IWGP Junior Heavyweight, KUSHIDA, announced earlier this month his intentions to leave New Japan Pro Wrestling. His final match with the promotion will be on January 29th against Hiroshi Tanahashi. KUSHIDA is expected to end up with WWE.
According to a report in the Wrestling Observer Newsletter, part of KUSHIDA’s decision to leave had to do with how he was being booked.
“One of the things with Kushida which led to his leaving for WWE is that early last year he wanted to go heel and join the Bullet Club,” Dave Meltzer wrote. “Gedo wanted him to stay in his place.”
The report continued to say his booking was likely not the only factor in his decision, however.
“That probably isn’t the only reason but it was part of it,” Meltzer continued. “He handled it professionally, working until 1/29, doing his clean jobs at the Dome and Dash, and because he handled it so professionally he’s getting his first career singles match with Hiroshi Tanahashi on his last night at Korakuen Hall.”
KUSHIDA Announces Departure From NJPW
Kushida announced he is leaving NJPW at a press conference in Tokyo earlier this month.
“As mentioned previously by Mr. Sugabayashi, I will leave New Japan Pro-Wrestling at the end of January,” KUSHIDA said. “Regarding this choice and decision, it was one made with the full co-operation and understanding of Mr. Kidani, Mr. Meij and Mr. Sugabayashi. It was a very big decision in my life and I’m thankful they understood. As for the future, I would like to see the wide world of professional wrestling with my own eyes, from one end of the earth to the other.”