NJPW Star Leaves Company Despite Reportedly Being Offered New Contract

Katsuya Kitamura heading for pastures new...

Departures from New Japan Pro Wrestling are the talk of the wrestling world at the moment, with the likes of KUSHIDA and Kenny Omega (officially still just taking a break from NJPW at the time of writing with AEW seemingly on the horizon) heading for pastures new.

NJPW announced via a press release that Katsuya Kitamura left the company on January 31, despite the 2017 Young Lion Cup winner reportedly being offered a new contract by New Japan this year - that's according to Dave Meltzer, at least.

Kitamura last wrestled for New Japan on March 4 of last year, teaming with Manabu Nakanishi in a loss to CHAOS' Tomohiro Ishii & Toru Yano. The reason for his lack of time in the ring has reportedly been down to a series of injury problems.

In a series of Twitter posts (put through Google translate), Kitamura said that he is sorry to the fans who have been waiting for his return to a NJPW ring. "I have been working my own training for my return. I wanted to return to the ring and meet the fans ' expectations," he continued.

"But I would like to find my way forward and rise again. I would like to cherish what I have received from fans who love wrestling and professional wrestlers, and I would like to continue my strong heart one step at a time with the experience of these three years.

"Finally, thank you for the cheers and cheer for the three years! The support of all of you was my everything. Thank you. Go to the next stage to watch Kitamura Katsuya again, I hope you will continue to support me."

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Ross Tweddell

Written by Ross Tweddell

Presenter over on the Cultaholic Wrestling YouTube channel. Email: [email protected]