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Thread: The New Japan Pro Wrestling Thread

  1. #901
    too big to fail Tainted Eclipse's Avatar
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    mike bailey vs. rysukue taguchi was awesome. one of my favorite matches of the year actually. probably top 5 at least. first new japan match (or even clip) i've seen this year where the hotness of the crowd genuinely felt pre-lockdown levels.

  2. #902
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    The first of the two Strong Independence Day shows in Korakuen was awesome. Jun Kasai's entrance was something.

    And now tonight is FINAL DEATH.

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    FBI Warning VHS's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tainted Eclipse View Post
    mike bailey vs. rysukue taguchi was awesome. one of my favorite matches of the year actually. probably top 5 at least. first new japan match (or even clip) i've seen this year where the hotness of the crowd genuinely felt pre-lockdown levels.
    Speedball is always 10/10.

  4. #904
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    First night of the G1 was pretty meh with a dead crowd.

    If you have the time I'd say check out Ren vs Shota and Will vs Taichi, but nothing on this show is drop everything watch it now worthy.

  5. #905
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    After 6 nights for anyone interested here are my match recs for the G1

    Kazuchika Okada vs Taichi - Night 5
    Shota Umino vs Kaito Kiyomiya - Night 5
    Yota Tsuji vs SANADA - Night 5
    Will Ospreay vs KENTA - Night 5
    Shingo Takagi vs Henare - Night 4
    Henare vs Mikey Nicholls - Night 2
    Hiroshi Tanahashi vs Zack Sabre Jr - Night 2
    Will Ospreay vs Taichi - Night 1

    You may notice there I enjoyed Night 5 quite a bit

  6. #906
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    Today's G1 A Block final show is one of the worst booked shows I have ever seen.

  7. #907
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    Why has Hikuelo made it to the quarter finals? Nothing against him per say but feel like he seems out of place there.

  8. #908
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    Quote Originally Posted by MTR View Post
    Why has Hikuelo made it to the quarter finals? Nothing against him per say but feel like he seems out of place there.
    There are a bunch of wrestlers in this year's G1 that seemed out of place. When I saw Eddie Kingston was in it, I was just like well....there goes any cred G1 maybe had remaining.

  9. #909
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    There are always going to be a handful of people in the tournament that don't belong and are fillers. I don't think Kingston was one of them. Me and you have different views on him and that is okay. He always wanted to do it and he got to do it. And looks like they set up his first NJPW Strong title defense.

    Either way the groups seemed unbalanced which helps Hikuelo make it through to the quarters.

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    the four bracket set-up kills a lot of my excitement for the g1. it's too bloated with filler.

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    I haven't watched any of the matches but when I saw that set up I was not thrilled. And then when I saw the unbalanced groups that didn't help change my view of it.

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    I'm sure a lot of wrestlers wanted to do the G1 and I feel like he's benefited from his relationship with Tony Khan and AEW or he would've been in it a long time ago. But he's just one of many examples.

  13. #913
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    Today's show was much better. Helped that it seems like Tanahashi decided that he really only had one great match in him and saved it for Today.

    The quarterfinals are Okada vs ZSJ, SANADA vs EVIL, Ospreay vs Finlay, and Naito vs Hikuleo.

  14. #914
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    Okada vs ZSJ should deliver.

    Not sure about the rest. Naito can probably carry Hikuleo to a decent match. Ospreay can probably carry Finlay to a decent match. I am sue Sanada and Evil will be fine.

    Tanahashi needs to hang it up. I have seen some recent matches and clips and he keeps trying to do what he used to do and it looks bad. He either needs to change his style or call it a day.

  15. #915
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    Here's how I got it going

    Okada over ZSJ
    EVIL over SANADA
    Naito over Hikuleo
    Finlay over Ospreay

    Okada over EVIL
    Naito over Finlay

    Naito over Okada

  16. #916
    too big to fail Tainted Eclipse's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Morrison View Post
    the four bracket set-up kills a lot of my excitement for the g1. it's too bloated with filler.
    yeah, the format kind of precludes any possibility of me being interested in it. i might have been down to give it a chance as the first g1 with real crowds otherwise. but still, i'm pretty down on new japan right now anyway. feels like a lot of it has just jumped the shark. i miss 2013-2018 new japan.

