Kenny Omega was recently interviewed by Sports Illustrated to hype Wrestle Kingdom 12 and made some interesting comments regarding New Japan Pro Wrestling, Shinsuke Nakamura, and WWE.
Here are transcripts of some of his more interesting comments!
His thoughts on New Japan: “As an artist, I really feel I need an outlet to exhibit all of my skills,” said Omega. “I still feel there is more to this Kenny Omega character and there are more stories I need to tell, and New Japan allows me that freedom. That is a freedom I earned through the hard work I put into the company. Now, I have the luxury of time to tell my stories, as well as the chance to work with the best guys on the roster, who I believe, are also the best in the world.”
“When I started in New Japan, I had humble dreams, and now I want to make the company a true force to be reckoned with,” said Omega. “I’m not saying I want to directly compete head-to-head with WWE, but I want it to be an option available for everyone to watch. I really do think it boasts the best professional wrestling on the planet, and I selfishly want to be the person leading the ship. I truly believe in my ability and the style I’ve created is something that wrestling fans–and people who haven’t even watched me yet–will take a liking to.”
His thoughts on Wrestle Kindom being compared to Wrestlemania: “I don’t feel that WWE has anyone on the main event level that can compete with us,” said Omega. “Both of our shows are for the spectacle, but our main events are going to be treated differently than what WWE puts on for WrestleMania. If we’re going to go match quality to match quality, then I can see our two main events really providing the full spectrum of what two storyline-driven main events can be with next-level athletics.
His thoughts on how Shinsuke Nakamura’s has been booked in WWE and WWE’s Booking as a whole: “I’m happy for the response that he (Nakamura) is getting. Of course, and all of us in New Japan knew when he left that he was going to get over with his charisma,” said Omega. “But when I see Nakamura in WWE, it’s hard for me to say he’s done anything compelling in-ring since he’s been there, which is a shame. It will just take the one right story and the one right moment, and then people will be captivated by everything that he does. Right now, he hasn’t had that.”
“Even to another degree, everything in WWE is super over-booked,” explained Omega. “Some people in WWE even need the steps, and their footing in the ring choreographed. They have to pace their breathing before they even go through with a match in the ring. When you’re used to dealing with people who need that match management, who need to have that much choreography in their matches before they go out there and perform.”
“Then when a guy like Nakamura–who is this new age ‘strong style,’ and a lot of that is based off emotion and feeling and fighting spirit–wrestles someone who needs marks on the ring so that he can get his footing right with a set of instructions. That’s where Nakamura’s style gets lost in translation. Everything starts to come across as that’s where Nakamura’s style gets lost in translation. Everything starts to come across as soulless if that makes any sense.”
You can read the whole interview at this link https://www.si.com/wrestling/2017/12/27/wwe-news-kenny-omega-chris-jericho
Authors Take: These comments are sure to ruffle a few feathers. But I’m sure that was the point!