The Triple Crown Heavyweight Championship has been vacant for All Japan Pro Wrestling (AJPW) since the end of 2021 following to the unfortunate injury of Jake Lee. Because of this, a mini-tournament was created to crown a new champion at NEW YEAR WARS 2022 on January 23rd. This led to the final match to crown a new Triple Crown champion between Kento Miyahara and Ryuki Honda.
Kento Miyahara Becomes Triple Crown Heavyweight Champion
How the Tournament Unfolded
This one-night tournament was decided with two major singles matches: Suwama vs. Kento Miyahara and Shotaro Ashino vs. Ryuki Honda. In the opening contest, Miyahara defeated longtime rival Suwama in the semi-finals. Meanwhile, Honda scored a major upset by defeating Ashino in the second match of the contest. Thus, Miyahara and Honda went on to the finals of the tournament.
Ryuki Honda truly stood out in this tournament as a potential main event player. He defeated one of the top workers of AJPW with Shotaro Ashino and even went after Kento Miyahara to establish his role in this tournament. In the main event of the show, Honda put on a star-making performance with Miyahara. But the result would be Kento Miyahara capturing the Triple Crown Heavyweight Championship, becoming the 65th champion in the title’s history.
The last time Kento Miyahara held the Triple Crown Heavyweight Champion was in early 2020, his last reign ending to Suwama in 2020. Miyahara’s reign lasted for over 500 days; one of his two reigns reached over 400 days. This also marks Kento Miyahara’s fifth reign as Triple Crown Heavyweight Champion.
After defeating Ryuki Honda, Abdullah Kobayashi came out and challenged Kento Miyahara. Kobayashi, who was the #1 contender for Jake Lee’s Triple Crown Heavyweight Championship, was supposed to challenge Lee on January 2nd. Kento Miyahara would accept and this match will take place during the upcoming EXCITE SERIES tour. With no confirmed date so far for this title match.
The 65th Triple Crown Heavyweight Champion is …
— AJPW International (@ajpwint) January 23, 2022
Synopsis of NEW YEAR WARS 2022
NEW YEAR WARS 2022 could be described as one of the most important tours of AJPW this year, with the crowning of three new champions. A brand new faction was created when Kazma Sakamoto made his return to AJPW and usurped Yoshitatsu’s Kingdom. Three championships were retained as well, with the two new champions having successful title defenses in this show. AJPW started 2022 off in a major way; we could see much more coming out of AJPW’s EXCITE SERIES in February.
Stay tuned to the Last Word on Pro Wrestling for more on this and other stories from around the world of wrestling, as they develop. You can always count on LWOPW to be on top of the major news in the wrestling world, as well as to provide you with analysis, previews, videos, interviews, and editorials on the wrestling world. Make sure to watch All Japan Pro Wrestling on AJPW.TV.