  17. #917
    too big to fail Tainted Eclipse's Avatar
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    also, man, remember how awesome the 2013 and 2014 G1s were?

  18. #918
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    Ospreay vs Naito is the MOTT so far. Also loved Okada vs EVIL but I am House pilled.

    Also Naito has an obvious concussion and is wrestling Okada in 18 hours

  19. #919
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    watched naito/ospreay. enjoyed it quite a bit, especially the crowd. it actually sounded like you'd expect a crowd to sound during a top-tier g1 match from before the lackdowns, which is really great. the new japan crowd was the best in wrestling so i'm glad they're back at that level. good match with some really cool spots. but everything after the count down spot, which i didn't like itself, was a step down. and of course naito was clearly badly fucked up from that mistimed kick.

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    too big to fail Tainted Eclipse's Avatar
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    though i liked the storm breaker into the hurricanrana spot because the hurricanrana looked great, it made me reflect that one downside of the storm breaker, and move i dont love in the first place, is that every counter to it has to look really really phony because will has to throw them up in a way that's totally out of synch with the way he actually hits the move. one upside of the one winged angle is that the mechanics are such that you can do believable looking counters to it.

  21. #921
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    Full Card for Saturday's Show in London

    NJPW "ROYAL QUEST III", 14.10.2023
    London Copper Box Arena, England

    1. Robbie X vs Taiji Ishimori
    2. El Desperado vs. Trent Seven
    3. Yota Tsuji vs. Luke Jacobs
    4. IWGP Jr. Heavyweight Tag Team Title: Clark Connors & Drilla Moloney (c) vs. Leon Slater & Cameron Khai
    5. El Phantasmo, Tama Tonga & Tanga Loa vs David Finlay, Alex Coughlin & Gabe Kidd
    6. Ren Narita & Shota Umino vs. Francesco Akira & Great-O-Khan
    7. SANADA & DOUKI vs. Tetsuya Naito & BUSHI
    8. Hiroshi Tanahashi, Eddie Kingston & Michael Oku vs. Jeff Cobb, HENARE & TJP
    9. Shingo Takagi vs. Tomohiro Ishii
    10. IWGP UK/US Heavyweight Championship: Will Ospreay vs. Zack Sabre Jr.

  22. #922
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    I bet that Ospreay/ZSJ match delivers

  23. #923
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    The show they're doing in Texas in a few weeks is a helluva card on paper

    Shingo vs Trent
    Eddie vs Kojima
    TJP vs Mistico
    ZSJ vs Mike Bailey
    Mayu vs Stephanie Vaquer
    ELP and Hikuleo vs Issacs and Nelson
    Yano vs Joey Janella

    Also announced but no matches yet Jon Moxley, Atlantis, and Ultimo Guerrero

  24. #924
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    President Ohbari has been fired. Hiroshi Tanahashi has been named new President.

  25. #925
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    Quote Originally Posted by Defrost View Post
    President Ohbari has been fired. Hiroshi Tanahashi has been named new President.
    Whoaaaaa this is massive! What's the lore with the firing?

  26. #926
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    Quote Originally Posted by Psycho666Soldier View Post
    Whoaaaaa this is massive! What's the lore with the firing?
    There has been a lot of backstage turmoil in both NJPW and Stardom. This seems like a powerplay from the Gedo faction. The question is whether this was in response to Okada leaving or if this was done as an ultimatum by Okada to get him to stay.

  27. #927
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    reading New Years Dash results. Brawl between BC and United Empire prompting a 10 man cage match in Feb as Ospreay's last match.

    Riddle showed up on Titontron and challenged Tanahashi.

    Other matches set up as well

  28. #928
    you either die a hero... Morrison's Avatar
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    https://www.njpw1972.com/168267

    okada leaving new japan after his contract expires on january 31st. he'll still be at two of the new beginning dates in february.

    insane to see him going. outside of putting up some records like tying/breaking chono's 5 g1 climax wins or more reigns as iwgp champion, there's not a whole left for him to do in new japan, and he's ten years younger than tanahashi, with a lot still left in the tank, so it does make sense. will be very interesting to see where he ends up.

  29. #929
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    Okada v. Cena Mania 40.

