WWE NXT Superstar Io Shirai has opened up about the differences between wrestling in Japan and the United States. Speaking with WWE show The Bump, Shirai detailed how wrestler win/loss records have an impact on how promoters decide on contenders in Japan.
Io Shirai noted how in the United States, wrestling is “more than the win or the defeat.” She highlighted how the story and process that leads into the matchup is what makes an American audience react.
When she wrestled in Japan, Io Shirai was only focused on winning. After arriving in America, however, “I realized that just winning the match won’t make me supported by the audience. It’s more about the process and the story that leads to the win or the defeat.”
It’s a moment she believes it shared between wrestler and audience. She explained how, upon realizing this, she was able to immerse herself deeper into pro wrestling.
Io Shirai is the current number one contender to Charlotte Flair’s NXT Women’s Championship. She won the right to face off against Flair after winning a #1 Contender’s Ladder Match on the 4/8 episode of NXT. Shirai defeated Mia Yim, Chelsea Green, Candice LeRae, Dakota Kai, and Tegan Nox for the right to challenge Flair.