One of professional wrestling’s biggest stars who has yet to enter WWE recently gave comments about the company and their use of Shinsuke Nakamura. Kenny Omega, who is slated to take on WWE’s Chris Jericho at Wrestle Kingdom 12 in January, has referred to “The King of Strong Style” as being underwhelming during his main roster run so far. In addition, Omega has called WWE “soulless” in terms of their approach to some aspects of the business. Here’s the latest on what Omega had to say about WWE ahead of his big match with Jericho.
On Wednesday, an interview that Kenny Omega did with Sports Illustrated began making the rounds online. In the article, Omega spoke about wanting his upcoming match against Chris Jericho to be a “wake-up call” for not only New Japan but also the WWE. Omega, also known as “The Cleaner,” was especially critical of the latter of these two entities. When asked about possibly coming to WWE, Omega has said he feels Japan is like a second home for him and he believes there’s still more for him to do within New Japan. He also said he doesn’t believe anyone on WWE’s main event scene can compete with the Okada vs. Tetsuya Naito or Omega vs. Jericho level of talent that will be on display at the Wrestle Kingdom 12 event.
— 新日本プロレスリング株式会社 (@njpw1972) December 25, 2017
The NJPW star said he believes that WWE is “super over-booked” right now and that some stars need a lot of choreography before they can perform in a match. In the SI interview, Omega further elaborated on his criticisms of WWE.
“When you’re used to dealing with people who need that match management, who need to have that much choreography in their matches before they go out there and perform, then when a guy like Nakamura–who is this new age ‘strong style,’ and a lot of that is based off emotion and feeling and fighting spirit–wrestles someone who needs marks on the ring so that he can get his footing right with a set of instructions, that’s where Nakamura’s style gets lost in translation. Everything starts to come across as soulless, if that makes any sense.”
Omega also mentioned he has followed Shinsuke Nakamura’s career since “The King of Strong Style” moved from NJPW to NXT and WWE’s main roster. He said he is happy to see the response Nakamura is getting and that they knew once he left NJPW his charisma would win fans over elsewhere. He added that despite that, he feels more work is needed to get Nakamura to the level he deserves within WWE.
“But when I see Nakamura in WWE, it’s hard for me to say he’s done anything compelling in-ring since he’s been there, which is a shame. It will just take the one right story and the one right moment and then people will be captivated by everything that he does. Right now, he hasn’t had that.”
Shinsuke Nakamura has participated in the WWE Championship picture but fell in several attempts against former champion Jinder Mahal. There are those fans who believe Shinsuke may pick up the big win at the Royal Rumble 2018 match, but based on his latest booking that could be questionable. “The King of Strong Style” has yet to capture any gold on WWE’s main roster level, but he is a former NXT Champion.
As mentioned, Kenny Omega has never set foot in a WWE ring, but there are plenty of fans hoping he will join the mix in the future. Based on his interview, he seems content with his current second home and the way in which NJPW presents its wrestling product to fans. That said, having a WWE legend like Chris Jericho working with him in their upcoming match could potentially be a tipping point as the connection is now there. Perhaps one day, fans will see that Kenny Omega vs. Shinsuke Nakamura dream match within the WWE.