While he's been busy as the reigning AEW World Champion, Chris Jericho made it clear on Sunday that he hasn't forgotten about his upcoming match at New Japan's Wrestle Kingdom 14 event next month inside the Tokyo Dome Jericho popped up via video during New Japan's World Tag League Final event on Sunday with an eerie message for Hiroshi Tanahashi, once again telling "The Ace" that his match with Jericho would be his last. Jericho appeared in full "Painmaker" gear during the video, and was surrounded by a group of goons all wearing his hat and trademark face paint.
"Time's running out, Tanahashi," Jericho said with a creepy smile. "January 5th is only weeks away. Only weeks away from The Painmaker vs. The Ace at the Tokyo Dome. It's going to be the greatest match of your career, it's also going to be the last match of your career."
AEW Star has another message for Hiroshi Tanahashi at NJPW World Tag League - Finals Night (Spoiler) from r/SquaredCircle
Jericho and his cronies then gave out a maniacal laugh together, making the video particularly creepy.
Even with his current AEW contract, Jericho has been allowed to keep working for New Japan on a part-time basis. The former WWE Champion returned to the promotion for the first time in nearly two decades back in 2017 for a match with Kenny Omega at the Wrestle Kingdom 12 event. He then turned his attention to Tetsuya Naito, which culminated in Naito winning the IWGP Intercontinental Championship back from Jericho at Wrestle Kingdom 13. Jericho then tried to get his hands on the company's top prize, but lost to IWGP Heavyweight Champion Kazuchika Okada at the Dominion event earlier in the year.
During the same event Jon Moxley returned to the company and attacked both Lance Archer and Minoru Suzuki. He then announced he would challenge Archer for the IWGP United States Championship (a title he was stripped of earlier this year) at Wrestle Kingdom 14 in a Texas Death Match.
Meanwhile Jericho and Moxley are starting up a feud stateside of Jericho's AEW World Championship. During a recent interview with Sports Illustrated, Jericho stated their new feud would be nothing like their encounters back in 2016 in WWE.
"It won't be the same," Jericho said. "Moxley was never this confident or this good in WWE. As Moxley said in our 'Talk is Jericho' podcast interview, he didn't know who he was in WWE. He was constantly at odds with the creative and at odds with himself. This is a completely new guy. Dean Ambrose was only a portion of his career. To me, Moxley is the real guy. And there is a new-look Chris Jericho with all this creative freedom in AEW, so it's going to be very intense and it's going to be a lot of fun.
"I know a lot of people have already said, 'This is happening too quickly.' Everybody needs to sit back, relax, and watch the story unfold," he added. "Trust me, we are not rushing anything. I wouldn't allow it."