Cody Rhodes Shreds Jay White On Twitter, Shibata On If He's Retired, NYT Article On NJPW's Rise

- Above is a look at some of the merchandise (Bullet Club, Lion Mark logo, Los Ingobernables de Japon) that will be available at tonight's NJPW Strong Style Evolved show. We will have complete coverage tonight beginning at 8pm ET.

- The New York Times wrote an article on New Japan Pro Wrestling's rise as they look to expand further into the U.S. wrestling market as an alternative option to WWE. Here's an except from the article:

"Professional wrestling has historically been colored by fierce territorial wars, with promoters battling over in-ring talent and the audience that pays to see it. Without serious competition, W.W.E. has built a business that allows its stars to reach levels of opulence never before associated with wrestling, both in income and crossover appeal. A top star like John Cena can appear with W.W.E. one night and guest-host NBC's "Today" show the next morning. There are, however, only so many Cena-level spots available. New Japan's rise has come, in part, from offering its performers more artistic freedom as well as additional avenues for income that are not always available to those working for W.W.E. For example, some wrestlers can negotiate with New Japan to also work for other promotions and to sell their own branded merchandise."

- Yesterday, NJPW held a fan expo at their dojo to help hype tonight's show. There were a number of meet and greets including one with the dojo's Head Trainer, Katsuyori Shibata. He was asked about his health and if he was retired from in-ring action. Shibata said he's not retired and currently is focusing on training others, he plans to wrestle again. Shibata was injured during his main event match with Kazuchika Okada at NJPW's Sakura Genesis last April. He was taken to the hospital after the match and was diagnosed with subdural hematoma and underwent successful surgery, followed by months of rehabilitation.

- IWGP US Champion Jay White and Adam Page did a Q&A at yesterday's fan expo where White sent a shot towards Page and Cody Rhodes. White said to forget about Cody's wife, Brandi Rhodes, Page was Cody's "real b----." Cody then reminded White that his legacy is a "trainee dojo boy" and washing other guys' backs.


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