After the recent unveiling of the IWGP World Heavyweight Championship, NJPW has now announced the creation of a new championship.
It became tradition for the winner of the US edition of the New Japan Cup to earn a IWGP US Championship match. This custom is not in place this year, instead, the winner of the New Japan Cup USA 2021 will become an inaugural champion.
During the April 2 episode of NJPW Strong, the NJPW Strong Openweight Championship was unveiled. As per NJPW1972.com, the title will be awarded to the winner of this month’s New Japan Cup USA.
Here is the full description:
This Friday saw the Road to New Japan Cup USA 2021, and the reveal of just what each of the eight competitors in single elimination competition this April will be fighting for.
While the 2020 tournament was contested for number one contendership status to the IWGP US Heavyweight Championship held by Jon Moxley, this year’s tournament will be different. In 2021, the tournament winner will not be a contender, but rather a champion; the Strong Openweight Champion.
As the name suggests, the title represents the pinnacle of competition on NJPW STRONG on Friday nights, and will be contested for by wrestlers of any weight class. Things are going to get even more exciting going forward on NJPW STRONG; who of the eight in this year’s tournament will become the first holder of the gold?
NJPW shared photos of the new championship on Twitter:
— NJPW Global (@njpwglobal) April 3, 2021
The tournament is set to begin April 9. The first round matches are as follows:
– Clark Connors vs. Lio Rush
– Brody King vs. Chris Dickinson
– Ren Narita vs. Tom Lawlor
– Hikuleo vs. Fred Rosser
Elsewhere in NJPW, March 30 saw Kota Ibushi presented with the new IWGP World Heavyweight Championship after unifying the Heavyweight and Intercontinental Championship. He defends the new title against Will Ospreay at Sakura Genesis on April 4.