On October 30th it was announced that WWE Superstar Shinsuke Nakamura will be returning to Pro Wrestling NOAH on January 1st for a match against Japanese legend the Great Muta. The match will serve as part of Muta’s retirement tour, ahead of his official retirement from the ring a few weeks thereafter in February.
Interestingly, it has now been reported that Pro Wrestling Noah reached out to AEW via a third party to check that any deal with WWE wouldn’t affect the burgeoning relationship between the two promotions. The report from Wrestling Inc states that legendary manager Sonny Ono acted as something of a go-between with all of the concerned parties.
Ono explained that NOAH wanted to “protect the newly developing relationship with AEW,” adding that he “made sure they were no objections from various promotions.”
Deal Involving Shinsuke Nakamura Came After Initial “Disagreement”
A new report from Tokyo Sports noted that the deal between Nakamura, NOAH and WWE was struck on October 26th, However, negotiations began before Vince McMahon left his role as WWE Chairman in July.
“After a disagreement at first, he persisted in negotiating with a new regime after Chairman and CEO Vince McMahon retired in July,” a translation of the article reads. “The final agreement was reached on the 26th of this month, and it seems that the tenacity has paid off.”
In the article, Nakamura described the match as a “miracle” adding that he pushed to make it happen.
“It’s nothing but a miracle,” Nakamura said. “Of course, I wanted to do it. I opened a door that no one could break in. Hahaha…it’s a real ‘Forbidden Door’.”
“I think it’s really fate, and I worked hard to make it happen. I’ve fought Keiji Muto twice in the past, but this was my first encounter with Great Muta, the first and last. I definitely think that I am in the midst of the miracle of the times,”
The match between Shinsuke Nakamura and the Great Muta will take place at Budokan Hall on January 1st 2023. Keiji Muto’s last match as he Great Muta will take place on January 22nd at the Great Muta Final Bye-Bye Show in Yokohama. Here, he will team with long-time friend and current AEW star Sting.
Muto’s final match will be held at the Tokyo Dome on February 21st 2023.