Karl Anderson has addressed his next NJPW appearance after he was booked for WWE Crown Jewel on the same day he was meant to defend the NEVER Openweight Championship.
The move was all the more surprising since both are active members of Bullet Club and Anderson is currently NJPW’s reigning NEVER Openweight Champion.
The Machine Gun was scheduled to defend the title against former Bullet Club member Hikuleo at NJPW’s Battle Autumn event in Osaka on November 5th. However, on the most recent edition of Raw, it was announced that he and Gallows would be otherwise engaged.
They are now set to join Styles to face off with Finn Balor, Damien Priest, and Dominik Mysterio at in a 6-Man Tag Team match at Crown Jewel in Saudi Arabia on the same day.
This threw the title defence into question, with no immediate answers coming from New Japan themselves.
Now, The Good Brothers have taken to social media to explain the situation, with Gallows claiming NJPW didn’t consult them before advertising the bout.
“You guys announced ‘Bright Lights’ ‘The Machine Gun’ Karl Anderson for a match November 5. Guess what, we’re a little double booked because you didn’t run it through me. So, he ain’t coming. We’re not coming unless it’s on our time.”
Karl Anderson then confirmed he would not be at the Battle Autumn show because he only works “when the lights are bright”.
“New Japan Pro-Wrestling, I love what you’ve done for the Good Brothers through these years. I am the greatest NEVER Openweight Champion of all time.
“I only work when the lights are bright. November 5, we’re not coming. We’ll come on our time. The Machine Gun will tell you when I’m coming to defend my championship.”
OFFICIAL STATEMENT FROM THE GREATEST #NEVEROPENWEIGHTCHAMPION ON THE FACT THAT @njpw1972 BOOKED ME WITHOUT GOING THRU MY BOOKING AGENT @the_biglg ……. SO WITH THAT SAID …..
We gotta little problem.
Signed, @wwe ‘s #theOC ‘s Karl “Bright Lights” Anderson pic.twitter.com/b5N8yIW7Xa
— Karl Anderson (@MachineGunKA) October 19, 2022
The next big event on the New Japan calendar is Wrestle Kingdom 17 on January 4th, and the lights don’t get much brighter than those in the Tokyo Dome.
Whether Karl Anderson will make an appearance on the biggest NJPW show of the year remains to be seen.
H/T to Fightful for the above transcription.