Kenny Omega on What Changed in His Career, Wanting to Be the Legend That Never Worked for WWE, His Vision for NJPW

New Japan Pro Wrestling (NJPW) star Kenny Omega was recently interviewed by Sports Illustrated. You can check out the highlights here:



On wanting to be the legend that never worked for WWE:

“I would rather be the legend that never stepped foot in WWE but was better than every single one of them and did something that none of those guys could do in their prime or could ever do if they left WWE and tried. No one is going to win ten ‘matches of the year’ in Japan, no one could. I’ve already won ten. No one could go from WWE and win one – if you did, you’d have to have a better match than me, and that isn’t going to happen. That’s the kind of pride I bring to my work. AJ is the closest guy who could do it, but I’m talking about their roster as a whole. It’s just not going to happen.”

On his vision for NJPW:

“My vision for the company is different from what we’re seeing right now. We are using a ton of foreign talent, and it would be easy for us to cross over and extend our borders. We have talent that is looking to stay loyal and see this company grow, and I’m not just sitting on the sideline waiting to see the highest bidder. I’m committed to seeing this company grow, as well. I can be multi-cultural, multi-lingual, work a physical style, push forward entertaining storylines, and be the more worldly entertainment that the company needs. I’m also willing to accept the blame if it fails. I’m not afraid to fail, and I have no fear because I believe we can do it.”

On how his career changed:

“My career changed instantaneously with the announcement of Shinsuke, AJ, Gallows, and Machine Gun leaving in the blink of an eye. I went from being a junior—and probably set to be Kushida’s arch-nemesis until the cows came home—to suddenly being vaulted into the heavyweight title picture for the Intercontinental championship. That taught me a lesson: I couldn’t put a limit on myself. The things I wanted were finally coming true. I was finally going to get a shot against these heavyweights, the guys that had all the hype. I had to listen while people said all these different guys were the best, but I knew, if I was ever given the chance, I would be able to show everyone something new. Then I was finally in the position to do it, so I wasn’t going to just be complacent. Some guys do that—they look at this as a job, but I knew I could show something really cool that people hadn’t seen before.”

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