New Japan Pro Wrestling issued the following press release announcing two big matchups for the NJPW Strong Ignition series. First up…Japanese legend Satoshi Kojima will collide with JR Kratos, then “Filthy” Tom Lawlor will defend the Strong OPENWEIGHT championship against Karl Fredericks. Full details are below.
KOJIMA VS. KRATOS:
When Satoshi Kojima made his STRONG debut last week, he did so alongside Karl Fredericks against team Filthy’s JR Kratos and Danny Limelight. Hard hitting super heavyweight Kratos instantly had his ire drawn by Kojima, and refused to yield an inch to the living legend. That led to some violent in-ring collisions during the match, and an intense pull apart brawl after it. Now Kojima and Kratos meet one on one in a match that will be crucial to Kratos’ claim of being the Most Feared, and toughest big man on Friday nights.
LAWLOR VS. FREDERICKS TITLE MATCH:
June 25 will see STRONG Openweight Champion Tom Lawlor put his title on the line for the second time against number one contender Karl Fredericks. Fredericks and Lawlor’s paths crossed during the Collision series, when an elimination main event saw Fredericks put Lawlor over the top rope to the floor, much to the consternation of the Team Filthy leader. When Lawlor defeated Chris Dickinson to make his first defence of the title two weeks later, Fredericks was quick to ‘congratulate’ the champion backstage, but made it clear that he would be next in line.
With a pair of wins over Lawlor’s teammates JR Kratos and Danny Limelight solidifying his case, Fredericks’ championship challenge has now been made official. It’s been almost exactly a year since Fredericks officially graduated from the LA Dojo and started making a name for himself as the Alpha Wolf. Can he celerate that anniversary as a champion, or is the Filthy Era set to continue?