  30. #930
    GO ON LAD Fanny Batter's Avatar
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    Might be why Nakamura's had a renewed push? Team them up, big split, put Okada over then shoot him up the card. Or AEW who will be lacking workhorse main eventers with Omega out for the foreseeable and Danielson winding down. No doubt he's going to end up being big news either way, and he's done all he can in New Japan. What an absolute hell of a run he had.

    It's a shame the next generation of guys haven't really kicked on to superstardom. I guess it was lightning in a bottle with that fleet of excellent main event talent in their primes (Nakamura, Okada, Tanahashi and Naito) with the Bullet Club getting over like anything. That 2014-2019 Wrestle Kingdom arc has to be up there with any 5 years a wrestling company has ever had. The AEW defections hurt then COVID really stuck the knife in. But maybe the shadow of Okada and Tanahashi has negatively affected the developing popularity of the younger talent?

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    Pretty wild to think. Especially when you look at someone like Tanahashi who is clearly a lifer, especially with the new position. But like Morrison said, he's done all there is to do, main eventers Tokyo Dome multiple times, had epic and iconic rivalries, and still has so much more left in the tank.

    I wonder if he immediately hitches to another company and explores a bit? Could see him doing a quick stint in AEW/Forbidden Door before signing a contract with WWE after the fact. Could also just see him going straight to WWE. Very exciting to think about what's next.

  32. #932
    GO ON LAD Fanny Batter's Avatar
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    It's amazing how much stronger the whole industry is based on New Japan's rebirth around the start of the 2010's. Obviously the style has been hugely influential, but the Bullet Club arc from 2013-2018 which lead to the formation of AEW and the development of AJ Styles as a main event ready talent for WWE after the shine had worn off him with TNA's downfall. It's a shame that Okada leaving is the end of that era, particularly with every English speaker being fair game for the big 2 every January. But then there's opportunities for the guys that get let go by the big 2 to step up in Japan. I think if you've been on WWE TV and still want to work, there's so many more openings now than a decade ago.

  33. #933
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    Quote Originally Posted by Fanny Batter View Post
    But then there's opportunities for the guys that get let go by the big 2 to step up in Japan.
    Yup, but the paradigm is shifting, both in Japan and the US. Money is coming in for the companies in the US at a stronger rate and NJPW has potentially plateaued. Things are going to change if it's eventually becoming that NJPW operates as a feeder system. The consolation may be that it is somewhat okay if they build to strengthen AEW because you'll presumably see those guys come back for big events. That said, it turns into the dad you like but your parents are divorced vibe. I do wonder if things change in the new regime for WWE where sticking points on appearances in Japan hold negotiations up. Seems safe to presume that was an issue under Vince's watch. Remains to be seen with Triple H.

  34. #934
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    Damn I should have gone last night to the show. I could have been there for history. The formation of the Bang Bang Scissors Gang

  35. #935
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    Quote Originally Posted by Fanny Batter View Post
    It's amazing how much stronger the whole industry is based on New Japan's rebirth around the start of the 2010's. Obviously the style has been hugely influential, but the Bullet Club arc from 2013-2018 which lead to the formation of AEW and the development of AJ Styles as a main event ready talent for WWE after the shine had worn off him with TNA's downfall. It's a shame that Okada leaving is the end of that era, particularly with every English speaker being fair game for the big 2 every January. But then there's opportunities for the guys that get let go by the big 2 to step up in Japan. I think if you've been on WWE TV and still want to work, there's so many more openings now than a decade ago.
    There was a time where you had that great ROH/New Japan relationship during the peak of the Bullet Club that really gave NJPW massive exposure for fans like me who would watch ROH on a Fox affiliate and seeing a lot of talent I had only read about. It made me feel like a teenager in the 90's again reading about Kenta Kobashi, Shinya Hashimoto, FMW, basically if you weren't part of that WCW relationship I only knew about you at first from the PWI 500/mags and whatever buzz on the AOL chats you had.

    There's definitely a ton of money getting thrown around. Okada for example. Idk if he goes to AEW if that's anything special. Some different people to work with no doubt but it's ultimately just like 90% of the industry, matches being made and that's it. For me if he goes to AEW I won't be mad about it but I do feel like it's the safe way to go. And IF that is his option the money will extremely nice. I can see AEW outbidding WWE, Tony has more money and has shown in the past with Jade Cargill he's willing to go above and beyond in hopes they stay. Okada, he's the man in NJPW and going to AEW would seem like a money move. There's a working relationship already there so why the trouble? Okada going to WWE and possibly getting to that next level, becoming World champion...That would be insane.

