Jeff Jarrett's new promotion, Global Force Wrestling (GFW) continues to announce partnerships and tease changing the game without offering many details on what exactly the new company will be. But the partnerships are with major players, as news broke this weekend that Jarrett was linking his new venture with New Japan Pro Wrestling (NJPW).
GFW had announced a partnership with Mexico's AAA in late April, and this now establishes ties between the Jarrett's and the two largest promotions in the world outside of North America.
Here's the press release:
GFW REACHES AGREEMENT WITH NEW JAPAN PRO WRESTLING
NASHVILLE - Global Force Wrestling has reached a partnership agreement with New Japan Pro Wrestling, the top wrestling promotion in the Eastern Hemisphere.
The companies will exchange talent for events in both the United States and Japan. NJPW originated in 1972 under the auspices of Japanese wrestling legend Antonio Inoki. It's a globally recognized brand in the world of wrestling, and its attendance annually ranks among the best.
"New Japan Pro Wrestling is excited to align with Jeff Jarrett and his vision for Global Force Wrestling," said Naoki Sugabayashi, NJPW chairman of the board. "Our brand is well known in many parts of the world, and this is an opportunity for us not only to expand it but to bring our fans the very best in wrestling talent from the West."
Jarrett, the founder and CEO of GFW, is pleased to add this partnership to one already announced with top Mexican promotion AAA.
"What NJPW has done in the past 40 years speaks for itself," Jarrett said. "Several top American stars have appeared there through the years, including current IWGP heavyweight champion AJ Styles.
"To be able to share our talent in Japan is exciting, and to bring the top Japanese stars here will expose our fan base to another exciting style and terrific brand, just like AAA. Global Force Wrestling will do everything possible to put the best possible talent in front of its rabid fans."
GFW announced its partnership with AAA on April 29.
While this will give the new promotion access to some exciting talent, and the opportunity to send whoever ends up under its umbrella (despite Sugabayashi's quote about the "best wrestling talent in the West", GFW hasn't actually announced any signings yet) to work with some of Japan's best, it's unclear what if anything this means about what GFW will offer as a product.
A producer that Jarrett has partnered with has been quoted as saying that it "won't be a bunch of wrestling matches", while Double-J releases videos about scouting the independents and "evolving" pro wrestling - but into what isn't mentioned.
Some have questioned if the NJPW partnership may be a move to force a severing of ties between that company and Ring of Honor (ROH), who just recently put on two well-received cross promotional supercards with New Japan. At least in the short-term, it doesn't appear to effect that relationship, as five performers under ROH contract were just announced as having been selected to go to head overseas on loan to work with NJPW:
Looks like I'm going back to Japan!! #NJPW #firstladyjapan @ringofhonor pic.twitter.com/FgCB0VTuZM— Maria Kanellis (@MariaLKanellis) June 21, 2014
With no mention of exclusivity in the press release, it's probably safe to assume that New Japan will work with both companies in an effort to bring in the best talent and expose their brand to the largest pro wrestling market in the world.
In other Puro-related news, The Great Muta's Wrestle-1 promotion and TNA are expected to make a big announcement in New York this week. Wrestle-1 has had their star Sanada on loan to Dixie Carter's company for several months, where he holds TNA's X-Division crown.
Speculation from Mike Johnson at PWInsider.com has focused on a possible co-produced card for the two companies, possibly even TNA's biggest show, Bound for Glory.
Exciting times on the international scene as the United States B-players jockey for position. Stay tuned for more on these announcements and partnerships from Cageside Seats.