AEW News

Chris Jericho Reportedly No Longer Under Contract With NJPW

Chris Jericho

Chris Jericho is at the moment a one-company man after his deal with New Japan Pro Wrestling has reportedly expired.

Jericho crossed the wrestling divide to wrestle for New Japan Pro Wrestling in January 2018. Before the forbidden door was a glint in Tony Khan’s eye, Jericho who was still at least acquainted with WWE faced off his fellow Winnipeg native Kenny Omega at WrestleKingdom 12.

What many fans, and according to Jericho Vince McMahon as well, was a one-off deal Jericho shocked the wrestling world again when he turned up at New Year’s Dash the night after WrestleKingdom and attacked Tetsuya Naito. This eventually led to a match between the two at Dominion in June for Naito’s Intercontinental Championship.

Dave Meltzer of the Wrestling Observer has reported that Jericho’s contract with the company has ended and his last match with Hiroshi Tanahashi at WrestleKingdom 14 in 2020 was the last fight of that deal. Meltzer notes that now-former NJPW President Harold Meij was not keen on the deal due to the high cost of having Jericho on NJPW shows.

Meltzer also quoted Jericho as telling TSN that he wants to re-sign with the company, with Jericho saying:

“There’s a lot of unfinished business for me in New Japan. Jay White is one, Suzuki is another one that would draw big money. Kota Ibushi and Ospreay, those four guys I’d love to work with. I’d love to do a Golden Jets team–Kenny and Jericho – versus Okada and Ibushi or Tanahashi and Okada or Tanahashi and Ibushi. I think that’s a Tokyo Dome main event right there. So there’s a lot of stuff I’d still like to do in New Japan and as soon as we can start going over there again, I’m more than agreeable to doing more work there. I really enjoyed the six matches that I had there in 2018 and 2019 and think there’s plenty of room for more.”

Chris Jericho also defended the IWGP Intercontinental Title he won from Naito against EVIL before dropping the belt back to the leader of Los Ingobernable De Japon. Jericho also challenged Kazuchika Okada for the IWGP Heavyweight Title at Dominion in 2019 but was unsuccessful in his challenge.