses: 4
  • Chris Sabin & KUSHIDA | Points: 6 Wins: 3 Losses: 3
  • Robbie Eagles & Taiji Ishimori | Points: 6 Wins: 3 Losses: 4
  • Soberano Jr. & Volador Jr. | Points: 4 Wins: 2 Losses: 5
  • Tiger Mask & Jyushin Thunder Liger | Points: 4 Wins: 2 Losses: 5

-This Week in NJPW History saw Hiroyoshi Tenzan defeat Yoshihiro Takayama for his first IWGP Heavyweight Championship at NJPW Yokohama Dead Out on Nov. 3, 2003 in Yokohama, Japan.


•Live Event Results

NJPW Road to Power Struggle: Super Jr. Tag League 2018 – Night 7
Oct. 26, 2018
Korakuen Hall in Tokyo, Japan
Aired on NJPW World

(1) Yota Tsuji & Shota Umino & Toa Henare defeated Yuya Uemura & Ren Narita & Ayato Yoshida by submission after Umino made Uemura tapout
(2) Toru Yano & Tomohiro Ishii defeated TAKA Michinoku & Minoru Suzuki by pinfall after Yano pinned Michinoku
(3) Tomoaki Honma & Togi Makabe & Hiroshi Tanahashi defeated Chase Owens & Yujiro Takahashi & Kota Ibushi by pinfall after Tanahashi pinned Ibushi
(4) Gedo & Tanga Loa & Tama Tonga & Bad Luck Fale & ‘Switchblade’ Jay White defeated Rocky Romero & Chuckie T & Beretta & Hirooki Goto & Kazuchika Okada by pinfall after White pinned Romero
(5) Chris Sabin & KUSHIDA defeated Tiger Mask & Jyushin Thunder Liger by pinfall after KUSHIDA pinned Liger in a Super Jr. Tag League 2018 Tournament Match
(6) El Desperado & Yoshinobu Kanemaru defeated Soberano Jr. & Volador Jr. by pinfall after El Desperado pinned Soberano Jr. in a Super Jr. Tag League 2018 Tournament Match
(7) Shingo Takagi & BUSHI defeated Robbie Eagles & Taiji Ishimori by pinfall after BUSHI pinned Eagles in a Super Jr. Tag League 2018 Tournament Match
(8) ACH & Ryusuke Taguchi defeated SHO & YOH by pinfall after Taguchi pinned YOH

NJPW Road to Power Struggle: Super Jr. Tag League 2018 – Night 8
Oct. 27, 2018
Korakuen Hall in Tokyo, Japan
Aired on NJPW World

(1) Ren Narita & Shota Umino & Tomoaki Honma defeated Yuya Uemura & Yota Tsuji & Ayato Yoshida by submission after Narita made Uemura tapout
(2) Hirooki Goto & Tomohiro Ishii defeated TAKA Michinoku & Minoru Suzuki by pinfall after Goto pinned Michinoku
(3) Chase Owens & Yujiro Takahashi & Kota Ibushi defeated Toa Henare & Togi Makabe & Hiroshi Tanahashi by pinfall after Owens pinned Henare
(4) Gedo & Tanga Loa & Tama Tonga & Bad Luck Fale & ‘Switchblade’ Jay White defeated Rocky Romero & Chuckie T & Beretta & Toru Yano & Kazuchika Okada by pinfall after Gedo pinned Romero
(5) ACH & Ryusuke Taguchi defeated Tiger Mask & Jyushin Thunder Liger by pinfall after Taguchi pinned Tiger Mask in a Super Jr. Tag League 2018 Tournament Match
(6) SHO & YOH defeated Soberano Jr. & Volador Jr. by pinfall after YOH pinned Soberano Jr. in a Super Jr. Tag League 2018 Tournament Match
(7) Robbie Eagles & Taiji Ishimori defeated Chris Sabin & KUSHIDA by pinfall after Ishimori pinned KUSHIDA in a Super Jr. Tag League 2018 Tournament Match
(8) El Desperado & Yoshinobu Kanemaru defeated Shingo Takagi & BUSHI by pinfall after El Desperado pinned BUSHI in a Super Jr. Tag League 2018 Tournament Match

