NJPW‘s Los Angeles dojo will open for business this month and Katsuyori Shibata has been named as the head coach.
Shibata commented on the new position saying, “With rehab and training, I’ve been sensing it’s time to move past the struggle of finding what I am capable of doing. These days, I’ve had a burning desire to take on a new challenge… What can I do in my current state? I thought a change of pace was needed, and the next thing I knew, I found myself in Los Angeles.”
For those who don’t recall, Shibata was injured in April of last year after hitting Okada with a stiff headbutt. He was diagnoased with subdural hematoma and has been rehabilitating since undergoing successful surgery.
The wrestler adds, “By some twist of fate, my thoughts happened around the time the new NJPW dojo was being set up in LA. While getting the dojo ready, I had the chance to assemble the ring with some of the young wrestlers and train with them, and I found myself doing wrestling moves I haven’t been able to do before.”
“These days have been full of discovery, and as I teach them things, I am learning, too. Los Angeles’ weather is great, and it would be difficult to find an environment with better conditions. As I continue with my rehabilitation and training, I have a desire to pass down the fundamentals, the know-how and techniques and the philosophy that I have built up through my own experience in pro-wrestling to the younger generation here in Los Angeles.”
Katsuyori’s assistant coach will be ROH wrestler Scorpio Sky.
The application process for attending the first camp has already closed, but seen in the above photo are Brody King and The Hobo.