The night after his shocking win in “THE NEW BEGINNING in OSAKA” on 12th February 2019, Jay-White, gave his first press conference since being crowned the new IWGP Heavyweight Champion, where he spoke at length about the future of the company.
Jay White will compete in his first title defense against the winner of the “NEW JAPAN CUP 2019” at “G1 SUPERCARD” to be held at Madison Square Garden in New York on 6th April.
■ Comment from Jay White
※ As he arrives in the conference room, he places the IWGP Heavyweight Championship belt on the table and drapes his necklace over it. Before he sits down, he starts speaking:
Jay: “Apparently, the top prize in the company isn’t worth looking after, it’s falling apart. See the name plate’s been changed, it’s not Tanahashi anymore. I know in this state the belt suited Tanahashi, old and broken down, but my name is on this now so [the belt] needs to be taken care of.
If you remember last year, January 6th last year when I joined Chaos, I put my necklace over this belt and everyone, especially Okada laughed at me. Just over a year later, this is real now [points at belt with necklace over it], this is Switchblade’s belt. Hearing that is so sweet – too sweet!
Everyone’s their own opinions about me winning this bout, whether that’s you, other wrestlers, NJPW executives, the fans… [sneering] The fans love to share their thoughts and opinions about us as wrestlers as if we were looking to be judged by them. I’m not looking to be judged by anyone, I don’t care about your opinions. The fans talk as if I owe them something. That’s the main difference between me and almost everyone else in New Japan is that I’m smart enough to not pander to the fans. It’s the other way round. You owe me, I’m the one putting his body on the line. You will sit there and watch. I’m the champion! I knew I was before I even won this belt. So I call the shots. Moving forward my first defense will be at Madison Square Garden against the New Japan Cup winner. That’ll be interesting, I see Ibushi returned last night, did he say he’s going to be in the New Japan Cup? He did? That’ll be interesting! Who else? It doesn’t matter because I’ve already beaten everybody. I don’t get why people are shocked… Switchblade shock… Nothing shocking about it.
Anyway, Madison – such a huge event, such a huge arena especially for New Japan, and the best part is I will forever be known as the first IWGP Heavyweight Champion to walk into MSG and wrestle there. I will also be the first to defend it there. The fact that I’ll be champion at MSG, that pisses people off! The fact that I’m going to defend it successfully. People are going to be livid. That makes me love it so much more. I’m the opposite to what everybody actually wants as a champion because I give you truth. I am what everybody wishes they could be, so they’re jealous. I get it. It doesn’t bother me. I’m the one making this company money.
I’m not jumping around doing death-defying moves. I’m smart. I’m the smartest, that’s why this belt is with me today. I’m going to walk into MSG champion and I’m going to walk out of MSG champion. I’m the champion Pro-Wrestling needs and despite each and every fan out there.”
※ Here, Jay puts both feet on the table, strikes the rainmaker pose with both hands and starts talking.
Jay: “When Okada came back he took a picture like this right? Take a picture and make sure to get the belt in there. [He changes his hands to his signature pose] You guys like to compare this to the Rainmaker shock right. Anyway, didn’t Naito say he wanted to enter the New Japan Cup? He’s the Intercontinental Champion right? He did? He needs to stay in his own lane. I haven’t crossed paths with Naito yet, I have with every other big star in New Japan. Naito I hope you’re watching or you can get one of your little goons, EVIL or SANADA to tell you to watch this. You want a shot at this, you prove yourself. Fight hard in the New Japan Cup and I’ll make you a big star at Madison Square Garden, don’t you worry!
■ Q & A
– You were taking sh*t about Tanahashi prior to the title shot, but what were your thoughts on the match last night.
Jay [Dryly] “Talking sh*t, nice translation! I already gave you my thoughts. My thoughts are gold. What I say goes, what I say, I do. I could have answered that question before we even had that match, it turned out exactly as I said it was going to. Now Tana, he’s an experienced guy, he’s been around for a long time. That both helps him but it’s also his downfall. Mainly physically. He can take a lot of punishment, I’ll give that to him. He has a lot of heart, but at the end of the day I’m much smarter. As I say, this is a new era now, it’s a new way of doing things. I’m not going to stand there in front of the guy and trade strikes in the face with him, that’s ridiculous, why would I want to have my brain rattled more and more? The less damage to me the better. It’s all about being smart out there and I proved *again* that I’m right about that. All the proof I need is sitting right here in front of me. Tana, I don’t know what the state of him was afterwards, his legs might be pretty shot, so hopefully he can have another match someday, probably won’t want another with me. He can open-up Madison Square Garden, he can have the first match and make it an easy tag match so the fans can see him.”
– At the moment NJPW is expanding globally. As the new IWGP champion, what are your your thoughts on that and how would you like to lead the company globally?
Jay “[Visibly annoyed] I feel like I’ve answered this question so many times before, it’s always the same questions… Just having me at the helm, that’s going to make this company expand as it is. My image, me standing there with this belt is money in itself. I am the hottest asset in all of Pro-Wrestling and including [sneering] sports entertainment as well. Having me as the frontman, that’s going to help the company grow. I know certain people may not agree with that, especially fans because, hey, the fans know best don’t they? The think that me as the champion is not going to work? No, no, no, I know best so everybody else just shut up, sit back and do as you’re told and let me take this company to new heights.
* When the announcer, Shonaki Kiyono, who hosted the event, asked for more questions, none were forthcoming. In response to the silence Jay commented. “That’s it?! What was it, Tanahashi’s 8th reign? I’ve been in this business 6 years, Tanahashi’s been doing it for god knows how long. I beat Tanahashi, just like I said I would and you only have two questions for me?”
– It’s been confirmed that you’ll be fighting against the winner of New Japan Cup at Madison Square Garden, but the participants haven’t been confirmed. Is there anyone you would like to face?
Jay “I know that’s a common things wrestlers like to say, ‘I wanna have a match against this person, or that person’, but everyone wants to have a match against me. As I just said I am money! I am the hottest asset in Pro-Wrestling! Everyone wants to have matches against me because that increases their star-power, that increases their name. There isn’t anyone I’m interested in going after. I’m on top now. I’m number one! Everyone should be wanting to come for me. If Naito gets into the New Japan Cup, if Ibushi gets in, who else… Taichi? [Laughs sneeringly] never mind. Everyone’s coming for me, not the other way around. YOSHI-HASHI! Get YOSHI-HASHI in there! Yeah, that’d be a good one! I could beat-up YOSHI-HASHI at Madison Square Garden!
※ Jay poses for a few photos before walking out, ending the press conference