New Japan Pro Wrestling, and their sibling promotion STARDOM, begins a big weekend of action in Saitama on Saturday. Wrestle Grand Slam will be presented over two nights in Saitama’s MetLife Dome. The show will be headlined by another chapter in the rivalry between Hiroshi Tanahashi and Kota Ibushi. As they continue to vie for the title of NJPW’s current Ace, this time the IWGP United States Heavyweight Championship will be on the line.
Ibushi has had a rough year. Not only did he lose the IWGP World Heavyweight Championship in his first defense with the new title, but his rematch was canceled when Ibushi developed aspirational pneumonia before this past July’s Wrestle Grand Slam show. Ibushi’s climb back to the top starts with a very motivated IWGP United States Champion.
Also on Saturday, Kazuchika Okada will deal with a thorn that has been in his side for much of the year, Jeff Cobb. With United Empire’s Will Ospreay running his mouth around the US & the UK, and Aaron Henare dealing with a neck injury, Cobb & Great-O-Khan have carried United Empire’s banner for much of the past couple months. Now a dangerously aggressive Cobb is coming for The Rainmaker.
Another huge grudge match will be the clash between former tag partner’s SHO & YOH. SHO broke up his highly successful tag team with YOH, Roppongi 3K, during this year’s Super Jr. Tag League, claiming he no longer needs the oft-injured YOH. Both men had been flirting with singles stardom for a couple of years now, and SHO finally severed the thread. The tag team had grown apart, and SHO’s recent appearances in the UWFi division of Lidet’s GLEAT promotion lit a new aggressive fire under the wrestler.
Plus, Chase Owens defends the KOPW 2021 Provisional Trophy against Toru Yano. Owens is the only person who has been able to wrest the trophy from Yano, and now Yano is looking for revenge. They’ll face in a No-DQ I Quit Match, which could go either way considering Bullet Club’s penchant for interference.
Robbie Eagles and Hiromu Takahashi feel each other out in tag team action, before their big title match on Sunday.
NJPW’s sibling promotion STARDOM will have a showcase match 30min before the main card’s start time. STARDOM has done matches before a couple NJPW shows in the past, but always in an unbroadcasted dark match capacity. Now that all legal entanglements have been navigated, the women of STARDOM will actually be broadcast on NJPWWorld.com
NJPW Wrestle Grand Slam
STARDOM Match starts at 3:30am ET, Main Card starts at 4am ET
- STARDOM Showcase Match: Lady C & Maika vs. Saya Kamitani
- Robbie Eagles & Tiger Mask vs. Los Ingobernables de Japon (Hiromu Takahashi & BUSHI)
- SHO vs. YOH
- KOPW 2021 Provisional Trophy No-DQ I Quit Match: Chase Owens (c) vs. Toru Yano
- Kazuchika Okada vs. Jeff Cobb
- IWGP United States Heavyweight Championship Match: Hiroshi Tanahashi (c) vs. Kota Ibushi
WRESTLE GRAND SLAM in METLIFE DOME: THIS WEEKEND!
Title matches set, bitter feuds settled, and special STARDOM showcases, all LIVE and in English on @njpwworld!
Wherever you are, be there for less than 10USD/mo.!https://t.co/cEFFsYsBAi#njwgsday1 #njwgsDay2 pic.twitter.com/dRqcqzlSe4
— NJPW Global (@njpwglobal) September 2, 2021