  36. #936
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    Yeah, from a drive perspective I'd like to see him attempt WWE, and that it's the more interesting option on the table. He's wrestled the best of AEW already. As you say, he puts on great matches so would be positioned highly, but there wouldn't be much growth as a performer. For as much as Shinsuke's wound down a bit in terms of his in ring efforts, he's been a memorable character for 7 years on the main roster. Okada's not quite as broken down coming in, he LOOKS a bigger star, and has the equity of being a known presence on US TV, whereas Nakamura had limited exposure. I think he'd do great.

  37. #937
    you either die a hero... Morrison's Avatar
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    there is still plenty for him to do if he chose AEW, though WWE would be the more challenging choice. in AEW, he's still coming into a weekly formatted american wrestling television show, and he'll have to get used to that. as good as jay white could be in new japan, i always felt like he was made for a western styled presentation, and he's been absolutely awesome. i think a lot of the japanese talent can sometimes fail to really grasp what it means to create a compelling weekly character and what it takes. shinsuke really didn't show any kind of character outside his 'kooky charisma' until he went heel, started hitting aj in the balls and pretending he didn't understand english.

    beyond that, if there was anything he wanted to try outside of wrestling, he'd likely have more flexibility being in AEW.

  38. #938
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    Like I said, if Okada wants to keep doing the same thing he's been doing for 10-15 years, go to AEW. Go where it's simply matches being booked, character takes a backseat to in-ring work, and you get paid a ridiculous amount of money.

    What I keep forgetting though is Okada's wife. This isn't like with Nakamura where he uprooted his family and loves America because he wants to surf all the time. Okada's wife, popular Japanese actress. Is this guy even leaving Japan? Is he even going to still wrestle?

  39. #939
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    Quote Originally Posted by MTR View Post
    Damn I should have gone last night to the show. I could have been there for history. The formation of the Bang Bang Scissors Gang
    lol just realized I posted this in the wrong thread

  40. #940
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nash Diesel View Post
    Like I said, if Okada wants to keep doing the same thing he's been doing for 10-15 years, go to AEW. Go where it's simply matches being booked, character takes a backseat to in-ring work, and you get paid a ridiculous amount of money.

    What I keep forgetting though is Okada's wife. This isn't like with Nakamura where he uprooted his family and loves America because he wants to surf all the time. Okada's wife, popular Japanese actress. Is this guy even leaving Japan? Is he even going to still wrestle?
    I can see him doing something like Ibushi and sign with AEW or TNA but still live in Japan and basically come over to the states for dates and then go back and maybe work for other promotions over in Japan.

  41. #941
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    Quote Originally Posted by MTR View Post
    I can see him doing something like Ibushi and sign with AEW or TNA but still live in Japan and basically come over to the states for dates and then go back and maybe work for other promotions over in Japan.
    That's what I'm leaning toward. I also think that the timing is very interesting. Tanahashi takes over, their #1 guy Okada leaves? Unheard of. He could still be in New Japan, secured knowing he's not going to wind up having to put over Wheeler Yuta by small package at Wembley or Moose in front of 120 people. NJPW has the relationship with AEW, TNA, etc. I can't imagine him wanting to be a top guy in Mexico or Europe.

    The scene in Japan is not very hot right now. Could he go to All Japan and NOAH? For sure but what big matches are there for a guy of that stature in the overall wrestling business? IDGAF if dude can speak English or not you can work around that. If WWE wanted him they're probably thinking he's not going to be put in the Roman Reigns/Cody Rhodes position at the very start but you can still get him over as fuck. Okada would easily be a top 5 guy in the US promotions. The exposure would be bigger in WWE but the flexibility might not match others.

    I just don't know if WWE/AEW are going to get into a battle to sign him. If that even becomes a thing. I'm honestly more intrigued by his decision to leave and the timing of Ace taking over.

  42. #942
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    From what I heard I think part of putting the Ace in charge was to try to help keep Okada there. So much for that.

