At the recently-concluded NXT TakeOver 31 event, Kyle O'Reilly unsuccessfully challenged Finn Balor for the NXT Championship in a rare singles match for the tag team specialist.
However, a few years prior to signing with WWE, Kyle O'Reilly also competed as a singles wrestler while still being in a tag team with long-term partner Bobby Fish. One of the rare instances when O'Reilly competed in a one-on-one match was against the legendary Katsuyori Shibata in New Japan Pro Wrestling.
Taking to Twitter, The Undisputed Era member recalled his brutal war with Shibata from his days in Japan, following the match's fourth anniversary. Responding to a tweet which showcased parts of O'Reilly's match with Shibata, the former labeled it as one of the favorite fights of his career.
Additionally, Kyle O'Reilly also praised Katsuyori Shibata by calling him the man, the myth, the legend. Here is what the former NXT Tag Team Champion wrote:
Kyle O'Reilly's run in NJPW
Kyle O'Reilly made his New Japan Pro Wrestling debut through the promotion's working relationship with Ring of Honor. Mostly working as a Jr. Heavyweight tag team with Bobby Fish in reDragon, they managed to get their hands on the IWGP Jr. Heavyweight Tag Team Championships.
During his time with the promotion, Kyle O'Reilly also competed in the Best of the Super Juniors in 2015. In the following year, he got his first shot at a singles title in NJPW, when he unsuccessfully challenged Shibata at the King of Pro Wrestling event.
Another notable instance when O'Reilly challenged for an NJPW singles title was when he wrestled Adam Cole at Wrestle Kingdom 11, with the ROH World Championship on the line.
In 2017, Kyle O'Reilly and Bobby Fish finally made their way over to WWE and have since been a vital part of the company, especially on the NXT brand. The duo continue to represent their traditional tag team under The Undisputed Era banner.Published 11 Oct 2020, 02:55 IST