Will Ospreay Makes NJPW History

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Photo: Defiant

While Will Ospreay won’t be in the finals for this year’s G1 Climax for NJPW, he can at least hold his head up high that he’s cemented himself in the New Japan history books. After competing in this year’s G1 Climax, Will Ospreay has become the first man in NJPW history to compete in the New Japan Cup, Best of the Super Juniors, and G1 Climax in the same year. He made it to the quarter-finals of the New Japan Cup (losing to Kazuchika Okada), defeated Shingo Takagi to win the 2019 Best of the Super Juniors, and will fail to advance out of his block in his first G1.

The New Japan Cup is a single-elimination tournament held every spring in NJPW (usually March or April), where the winner can challenge for either the IWGP Heavyweight, IWGP Intercontinental or NEVER Openweight Championship. The Best of the Super Juniors is one of the top tournaments of the year for NJPW, as it features some of the world’s best junior heavyweights in a block style tournament, while the G1 is a block tournament where the winner faces the IWGP Heavyweight Champion at the next Wrestle Kingdom.

While many men have done two of the three, the New Japan Cup is traditionally also heavyweights, similar to the G1, so the likelihood of a heavyweight being in the Super Juniors is rare – although some like Jushin Thunder Liger, Koji Kanemoto, and Tiger Mask IV have competed in New Japan Cup and BOTSJ. WWE Superstar Andrade – formerly known as La Sombra – has also competed in all three, but not in one calendar year (BOTSJ XVII, 2010; G1 Climax 21, 2011; New Japan Cup 2012), and many other Japanese legends have also competed in multiple of the three, but not in the same calendar year.

Stay tuned to the Last Word on Pro Wrestling for more on this and other stories from around the world of wrestling, as they develop. You can always count on LWOPW to be on top of the major news in the wrestling world, as well as to provide you with analysis, previews, videos, interviews, and editorials on the wrestling world. You can follow Will Ospreay’s journey in NJPW on NJPW World.

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