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SANADA Wins The 2023 New Japan Cup

SANADA is the 2023 New Japan Cup winner!

For the first time in his career, SANADA is the winner of the New Japan Cup.

SANADA squared off with Bullet Club's David Finlay in the final of the New Japan Cup today in Niigata. Finlay went for Trash Panda down the stretch, the finishing move that has scored him victory after victory in recent matches, but SANADA blocked it and followed up with his new DDT finisher for the win. 

SANADA was presented with the trophy and he came face-to-face with Kazuchika Okada following the match. Having won the New Japan Cup, SANADA will challenge Kazuchika Okada for the IWGP World Heavyweight Championship at Sakura Genesis on April 8. 

Cold Skull has yet to challenge for the IWGP World Heavyweight Title but he has previously challenged for the IWGP Heavyweight Championship. He failed to defeat Okada for the gold on three occasions between February 2018 and October 2019. SANADA also failed to beat Kota Ibushi for the IWGP Heavyweight/Intercontinental Double Title in February 2021. 

SANADA has been on the receiving end of a renewed push in recent weeks, having debuted a new aggressive side and finisher. He picked up wins over Taichi, KENTA, Tetsuya Naito, and Mark Davis on his way to the New Japan Cup final.

Following his win over Naito, SANADA defected from Los Ingobernables de Japon and joined Taichi, TAKA Michinoku, DOUKI, and Yoshinobu Kanemaru to make their stable Just Five Guys. 

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Aidan Gibbons

Written by Aidan Gibbons

Editor-in-Chief of Cultaholic.com Twitter: @theaidangibbons