Who Are The Reiwa Three Musketeers In NJPW?

Hamish Woodward

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On June 30th, 2023, New Japan Pro Wrestling revealed the three young stars that were to be known as the Reiwa Three Musketeers.

Following in the footsteps of the New Three Musketeers of the 2000s, they have been positioned as future top stars of New Japan Pro Wrestling and potential megastars in Japan.

In this article, we’ll explain who the Reiwa Three Musketeers are, and which legends of the ring they have drawn comparisons to in their early carers.

Reiwa Three Musketeers

The Reiwa Three Musketeers is the name given to the three top talents to come through the New Japan dojo in 2023.

After returning from their respective excursions, NJPW management saw huge star potential in three young talents – Ren Narita, Yota Tsuji and Shota Umino.

They were named the “Three Muskateers” after the three top stars that came before them, that were also bestowed with that moniker – Katsuyori Shibata, Shinsuke Nakamura and Hiroshi Tanahshi.

Ren Narita

Being described by NJPW as having “an aggressive attitude an effective, hard hitting in ring style”, Ren Narita is the first of the Reiwa Three Musketeers in NJPW.

Trained by Katsuyori Shibata in the LA Dojo, he is seen as the second-coming of the wrestling legend.

With his black trunks and hard-hitting, no-nonsense style, fans certainly see a lot of Shibata in the young Narita.

He was even chosen by Shibata to wrestle in his comeback match, fighting in a surprise encounter at Wrestle Kingdom 16.

Since then, Ren Narita has gone from strength to strength, and is referred to as the “Son of Strong Style”: evoking the feeling of past stars, like Shibata and Shinsuke Nakamura.

Yota Tsuji

While he has drawn some comparison to Shinsuke Nakamura, Yota Tsuji is certainly the most unique of the Reiwa Three Muskateers.

He debuted in NJPW in 2023, challenging SANADA for the IWPG World Heavyweight Championship.

Despite falling short against the champion, the fans were introduced to Los Ingobernables de Japon’s newest member, and they were immediately impressed.

With one of the most exciting move sets ever seen in NJPW, and an innate charisma that blends Tetsuya Naito and Shinsuke Nakamura, Yota Tsuji has the potential to be a top heel in New Japan if the continues to develop in the future.

Shota Umino

The most familiar of the three men to western wrestling fans has to be Shota Umino – or “Shooter” as you may recognize him.

At Dominion 6.9, Jon Moxley dispatched a young Shota Umino in four minute match. He showed no mercy onto the young star, who was being prepped as a future star in the company, once he went for excursion later that year.

After the match, Moxley announced his entry into that year’s G1 Climax tournament, before dragging Shota Umino (still delirious from his beating) backstage with him.

Carrying the young star into the press conference after the show, Moxley “claimed” him as his own “young lion”, claiming that he needed a new training partner, and Umino fit the bill.

Shota Umino was adopted as Jon Moxley’s Young Lion in New Japan.

“He can be my new Young Lion. I’m gonna need some help around here. I’m gonna need a partner, I’m gonna need a training partner, I’m gonna need a spot on the bench. I’m gonna need someone to drive me home from Roppongi – you can drive? He can drive. This is my new boy right here.”

After going on excursion to the UK and worked on his character, before returning as a potential new top-face in NJPW.

He has been likened to Hiroshi Tanahashi – not just his look, but also his explosive in-ring style and never say die attitude.

Shota Umino truly has the potential to become the new Ace of New Japan, and could lead the Reiwa Three Musketeers into the next decade and beyond.

Who do you think is the best wrestler in the Reiwa Three Musketeers? Tell us your thoughts in the comments section below.

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