Kenny Omega recently spoke with Kenny Herzog for Rolling Stone; you can read a few highlights below:
Kenny Omega comments on why he wants to face Chris Jericho:
At the end of each year, everything builds toward Wrestle Kingdom anyway, so you sort of need that endgame storyline. For me, who’s been working diligently to build up this U.S. title, it’s the thing I needed to make it a topic worth talking about. I’m a big fan of not only telling stories in the ring but telling stories people haven’t seen before. What we’re doing right now is original because it’s something only a guy like Chris Jericho could pull off. That part of it excites me. When you strip it away, it’s not a complex story, but as it goes along, we’ve been changing up the details, and it’s really taken on a life of its own and felt like something special day by day. It’s feeling fun, and I feel like the fans are having fun too, and that’s the most important part.
If he’s motivated by bringing out a new side of Jericho:
When we kickstarted the angle, I don’t think either of us really knew what it would turn out to be. So I don’t think us being unchained has led to this new wild-man Chris Jericho. With the combination of all these reactions from all types of fans, it became what it has, and now it is definitely something you couldn’t see on WWE programming, but I don’t think it was originally designed to be that. It felt at first, it was just gonna be a dream match for wrestling fans that were in the know, and now it’s become this cool little topic amongst not only fans that have known the career of Chris Jericho but have followed mine. A lot of our new New Japan fans have just started watching from 2012 onward, so they don’t even know who Chris Jericho is, but they do understand he’s a huge megastar, and they can only go with what they see every time he makes an appearance or what I tell them. There is that side where I’m the more known act and have to introduce Chris Jericho to them. All different fans are being absorbed in this angle. The way to keep them all interested is the way we’ve gone about it so far.
Omega comments on blood being a faux pas, getting trust from the higher ups:
I’ve been lucky where I’ve asked for a little bit of trust from the company. When you put yourself in a situation like that, you either hit consecutive home runs or you’re dead in the water, because there’s a lot of money on the line, there’s a reputation on the line. And a lot of times I really forced them to step out of their comfort zone. Between last year’s G1 and now with Jericho, I have done a lot of things the company isn’t necessarily comfortable with, but they’re seeing positive growth from it. Drawing blood is a faux paus. They don’t like it at all. Our parent company makes its money through anime and card games.
Omega comments on making their match stand out, the non ‘family friendly’ approach to it:
Yeah, and even if it wasn’t what they’ve been expecting, we want to give them something completely different from what’s gonna be on the rest of the card. And not just different because, ‘Hey, it’s a WWE legend coming in to invade New Japan.’ From how we went about it, how we’re going about it and how we will execute the match, we want it to stand out from anything in recent memory. It’s really important for us to do that.