The long-awaited night is finally here. For the first time, we’ll be to actually call this the January 5 Dome Show! Silly as that sounds, this is serious stuff here, a monumental and historic night for pro wrestling. Wrestle Kingdom 14 is one double the scope of everything that has come before it, a full weekend of wrestling greatness. And now we’re here on Night 2, where things are heating up more than ever before.
I’m Jordan Huie of the Overtimer, and it’s a good thing my sleep schedule was already a great big mess by the end of last year! Otherwise I’d never be able to stick with you for the entirety of these shows! It’s a great trade-off, if you ask me. I’ll be previewing the action for tonight, just as I did for Night 1, so let’s get to it!
IWGP United States Championship: Jon Moxley (c) vs. Juice Robinson
Jon Moxley certainly signed up for quite the ordeal this week. He worked against Trent on Dynamite this past Wednesday, and shortly after took the flight to Japan for this historic Tokyo Dome weekend. On Night 1 of Wrestle Kingdom 14, he went through a physical, brutal battle with Lance Archer in a Texas Deathmatch for this very IWGP United States Championship. A Paradigm Shift off the apron through two tables put an end to Archer and had him regain the title that was stripped of him back in October due to being unable to make a scheduled defense.
Now, we have that make-up match. This feud has been going on ever since Mox made his debut in New Japan. He swiftly targeted Juice in his pre-debut vignettes, and on his first night he took the US title from him. The next month, the both of them entered the G1 where on the last night, Juice Robinson played spoiler, defeating Mox to keep him out of the running in the famed tournament, getting some revenge. They were set to have a rubber match of sorts for the title but due to Typhoon Hagibis Moxley was unable to make this match. Now it finally takes place and on the biggest possible stage.
This is, without question, the biggest match Juice Robinson has ever had to date.
And even though he’s already held this title twice, this one would really put him on a different level. I can’t help but feel it’s the natural story for Juice to get this win, this angle seemed designed to elevate him. Admittedly, I felt better about that last night when I was figuring GoD would retain the tag titles. The thought of him becoming double champ on a night where that’s already a huge gimmick for the main event does give me pause. But it’s one I feel strongly about regardless.
For all we know, this may be Moxley’s last night in New Japan anyway. His contract seemingly was only meant to get him here so they’ll have to renegotiate for anything further. Maybe they’ve already agreed and he’s sticking around, and in that event, he will almost definitely be moving on to bigger names, but he’d almost certainly have to lose the US title before he moves on to the IC or Heavyweight belts regardless. Plus, he has an easy excuse for losing, given his match with Archer the night before.
On top of all that, let’s be honest. Having a US champ who can’t defend the title in the US kinda defeats the whole purpose, doesn’t it? And New Japan has a lot more dates in the States this year, so that’s really gonna stand out. Juice Robinson over.