    Would I like to see him in the WWE? Hell yeah. Do I think they would fuck it up. Maybe. I feel like Nakamura could have been a bigger star but they keep starting and stopping with him. I think now that they are letting him do more of his stuff in Japanese and same with IYO and Asuka and what not that maybe they wouldn't fuck up as much I would have once thought. I think if he was going to come over to the WWE this is probably the time to do it. There is matches there that he has not done unlike with AEW and TNA where he has done matches with various people now the last few years because of them all working together. WWE seems to be willing to push the Japanese talent more and just let them be instead of making them focus on the English.

    Yeah I bet he ends up signing with AEW on same kind of deal as Ibushi and comes over here and works some AEW stuff and just does All Japan and NOAH and things like that the rest of the time. But if he really wants a challenge and matches he has not had WWE is the way to go but WWE is such a different style and way of telling stories from what he is used to.

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    Like we've said, the move to WWE is the most interesting because they're really not like anyone else in terms of presentation. The fact is, American wrestling is storyline/character driven which is why the biggest moments/matches usually don't look like Omega v. Okada II. Not to mention, there's really no Vince anymore. It's Triple H and Nick Khan trusting his vision. Triple H loves wrestling, but he's not a mark and he came up during the hottest period so he knows a balance is needed. I think he will see that despite Okada's limitations on the mic, the presentation in and out of the ring will do very well.

    I mean when you think about Nakamura for example, the fact he won the Rumble, the multiple World title programs, IC title reigns were solid. My biggest gripe with his booking is that each time he was in a World title feud you could make a strong argument for him to win the belt. He should've beat Jinder, should've gone on to Mania to beat AJ, and he definitely should've beat Rollins. If his English was the deciding factor whatever it's nothing new for WWE or really any mainstream company here. Just like you don't see Big E winning the IWGP title anytime soon. But again I think Okada, just his reputation and his look and the match quality should speak for itself. And a year from now dude could sound fine on the mic.

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    Yeah Nakamura should have beaten AJ at Mania after the Rumble win and recently I think Nakamura should have gone over Rollins. He has had some solid IC reigns but he has also had a lot of just nothing as well. I don't think it was just his english that held him back but probably played somewhat of a factor. I felt like hasn't been booked all bad but not completely solid either. But I think that is changing even if I think he should have gone over Rollins. He has been doing fine moving on to Cody and we all know Cody is going over in that feud but it was fine.

    At the end of the day yeah I agree if there is a good time for Okada to come to WWE instead of AEW or anywhere else the time is now. Triple H would make it work and there are match ups to be had they he has not had plus a chance to work places and obviously events he has not worked before.

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    I wasn't even thinking about a pro with WWE would be the international reach they have and the places Okada could wrestle not just in the US/North America but Europe, South America, obviously going back to Japan would be huge under the WWE banner.

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    Wait. Okada, Ishii, and Tahanhashi didn't drop the six man belts today. I don't have a problem with him not losing in his last match but like couldn't they have had them drop the belts before his last match and farewell. Like do they get to find another partner or do they have to vacate?

    Of course I don't know why they didn't drop the belts but like people all over twitter saying he didn't want to put young talent over.

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    Oh not his last match but last six man title defense. He still has a few matches left

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    People on twitter acting like Okada going to be on Dynamite tonight because technically is is already Feb 1st in Japan or whatever. He has like 2 or 3 more matches he has committed to doing for them. He is not flying over here just to show up even if he does sign with them.

  49. #949
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    there were dum dum's fantasy booking a spot in the rumble for him when they first released the statement he was leaving, even though his contract didn't expire until after the rumble.

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    yeah I saw that and then at some point people were like crossing off who could be surprises and like crossing him off. He should have never been on the list.

    Meltzer (so take this with a grain of salt) reporting that the announcement next week on Dynamite is the signing of Okada and Mercedes and that they could have announced it on Collession but decided not too. That is were I am like yeah right. Not that they are going to sign these two but that they could have announced it the night on tv against the Rumble.

  51. #951
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    Quote Originally Posted by MTR View Post
    yeah I saw that and then at some point people were like crossing off who could be surprises and like crossing him off. He should have never been on the list.

