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WWE/NJPW News: NJPW Owner says he will pay money to bring Ex-WWE stars to NJPW

8.97K   //    08 Jan 2018, 13:16 IST

Chris Jericho and Kenny Omega's match may have been the sparks to a larger fire
Chris Jericho and Kenny Omega's match may have been the sparks to a larger fire

What's the story?

NJPW's Annual Wrestle Kingdom 12 pay-per-view aired on the 4th of January this year and was immensely successful in front of a sold-out Tokyo Dome. NJPW owner Takaaki Kidani spoke to Tokyo Sports about the direction he wants to take NJPW in. 

He referred to Chris Jericho's match with Kenny Omega and talked about how he had plans to bring more WWE wrestlers to NJPW in the future. 

In case you didn't know...

Chris Jericho and Kenny Omega recently had a match at the Wrestle Kingdom 12 pay-per-view. The bout between the two stars marked the first time that Chris Jericho performed in a wrestling ring outside WWE after joining them in 1999. 

Omega won the match, but Jericho went on to attack Tetsuya Naito on the following show of NJPW at New Year's Dash. His continued participation with NJPW seems to indicate that he will not be returning to WWE in the foreseeable future. 

The heart of the matter

NJPW owner, Takaaki Kidani spoke to Tokyo Sports about the goals he has set for the future of the Wrestling promotion. He talked about filling up the seats at the Tokyo Dome more and bringing in younger Japanese wrestlers. 

He talked about how he had brought in Chris Jericho and also mentioned that the New Japan membership figures had increased at a startling rate from 2012. He said that because of the rising fan base of the promotion, and the increased number of membership figures, he had money available to pay wrestlers. 

Kidani revealed that he planned to use this to bring in wrestlers with relations to WWE in the future like he had brought in Jericho. He made his intentions clear saying he would continue to do this until "the other side" was willing to cooperate.

What's next?

WWE is not known for bowing down to rivals. Vince McMahon brought WWE out of the old format of wrestling promotions territories. He faced stiff competition from the likes of WCW and TNA and was even able to buy out the former, while the latter faded into irrelevancy from a competitive perspective. 

Jericho's match in NJPW may be a start to a cold war between WWE and NJPW, with talents going back and forth between the two companies. While it cannot be said who will do better, but the competition is likely to improve the wrestling content that is broadcast from the near future, as both promotions will try to outdo the other. 


Author's take

WWE has recently been looking to expand their operations globally, most notably trying to use Jinder Mahal to win over the Indian Market. They also have a history of bringing in stars from other promotions, including former NJPW stars such as AJ Styles, Finn Balor, Gallows and Anderson, and Shinsuke Nakamura. Kidani looks like he wants to turn the tables on WWE, and bringing in Jericho was just the warning shot. 

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