NJPW Road to Power Struggle: Super Jr. Tag League 2018 – Night 9
Oct. 28, 2018
Big Palette Fukushima in Fukushima, Japan

(1) Shingo Takagi & BUSHI defeated Yuya Uemura & Yota Tsuji by submission after BUSHI made Uemura tapout
(2) ACH & Ryusuke Taguchi defeated Ren Narita & Shota Umino by pinfall after ACH pinned Narita
(3) Toa Henare & Soberano Jr. & Volador Jr. defeated Ayato Yoshida & Chris Sabin & KUSHIDA by pinfall after Henare pinned Yoshida
(4) Tanga Loa & Tama Tonga & Bad Luck Fale defeated Chuckie T & Beretta & Hirooki Goto by pinfall after Fale pinned Beretta
(5) Toru Yano & Tomohiro Ishii defeated TAKA Michinoku & Minoru Suzuki by pinfall after Yano pinned Michinoku
(6) Tomoaki Honma & Hiroshi Tanahashi defeated Chase Owens & Yujiro Takahashi by pinfall after Tanahashi pinned Owens
(7) El Desperado & Yoshinobu Kanemaru defeated Tiger Mask & Jyushin Thunder Liger by pinfall after El Desperado pinned Liger in a Super Jr. Tag League 2018 Tournament Match
(8) Robbie Eagles & Taiji Ishimori & Gedo & ‘Switchblade’ Jay White defeated SHO & YOH & Rocky Romero & Kazuchika Okada by pinfall after White pinned Romero

NJPW Road to Power Struggle: Super Jr. Tag League 2018 – Night 10
Oct. 29, 2018
Yume Messe Miyagi in Miyagi, Japan

(1) Yuya Uemura & Ayato Yoshida defeated Yota Tsuji & Tomoaki Honma by pinfall after Yoshida pinned Tsuji
(2) Soberano Jr. & Volador Jr. & Jyushin Thunder Liger defeated Shota Umino & Chris Sabin & KUSHIDA by pinfall after Soberano Jr. pinned Umino
(3) El Desperado & Yoshinobu Kanemaru defeated Ren Narita & Tiger Mask by submission after El Desperado made Narita tapout
(4) Tanga Loa & Tama Tonga & Bad Luck Fale defeated Chuckie T & Beretta & Toru Yano by pinfall after Fale pinned Chuckie T
(5) Hirooki Goto & Tomohiro Ishii defeated TAKA Michinoku & Minoru Suzuki by pinfall after Goto pinned Michinoku
(6) Chase Owens & Yujiro Takahashi defeated Toa Henare & Hiroshi Tanahashi by pinfall after Owens pinned Henare
(7) Shingo Takagi & BUSHI defeated ACH & Ryusuke Taguchi by pinfall after Takagi pinned ACH in a Super Jr. Tag League 2018 Tournament Match
(8) Robbie Eagles & Taiji Ishimori & Gedo & ‘Switchblade’ Jay White defeated SHO & YOH & Rocky Romero & Kazuchika Okada by pinfall after White pinned Romero

NJPW Road to Power Struggle: Super Jr. Tag League 2018 – Night 11
Oct. 31, 2018
Nagano Athletic Park Gymnasium in Nagano, Japan

(1) ACH & Ryusuke Taguchi defeated Yuya Uemura & Yota Tsuji by pinfall after ACH pinned Tsuji
(2) Shingo Takagi & BUSHI defeated Ren Narita & Shota Umino by pinfall after Takagi pinned Narita
(3) Toa Henare & Tiger Mask & Jyushin Thunder Liger defeated Ayato Yoshida & Chris Sabin & KUSHIDA by pinfall after Henare pinned Yoshida
(4) Tanga Loa & Tama Tonga & Bad Luck Fale defeated Chuckie T & Beretta & Hirooki Goto by pinfall after Fale pinned Beretta
(5) SHO & YOH & Toru Yano & Tomohiro Ishii defeated El Desperado & Yoshinobu Kanemaru & TAKA Michinoku & Minoru Suzuki by pinfall after Yano pinned Michinoku
(6) Tomoaki Honma & Hiroshi Tanahashi defeated Chase Owens & Yujiro Takahashi by pinfall after Tanahashi pinned Owens
(7) Soberano Jr. & Volador Jr. defeated Robbie Eagles & Taiji Ishimori by pinfall after Volador Jr. pinned Eagles in a Super Jr. Tag League 2018 Tournament Match
(8) Gedo & ‘Switchblade’ Jay White defeated Rocky Romero & Kazuchika Okada by pinfall after Gedo pinned Romero


