Goldberg hasn’t wrestled since losing the Universal Championship to Brock Lesnar at WrestleMania 33 in Orlando. On the following day’s episode of Raw, Goldberg thanked the fans and seemingly bid farewell to the squared circle for good.
But according to Dave Meltzer of Wrestling Observer Newsletter, New Japan Pro Wrestling talked to Goldberg about appearances for some of their main events. A deal was not reached, however.
Earlier this week, it was announced that Goldberg would be part of the 2018 WWE Hall of Fame class. As pointed out by Andrew Ravens of eWrestlingNews, it’s highly unlikely Goldberg joins a rival promotion as he awaits his induction.
NJPW recently brought in Chris Jericho – who faced Kenny Omega at Wrestle Kingdom 12 in Tokyo. Y2J has since made other appearances for the company, though his lengthy tour with Fozzy means he won’t be there in the foreseeable future.
Over the past couple of years, the WWE and NJPW have signed away top talents from the rival promotion. Gallows & Anderson, AJ Styles and the recently-signed War Machine tag team have all jumped over to WWE after successful stints with NJPW.
As for Goldberg, he showed tremendous ability to still wrestle in his brief return to the WWE in 2016-17. He’s 51 years of age, but follows a strict diet and workout program to keep himself in shape. It’s possible he could join a rival promotion in the future – and the money will be there.
It’s not rare for superstars to get inducted into the WWE Hall of Fame, only to leave for another promotion some time after. Hulk Hogan joined TNA in 2009 – four years after being inducted.
Of course, Goldberg’s always been a wrestler who never had great stamina and always squashed his opponents to win matches. If NJPW were to sign Goldberg, they’d have to be aware of the risks that the match quality will be lackluster at best.
And this is a promotion that tends to prioritize quality matches over big names alone.
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