Y2J is not expecting a celebration from his home city but he is expecting something.
On June 9th multi-time WWE World Champion Chris Jericho solidified himself as one of what he has been calling himself for years, the best in the world. Jericho competed in his second match for NJPW at their 'Dominion' event where he challenged Tetsuya Naito for the IWGP Intercontinental Championship. Y2J used his sly tactics of a "low-blow" that was not seen by the referee and a "Code-Breaker" to shock the crowd inside of 'Osaka Jo Hall' as he became the new IWGP Intercontinental Champion.
Jericho is now a ten-time holder of the Intercontinental Title; winning the prestigious belt nine times in WWE and once in New Japan. Jericho is also the only individual in the history of the sport to have held both titles. The Winnipeg native stated that NJPW is breathing down the neck of WWE and with two foreigners--being himself and fellow Winnipeg native the IWGP Heavyweight Champion Kenny Omega holding the top titles in the company, it only brings more attention to the product.
"That’s three native Winnipeggers [Kenny Omega, Chris Jericho, Don Callis] in an arena with over 40,000 people. It’s not just for wrestling, it’s a cross-cultural culmination, as it’s one of the biggest forms of entertainment in Japan," Jericho told the 'Winnipeg Free Press'. "(NJPW) is a company that’s slowly but surely increasing its worldwide popularity and basically breathing down the neck of the WWE. It’s a Japanese wrestling company, the top stars are Japanese, but there we were, two foreigners, headlining and main eventing the Tokyo Dome. It would be like two Japanese football teams in the Super Bowl. The fact it’s two guys from Winnipeg is a really huge deal."
Chris Jericho has been offered countless opportunities to compete in other promotions and companies in the United States but Jericho has came out and stated that he does not want to disrespect Vince McMahon by doing-so. The former nine-time WWE Intercontinental Champion shared during this particular interview that he does not think there will be toe-to-toe competition for WWE but a company like NJPW is on the rise and has an aura that is different from other wrestling products.
"Obviously, you’ll never beat WWE, but to carve out a niche for yourself within the market, you have to do something different, and New Japan is a completely different animal," said Jericho."Yes, it’s still pro wrestling, but it’s a completely different style and much more reformed, more hard-hitting and, in a lot of ways, more fun, depending on what you’re looking for."
Y2J also discussed the possibility of there being a celebration for himself and Kenny Omega when they return to Winnipeg, and more. To read the full interview, click here.