EIGHTEEN DAYS UNTIL WRESTLE KINGDOM, YOU GUYS. New Japan Pro Wrestling’s flagship show from the Tokyo Dome is fast approaching, and I can hardly wait. For American fans, this will be the most user-friendly Wrestle Kingdom to date. It’s coming to pay-per-view thanks to Jeff Jarrett and the folks at Global Force Wrestling, and Jim Ross will be providing English commentary. But until yesterday, we had no idea who’d be joining Good Old J.R. at the desk. Finally, we know who the other commentator will be, and the news is… um, newsworthy?
WrestlingInc reports that Matt Striker will be the other half of the commentary team. I think we’re all familiar with Matt Striker, whether it’s from his time in WWE, his run in the independent scene, or his commentary work at the Lucha Underground temple. This strikes (Ha!) me as an announcement that’ll split people right down the middle. We’ve learned by now that Striker’s a love-him-or-hate-him guy, but oddly enough, I don’t feel too strongly one way or the other. I certainly don’t think he’ll ruin the show – we know he’s a puroresu fan through and through, and how could a guy bringing reverence of the product to the table be a bad thing? If anything, the problem with Matt Striker is the same problem that I have. I like to think that I know my wrestling, but I eventually end up being such a rambling dork about it that people in the vicinity just start saying “OH MY GOD, SHUT UP.” That’s Striker in a nutshell. He’s the stereotypical asthmatic Trekkie of the wrestling world… a reliable wealth of knowledge who might benefit from a personality transplant. I think we’ll be just fine as long as the Dudleys don’t make a surprise appearance at the Tokyo Dome.