wrestling / Columns

NJPW’s Alpha VS Omega: The Good, The Bad, & The Ugly

January 10, 2018 | Posted by Justin Watry
Kenny Omega - NJPW's Chris Jericho vs. Kenny Omega - Wrestle Kingdom 12

“I have been reading your stuff on 411mania and nodq.com for the longest time now and I have never felt inclined to email in. The general consensus of you not being most popular is harsh at times but also can be well-founded too. But I still read your stuff because I do enjoy your articles and find your perspective interesting most of the time.

That said, your article about your friend Megan and trip to Wrestlemania was the greatest thing you have ever wrote. Forget about the predictions you brag about getting right. This is your crowning piece. Maybe it is because I can relate as going to Wrestlemania is my ultimate dream and it will be happening next year. But I genuinely loved your article.

Thank you for the great stuff.”


As promised, I watched Chris Jericho vs. Kenny Omega from Wrestle Kingdom 12. Here are my thoughts on the feud, match, and everything in between…

Alpha VS Omega

Full disclosure – I have seen one match of Kenny Omega’s, and that was last year’s much hyped bout against Kazuchika Okada. Pretty sure it was in 2017 sometime. I can’t remember seeing anything else from Omega, but don’t quote me on that. As I wrote about (on another website), I enjoyed the supposed 576 million star match but didn’t think it was THAT amazing and simply moved on to other things five seconds after it ended. No repeated viewing. No interest in the product. No other care in the world for New Japan Pro Wrestling. Just a very good match.

NJPW – Ditto. As stated above, I have seen very little of the promotion. Like next to zero minutes. Insult me all you want, call me whatever names you want. Do as you please. Been that way for nearly ten years now, so nothing will bother me. Just being honest here.

How I Watched – I asked on Twitter if anybody had a non-spoiler link. Sure enough, within minutes, my inbox and mentions gave me what I wanted right off of Youtube…so no, I didn’t pay for the event. I didn’t become a subscriber to the promotion’s network. Nor will I care to keep following now. Heck, I didn’t even remember the match was happening until the afternoon when I saw a post on Twitter. Luckily, the tweet did not feature the winner (or loser), so I was still in the clear on watching without any details. Okay, enough ramblings, let’s get to it.

The Good

– I though the match was good. Very limited knowledge on Kenny Omega and obviously nothing from Jericho since his one off return to Smackdown LIVE a few months ago. These two had a blank canvas and did a solid job with it. Considering all the build and anticipation, they took advantage of the stage.

– I liked the NoDQ(.com) stipulation. These guys were never going to deliver one of those classics inside the squared circle in 2018, so why not go for the brawl? It was a blood and guts grudge match based on the rivalry, so it made sense. Bring out the weapons and go at each other full board! Smart move.

– The entrances and (English) commentary really put over how big this was. As noted, I am not a NJPW follower. I also have very little clue of just how important Wrestle Kingdom is. Well, it takes all of five seconds to see the stage and huge live crowd to know it is a HUGE deal. Like WrestleMania each year, love the WWE or hate the WWE, you know real quick it is the biggest show of the year just by opening your eyes.

– The right guy won. Not as if it was ever in doubt, but sometimes even the easiest decisions get screwed up. You know, like when a certain best in the world decided to beat a phenomenal one on the grandest stage of them all in 2016. Omega should have won clean and did so in convincing fashion with a wicked move. Looked nasty. Hopefully, Jericho is alright.

– Not that it pertains to the actual bout BUT bonus points to Jericho sticking around the next day for another feud. This time versus Tetsuya Naito. Like his Omega “verbal exchange” months ago, he had already been planting seeds for his next story line. Why people keep buying whatever Jericho says on Twitter or in interviews is beyond me. Smarks are the SMART fans, right? I am fine with Y2J doing more with NJPW. Why not? Sure, he will be back in WWE at some point. We all know that. I wouldn’t even rule out a 2018 comeback sooner than most think. Still, let the man have some fun for awhile on his own.

– Based on reports, this was a successful show. Big live gate. Big boost in subscribers. Clearly a big bump in interest in the United States due to Chris Jericho wrestling. A win-win-win all around on the financial side. At the end of the day, every company in the world should have on goal, and that is to make money.

Yeah, good match. Good delivery from both men and right winner with a strong follow up for Jericho. Now for the negatives…

The Bad

– I know this was already explained, but please let me just say the next sentence. If WWE had a NoDQ(.com) bout and kept going to rope breaks, you know darn well fans would rip it apart. Yes, I am aware of the difference between count outs and disqualifications. I get it. Save me the argument. It makes no sense in WWE, and it makes no sense in NJPW.

– Disappointing. While I did say the match was good, that is all it was…good. Maybe I should blame myself for buying into the talk but meh. This thing was heralded as the greatest thing ever and was going to blow the roof off the building. It didn’t. Not by a long shot. NJPW kinda-sorta ‘won’ by getting me to check out ONE match from the event but failed in keeping me a fan beyond those 30 minutes. Just like all those new subscribers, I wonder how many will stick around. If they do, great! Mission accomplished. If not, it was a wasted payday from one buddy to another behind the scenes. Politics, every promotion has them.

– Why the heck were The Young Bucks there? I don’t care if they have a stable with Omega. This thing felt like it should have been a one on one hard hitting battle without any other goons ringside leeching off the publicity.

The Ugly

– If you are going to criticize John Cena for audibly calling spots during a match, you can’t turn a blind eye here. Jericho sure seemed awfully loud at times talking to Omega. I typically don’t care for this type of complaint, but when it is VERY noticeable, it becomes a distraction. When you add in the fact that these two supposedly HATED one another so much, it stinks.

Summary: There it is. I watched the match, enjoyed it for the one off special attraction it was but won’t keep following the product nor will it end up anywhere near my Match of the Year rankings come December 2018.

Podcast Debut

One of my goals in 2017 was to make my podcast debut. On Thursday December 7th, I crossed off yet another item on my to-do list for the year. Shout out to Matt and D for the great discussion. Topics included WWE today, stock market, video games, movies, television, steroids, Survivor, Flat Earth, old school WWF, and more! Lasted a little over an hour, so it is an easy listen. Plenty of wrestling talk folks and my beautiful voice heard for the first time ever. Here it is…

Cheap Plugs

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