Kazuchika Okada Confirms Pandemic Changed NJPW’s US Plans

Kazuchika Okada

Kazuchika Okada has confirmed that the global COVID pandemic scuppered NJPW’s plans to return to the site of one of their biggest shows – Madison Square Garden.

In April 2019 New Japan Pro Wrestling and Ring of Honor co-produced the G1 Supercard that took place in Madison Square Garden, New York – the spiritual home of WWE.

The event was announced to great fanfare in the summer of 2018 but by the time the G1 Supercard came around many of the big names fans expected such as The Young Bucks, Cody Rhodes, and Kenny Omega were absent from the card due to the formation of AEW which was announced on New Year’s Day 2019.

Now in an interview with Sports Illustrated, Kazuchika Okada explained how NJPW was meant to return to Madison Square Garden in 2020 but the pandemic intervened:

“Wrestling in MSG is one of my greatest memories. I don’t think I’ll ever forget looking out into that crowd as I made my entrance. We had plans to return in 2020 that had to be canceled because of the pandemic, but I would absolutely love to be back in MSG someday.”

Kazuchika Okada was back in New York City for Rumble on 44th Street which emanated from the Palladium in Times Square on the 28th of October. Okada teamed with Eddie Kingston and the pair fell to defeat at the hands of the bullet Club duo of Jay White and Juice Robinson.