On January 4, New Japan Pro Wrestling will hold the latest installment of its annual largest show, Wrestle Kingdom. You might already be aware of this show as “the one where Chris Jericho will fight Kenny Omega,” and there are plenty of other reasons you should go out of your way to check out this event.
On Tuesday, New Japan finalized the card for Wrestle Kingdom 12. Omega vs. Jericho for the IWGP United States Heavyweight Championship will now be a no disqualification match, but that isn’t the only addition to the card. Minoru Suzuki and Hirooki Goto will have their fierce rivalry culminate in a good old-fashioned hair vs. hair match.
It will be a real shame if Suzuki has to lose his hair, since it’s the source of much of his trolling power, but Goto having to shave his luxuriant tonsorial mane would also be a real tragedy. It might have to become an official day of mourning in Japan if Goto gets shorn.
Anyway, I don’t have to sell a hair vs. hair match to y’all. It sells itself. Here’s the full card for Wrestle Kingdom 12, as things currently stand.
1. IWGP Heavyweight Championship Match: Kazuchika Okada (c) vs. Tetsuya Naito
2. IWGP United States Heavyweight Championship No Disqualification Match: Kenny Omega (c) vs. Chris Jericho
3. IWGP Intercontinental Championship Match: Hiroshi Tanahashi (c) vs. Jay White
4. NEVER Openweight Championship Hair vs. Hair Match: Minoru Suzuki (c) vs. Hirooki Goto
5. IWGP Tag Team Championship Match: Killer Elite Squad (c) vs. SANADA and EVIL
6. NEVER Openweight Six-Man Tag Team Championship Gauntlet Match: Bad Luck Fale and Guerrillas of Destiny (c) defend against Tomohiro Ishii, Toru Yano and Beretta; Togi Makabe, Juice Robinson and Ryusuke Taguchi; Michael Elgin and War Machine; Zack Sabre Jr., Takashi Iizuka and Taichi
7. IWGP Junior Heavyweight Championship Match: Marty Scurll (c) vs. Hiromu Takahashi vs. KUSHIDA vs. Will Ospreay
8. IWGP Junior Heavyweight Tag Team Championship Match: Roppongi 3K (c) vs. The Young Bucks
9. Cody vs. Kota Ibushi
10. Pre-Show Match: New Japan Rumble
The Cody Rhodes vs. Kota Ibushi match was originally slated to be for the Ring of Honor World Championship, but Rhodes lost that title to beloved fan favorite Dalton Castle at ROH Final Battle last weekend.
If you’re unwilling or unable to spring for New Japan World and watch Wrestle Kingdom 12 live, the event will also air as a three-hour special on AXS TV on January 6.