•Upcoming Major Show Line-ups

NJPW Road to Power Struggle: Super Jr. Tag League 2018 – Night 12
Nov. 1, 2018
Shizuoka, Japan at Twin Messe Shizuoka
Airs at 5:30 a.m. ET on NJPW World

  • Yuya Uemura & Yota Tsuji vs. El Desperado & Yoshinobu Kanemaru
  • Tomoaki Honma & Tiger Mask & Jyushin Thunder Liger vs. Ren Narita & Soberano Jr. & Volador Jr.
  • Shota Umino & ACH vs. Robbie Eagles & Taiji Ishimori
  • Ayato Yoshida & Ryusuke Taguchi vs. Shingo Takagi & BUSHI
  • Rocky Romero & Tomohiro Ishii vs. TAKA Michinoku & Minoru Suzuki
  • Toa Henare & Hiroshi Tanahashi vs. Chase Owens & Yujiro Takahashi
    Chris Sabin & KUSHIDA vs. SHO & YOH in a Super Jr. Tag League 2018 Tournament Match
  • Chuckie T & Beretta & Toru Yano & Hirooki Goto & Kazuchika Okada vs. Gedo & Tanga Loa & Tama Tonga & Bad Luck Fale & ‘Switchblade’ Jay White

NJPW Power Struggle: Super Jr. Tag League 2018
Nov. 3, 2018
Osaka, Japan at Osaka Prefectural Gym
Airs at 4:00 a.m. ET on NJPW World

  • Taichi (c) vs. Hirooki Goto for the NEVER Openweight Championship
  • Tomohiro Ishii (c) vs. Minoru Suzuki for the RPW British Heavyweight Championship
  • Chris Jericho (c) vs. ‘King of Darkness’ EVIL for the IWGP Intercontinental Championship
  • Tetsuya Naito vs. Zack Sabre Jr.
  • Rocky Romero & Tomohiro Ishii vs. TAKA Michinoku & Minoru Suzuki
  • Hiroshi Tanahashi & David Finlay vs. Kenny Omega & Kota Ibushi
  • Kazuchika Okada & Beretta vs. ‘Switchblade’ Jay White & Bad Luck Fale
  • To Be Determined vs. To Be Determined in the Super Jr. Tag League 2018 Tournament Finals

NJPW/ROH Global Wars Tour: Lewiston
Nov. 7, 2018
Lewiston, Maine at Androscoggin Bank Colisee
Jeff Cobb vs. Cheeseburger

  • SCU (Frankie Kazarian & Scorpio Sky) vs. The Bouncers (Beer City Bruiser & Brian Milonas)
  • The Briscoes (Jay Briscoe & Mark Briscoe) vs. ‘Hangman’ Adam Page & ‘The American Nightmare’ Cody (w/Brandi Rhodes)
  • The Kingdom (Matt Taven & TK OíRyan & Vinny Marseglia) vs. Dalton Castle & The Boys
  • Christopher Daniels vs. Juice Robinson
  • Bully Ray & Silas Young vs. The Young Bucks (Matt Jackson & Nick Jackson)
  • Jay Lethal & Jonathan Gresham & Chris Sabin & KUSHIDA vs. Los Ingobernables de Japon (Tetsuya Naito & ‘King of Darkness’ EVIL & SANADA & BUSHI) in an Eight-Man Tag Team Match

NJPW/ROH Global Wars Tour: Lowell
Nov. 8, 2018
Lowell, Massachusetts at Lowell Memorial Auditorium

