And The 2017 NJPW G1 Climax Finals Winner Is…

Mike Killam

NJPW

Tetsuya Naito defeated Kenny Omega Sunday afternoon at Sumo Hall in Tokyo, Japan, bringing an end to a grueling three week tournament and officially crowning our 2017 New Japan Pro Wrestling G1 Climax winner.

The Los Ingobernables leader entered the finals with a record of 7-2-0 after defeating career rival Hiroshi Tanahashi in the final match of A Block competition on Friday. Kenny Omega also entered the finals with a record of 7-2-0 having last defeated his own greatest rival┬áKazuchika Okada in their third encounter this year. Not only was it a battle between Japan’s two top factions, but it was a rematch from the 2016 G1 B Block Finals, voted as the Match of the Year by numerous websites and publications.

Naito will now advance to the main event of Wrestle Kingdom 12 to challenge Kazuchika Okada for the IWGP Heavyweight Championship on January 4th. Of course, that’s barring any last minute changes and assuming both Okada and Naito can hold onto their place between now and the Dome. The champion will likely defend his title at least one final time before the end of the year – all signs point to that challenger being fellow Los Ingobernables star EVIL. Naito may also be forced to put his G1 opportunity on the line, but given New Japan’s affinity for long term booking and the background of this story extending back to 2013, it would take an act of god to keep these two apart come January.

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