Dave Meltzer has given a major update on the status of Kota Ibushi and his contract with NJPW
It has been more than a year since we last saw the “Golden Star” fight after his shoulder injury in the final of the G1 Climax 2021 against Kazuchika Okada and since then reports of his condition (both health and contractual) have come and gone without a definitive truth about the future of the inaugural IWGP World Heavyweight Champion. A few hours ago Dave Meltzer of the Wrestling Observer Newsletter gave the latest update on Ibushi’s health and his contract with NJPW.
In the latest edition of the Wrestling Observer Newsletter it has been reported that Kota Ibushi has returned to training and his injury seems to be improving.
Kota Ibushi has been in light training in the ring lately and so far his shoulder has held up well, so that’s a good sign. His contract with New Japan Pro Wrestling expires at the end of January and he tweeted hinting at it. There’s been a lot of bad feeling over the past year, but nothing is final about staying or leaving up to this point other than he said something cryptically about being a free agent in two months.
It is worth mentioning that it is not the first update that the Wrestling Observer gives about Kota; in April of this year they reported that Ibushi was already 70-80% recovered, consistent with NJPW’s announcement of the fighter’s participation in the 2022 New Japan Cup, which ultimately did not happen.