AEW announcer Kevin Kelly will no longer be a part of NJPW despite earlier stating that he’d be calling the action in Japan through to Wrestle Kingdom 18.
Former WWE broadcaster Kevin Kelly has been the English voice of New Japan Pro Wrestling since 2015 but many wondered about his long-term role with the promotion after he was confirmed as the lead announcer for AEW’s new Collision show.
Kelly responded to fans on social media questioning if he was finishing up with the Japanese promotion. According to the announcer he expects to call Wrestle Kingdom in early 2024 but beyond that, his time looks to be up:
“I am at some point soon but I’ll leave it to New Japan to announce it or not. I plan on calling Destruction at Ryogoku and Wrestle Kingdom/ New Year Dash”
Kevin Kelly Now Gone From NJPW
In a statement made on the promotion’s website, NJPW confirmed Kevin Kelly was no longer working with them and would miss Wrestle Kingdom 18 due to family commitments:
Thank you for supporting New Japan Pro-Wrestling.
Kevin Kelly, who has been the English voice of New Japan broadcasts since King of Pro-Wrestling 2015, has departed NJPW to pursue outside opportunities.
Kevin was originally planning to join the English broadcast of Wrestle Kingdom 18 on January 4, but will be unable to attend due to family commitments.
New Japan Pro-Wrestling joins fans in their gratitude for the work Kevin has done to grow the English-speaking audience for NJPW, and for countless memorable calls over the years. We wish Kevin the very best in his future.
In recent weeks Kevin Kelly has been joined by both Nigel McGuinness and Tony Schiavone for most of AEW’s Collision shows. Tony Schiavone confirmed he asked Tony Khan for another shot at play-by-play which led to his involvement in the show. Kevin Kelly therefore is the one to give way for Jim Ross to call the main events each Saturday but Jim Ross is set to miss several weeks of AEW action as he continues to recover from cancer treatment.