NJPW News: Confirmed line-ups for 2018 Best of Super Juniors tournament
What’s the story?
New Japan Pro Wrestling has taken it to their social media sites to confirm the 16 participants for the 27th annual NJPW: Best of Super Juniors tournament.
In case you didn’t know…
The NJPW: Best of Super Juniors (commonly known as BOSJ) is an annual Pro Wrestling tournament conducted by New Japan Pro Wrestling, consisting of Junior Heavyweights/Cruiserweight Superstars from all around the globe.
The first BOSJ tournament initially took place way back in 1998, where Shiro Koshinaka became the first winner of the tournament.
Throughout the BOSJ’s long-term history, Jushin Thunder Liger and Koji Kanemoto are the only two Superstars who have won the tournament on three different occasions. Whereas, Tiger Mask IV is the only Superstar to have won the tournament in two consecutive years. (2004 and 2005).
In the past, notable names such as Pegasus Kid (Chris Benoit), Kota Ibushi, Prince Devitt (now Finn Balor), current NXT Superstar Ricochet, Will Ospreay, and Kushida have all won the Best of Super Juniors tournament.
The heart of the matter
As confirmed by NJPW, the 2018 BOSJ tournament will once again feature 16 of the very best Junior Heavyweights from NJPW, Ring of Honor, and CMLL.
These Jr. Heavyweights now get set to compete against each other in order to get a shot at the IWGP Jr. Heavyweight Championship at this year’s Dominion pay-per-view.
As noted, top NJPW Jr. Heavyweights, such as the likes of Hiromu Takahashi, Kushida, and current IWGP Jr. Heavyweight Champion Will Ospreay, will all be heading into this year’s BOSJ, as some of the biggest favorites to win the tournament.
Meanwhile, CMLL Superstar Dragon Lee could very well be the dark horse in this year’s BOSJ.
On the other hand, three top ROH Superstars, Marty Scurll, the returning Chris Sabin, and the debutant Flip Gordon, are all slated to make a huge impact during this year’s BOSJ tournament, with ‘The Villain’ Scurll being a favorite to win the entire thing.
Also, Independent Superstar and current VIP Heavyweight Champion ACH will also make his return to NJPW as part of the 2018 BOSJ.
However, speaking of favorites to win this year’s BOSJ, it will be an absolute crime if we decide to overlook NJPW’s newest signee and the newest member of the Bullet Club, Taiji Ishimori, who is the absolute favorite to win this year’s Best of Super Juniors tournament and eventually dethrone current champion Will Ospreay, later in the year as well.
Below are the two blocks for this year’s BOSJ:
Tiger Mask IV
The final of the Best of Super Juniors tournament will take place on the 4th of June, 2018 and the winner will get a shot at the IWGP Jr. Heavyweight Title at this year’s Dominion PPV.
Speaking of which, as of this writing, several other Championship matches have also been confirmed for this year’s Dominion show, with WWE legend Rey Mysterio set to make his debut for the company as well.
Below is the updated card for Dominion:
Kazuchika Okada (c) versus Kenny Omega - No time limit best two out of three falls match for the IWGP Heavyweight Championship
Tetsuya Naito (c) versus Chris Jericho - IWGP Intercontinental Championship
Los Ingobernables de Japon (Evil and Sanada) (c) versus The Young Bucks (Matt Jackson and Nick Jackson) - IWGP Tag Team Championship
Hirooki Goto (c) versus Michael Elgin and Taichi - NEVER Openweight Championship
Rey Mysterio Jr. versus mystery opponent
This year’s BOSJ tournament is definitely going to be an outstanding tournament and get ready to witness some of the absolute best matches of the year, as these Junior Heavyweights get set to steal the show.