  • Frankie Kazarian vs. Flip Gordon
  • Mark Briscoe vs. ‘The American Nightmare’ Cody (w/Brandi Rhodes)
  • Bully Ray & Silas Young vs. Los Ingobernables de Japon (‘King of Darkness’ EVIL & SANADA)
  • Christopher Daniels vs. Juice Robinson
  • Bully Ray & Silas Young vs. The Young Bucks (Matt Jackson & Nick Jackson)
    Jeff Cobb vs. Christopher Daniels
  • Jay Briscoe vs. Scorpio Sky
  • ‘Hangman’ Adam Page vs. Tetsuya Naito
  • Jay Lethal & Jonathan Gresham vs. KUSHIDA & Chris Sabin vs. The Young Bucks (Matt Jackson & Nick Jackson) vs. The Kingdom (TK O’Ryan & Vinny Marseglia) in a Four Corner Survival Match

NJPW/ROH Global Wars Tour: Buffalo
Nov. 9, 2018
Buffalo, New York at Buffalo Riverworks

  • Juice Robinson vs. Silas Young
  • ‘King of Darkness’ EVIL vs. Jeff Cobb
  • The Young Bucks (Matt Jackson & Nick Jackson) vs. Los Ingobernables de Japon (SANADA & Tetsuya Naito)
  • Jay Lethal vs. Chris Sabin in a Proving Ground Match
  • ‘Hangman’ Adam Page & ‘The American Nightmare’ Cody (w/Brandi Rhodes) vs. The Briscoes (Jay Briscoe & Mark Briscoe) vs. Best Friends (Beretta & Chuckie T)
  • KUSHIDA vs. Jonathan Gresham vs. Flip Gordon vs. BUSHI in a Four Corners Survival Match

NJPW/ROH Global Wars Tour: Toronto
Nov. 11, 2018
Toronto, Ontario at Mattamy Athletic Centre
KUSHIDA & Chris Sabin vs. The Young Bucks (Matt Jackson & Nick Jackson)

  • ‘The American Nightmare’ Cody (c) (w/Brandi Rhodes) vs. Beretta for the IWGP United States Championship
  • Jay Lethal (c) vs. Kenny King for the ROH World Championship
  • More matches to be announced

