New Japan Pro-Wrestling confirmed on Thursday that it has made a deal with Roku that will bring NJPW programming back to the United States. Beginning on Feb. 11, the promotion will air a one-hour block of matches from recent events that have yet to air outside of Japan. The Roku Channel will also have an on-demand library of NJPW content from its 2020 events.
"New Japan Pro-Wrestling Co., Ltd. (NJPW) today announced a partnership with Roku, Inc. (NASDAQ: ROKU) to bring NJPW content to The Roku Channel in the United States, Canada and the United Kingdom," the company's announcement read. "The eponymous New Japan Pro-Wrestling, a one-hour weekly series featuring the athletic action of the world's preeminent pro-wrestling organization, will air episodes featuring top matches and events that have yet to air on television outside of Japan."
New Japan previously had a US television deal with AXS TV, though that ended in 2019.
"Expanding the breadth and quality of our programming has fueled The Roku Channel to one of the largest and fastest-growing channels on our platform," Ashley Hovey, Roku Director of AVOD Growth, said in the release. "Sports programming continues to be an important category for our users, and we are very excited to partner with NJPW to put the world of professional wrestling at the fingertips of millions of engaged users on The Roku Channel."
"Our fans in the United States, Canada and the United Kingdom are among our most loyal, and they have been very clear that they want NJPW's content made available to them," NJPW president Takami Ohbari said. "NJPW is unlike any other pro-wrestling in the world. It is the most athletic, sports-oriented pro-wrestling on the planet, and we are excited to bring our athletes and matches to these markets in such a major way. Thank you to The Roku Channel, and we look forward to a successful partnership that brings NJPW to millions of new fans around the world."