Back in February, Kota Ibushi announced he had signed a new deal with New Japan Pro Wrestling, keeping him with the promotion until 2021. The current IWGP Intercontinental Champion had previously worked more as a freelance wrestler in recent years until that deal.
In a press conference, Ibushi announced he had a new contract with NJPW and would stay "until the day I die." Obviously, the two sides decided it would be best to keep him for a longer period of time than originally announced.
"To me, this is the last place I'll be," Ibushi said. "Until the day I die. Until the end. That's my contract period. "
Aside from his current title reign, Ibushi is also a three-time IWGP Jr. Heavyweight Champion, one-time NEVER Openweight Champion, and one-time IWGP Jr. Heavyweight Tag Team Champion.
In a February interview with ShuPro, Ibushi commented on why he decided to chose NJPW over AEW.
"The second I went, that would be the end of my wrestling career, I thought," Ibushi began. "What I realized [talking to AEW] was I really don't care about money. ... AEW said they just want me in their ring in some form. The ideal for them was for me to move to America and be there full-time. I turned them down just after Wrestle Kingdom. ... If I went it would be the end of my career. There wouldn't be anywhere else to go after that. No step up, nothing left to do. That would be the last step to make, and after that things would just go down. Great money, but I want to keep developing."