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The third man to hold the IWGP World Heavyweight championship is...

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New Japan’s Instagram

At New Japan’s Dominion 6.6 event early today (June 7, thanks COVID), the main event was a battle to determine a new IWGP World Heavyweight champion.

The title was just introduced earlier this year, and its existence has been a rocky one. The decision to merge the IWGP Heavyweight and Intercontinental championships was a part of Kota Ibushi’s storyline, but it was still a controversial decision. When the new belt design was unveiled, it was met with more jokes than praise.

Ibushi’s reign turned out to be a short one, and reaction to Will Ospreay beating the Golden Star in his first defense was mixed. Then, only six weeks into his reign, Ospreay was forced to vacate due to injury.

It all set the stage for this morning’s showdown between Shingo Takagi, who came up short against Ospreay at last month’s Wrestling Dontaku, and the company’s current Ace, Kazuchika Okada.

After a 30+ minute main event that saw both men use Okada’s iconic Rainmaker finisher, the winner is...

Shingo needed to use a dragon suplex, a diving forearm strike and his Last of the Dragon finisher, but a man many know from his years as Dragon Gate’s top heel now holds the top prize in New Japan.

And as you can see in this celebratory tweet from one of his Los Ingobernables de Japon teammates, The Dragon already has his first challenger - the first ever IWGP World Heavyweight champion, Kota Ibushi.

Will Shingo be able to change the new belt’s fortunes? Excited for Ibushi/Takagi?

Get full Dominion 6.6. results here.