Original article from Tokyo Sports
Okada on the possibility of becoming the longest ever reigning champion.
Okada, the current IWGP Heavyweight Champion, made his promise public; to break the record of the ‘King of Destruction’ (Shinya Hashimoto). Okada will accept the challenge from EVIL on Oct 9th in Ryogoku.
The champion could not continue his winning ways since his loss to EVIL in the G1. Also, possibly due to an injured neck, he couldn’t defeat Suzuki (draw). Furthermore, in his last singles match, he lost to Kenny Omega. Okada was unsuccessful in his quest to get to the final.
Okada speaks on his 8th title defense match against EVIL, “It’s true, that my neck was injured, although, I had to win, even in pain. My losses were because of my weakness. I want to pay EVIL back.” Currently, his left arm is experiencing numbness. “I still have time (before the match). I want to get healthy.” He wants to challenge in his best possible condition for the next run (beginning Sept 5th in Nagoya).
If Okada is successful in his 8th title defense, he will be on the path to setting a new record in IWGP history. If Okada can keep his title until the next Tokyo Dome event (January 4th), he will take the record of longest reign, eclipsing the 489 days of Hashimoto Shinya (dead at 40, the 19th champion).
Okada says, “I’m not fighting because of that reason, but if I make it, I think it will be something great.”
There will also be the Tokyo Dome Contract Defense Match on the same day between Naito and Ishii. Okada says, “I will think about that (the Tokyo Dome main event) after my battle with EVIL.” Before Okada can continue his road to the Tokyo Dome, he must drive EVIL, and the darkness world, away.