The road to Wrestle Kingdom 13 has begun! It all starts with the NJPW’s most prestigious tournament: the G1 Climax.
The G1 Climax is a long-standing traditional tournament that features the best of NJPW’s roster battling each other for a chance to go to the main-event in Wrestle Kingdom, NJPW’s biggest show of the year. The tournament as a whole is always covered by Japan’s media and newsprint as one of the biggest events of the summer.
The field consists of 20 wrestlers, split evenly into 2 Blocks (A-Block and B-Block). The wrestlers then compete in a round-robin tournament lasting 4 weeks. The winner of each block is determined by a points system, as follows: 2 points for a win, 1 point for a draw, and 0 points for a loss.
As of Kizuna Road 2018, the following participants have been announced and classified for G1 Climax 28:
- Hiroshi Tanahashi
- Bad Luck Fale
- Kazuchika Okada
- “Hangman” Page
- Jay White
- Togi Makabe
- Minoru Suzuki
- Michael Elgin
- Juice Robinson
- Hirooki Goto
- Kenny Omega
- Kota Ibushi
- Tomohiro Ishii
- Toru Yano
- Tetsuya Naito
- Tama Tonga
- Zack Sabre Jr.
Given the talent and star-power of these athletes, it stands to reason that this may be NJPW’s most stacked G1 Climax ever. As an added bonus, it seems that several storylines are intertwined within the blocks that will become more apparent as the event progresses, such as:
–Okada’s readjustment to being a non-champion after his record-setting IWGP Heavyweight Championship reign
–The inclusion of “Switchblade” Jay White in the same block as Okada, which furthers the distrust between White and CHAOS
–The fated Golden☆Lovers matchup between Kenny Omega and Kota Ibushi, in the same arena that they last fought (Budokan Hall), but with the inclusion of the IWGP Heavyweight Championship (held currently by Omega)
–The guarantee of a Tanahashi/Okada rematch, which could re-ignite their old rivalry. Also of note, the potential of an Okada/Omega rematch (assuming both win their respective blocks).
The match listings will be posted later today, based on block organization and dates. Stay tuned!
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Image Credit: New Japan Pro Wrestling