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The 2021 New Japan Cup bracket was revealed on Monday morning and features some enticing match-ups with key New Japan talent. First round byes were handed out to the 2020 tournament winner, Evil, and the Never Openweight Champion, Hiroshi Tanahashi.
Great-O-Khan vs. Tetsuya Naito, Kazuchika Okada vs. Shingo Takagi, Juice Robinson vs. Kenta, and Tomohiro Ishii vs. Sanada are the standout first-round highlights.
With first round byes for NEVER Champion Hiroshi Tanahashi and 2020 winner EVIL, this is your official New Japan Cup bracket!
— NJPW Global (@njpwglobal) March 1, 2021
The New Japan Cup has been a staple tournament on the New Japan calendar since 2005. Unlike the G1 Climax tournament in the summer, the New Japan Cup is a single elimination tournament with the winner earning an IWGP Heavyweight Championship match. The 2021 tournament kicks off on Thursday March 4.