SPOTLIGHTED PODCAST ALERT (YOUR ARTICLE BEGINS A FEW INCHES DOWN)...
-Tickets for the first night of G1 Climax in Dallas, Tex. went on sale yesterday and according to the ticket chart only around 1,600 seats were sold. Not all of the seats were made available for sale on the first day and only a fraction of the seats in the venue were made available for the initial ticket launch. NJPW did not hold a pre-sale for this event. The American Airlines Center can hold up to 20,000 fans depending on the setup for the event it’s holding.
Radican’s Analysis: This is not a good sign for NJPW. Dallas is a first time market that they haven’t visited before and they are bringing a major show to a big arena in G1 Climax and they only moved 1,600 tickets. It’s clear that losing access to Kenny Omega, Cody Rhodes, and The Young Bucks have hurt NJPW’s marketability in the U.S. at this point.
It also didn’t help that NJPW expanded their U.S. schedule earlier this year in several new markets, but due to visa issues they weren’t able to bring over any native Japanese talent to those events in Los Angeles, Charlotte, and Nashville. I’ve felt all along that NJPW is going to have to work with AEW if they’re going to expand in the U.S. and this is a sign that they need to do something if they want to continue to expand in the U.S.
-NJPW did a pre-sale for their event in London on Aug. 31 and sold around 4,500 tickets. The event will be a major NJPW in the U.K. and the total number of tickets made available will be around 7,500. The public sale of tickets begins today and Will Ospreay is the only name announced so far for the event so far. Dave Meltzer of the Wrestling Observer was the first to report the ticket sales for this event.
Radican’s Analysis: This is NJPW’s first major event being held in the U.K. and it’s clear fans are excited to see the NJPW product live given the pre-sale tickets that moved. Starting with this kind of momentum in the U.K. is a good sign for NJPW running major eventes there in the future, especially if the remaining tickets sell out quickly.
-The G1 Supercard lineup is taking shape. ROH held a press conference yesterday to have the contract singing for the ROH World Champion Jay Lethal vs. Matt Taven match at ROH 17th Anniversary PPV that takes place tomorrow. During the press conference, it was announced that Marty Scurll will challenge the winner of the Lethal vs. Taven for the ROH World Championship at G1 Supercard at MSG next month. Scurll is cashing in his title shot from winning Survial of The Fittest 2018 last November.
Other matches signed for the card include:
- IWGP Heavyweight Champion Jay White defending against the winner of the New Japan Cup
- Marty Scurll vs. Jay Lethal or Matt Taven for the ROH World Championship
- IWGP Junior Heavyweight Champion Taiji Ishimori vs. Dragon Lee vs. Bandido in a Triple Threat match
- IWGP Tag Team Champions G.O.D. (Tama Tonga & Tanga Loa) vs. ROH Tag Team Champions The Briscoes with both championships on the line. The Briscoes are facing P.C.O. & Brody King at ROH’s PPV tomorrow with the titles on the line, so this match could change.
- Honor Rumble (pre-show match)
Other talent that was released for a meet and greet prior to G1 Supercard included BUSHI, EVIL, SANADA, Hirooki Goto, Juice Robinson, Jushin Liger, Kazuchika Okada, Kota Ibushi, Shingo Takagi, Tetsuya Naito, Will Ospreay and Zack Sabre Jr.
Hiroshi Tanahashi will also wrestle on the G1 Supercard, but his match has not been announced yet. His appearance was announced in a video put out by NJPW below:
Radican’s Analysis: This doesn’t feel like a big card to me yet. NJPW is lacking in main event star power that appeals to fans in the U.S. right now and with no match announced for Tanahashi or Okada as of yet, it’s hard to get excited for G1 Supercard.
The junior heavyweight title match was a great start to announcing matches, but none of the other matches announced are likely to spark a ton of buzz around the show. There is still a lot that has yet to be announced, so I think interest will pick up once the NJPW Cup concludes and more matches are announced.