Still no word on whether or not Chris Jericho will be in Long Beach when New Japan Pro Wrestling (NJPW) returns to the United States for Strong Style Evolved on March 25, but we learned today another name that’s been on a lot of WWE fan’s lips lately will be.
Rey Mysterio appeared via the big screen at the New Beginning in Osaka show this morning (Feb. 10) to announce he’s making his New Japan debut in California next month. He closed the promo by calling out Jushin “Thunder” Liger. Liger was on commentary, and accepted the challenge. The promotion has begun promoting their bout, so this is officially the first match booked for Strong Style Evolved.
An explosive challenge issued by the legendary @reymysterio! #LEGENDvLEGEND Sign up Now & Get ready!!▶︎https://t.co/Tj7UBJ4PjP#NJPWWorld #NJSSE #la325 #NJNBG pic.twitter.com/PaH3vP2m3Y
Since his surprise appearance at Royal Rumble last month, there’s been lots of talk about Mysterio returning to WWE. This announcement doesn’t rule that out by any means, although it makes his showing up in The ‘E between now and March 25 unlikely. Jericho appeared on Raw25 shortly after working Wrestle Kingdom, and Liger himself was on NXT TakeOver: Brooklyn in 2015 – so the companies can work together when they want/need to.
We’ll see how that evolves. As for Strong Style Evolved, the show was already sold out, so they didn’t need the San Diegan to move tickets. But he’ll certainly help getting publicity ahead of and eyes on the broadcast of the show on AXS and New Japan World.