•Upcoming Events

11/01/2018: NJPW Road to Power Struggle: Super Jr. Tag League 2018 – Night 12 in Shizuoka, Japan
11/03/2018: NJPW Power Struggle: Super Jr. Tag League 2018 in Osaka, Japan
11/07/2018: NJPW/ROH Global Wars Tour: Lewiston in Lewiston, Maine
11/08/2018: NJPW/ROH Global Wars Tour: Lowell in Lowell, Massachusetts
11/09/2018: NJPW/ROH Global Wars Tour: Buffalo in Buffalo, New York
11/10/2018: CharaExpo USA 2018 – Day 1 featuring Jyushin Thunder Liger, Jeff Cobb, Rocky Romero & Ryusuke Taguchi in Anaheim, California
11/11/2018: CharaExpo USA 2018 – Day 2 featuring Kenny Omega, Hirooki Goto, ACH, David Finlay & Harold G. Meij in Anaheim, California
11/11/2018: NJPW/ROH Global Wars Tour: Toronto in Toronto, Ontario
11/17/2018: NJPW World Tag League 2018 – Night 1 in Kanagawa, Japan
11/18/2018: NJPW World Tag League 2018 – Night 2 in Tokyo, Japan
11/20/2018: NJPW World Tag League 2018 – Night 3 in Toyama, Japan
11/21/2018: NJPW World Tag League 2018 – Night 4 in Niigata, Japan
11/23/2018: NJPW World Tag League 2018 – Night 5 in Kanagawa, Japan
11/24/2018: NJPW World Tag League 2018 – Night 6 in Saitama, Japan
11/25/2018: NJPW World Tag League 2018 – Night 7 in Aichi, Japan
11/26/2018: NJPW World Tag League 2018 – Night 8 in Ishikawa, Japan
11/28/2018: NJPW World Tag League 2018 – Night 9 in Ibaraki, Japan
11/29/2018: NJPW World Tag League 2018 – Night 10 in Tokyo, Japan
11/30/2018: NJPW World Tag League 2018 – Night 11 in Tokyo, Japan
12/02/2018: NJPW World Tag League 2018 – Night 12 in Osaka, Japan
12/03/2018: NJPW World Tag League 2018 – Night 13 in Kochi, Japan
12/04/2018: NJPW World Tag League 2018 – Night 14 in Hyogo, Japan
12/06/2018: NJPW World Tag League 2018 – Night 15 in Yamagata, Japan
12/07/2018: NJPW World Tag League 2018 – Night 16 in Akita, Japan
12/09/2018: NJPW World Tag League 2018 – Night 17 in Iwate, Japan
12/14/2018: NJPW Road to Tokyo Dome – Night 1 in Tokyo, Japan
12/15/2018: NJPW Road to Tokyo Dome – Night 2 in Tokyo, Japan
01/04/2019: NJPW Wrestle Kingdom 13 in Tokyo, Japan
01/05/2019: NJPW New Year Dash in Tokyo, Japan
01/11/2019: NJPW presents CMLL Fantastica Mania 2019 – Night 1 in Osaka, Japan
01/12/2019: NJPW presents CMLL Fantastica Mania 2019 – Night 2 in Ehime, Japan
01/13/2019: NJPW presents CMLL Fantastica Mania 2019 – Night 3 in Kyoto, Japan
01/14/2019: NJPW presents CMLL Fantastica Mania 2019 – Night 4 in Gifu, Japan
01/16/2019: NJPW presents CMLL Fantastica Mania 2019 – Night 5 in Chiba, Japan
01/18/2019: NJPW presents CMLL Fantastica Mania 2019 – Night 6 in Tokyo, Japan
01/20/2019: NJPW presents CMLL Fantastica Mania 2019 – Night 7 in Tokyo, Japan
01/21/2019: NJPW presents CMLL Fantastica Mania 2019 – Night 8 in Tokyo, Japan
01/26/2019: NJPW Road to The New Beginning – Night 1 in Saitama, Japan
01/28/2019: NJPW Road to The New Beginning – Night 2 in Tokyo, Japan
01/29/2019: NJPW Road to The New Beginning – Night 3 in Tokyo, Japan
01/30/2019: NJPW Road to The New Beginning – Night 4 in Miyagi, Japan
02/02/2019: NJPW The New Beginning in Sapporo – Night 1 in Hokkaido, Japan
02/03/2019: NJPW The New Beginning in Sapporo – Night 2 in Hokkaido, Japan
02/06/2019: NJPW Road to The New Beginning – Night 5 in Nagano, Japan
02/07/2019: NJPW Road to The New Beginning – Night 6 in Aichi, Japan
02/08/2019: NJPW Road to The New Beginning – Night 7 in Mie, Japan
02/09/2019: NJPW Road to The New Beginning – Night 8 in Osaka, Japan
02/11/2019: NJPW Road to The New Beginning – Night 9 in Osaka, Japan
04/06/2019: NJPW/ROH G1 Supercard in New York, New York


•Latest TV Highlights: NJPW on AXS TV (10/26/2018)

Destruction in Kobe 2018
Sept. 23, 2018
Kobe World Hall in Hyogo, Japan
Originally aired on NJPW World

(1) Hiroshi Tanahashi defeated Kazuchika Okada by pinfall


•NJPW in the Media

Killing The Town: Omega vs Cyrus!!!! (WATCH)

The Dan Le Batard Show with Stugotz ft. Chris Jericho (WATCH)

Chris Jericho’s Rock & Wrestling Rager – Behind The Seanes (WATCH)

Kill or Be Killed – Messages from EVIL to Chris Jericho (WATCH)

The Alpha of the Darkness World, EVIL speaks on challenging Chris Jericho! (WATCH)

Killing The Town: One Year Anniversary Redux!! Jericho-Mania!! (WATCH)

The Wire: Chris Jericho’s First IWGP Intercontinental Championship Defense (WATCH)

‘The Elite Society’ (Halloween Special) – Being The Elite Ep. 123 (WATCH)


•Social Media Scene

https://twitter.com/CodyRhodes/status/1056215488731275264

https://www.instagram.com/p/BpcCjvtHc6z

View this post on Instagram

Elite Society #villain ☔️

A post shared by MartyScurll (@martyscurll) on

https://www.instagram.com/p/Bpjs0ienZZ2

View this post on Instagram

Today's STANCE #stancesocks #stance_japan

A post shared by MINORU SUZUKI (@suzuki.d.minoru) on

https://www.instagram.com/p/BpmN0SelPPF

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Happy Halloween you spooky numpties #villain ☔️

A post shared by MartyScurll (@martyscurll) on


•Closing Commentary

Last week I touched base on the rumor of a new wrestling promotion backed by Jacksonville Jaguars owner Shahid Khan and supported by notable names such as Chris Jericho, The Young Bucks, Cody, and Jim Ross. This past weekend on Chris Jericho’s Rock ‘n’ Wrestling Rager at Sea, J.R. commented “Somebody along the way is going to create another company…” While last week I was intrigued, this week, after thinking about the situation, I’m disappointed.

