Former WWE NXT Star Shows Up at NJPW Dominion, Enters G1 Climax Tournament

Former WWE NXT star Hideo Itami, known to Japanese wrestling fans as KENTA, showed up at Sunday's NJPW Dominion event in Osaka.

KENTA was introduced by Katsuyori Shibata at the show. He came out and announced that he wants to show fans "KENTA's professional wrestling." He then announced he would be entering this year's G1 Climax tournament.

This year's G1 Climax is shaping up quite nicely In addition to KENTA, Jon Moxley (formerly WWE's Dean Ambrose) and Shingo Takagi have also announced themselves as entrants.

Moxley is the current IWGP U.S. Heavyweight Champion, having defeated Juice Robinson for the belt in his first NJPW match earlier this week at the Best of the Super Juniors final night. He was also in action at Dominion on Sunday, defeating Shota Umino in a non-title match.


Takagi is a legend, notably with Dragon Gate, who made his transition to New Japan last year. At the same Best of the Super Juniors show earlier this week that Moxley won the U.S. title, Takagi and Will Ospreay competed in the finals of that tournament and had an outstanding match. Ospreay was victorious, but both men will likely be in the match of the year conversation for the rest of 2019 for the performance that they put forth that night.

KENTA formerly starred in Japan's Pro Wrestling NOAH before jumping to WWE in 2014. While with the WWE, he never really hit his stride with the NXT brand due to a couple of serious injuries. He was released from his WWE contract this past February.