WWE fans in Japan have a fresh reason to rejoice. The World Wrestling Entertainment has recently announced its latest broadcasting partnership with ABEMA, ensuring that events like "WWE Raw," "WWE NXT," "WWE SmackDown," and various premium live events will now be available on ABEMA's free, ad-supported streaming platform.
Adding a touch of authenticity and garnering immense attention for this new arrangement is none other than Japanese wrestling legend and WWE Hall of Famer, The Great Muta, also known as Keiji Muto. As per the Wrestling Observer Newsletter by Dave Meltzer, Muta graced a pre-taped show heralding the new streaming deal.
This appearance seems to be connected to his visit to WWE Payback in Pittsburgh the prior month. It was indeed a treat for fans to see him seated front and center as Shinsuke Nakamura faced off against Seth Rollins for the esteemed WWE World Heavyweight Championship.
Free WWE Streaming Era
Prior to this groundbreaking agreement, the Japanese WWE aficionados had to opt for a paid subscription with J Sports to indulge in their favorite WWE bouts. The new arrangement, thankfully, liberates them from the paywall, offering content at no charge, albeit on a slight tape delay.
Fans are eagerly awaiting the "Raw" episode scheduled for October 2, anticipated to inaugurate this new streaming era. Keiji Muto's 2023 journey has been monumental. After an illustrious career spanning almost four decades, he concluded his wrestling journey this February.
One of his significant bouts of this year was against Nakamura at Pro Wrestling NOAH's New Year's gala. This not only marked Nakamura's return to NOAH after ten years but also spotlighted him as a reigning WWE superstar. Capping off Muto's splendid career, WWE paid homage by inducting him into their Hall of Fame during the WrestleMania 39 weekend in Los Angeles.
As WWE continues to expand its global reach, having iconic figures like The Great Muta endorsing such endeavors only amplifies its significance and appeal to fans worldwide.