    Meltzer (so take this with a grain of salt) reporting that the announcement next week on Dynamite is the signing of Okada and Mercedes and that they could have announced it on Collession but decided not too. That is were I am like yeah right. Not that they are going to sign these two but that they could have announced it the night on tv against the Rumble.
    I said it somewhere else, here, Twitter IDK but the whole Mercedes is coming to AEW on *insert show* is turning into a meme like that Veer is coming to Raw. Seriously, ever since she left WWE it's been "Sasha is going to AEW" and it got worse when she was at All In. Ever since All In I swear every week she was supposed to debut and/or be announced as a new signee. At this point it's just another body. I'm not thinking about any great storylines or rivalries I'm just thinking it'll be nice to see her wrestle. I was never a big Sasha Banks fan but when she's in there with someone special like Charlotte or Bayley it's usually very very good.

    I mean here's the thing...why would Tony announce their signings on Collision going up against the Rumble? Forget the Vince stuff, it was Rumble plus who even watches that show? You don't have names like that debut on the show half your audience doesn't even watch. Dynamite or bust.

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    Well they are not going to debut. Okada is still in Japan finishing up dates and not sure what is going on with Mercedes but I don't think she is cleared to wrestle yet but could appear at least.

    But yeah I agree why would that announce that on a show going against the Rumble. that is why I am like whatever to this news. If he is going to announce the signing it makes sense to do it on a Dynamite. So maybe he does announce the signing on Dynamite this coming week but no way he was set to do it against the Rumble. Meltzer is so full of shit at times. Same guy saying they changed the cage match on that show to escape the cage because Malakai and Buddy don't like doing jobs and then Buddy pointed out his won-loss record on twitter. lol

    Anyway I am just ready for her to show up somewhere already even if she is not ready to go quite yet so we can just be done with the when is she going to show up.

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    Quote Originally Posted by MTR View Post
    Well they are not going to debut. Okada is still in Japan finishing up dates and not sure what is going on with Mercedes but I don't think she is cleared to wrestle yet but could appear at least.

    But yeah I agree why would that announce that on a show going against the Rumble. that is why I am like whatever to this news. If he is going to announce the signing it makes sense to do it on a Dynamite. So maybe he does announce the signing on Dynamite this coming week but no way he was set to do it against the Rumble. Meltzer is so full of shit at times. Same guy saying they changed the cage match on that show to escape the cage because Malakai and Buddy don't like doing jobs and then Buddy pointed out his won-loss record on twitter. lol

    Anyway I am just ready for her to show up somewhere already even if she is not ready to go quite yet so we can just be done with the when is she going to show up.
    I'm more concerned with Mercedes being able to last. She had what, 5 matches since she left WWE and already injured. She's had a lot of them too and she's only 30. She'll be like Rey Mysterio or Edge though where despite spending 50% of their career on the injured list they'll still be there in their twilight years pulling out a good match once in a while lol.

    I still think it's weird that Okada left New Japan and we don't really know why. Not saying I'm losing sleep it's just odd. It's almost like if you heard Roman Reigns was leaving WWE after Mania. It's just not something that normally happens where you have the top guy in NJPW, and he wants to do what? Have more freedom to wrestle in America? IDK.

  54. #954
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    I think he said in an interview that is on New Japan's site that something about still in his prime and looking to do more. I don't remember the exact quote and too lazy to go look.

    I mean it does seem odd considering New Japan gives their guys freedom to go work with AEW and TNA and work indy dates if they want over here in the States and hell they are not even all under contract over there and some are working NOAH and other Japan promotions. They only thing he wouldn't be able to do is work with the WWE and even then that is not really out of the question per say. Triple H and company is more likely to work something out with them with them than Vince in the past.

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    I saw that Barry Bloom was representing Okada so that makes me think this is 100% about money.

  56. #956
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    Yeah Bloom is representing him.

    I think I saw something like AEW has the bigger offer and WWE did put an offer in and basically like if he wants to come here then he will. I don't think they are going to try to outbid TK.

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    Quote Originally Posted by MTR View Post
    Yeah Bloom is representing him.

    I think I saw something like AEW has the bigger offer and WWE did put an offer in and basically like if he wants to come here then he will. I don't think they are going to try to outbid TK.
    I agree. They're not trying to play that game when they know if a wrestler really wants to be in the WWE that talent will come. Look at Jade. TK said he offered her more money than WWE but she still went to the WWE.

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    Riddle is the new tv champ and Nemeth is the new global champ

  59. #959
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    And now Jack Perry is part of the House of Torture. Some stuff going on over there.

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