Kazuchika Okada was sent on excursion to America by NJPW in 2010. They sent him to TNA Wrestling where he posted a 2-16 record in 18 matches from September 2010 to June 2011. NJPW was said to have not been pleased with how its future World Champion was used while in the promotion.
Okada himself commented on his time in TNA recently during an interview with NJPW1972.com. According to Okada, the language barrier he experienced in TNA was frustrating. He was also upset that there was little effort made to communicate with him.
“The other wrestlers would only be around if they had matches,” Okada said about his time with TNA. “Every day I would be going to the gym by myself, going shopping by myself, and then going home, and that was it.”
Okada on the Language Barrier in TNA
Okada continued to talk about how the language barrier was difficult at the time.
“I’d be going to the gym and just working out in silence and then coming home, putting the TV on and having no clue what anybody was saying. I’d be so bored sometimes I’d talk to myself in the mirror (laughs).”
Okada would continue to say his English isn’t too bad, however. He also noted that Finn Balor and Karl Anderson helped him earlier in his career with it.
“It really made me think, with no human contact people go absolutely nuts (laughs). But as far as English goes, it’s never been too bad. I studied in junior high, and then went to America on my excursion. Plus when I was in the Dojo, Prince Devitt and Karl Anderson were around, and I could have conversations with them OK.”
The new management of Impact Wrestling is reported to have apologized to NJPW for the way TNA used Okada during his time on excursion to the United States.
The full interview with Okada can be read here.