The next challenger for Will Ospreay’s IWGP United States Heavyweight Championship will be none other than Tetsuya Naito.
Naito earned this title shot when he beat Zack Sabre, Jr. in the main event on the second night of Royal Quest II, which took place on October 2nd at the Crystal Palace Indoor Arena in London.
This will mark Will Ospreay’s third title defense since winning the then-vacant title at Dominion 6.12 in a match against SANADA. Ospreay has already had successful title defenses against AEW’s Orange Cassidy at Forbidden Door and against NJPW’s David Finlay at Burning Spirit.
This will be only the second time ever that Ospreay and Naito face off one-on-one. The first time was two months ago when Ospreay beat Naito during the 2022 G1 Climax tournament. Before that, the two stable leaders faced off many times in multi-man tag matches going as far back as 2016. They will clash again when Los Ingobernables de Japon face United Empire at Declaration of Power on October 10th.
As of this writing, a date for their match has not been set. However, there are multiple options in the coming months. NJPW’s next big events following Declaration of Power are Rumble on 44th Street on October 28th in New York City, then by Battle Autumn ’22 on November 5th in Osaka, and then Historic X-Over on November 20th also in Tokyo.
And if Ospreay manages to hold this title past all those events, then he could find himself defending it at Wrestle Kingdom 17 on January 4th.