Kenny Omega Says Naito Can't Lead NJPW Globally, Says Foreign Talent Work Harder In NJPW Than Locals

Kenny Omega was brash about what he thinks of the Japanese wrestlers at New Japan.

During a conference call for the G1 Special, Kenny Omega stated his opinion on Tetsuya Naito and his stable Los Ingobernables de Japon. Omega said New Japan Pro Wrestling can't use a character like Naito in the worldwide market.

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"Naito in a way is a Pseudo-Stone Cold Steve Austin, anti-hero-esque character. I really don't appreciate his message and I really only think it works in Japan," said Omega. "In Japan, people work twelve, fourteen, fifteen, sixteen hour days. They live very rough lives... Naito's message is rather than trying to follow your dreams, rather than try and strive for something more than that, just calm down, just don't worry about it, and don't care," he continued. "I don't think that people on a worldwide scale are going to get behind that, I think it's stupid. LIJ is just rinse, wash repeat. Sure they're talented, maybe they have an interesting type of charisma, but they're very local and not the type of worldwide image NJPW is looking for. They're assets, we can use them, but they're niche."

Omega wants NJPW to be a worldwide company and does not think Naito can be the "face of the company" because of his character. He does think Naito and Los Ingobernables de Japon can be an important part of NJPW. 

After winning the IWGP Heavyweight Championship, Omega made comments about the Japanese talent in the promotion and how the foreign talents are trying much harder than them. He defended those comments during the conference call.

"I've heard people overreact 'oh Kenny, you're racist.' What's funny about that is the general feedback from the Japanese community is "Kenny, you're right,'" said Omega. "Those comments were sort of kayfabe, you don't see how hard everyone is working, but I do. I see it every time I go to the gym. The gym is myself, Michael Elgin, Juice (Robinson). It's all the foreigners. You never see the Japanese talent at the gym with the exception of a couple guys. When you're looking at guys eating food and dieting, thinking outside the box for something new and exciting for the brand, most of the time it's the foreigners. I'm not saying this is a racial thing whatsoever. It is what it is. The guys that are absolutely killing it right now are foreigners. Why is that?"

Omega said it seems the talent from Japan is content with "waiting for their turn" and he does not want anyone to be a "turn waiter" and wants everyone in NJPW to do well.

His comments can be heard in the video at the top of this page or the Fightful YouTube channel.


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