Jay White is on the precipice of superstardom, and he looks to take the next step toward that goal tonight in Los Angeles at New Japan’s Resurgence show. His opponent, an incredibly talented performer in David Finlay, is also hungry to make that very same leap.
“I’m the fourth generation in my family to become a wrestler and I want my family name to be synonymous with greatness,” said Finlay, who is the son of wrestling great Fit Finlay. “My father retired the same night I started my career and I was fortunate enough to tag with him that night in Hanover, Germany. After the match was over, we hugged and he told me, ‘The torch is passed. You’re the man now.’ I am the torch bearer for the Finlay family.”
Finlay challenges White for New Japan’s NEVER Openweight title in the co-main event tonight at the Torch at the Los Angeles Coliseum. The match represents a significant opportunity for Finlay, a German-born Irish immigrant who grew up in Atlanta, Georgia and has spent the overwhelming majority of his professional career in Japan. He is primarily known for his tag work in FinJuice with fellow emerging star Juice Robinson. Resurgence is a chance to show off his value as a singles performer.
“I’m looking forward to showcasing what I am capable of on my own,” said Finlay. “I love wrestling in America, and to help main-event New Japan’s first show back in the US since COVID-19 is something I take great pride in. I’m ready to show the U.S. fans exactly who the hell I am.”
Finlay has the best possible opponent at Resurgence in budding star Jay White. Known as “Switchblade”, he is cocky, charismatic and extraordinary in the ring. White is currently starring for both New Japan and Impact Wrestling, and he is the current face of Bullet Club. Finlay and White have history that extends back years, dating back to their time together in the New Japan Dojo. Their first match against one another took place in September of 2015 at Tokyo’s Korakuen Hall. Both recall that day for distinctly different reasons.
“You'd think that would be a memory that I would focus on after all of the things I have done since then,” said White, dismissing the memory. “Believe it or not, countless championship victories hold more significance to me than a Young Lion match.”
For Finlay, his memory holds much more clarity.
“What I remember most about that match is I made Jay tap out,” said Finlay. “That first time we faced off one-on-one, I was the better wrestler. Unfortunately, it would take me five-and-a-half years to beat him again. However, I beat him when it mattered. I knocked him out of the New Japan Cup and brought his journey of recapturing the IWGP world heavyweight championship to an end. I intend to repeat that result and end his journey as NEVER Openweight champion.”
Unlike Finlay, White has had star-making moments. He had an outstanding match this past January at Wrestle Kingdom against Kota Ibushi, where he successfully ensconced himself into the top tier of New Japan. Those are the types of moments Finlay is craving, establishing himself in the upper echelon of the best wrestling promotion in the world. That drive was on full display during the pandemic, as he spent time away from the ring refining his look and fully immersing himself in his training. Beginning at Resurgence, Finlay plans on unleashing the best version of himself.
“Jay has essentially accomplished I’ve wanted, and he’s done it in record time,” said Finlay. “He is the first and only Grand Slam Champion in New Japan history, he’s literally done everything. I would be lying if I said I hadn’t lost sleep over that. My goal is to be better than him. I want to be the best. I want to be number-one, the champion. That’s what fuels me.
“I come from a family that has a love for fighting people, so this is right up my alley. Jay White can expect to go home bruised, battered, and empty-handed. He’ll go to sleep knowing I’m better than him. He’ll wake up knowing I’m better than him. To quote my grandfather David Finlay Sr., I’m going to rip his head off and spit down the hole in his neck. I am your next NEVER Openweight champion.”
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