by Tony Quant
We are just a matter of hours away from New Japan Pro Wrestling’s latest edition of their biggest PPV of the year, Wrestle Kingdom 12. The show is set to take place at the Tokyo Dome in Japan and this year will be broadcast live on New Japan World (NJPWWorld.com). The show will feature British commentary from Kevin Kelly and Don Callis.
The first hurdle you need to jump over is signing up for a New Japan World account which you can do at NJPWworld.com. The promotion much like the WWE take a monthly fee and for New Japan World it is 999 yen which roughly converts at the moment to about £6.85 give or take. Unfortunately though it’s not as straight forward as going onto the site and signing up, you firstly have to convert the site from Japanese to English but there is an option for this at the top of the site. Once you convert it to English its relatively straightforward to follow and you can now pay for the subscription on a monthly basis via PayPal or Debit/Credit card. Once you have made payment you are good to go!
Secondly is the timing of the show, it kicks off pretty darn early. It is an 8am UK time for the main Wrestle Kingdom show, however, the pre-show which includes the New Japan Rumble starts at 7am. So make sure you all get an early evening tonight otherwise it will be a struggle. You can obviously watch it all on catch up once you have signed up.
If Wrestle Kingdom 12 is your first experience of Japanese wrestling then it’s probably worth noting these terms which will absolutely be bought up during the commentary;
IWGP: Stands for “International Wrestling Grand Prix”. It is the governing body of New Japan (think the WWE Board of Directors), and one of the early names of the annual tournament that would eventually be re-branded as the G1 Climax.
Puroresu: The shortening of the Japanese pronunciation of “pro wrestling”.
Gaijin: Translated as “foreigner”. The term given to foreign wrestlers, generally from the west, generally portraying villains.
Juniors: In New Japan the roster is divided into “juniors”, wrestlers under 220 pounds, and “heavyweights”.
Strong-Style: You’ve probably heard this term before, possibly from New Japan veteran turned NXT Champion Shinsuke Nakamura. It refers to a specific style of wrestling based around the founder of New Japan, Antonio Inoki, who utilized a lot of stiff strikes and kicks, as well as submissions in his repertoire.
20-Count: Unlike most western promotions, New Japan uses a 20-count when wrestlers leave the ring. This allows them more time to work freely around the ring, selling injuries, and setting up big spots.
Hopefully the above has given you a quick whistle stop tour of the upcoming show and we hope you enjoy what stands to be potentially the show of the year for 2018! Here is the full card:
Kazuchika Okada (c) Vs Tetsuya Naito for the IWGP Heavyweight Championship
Kenny Omega (c) Vs Chris Jericho for the IWGP United States Heavyweight Championship in a No DQ match
Hiroshi Tanahashi (c) Vs Jay White for the IWGP Intercontinental Championship
Marty Scurll (c) Vs Hiromu Takahashi Vs Kushida Vs Will Ospreay in a four-way match for the IWGP Junior Heavyweight Championship
Minoru Suzuki (c) Vs Hirooki Goto for the NEVER Openweight Championship
Killer Elite Squad (Davey Boy Smith Jr & Lance Archer) (c) Vs Los Ingobernables de Japon (Evil & Sanada) for the IWGP Tag Team Championship
Cody Vs Kota Ibushi
Bullet Club (Bad Luck Face, Tama Tonga & Tanga Loa) Vs Chaos (Beretta, Tomohiro Ishii & Toru Yano) Vs Michael Elgin & War Machine (Hanson & Raymond Rowe) Vs Suzuki-Gun (Taichi, Takashi Iizuka & Zack Sabre Jr) Vs Taguchi Japan (Juice Robinson, Ryusuke Taguchi & Togi Makabe) in a gauntlet match for the NEVER Openweight 6-Man Tag Team Championship
Roppongi 3k (Sho & Yoh) (c) Vs The Young Bucks (Matt & Nick Jackson) for the IWGP Junior Heavyweight Tag Team Championship
New Japan Rumble