NJPW star Kenny Omega is gearing up for his mega-fight with WWE legend Chris Jericho at Wrestle Kingdom 12 and sat down with Sports Illustrated to talk.
Omega is ready for his clash with Jericho.
“I really want this match to be a wake-up call to New Japan and WWE” Omega said.
“This match is going to open up a lot of eyes, and it’s going to invoke a feeling you’ve never felt when watching a wrestling match. It’s a clash of unique worlds, and the match we’re going to show with aggression, violence, and disdain is going to evoke a new kind of emotion from people watching.”
Omega also shared his thoughts on Shinsuke Nakamura’s run with WWE.
“I’m happy for the response that he’s getting, of course, and all of us in New Japan knew when he left that he was going to get over with his charisma. But when I see Nakamura in WWE, it’s hard for me to say he’s done anything compelling in-ring since he’s been there, which is a shame. It will just take the one right story and the one right moment and then people will be captivated by everything that he does. Right now, he hasn’t had that.”
“Even to another degree, everything in WWE is super over-booked. Some people in WWE even need the steps and their footing in the ring choreographed. They have to pace their breathing before they even go through with a match in the ring. When you’re used to dealing with people who need that match management, who need to have that much choreography in their matches before they go out there and perform, then when a guy like Nakamura–who is this new age ‘strong style,’ and a lot of that is based off emotion and feeling and fighting spirit–wrestles someone who needs marks on the ring so that he can get his footing right with a set of instructions, that’s where Nakamura’s style gets lost in translation. Everything starts to come across as soulless, if that makes any sense.”
Davey Boy Smith Jr. Done with New Japan
Dave Boy Smith Jr. may be done with New Japan Pro Wrestling, ending a relationship he has had with the promotion since 2011, according to various reports, and effectively ending his partnership with Lance Archer, who together formed the Killer Elite Squad tag team.
Smith is still involved with Major League Wrestling where Smith Jr, Teddy Hart, and Brian Pillman Jr comprise the Hart Foundation, who are currently their tag team champions, and Teddy Hart is the middleweight champion.
Smith will receive a future MLW World Championship match as he recently won a fan vote.
NJPW’s Harold Meij Comments on Departing Talent
With the departures of Cody Rhodes, the Young Bucks, Chris Jericho, and the likely forthcoming departure of Kenny Omega, New Japan Pro Wrestling has been reeling.
New Japan Pro Wrestling president Harold Meij commented on the departures of the The Elite members, and other talent, most of whom are moving to either WWE or AEW.
Meij: ‘Talent will come & go. That’s life. Half of Japanese people have had more than one occupation. More overseas. There are different life stages, priorities change. What counts is that while here, ppl shine as bright as possible & produce the best product possible for us’— chris charlton (@reasonjp) January 9, 2019
Chase Owens Re-Signs With NJPW
NJPW is expected to lose Kenny Omega at the end of the month, who announced he would be leaving when his contract expires at the end of the month, but they will not be losing Chase Owens.
“The Crown Jewel” Chase Owens has also officially re-signed with NJPW, making the official announcement on Twitter.
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