Anderson was scheduled to defend the NEVER Openweight Championship against Hikuleo at the event. However, his status had been unclear ever since he and Doc Gallows returned to WWE on the October 10 episode of WWE RAW. NJPW continued to advertise him for the show, even after WWE announced that Anderson would compete at the Crown Jewel event on November 5. Anderson then shared a video in which he claimed that he wouldn’t be at Battle Autumn. NJPW subsequently issued an official statement, making it clear that the company would strip him of the title if he didn’t honor his scheduled appearance.
In an update, NJPW has officially announced that the title match has been canceled due to unsuccessful negotiations with Anderson. Hikuleo will face Yujiro Takahashi in a non-title match instead.
Despite extensive efforts by New Japan Pro-Wrestling to negotiate with Karl Anderson regarding his scheduled match in Osaka at Battle Autumn on November 5, NJPW officials have still been met with no response, and have been left with no other option but to cancel the planned NEVER Openweight Championship match.
We apologise to fans who had been looking forward to watching Anderson wrestle.
After a challenge from Yujiro Takahashi, and at the direct request of Hikuleo, Osaka will now see a non-title special singles match between Yujiro Takahashi and Hikuleo.
NJPW holds its champions to the highest standard of professionalism. We deeply apologize for the inconvenience and disappointment caused by this matter.
WrestleZone will provide more information as it becomes available.