INTERVIEW: NEW JAPAN PRO WRESTLING DEBUTS IN AUSTRALIA

The New Japan Fallout Down Under tour is kicking off on Friday at Adelaide’s Titanium Arena. This is New Japan Pro Wrestling’s (NJPW) first Australian tour and couldn’t come at a better time as NJPW’s biggest event Wrestle Kingdom 12 was recently held in the 55,000 capacity Tokyo Dome in January.

Before the tour begins, The Upside News had a chance to talk about all things NJPW with professional wrestler, Juice Robinson, formerly CJ Parker in WWE’s NXT.

“Oh man, it’s an exciting time for New Japan right now,” said Juice. “I remember last year, or the year before, we went to Singapore, Thailand and New Zealand, but I don’t think anywhere near the scale that we’re doing the four days in Australia. This is awesome, as a wrestler I love going to new countries and Australia has always been a place I’ve wanted to go. I’ve seen it on Animal Planet and I can’t wait!” 

NJPW has been capturing the attention of the western world as the yearly Wrestle Kingdom events, like Wrestle Kingdom 12 are becoming critically acclaimed as the best wrestling shows of the year. In recent years, many NJPW wrestlers have moved to WWE and this has seemed to only help the brand’s exposure in America.

“Yeah, I think that Bullet Club really had a huge part in that. AJ Styles, Prince Devitt [Finn Balor], Tama Tonga, Bad Luck Fale and Gallows & Anderson. I think that was the beginning of the Bullet Club really. It seems to be getting bigger and bigger. Now with New Japan World, anyone can watch any of our shows at any time, there is really no reason why it shouldn’t keep growing and growing.”

Since leaving WWE’s developmental territory, NXT three years ago, Juice Robinson has thrived in the independent wrestling scene and NJPW. Juice believes NJPW is the company he is meant to be with.

“Well, first off it’s awesome working for New Japan. I think this is where I’ll always belong and where I was always meant to be. I had to go through that NXT stuff, that was kind of the beginning of my career. I didn’t really fit in there and it didn’t really work out, obviously. Now, this is where I’m supposed to be and it’s working out great.”

“I’m kind of in control of what I do on a daily basis, I have more creative liberties and I can just be myself. Just freedom, I think that’s very important in wrestling.” 

While working in NXT, Juice was based in Florida and would only tour interstate in the US occasionally. Now with a full-time NJPW schedule and independent dates, Juice is fully packed and the Australian tour is no different.

“Well, I think that the schedule that I have nowadays is what a pro wrestling schedule is supposed to be. I wrestle, I move on to the next town, I wrestle, on to the next town, all over Japan, then I fly home and if I have the time I try to do an independent show or two, then I’m back in Japan and it’s go, go, go. That’s why I wanted to be a wrestler, I didn’t want to become a wrestler to practice taking bumps and grabbing headlocks in a warehouse, I’m living the life now.”

New Japan Pro Wrestling comes to Australia this Friday at Adelaide’s Titanium Arena.

Tickets Available Here

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