Karl Anderson was originally booked to work WWE and NJPW events during the same night, but decided to skip the latter due to scheduling conflict. He is now being asked to choose sides or vacate the belt.
NJPW released a statement on Tuesday in which they asked The Machine Gun to honor his commitments by competing in his scheduled Never Openweight Championship match against Hikuleo on November 5, 2022.
The Japanese promotion claimed it reached out to Anderson on multiple occasions but didn’t get a response from him. If Anderson doesn’t show up at NJPW’s Battle Autumn series, then he will have to vacate his title and return it to the promotion. Check out the full announcement below.
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Early morning Japan time on October 20, NEVER Openweight Champion Karl Anderson posted a video on social media indicating that he would not be making his advertised commitment on November 5 in Osaka.
NJPW had announced Anderson’s match with Hikuleo for the NEVER Openweight Championship on October 4. Despite comments from Doc Gallows to the contrary in Anderson’s video, the booking was made through the appropriate channels, and with Anderson’s expressed approval.
However, after the match’s announcement, both Gallows and Anderson would appear on the October 10 edition of WWE’s “Monday Night Raw” broadcast. This led to WWE announcing a match featuring both men for their Saudi Arabia event on November 5, in direct conflict with Anderson’s prior commitment.
NJPW has for the past several days attempted to negotiate with Anderson, but has not been met with a response. Should Anderson decide to renege on his scheduled championship match, he will be required to vacate the NEVER Openweight Championship and return the title belt to NJPW immediately.
New Japan Pro-Wrestling holds its champions to the highest standards of professionalism, and sincerely apologises to fans for any disappointment or inconvenience caused by this matter.
According to NJPW President Takami Ohbari, Karl Anderson is still expected to appear during the promotion’s Autumn Series event at Osaka Jo on November 5, 2022. Anderson’s WWE schedule has already put him in six-man tag team match against The Judgment Day at Crown Jewel.
Do you think Karl Anderson will vacate the Never Openweight Championship? Sound off in the comments!