Shinsuke Nakamura Says Big Upcoming Match Is 'Fate'

Japanese wrestling promotion Pro Wrestling NOAH turned a lot of heads with the announcement that Shinsuke Nakamura will be having a singles match against Keiji Muto, aka The Great Muta. Nakamura is under WWE contract, but he will face Muto under the NOAH banner at the promotion's New Year's show on January 1, 2023. During an interview with Tokyo Sport, Nakamura expressed his belief that one last showdown with Muto is destiny.


"Burning fighting spirit. Antonio Inoki, who is a common teacher, has just passed away on the 1st. It will be a dream confrontation realization at a dramatic timing," Nakamura said. "I think it's really fate, and I worked hard to make it happen. I've fought Keiji Muto twice in the past, but this was my first encounter with Great Muta, the first and last. I definitely think that I am in the midst of the miracle of the times."

Back in 2008, Nakamura had two title matches with Muto, both for the IWGP Heavyweight Championship. In their first match, Muto defeated Nakamura to capture the IWGP Heavyweight Championship with a moonsault. Muto also won the rematch. The story at the time was that Nakamura was inexperienced and wasn't prepared for Muto. Over a decade later, Nakamura has cemented his own legacy as a Japanese wrestling legend.


Muto is in the midst of a retirement tour. He will be appearing in a New Japan Pro-Wrestling match for the final time at the promotion's Historic X-Over event on November 20. The final match of Muto's career is set to take place at a special Great Muta Final Bye-Bye show on January 22, 2023.