At Dominion 2020, EVIL vanquished his former mentor in Los Ingobernables de Japon Tetsuya Naito to capture the IWGP Intercontinental Championship and IWGP Heavyweight Championship. His shocking defection to Bullet Club the night before sent shockwaves through New Japan Pro-Wrestling and his feud with LIJ looks set to dominate the promotion until Wrestle Kingdom 15.
The King Of Darkness had previously competed for the top championships in New Japan as he faced Chris Jericho for the IWGP Intercontinental Title at Power Struggle 2018. The Painmaker ultimately left Osaka with his championship after forcing EVIL to submit to the Walls Of Jericho, but he revealed during Chris Jericho's Saturday Night Special that Gedo had been planning to give the new double champion a run with the gold since before November 2018.
Le Champion said: "I'll tell you something right now, Gedo told me 18 months ago before I wrestled EVIL in Osaka, which I really enjoyed the match by the way. I enjoyed all six of my New Japan matches, it was just a really cool magical time. EVIL was the one kind of wild card. I did not know much about him but I really enjoyed working with him. I thought he did a great job. And Gedo told me, 'Over the next year or so, we're going to give him a shot as the champ.' And lo and behold they do, they always have a plan there and so does AEW. Trust me, we've always got a plan."