16 men, 8 matches, 4 weeks, qualifying (or the first round, as most logical people would call it) is over, it’s time for the New Japan Cup USA 2021 to start.
Three rounds of competition to come over the next three weeks, starting this Friday with the quarter-finals. Next week, the four remaining men will meet in the semi-finals, with the final being held on Friday 23rd April.
To the winner? The spoils.
Not just the New Japan Cup USA. The winner will also become the first-ever NJPW Strong Openweight Champion.
That means one of the eight remaining competitors will get their hands on all of the shiny things below and will be the face of Friday nights.
So, who’s left? Who has a shot at making history? Well, it’s these eight gentlemen (and I use the word “gentle” loosely!)
All eight have overcome tough qualifying matches, but things just don’t get any easier. Here’s a look at the quarter-final match-ups, with an added shot of me trying to predict how all this will go down.