Top NJPW Star Pulled From Tag League Tour Due to Injury, Wrestle Kingdom Title Match in Jeopardy

IWGP Intercontinental Champion Hiroshi Tanahashi is currently suffering from an undisclosed injury to his right knee. The New Japan “ace” was actually pulled from the final shows of the World Tag League tour, which concluded Monday in Fukuoka.

This potentially puts Tanahashi’s upcoming title defense against Jay White at Wrestle Kingdom in jeopardy. The company is scheduled for a press conference Monday night to announce the full match card for the January 4th Tokyo Dome show, so we should have an update on his condition and plans going forward by Tuesday morning.

What we can say is that the 40-year-old star has worked through numerous injuries throughout his career, many serious enough that a company like WWE would have pulled him if he was on their roster. He is essentially synonymous with Wrestle Kingdom as a marquee event at this point, much like Shawn Michaels to WrestleMania, and has never missed a single Tokyo Dome show in 14 years. It’s likely that he was removed from the Tag League tour to have some time to rest, get the injury examined, and make sure he can compete on January 4th. We’ll keep you posted…

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