Tetsuya Naito On Winning Tokyo Sports Awards: I Assumed This Was Coming After Wrestle Kingdom 14

Tetsuya Naito gives his comments on winning multiple Tokyo Sports awards.

It was announced this week that Naito won the Tokyo Sports MVP award and held a press conference of sorts to talk about his award. Naito's 2020 saw him capture both the IWGP Heavyweight and Intercontinental titles at Wrestle Kingdom 14, becoming the first in history to hold both belts at the same time. Admittedly, Naito said he figured his performance at Wrestle Kingdom 14 would be enough to net him the award. 

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"To be honest, as soon as I did what I did in the Tokyo Dome on January 4 & 5, I had assumed that this award was coming. But after the Tokyo Dome, thanks to the pandemic, the match I had wanted with Hiromu Takahashi for a decade didn’t take place. From there, this year took a rather different form to what I had expected. Then again, things not exactly going to plan, that’s pretty much on brand for Tetsuya Naito," Naito said.

That's not the only award that Naito won from Tokyo Sports as his match against Kazuchika Okada from the second night of Wrestle Kingdom 14 also won "Match Of The Year." Naito said picking "Match Of The Year" can be tough and understands this year's winner may cause some debate. However, Naito said the match against Okada was the one that stood out to him the most.

"Everybody has their own taste. Some people might think my match with Okada was the clear winner, and some might have a very different idea. It’s a difficult call to make, and this decision will certainly raise a lot of debate. But thinking back on the matches I’ve had this year, the (Okada match) certainly is one that stays with me. I think a few years from now when I look back on my career, this is definitely a match that will leap out as an important one, and I’m happy it got chosen. The moments that really stand out from that match… The chest bump before the Stardust Press, the ‘Naito’ chants, not just during the match or my entrance, but afterward, with all of the Tokyo Dome chanting my name, that’s such an incredible memory. It wasn’t just a match and a moment that I created with Okada, but something everybody in that building help make, so all of you chanting have my gratitude. Gracias," Naito said.   

Speaking of Wrestle Kingdom, Naito will defend both of his titles against Kota Ibushi on night one of Wrestle Kingdom 15 on January 4, 2021.

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