Puro Report (17/2/2023 — 23/2/2024):

Some interesting news this week. New Japan has crowned a bunch of new champions, CyberFight has expanded their streaming platform and Stardom has announced the participants for their big upcoming tournaments. There’s certainly a bit to discuss.

New Japan Pro Wrestling:

As of writing, New Japan has just concluded their New Beginning in Sapporo show, and it was a doozy. After finishing their Fantasticamania tour with CMLL, business seems to be back to usual. Three titles changed hands at this event. Mayu Iwatani and EVIL retained their IWGP Women’s and NEVER Openweight titles respectively, but EVIL’s stablemate SHO picked up the IWGP Jr Heavyweight Championship by beating El Desperado in nefarious fashion. This is SHO’s first reign with the title. Hiroshi Tanahashi also lost his NJPW Television title in a quick match with Matt Riddle, who became the third ever man to hold the belt. And finally, Nic Nemeth defeated David Finlay in his first defence to become the second ever IWGP Global Heavyweight Champion. Quite the event for turnovers.

Pro Wrestling NOAH:

In NOAH news, Tadasuke has challenged Daga for his Jr Heavyweight Championship, following a successful defence of his and Yo-Hey’s Jr Tag titles. Daga accepted, under the condition that he and Yoshinari Ogawa also get a shot at their belts in return. Speaking of GLG, Jack Morris successfully defended his National title against fellow Tag Team Champion Anthony Greene. Both men celebrated amicably after the fight.


On the topic of NOAH, CyberFight — its parent company — has recently announced they will be adding a number of new promotions to their streaming promotion. From February 22nd, Michinoku Pro, REAL ZERO1 and Sendai Girls Pro Wrestling will be joining the platform alongside DDT, NOAH and TJPW. The subscription price will subsequently be jumping form 900 yen a month (roughly $9.00 AUD) to 1,298, but for the range of offerings, Wrestle Universe remains one of the best platforms for engaging with wrestling in the entire medium. It is an excellent gateway for people wanting to investigate the Japanese scene.

All Japan Pro Wrestling:

After suffering an injury that cost him his title shot, Jun Saito fought Katsuhiko Nakajima for his Triple Crown Championship on his brother Rei’s behalf, losing but earning Nakajima’s respect in the process. Nakajima praised both men in the aftermath, going as far as to offer a partnership between the two parties, but the Saito’s emphatically declined. After this, Nakajima continued on with a promo, expecting to see Suwama but instead being confronted by Yuma Anzai who positioned himself as the belt’s next contender.

Pro Wrestling Zero1:

Zero1 has announced that Hiromu Takahashi will be appearing at their 23rd Anniversary Show. Ryo Hoshino, winner of last year’s Tenkaichi Junior Tournament, made an appearance during NJPW’s Fantasticamania tour backstage. He approached Takahashi after a broadcast, offered his gratitude and respects before challenging him to a match at the upcoming event. Takahashi accepted. That match will go down on March 3rd.

Big Japan Pro Wrestling:

Yuya Aoki made yet another successful defence of his BJW World Strong Heavyweight Championship by defeating Kazumi Kikuta in the main event of a BJW show.

World Wonder Ring Stardom:

Stardom has announced the participants for this year’s Cinderella tournament with the field including a whopping 24 competitors. These wrestlers are: AZM, Xena, MIRAI, Ruaka, Yuzuki, Hanan, Lady C, Hazuki, Koguma, Saya Iida, HANAKO, Mei Seira, Ami Sohrei, Mai Sakurai, Suzu Suzuki, Starlight Kid, Saki Kashima, Natsuko Tora, Momo Kohgo, Miyu Amasaki, Ranna Yagami, Sayaka Kurara, Yuna Mizumori and Waka Tsukiyama. Suzuki, MIRAI, Sohrei, Sakurai, Tsukiyama, AZM, Hazuki and Seira will all have byes in the first round to make the format work. There are a lot of big names missing from this lineup, providing a lot of opportunities for new stars. The tournament is expected to commence in March.

Tokyo Joshi Pro Wrestling:

Maki Itoh has found herself a rather unusual opponent for the 31st of March, stepping into the ring with wrestling legend and generally frightening man, Minoru Suzuki. This should be interesting.

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