Here in Canada, NJPW airs on the Fight Network every Tuesday night at 10 p.m. However, it’s dated back to the days where A.J. Styles, Shinsuke Nakamura, Luke Gallows, and Karl Anderson were still a part of NJPW. While it’s not current, it is relevant. It’s a reminder that at one time, NJPW had the current WWE Champion on their roster. They had the current United States Champion on their roster. They had the former Raw Tag Team Champions on their roster. The relevance? They’re no longer part of NJPW, but the company still exists. In fact, they’re doing stronger numbers now than they were back then.

With the rumors of major talent potentially leaving NJPW, wrestling fans are going nuts speculating what’s in store for the end of the year. What happens if NJPW loses Cody, The Young Bucks, Kenny Omega, Adam Page, Marty Scurll, and Chris Jericho? What happens if they all sign with the WWE? What happens if the rumors of a new promotion are true? It would be the end of the world for NJPW right?

Wrong.

If New Japan Pro Wrestling has shown us anything in the past five years, it’s been that they can not only maintain their loyal fanbase, they can grow it with new stars. When Kevin Nash and Scott Hall headed to WCW in the mid-’90s, it was the end of the road for the WWF and they were done as a wrestling promotion. No way in the world they could survive with the stars that were left. They weren’t main eventers. They weren’t merchandise sellers. They weren’t franchise players. You had your loyals in Bret Hart, Shawn Michaels, and The Undertaker. Two former tag team wrestlers and a “Paul Heyman Guy” whose finishing move used to be the Heart Punch.

The morale of the story?

Kevin Nash and Scott Hall “went south” and because of that, Steve Austin became “Stone Cold,” Rocky Maivia became “The Rock,” Cactus Jack became “Mankind,” Hunter Hearst Helmsley became “Triple H,” and those previously mentioned loyals made these new stars into superstars. Superstars who brought WCW to their knees in 2001.

Am I stating that NJPW will do the same to the WWE or the rumored new wrestling promotion?

Hell no.

What I am stating is that if NJPW can retain loyals like Kazuchika Okada, Hiroshi Tanahashi, Tetsuya Naito, and Tomohiro Ishii, they can groom guys like “Switchblade” Jay White to become a future IWGP Heavyweight Champion, Taiji Ishimori to become a future IWGP Intercontinental Champion, SHO & YOH to become future IWGP Heavyweight Tag Team Champions, while signing more guys like Shingo Takagi. Rumor has it that NJPW is looking into bringing back Nakamura, Gallows, and Anderson.

ALL IN sold more than 11,000 seats. Did they sell 11,000 seats based on the talent on the show or based on the matches they presented? Did they sell 11,000 seats based on the fact they weren’t WWE? Finally, could they have done it without the New Japan exposure?

There’s no argument that the WWE can’t create successful superstars. But, when it comes to superstar talent that has made a name for themselves outside of that Connecticut office, just look at the WWE careers of Nakamura, Gallows, Anderson, and Finn Balor – mere shells of their NJPW existence. If we as fans think anything will be different for the ELITE, then we’re simply scumbags as far as wrestling fans go. While Kenny Omega may get the A.J. Styles treatment, the same can’t be assure regarding Marty Scurll, Adam Page, The Young Bucks, and even Cody.

With that being said…

#GoodLuckStardust


NOW CHECK OUT OTHER WEEKLY OVERVIEWS HERE.

OR JUMP TO LAST WEEK’S WWE OVERVIEW: WEEKLY OVERVIEW – NJPW (thru 10/24): Latest updates on Jericho cruise developments, Omega-Callis angle, Super Jr., Poffo, live event results, schedule of live events, next big show line-ups, noteworthy social media and YouTube posts, closing commentary

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