NJPW Star Hiroshi Tanahashi Disagrees With Running Empty Arena Shows In The Middle Of A Pandemic

He thinks it would "deal a black eye" to the industry...

The ongoing coronavirus pandemic has caused major disruption to New Japan Pro-Wrestling's 2020 schedule. The promotion has cancelled the New Japan Cup and Best Of The Super Juniors 27, and hasn't held a show since February 26. Their policy has differed from other Japanese promotions like Dragon Gate, All Japan Pro-Wrestling, and Pro Wrestling NOAH who have all ran events during the pandemic. 

Hiroshi Tanahashi recently sat down for an interview with Justin Barrasso at Sports Illustrated and said he agrees with New Japan's decision to not run shows at the moment. 

The Ace Of New Japan said: "The wrestling business is in an extremely difficult situation. After all, we are athletes in a contact sport and we perform in front of packed crowds. That's a recipe for disaster right now. It's hard to say when exactly we'll have matches again, but I hope in the meantime wrestlers look after themselves, stay in top shape and keep fans hungry to see us when we can come back."

He later added: "There isn't a governing body for Japanese pro wrestling. As such, we can't necessarily enforce cancellations. That's been the responsibility of each company. But to run events in the middle of a pandemic presents the wrong image of professional wrestling to society and would deal a black eye to the industry that might still remain even after the pandemic ends."

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Aidan Gibbons

Written by Aidan Gibbons

Cultaholic's resident newshound.