The New Japan Pro Wrestling calendar was significantly altered when the company’s anniversary show and annual New Japan Cup were canceled because of the coronavirus outbreak, and more changes have just been made.
NJPW was due to start up again on March 16 with a series of shows leading to the New Japan Cup final on March 21. For those wondering how they would compress the 32-man, single-elimination tournament into five shows – now they’re not! Per an announcement on the company’s website earlier today, these shows have all been called off.
NJPW, along with most other wrestling companies in Japan, originally canceled shows after a government request at the end of February that large cultural and athletic events be deferred or canceled for the first two weeks of March. Among other changes, this resulted in a postponed Tokyo Marathon, a no-spectator sumo tournament, and the start of baseball season being delayed. These new cancelations come after the Japanese government asked for big events to be put off for another ten days.
For New Japan, which has been providing a series of no-spectator talk show events on its streaming service and uploading older matches during this time, this means its next scheduled show is Sakura Genesis on March 31. After that, its wrestlers are set to go to WrestleMania weekend in Tampa to wrestle on indie shows and NJPW’s Lion’s Gate Project.