Hello and welcome to the WrestleTalk Super
News. I’m Oli Davis. And our rather lofty new year’s resolution
is to reach … one million subscribers in 2019, so Support WrestleTalk and give us a
subscribe. Tell me you’re subscribed in the comments down below and I’ll give a
Too SWAFT FROM OUTTA NOWHERE to as many as I can.
We’ve got a show more packed than Finn Balor’s abdomen after a sit-up / leg raise super set
today – with even more huge developments on Cody and The Young Bucks’ new All Elite
Wrestling promotion, including reports that both Chris Jericho and a former WWE Universal
Champion could be on their way there. I know they’re similar body shapes, but
that’s not Shane McMahon. But first! WrestleKingdom 13 is tomorrow!
Because the first four days of 2019 hasn’t been packed enough with wrestling news already,
tomorrow will see likely the best pay-per-view of the year take place – New Japan’s version
of WrestleMania, WrestleKingdom 13. While this year’s event doesn’t have the
level of anticipation of the last two years – with WrestleKingdom 11 boasting Kenny Omega
and Kazuchika Okada’s first six star encounter, and the shock use of Chris Jericho in his
brawl against Omega last year – many are saying tomorrow’s show has one of the greatest
cards ever on paper. The 9 match main card includes Jericho defending
his IWGP Intercontinental Championship against Tetsuya Naito, Okada taking on the new Bullet
Club leader Jay White in a bitter grudge match, the Young Bucks vs tag champions Guerrillas
of Destiny and Los Ingor…Los Igno… LIJ, Cody Rhodes defending his IWGP United States
Championship against Juice Robinson, Tomohiro Ishii vs Zack Sabre Jr for Rev Pro’s British
Heavyweight title, Kushida vs Taiji Ishimori for the IWGP Junior Heavyweight title and
a huge main event of Omega defending his Heavyweight title against comeback veteran and owner of
the most beautiful hair in wrestling Hiroshi Tanahashi.
But arguably the most excitement is for the show’s opening match – Kota Ibushi defending
his NEVER Openweight title against Will Ospreay, which Dave Meltzer is hoping, if all their
insane flips and spots land, could be one of the best matches of all time.
As the event is in Japan, that means the pre-show will begin at 2am Eastern Time in the United
States, with the main show starting at 3am. Which means we get it here in the UK at 8am.
A normal-ish hour for watching stuff. We win this round, America. Enjoy waking up to loads
of spoilers. We’ll have both a Super and WrestleRamble
review of the show up tomorrow, so again, make sure you’re subscribed with notifications
set to ‘Always On’ to know first when they’re live.
But WrestleKingdom 13 isn’t just worth watching for what will most definitely be some of the
best in-ring wrestling this year, if not the entire history of the sport… it may also
provide us some clues on who’s staying with New Japan, and which of its top stars might
be leaving for other promotions. Despite being arguably the best booked and
in-ring major wrestling promotion in the world recently, New Japan seems destined for a repeat
of January 2016, though – where a year of storylines had to be scrapped when four of
its top stars, the then-leader of the Bullet Club AJ Styles, his stablemates and former
Tag Team Champions Doc Gallows and Karl Anderson and the then IWGP Intercontinental Champion
Shinsuke Nakamura all informed the promotion they were leaving for WWE just hours after
WrestleKingdom 10 finished. New Japan’s head booker Gedo rewrote the
following day’s New Year’s Dash show, with Kenny Omega turning on Styles to become
the new leader of the Bullet Club. Which worked out pretty well for them
But now, with Cody and the Young Bucks’ new All Elite Wrestling promotion being announced
on New Year’s Day, New Japan could be losing a group of its top stars all over again…
Depressing but also somewhat arousing Segway New Japan’s current top champion Omega is
easily the biggest suspected wrestler to leave the promotion for AEW, with his contract expiring
at the end of January, and him being very close with the Being the Elite group. If he
loses his title to Tanahashi, this could be a sign that he’ll be winding down his New
Japan run. But it won’t stop everyone speculating he’ll debut for WWE at the Royal Rumble,
though. Us included. Current IWGP United States Champion Cody Rhodes
and tag title challengers the Young Bucks have already joined AEW – confirming their
Co-Executive Vice Presidents for the new promotion (business, business, business) and posting
a photo of them seemingly signing their contracts on Twitter. It’s expected Cody will lose
his title to Juice and the Young Bucks won’t win the tag titles for them to move across.
And the Bullet Club will likely lose the pre-show’s Never Openweight 6-Man Tag Team title gauntlet
match, as Hangman Page was also part of that photo signing his AEW contract.
