Kota Ibushi‘s NJPW career looks to have come to end, with his recent tweets indicating that Kota Ibushi has been fired by NJPW.
Kota Ibushi took the wrestling world by storm when he tweeted about how he was going to “expose all about the former cheaters-gun (already returned) and the sexually harassing bosses”, indicating that he would reveal some dark secrets surrounding the New Japan Pro Wrestling bosses.
Kota Ibushi has been missing from NJPW since October 2021 and did not wrestle at the recent Wrestle Kingdom shows. This was due to injury, although he claimed to be ready for the recent New Japan Cup tournament. Ibushi was scheduled to win the tournament, but was pulled from the event by Kikuchi on the advice of a doctor for what was described as a ‘minor concern’.
However, later tweets indicate that the NJPW bosses tried to get Ibushi to return to wrestling before he was ready, furthering his discontent with the company and helping to prompt him to post the damning tweets.
Kota Ibushi fired?
Kota Ibushi posted a second tweet where a NJPW official named Kikuchi told him “maybe we should end your contract with NJPW”, threatening to fire the former IWGP World Heavyweight Champion.
Voices of Wrestling reported via their Patreon that Kikuchi is a person from NJPW’s talent relations department and has regular contact with New Japan wrestlers.
Ibushi immediately called his bluff, responding with “”If I’m told so from the NJPW side, I can’t complain. I’ll get things settled. It’s fine if you just fire me.” The NJPW official immediately back pedalled, but Ibushi seemed resolute in his actions and accepted the consequences.
Ibushi also went on to call NJPW a “Black Company“, which is a term used for an exploitive or “sweat-shop” like company. It is a huge insult for Kota Ibushi to call the company that and could contribute to him being fired from his New Japan Contract.
In the most damning Tweet, Kota Ibushi named NJPW as a “Anti-Social Organistion”, which is a word used to describe companies associated with the Yakuza (the Japanese version of the Mafia).
It is no secret that many wrestling companies, and other companies, have had business dealings with the Yakuza. Pride Fighting Championships died because their affiliation with the Yazuka got out and nobody would do business with them anymore.
Likewise, Pro Wrestling NOAH was founded with the help of the Yazuka, who strong armed fans into going to watch the shows when business was down. The Yakuza has a long history with pro-wrestling and it seems it has continued into the modern day with NJPW.
Problems with Management
Kota Ibushi’s issues with management seem to a well-known thing by wrestling journalists, according to Dave Meltzer of the Wrestling Observer. He wrote that Ibushi has “problems with upper management” and that NJPW are tying to “smooth them out”, but nothing is figured out yet for one of their top stars.
“There is more than smoke to the fire. Ibushi has problems with upper management that are significant. Gedo…is trying to smooth them out, but it’s not settled.”Dave Meltzer on Kota Ibushi’s troubles with NJPW
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Hamish is a writer and podcaster and wrestling fan who is a key part of the Atletifo team.
After playing countless hours of WrestleMania X8 on the Gamecube, he discovered Rey Mysterio getting his head crushed by The Great Khali, and thus a love for professional wrestling was born.
He is also a Media Graduate, as well as writing for multiple sites about Premier League football and the culture of Wales – his home country.