KENTA Discusses Not Achieving What He Hoped To In WWE

Jul 4, 2019 - by James Walsh

KENTA spoke with the NJPW website for a new interview discussing being frustrated with his WWE run, why he chose to go to NJPW and more. Highlights are below:

On why he chose to go to New Japan: “Well, I explained this in my backstage comments, but I went to America, I went to WWE, and I didn’t really achieve what I set out to do there. I didn’t get the results I wanted. While all this was going on, I was still in contact with (Katsuyori) Shibata, and we talked about this and that. In the end it boiled down to ‘OK, what do I want to do with myself’? What I concluded was that I didn’t want things to end this way, I wanted to try once more to bring my vision of pro wrestling to the world.”

On if New Japan has changed in meaning while he was in WWE: “I think so. You know, when people would ask me after I left WWE what I was going to do next, a lot of those questions would be followed up with ‘are you going to New Japan’? It really made me feel that NJPW had this big international influence … I mean, in April, NJPW filled Madison Square Garden, and the quality of the wrestling is always very high. I thought ‘OK, here I can make my mark’. The best wrestlers from all around the world are here. If I can do my thing in NJPW, it’s a chance for my style of wrestling to be seen, naturally, by the whole world.”

On not being able to achieve what he wanted in WWE: “It’s hard to put into words but… it was a very tough five years. I got hurt, and beyond that I was really grasping for something during that whole time. It’s like, I came into the company to bring my style of wrestling worldwide, but what that actually became was bending and adapting to what the company wanted. That’s important in a sense, but the strength and aggression that I bring to the table got lost. That’s a real shame.”

On not being able to express himself the way he wanted: “One person there might tell you ‘do it this way’, and then another would be ‘no, no, do it like this’. That meant my own personal vision just crumbled away. There are people who can do very well in that environment, but I just couldn’t. So when that ‘what next?’ question came up, I didn’t ask anybody else what they thought. I just decided to focus on what I wanted to do. Otherwise there’s no point.”

On what he gained from the experience: “If I didn’t, the whole thing would have been meaningless. Of course, you want to succeed in everything first time and keep moving forward, but life isn’t like that. You take your knocks, and then have to learn from that, otherwise your experience is pointless. In the end, I have zero regrets about any of my decisions.”

Leave a Reply