Just a few hours ago at a New Japan Pro Wrestling’s “Power Struggle” event, the “Twitter feud” between Chris Jericho and Kenny Omega finally reached the first checkmark, as it was announced the two would be having a match in two months at NJPW’s Wrestle Kingdom 12 at the Tokyo Dome. For those of you unaware, WK12 is NJPW’s version of WrestleMania, and it usually sets attendance records every year with 63,000+ wrestling fans attending the already sold-out event. For the past week or so, Jericho and Omega have been having an online spat (which not a lot of people bought into before the announcement) about who was the best wrestler from Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada. Last night (Japan time) as an NJPW event was coming to a close, this video aired in the building…
— LARIATOOOO!!!! (@MrLARIATO) November 5, 2017
Now, this is a bit of a landmark match for a number of reasons. First, it marks Chris Jericho’s first return back to the promotion since 1997, back when he was a WCW employee doing wrestler exchanges between promotions. It’s also one of the few times since the late 80’s since a major WWE star has been a fixture in their storylines. Jericho may only be a part-timer who pops in when they need a jolt to the story, but he’s still a major figure in WWE culture. To see him go to Japan and wrestle against one of the biggest stars in NJPW (that WWE only wish they had) is a big deal. It’s also one of the few matches Omega could possibly have in NJPW to top his set of matches against Kazuchika Okada, who will be defending the IWGP title against Tetsuya Naito in the main event.
Ultimately, this is a major “get” for NJPW as far as branching out to an American and European audience. The company has been making bigger strides to become a global entity and essentially be a worldwide competitor to WWE. There are few wrestlers who could do what Jericho just did in an instant, and that’s appear on NJPW programming and instantly get the internet talking. Now whether or not that translates into people subscribing to NJPW World over the next couple months to see the show… that’s going to be the real test. Either way, those two are already looking like they’ll be “match of the night” candidates, and they haven’t even touched yet.
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