During New Japan Pro Wrestling’s Wrestle Kingdom 11 on Wednesday, the company announced that for the first time ever, they will be doing a completely self-produced “tour” in the United States. New Japan has held many joint-promotion shows in the U.S., mostly with their business partner Ring Of Honor, but these will be the first just straight-up “New Japan Pro Wrestling” events to be held stateside. What’s more, they will be two of the dates in the ultra-prestigious G1 Climax tournament, which will be in its 27th year in 2017.
On July 1 and 2 in Long Beach, California (half an hour south of Los Angeles), New Japan will present two dates of the G1 Special at the Long Beach Convention Center. Tickets are not yet on sale, and more information about that weekend is expected soon.
For those who aren’t familiar, the G1 Climax is the most renowned and longest-running singles wrestling tournament in the world. The winner of the G1 (in addition to putting their name in the record books) is guaranteed a world title shot at the following year’s Wrestle Kingdom show. It’s one of New Japan’s hallmarks, in addition to the Best of the Super Juniors and the World Tag League.
Needless to say, this is a huge deal for fans of pro wrestling and NJPW fans in particular. Turns out there’s something to look forward to after WrestleMania after all!