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Is Rainmaker Okada WWE Bound?
- Updated: March 15, 2016
Is Rainmaker Okada WWE Bound? According to the rumor mill, this looks like a HUGE possibility.
It looks like the WWE is expanding it’s horizons yet again, if rumored reports hold true. The ‘E is apparently looking to romance Kazuchika “Rainmaker” Okada from the ranks of New Japan Pro Wrestling, in an attempt to sign more and more foreign stars to the roster.
The big company from Stamford, CT have already signed New Japan stars AJ Styles, Karl Anderson, the returning Doc Gallows, and Shinsuke Nakamura. Nakamura is slated to debut in April, according to some reports, while Styles has already become a mainstay on the main roster, there have been rumblings (most likely just fan fodder) that Gallows and Anderson would reprise the “Bullet Club” name in the WWE, although, this writer believes that they’ll join former Bullet Club leader Finn (Furgal “Prince” Devitt) Balor in NXT as part of the “Balor Club“.
Wishful thinking, perhaps?
Okada represented a change for New Japan, who was a considerably traditional company, and started to treat their approach in their shows more like their American counterparts, in where fan participation was more encouraged. Okada, who was one of the more old school wrestlers out of Japan, ventured States’ side, wrestling for TNA, where he developed his current gimmick and approach in the ring. When he returned, he went through a transformation, becoming a mixture of The Pope (the wrestler, not the Pontiff) and Randy Orton.
New Japan has had to make changes to the way they handled talent, where in the past, they would offer one-year deals, in order to evaluate talent, to see who they wished to keep, and who they wished to release. The change came in light of the recent signings, which rocked NJPW at their core, and if Okada were to sign, it could spell trouble for the company, as he is the current IWGP World Heavyweight Champion.
The promotion is trying to keep Okada at bay, by offering him a five-year contract, with an option for a higher salary. Of course, he is not the only talent being offered a higher salary to stay with the company, but, word has it that he has yet to sign the new deal, which could indicate that he is looking at making a jump.
That would definitely benefit the WWE, as they have made the WWE Network available in Japan, and by having Hideo (KENTA) Itami, Nakamura and Okada would surely help with bringing in more fans, as they have already been established in that market.
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Photo by Daniel Carrol, via Flickr.