Zack Sabre Jr. responds to Bryan Danielson's challenge for 2-out-of-3 Falls rubber match

Originally published at Zack Sabre Jr. responds to Bryan Danielson's challenge for 2-out-of-3 Falls rubber match

Z.S.J. also spoke about Kazuchika Okada and Will Ospreay’s departures. 

The scoreboard between Bryan Danielson and Zack Sabre Jr. is at 1-1. In late 2023, Danielson bested Sabre Jr. at AEW WrestleDream and in February, Sabre Jr. got his win back by defeating Bryan at NJPW The New Beginning in Osaka. 

Sabre Jr. talked about their recent bout in his new interview with NJPW1972.com. He feels Danielson is the only person he can wrestle that type of match with. He called it bittersweet if that is the last time they wrestle because it could be the end of that specific wrestling style. 

After his loss, Danielson put the label of best technical wrestler in the world into Sabre Jr.’s hands. He then proposed the idea of a 2-out-of-3 Falls match and stated that any wrestling promoter in the world could host it. Sabre Jr. added that he’d like it to take place somewhere that’s not NJPW or AEW. 

Obviously, wrestling Bryan (Danielson) the first time changed my whole career, and I’d come to terms that we’d never wrestle again. To have those matches back-to-back essentially meant so much to me because he’s the only one in the world I can wrestle that kind of a match with. It’s bittersweet because if (Osaka) was the last time we wrestled, it could potentially be the end of that style. I hope one day somebody will be as passionate about that style as me, but for now…

Maybe international waters (laughs). But I’d love to do it (2-out-of-3 Falls rubber match) around the world. Somewhere that’s not a NJPW or AEW ring. A match like this can go to every continent. I’m not sure how big wrestling is in Antarctica, but still.

Elsewhere in the interview, Sabre Jr. addressed Kazuchika Okada and Will Ospreay exiting New Japan. He feels that even if they stayed, 2024 would be the year he takes over the top main eventer spot. 

Well, even in a scenario where (Kazuchika) Okada and Will (Ospreay) stay, I would still feel that 2024 had to be the year I become a top main eventer in New Japan. I’ve had that mindset, really since I started, but definitely for the last few years. But obviously there is a gap with the two of them leaving and I do feel I’m best qualified to step into that gap.

I think one had a very western way of leaving, and one had a very Japanese one. Okada’s farewell I think fit into the same way other Japanese domestic wrestlers have left, so I don’t think that was peculiar in any way. Ospreay wears his heart on his sleeve and he’s a much more emotional type, so I think the way he went out was right for him.

The interview was conducted to promote the 2024 New Japan Cup and Sabre Jr. is awaiting his match against Ren Narita to determine who advances to the quarterfinals.

If Sabre Jr. wins, he’ll be facing either Yota Tsuji or El Phantasmo in the next round.