2018 G1 Climax Winner Hiroshi Tanahashi sat down with New Japan Pro-Wrestling recently to discuss his upcoming match against Kenny Omega. In the interview, Tanahashi touched on The Best Bout Machine’s arrogance, saying that Omega’s obsession with having the best style is “shallow.”
NJPW: Since the title match was set in October, you both have had harsh words and fierce warm-ups. Now that the match is just around the corner, what is your current impression of Kenny?
Tanahashi: I re-watched our press conference and read his interviews, I find many of his ideas and principles to be very shallow.
NJPW: Kenny said, “I’m the one who is leading New Japan, now. Tanahashi can’t accept that reality.”
Tanahashi: He also says, “My style is what fans like the best.” He is indeed, very shallow.
Tanahashi said that the current IWGP Heavyweight Champion is obsessed with approval.
NJPW: Understood. Kenny is also frustrated that when New Japan is featured on TV on various programs and shows, he’s not the one in the spotlight.
Tanahashi: But if the situation was reversed, if we were in America, a Japanese wrestler would face the same problem. There are always obstacles which makes things difficult for foreigners, anywhere. But he can’t use that as an excuse. He has to take it upon himself to make it happen.
NJPW: I see.
Tanahashi: At the core of Kenny’s frustration is a need for approval. I can sense his desire for wanting to be appreciated. ‘Why is Tanahashi still admired more than me, even though I’ve had so many amazing matches?’