There’s still a chance AEW could start a working relationship with New Japan, allowing
Omega, Cody, the Bucks and Page to still wrestle for NJPW. But New Japan’s relationship with
Ring of Honor – which will be a direct competitor to AEW in the States – might prevent that
from happening. But it’s not all just traffic to All Elite
Wrestling, as Dave Meltzer has reported WWE is very interested in current Junior Heavyweight
Champion Kushida. If he loses tomorrow, it could be a sign he just bought a ticket to
sit in the crowd at NXT TakeOver: Phoenix. The other key name at WrestleKingdom 13 is
last year’s co-main eventer and this year’s Intercontinental Champion Chris Jericho – another
person who, if he loses his title to Naito tomorrow, is likely on his way out of New
Japan to AEW. Jericho was one of the initial names linked
to All Elite Wrestling along with the currently contracted to WWE announcer JR when SEScoops
broke the story back in October, claiming JR and Jericho have been “sending out feelers”
to talent in WWE and New Japan respectively. Other sites would discredit that report over
the following months, claiming Jericho and JR were just involved as talent and wouldn’t
be part of the behind-the-scenes running of the promotion. Jericho and JR also both dismissed
the claims as ludicrous… but then everything else that initial article claimed – from the
TV talk details to the billionaire KHAAAAAN family providing the funding has come to pass.
Then over the weekend, Y2J thanked Tony Khan on Instagram for getting him tickets to an
NFL game – Tony has since been revealed as the president of the AEW company – and Jericho’s
graphic designer has posted a cryptic countdown tweet which runs out on the 1st February,
leading many to speculate it involves an AEW and Jericho announcement.
Dave Meltzer has since confirmed on Wrestling Observer Radio that while Jericho isn’t
currently signed to the new promotion, he’s very much on their wishlist. Rajah claim,
however, that their sources say Jericho “is going to be involved ‘in depth’”.
Rajah aren’t the most reliable of sources, so do take that with a pinch of salt, but
their report matches parts of that initial SEScoops article that has since proved pretty
correct. And they’re also reporting a rather enormous name for ‘who’s next’ to AEW. Rajah claim Bill Goldberg is one of the WWE
legends All Elite Wrestling is going after! PWInsider have already revealed that AEW has
been signing wrestlers to multi-year deals, with the billionaire Khan family backers seeing
this as “a major financial investment” with it being “the biggest financial push
from anyone getting into the professional wrestling world in a long, long time, dating
back to the end of World Championship Wrestling in 2001”. So who better to start it with,
than one of WCW’s biggest ever stars. The Rajah report actually gives a number for
how big this ‘major financial investment’ from the Khans is, writing they’re “fronting
$100 million for the launch of AEW”. As part of the already announced signings
of Cody and Brandi Rhodes, The Bucks and Hangman Page, they corroborate SEScoops’ initial
claims that Jim Ross will also be “heavily involved – both on commentary and in a backstage
capacity”, but he’s stayed quiet on the situation because he’s still under contract
with WWE until March. In addition to JR and Jericho, Rajah write
that sports agent Barry Bloom is involved in AEW’s talent recruitment. Bloom is one
of the more fascinating names in wrestling history, being the agent for Kevin Nash and
Scott Hall when they jumped from the WWF to WCW in 1995. And apparently he’ll “‘go
hard’ at WWE for stars whose deals will be expiring and they will be ‘mixing in
legends’ as well”. The only ‘WWE legend’ Rajah names is former
Universal Champion Goldberg, who they note . This ties in with the original SEScoops
report, which oddly included an out-of-place reference to Goldberg when talking about who’s
expected to worth with AEW: “For what it’s worth, Bill Goldberg is a client of Barry
Bloom, along with JR and Jericho.” Which is the kind of line you say if you’ve heard
something big, but you’re not allowed to say it. You might as well write ‘wink wink
nudge nudge’ after it. As previously mentioned, though, Rajah don’t
have the best track record with scoops. We’ll need something a lot more concrete that proves
Goldberg even knows what All Elite Wrestling is before we start to get excited. Like, I
don’t know, following both AEW and the Double or Nothing All In accounts on Twitter. But
that’ll never happ- Whaaaaaaaaaat?!
Why does Bill follow Coachman on Twitter? …oh crap, he follows AEW too.
That’s right, out of the 385 accounts Goldberg’s official Twitter profile follows – none of
whom are me, what the hell, man? – the latest two are All Elite Wrestling and All In’s
Double or Nothing – the latter being the suspected name for All In 2, which will reportedly take
place in the Spring. And abiding by the ‘follow me, I’ll follow
you back’ courtesy – the Double or Nothing account has returned the favour.
So in just a few months, we could have a new promotion of upstarts, represented by the
agent of Kevin Nash and Scott Hall, headlined by Goldberg, taking on Vince McMahon’s WWE.
To quote Cody’s statement yesterday: “what’s old isn’t new – what’s new is new”.
And I’ve genuinely got no problem with that possible contradiction whatsoever.
What are the 10 biggest WWE rumours you need to know for 2019? Click the video onscreen
now to find out! And give us a subscribe and enable notifications to always on to get our
WrestleKindgom 13 videos tomorrow first! I’ve been Oli Davis, and that was wrestling.