David Finlay: I think it was a couple of years in NJPW where I honestly struggled to find my footing

Photo Courtesy: New Japan Pro-Wrestling

Finlay reflects on his New Japan run. 

The newest edition of Cultaholic’s Desert Island Graps podcast features an interview with David Finlay. Throughout his years with New Japan, Finlay has captured the IWGP Tag Team, NEVER Openweight 6-Man and NEVER Openweight Championships. 

He feels his career began to take a turn for the best when he decisively defeated Tama Tonga to become NEVER Openweight Champion at Wrestling Dontaku. He remembers there being a few years where he struggled to find his footing in the company. 

Finlay added that his team with Juice Robinson helped on that front, but being the happy-go-lucky guy was not going to help him when it comes to drawing money. 

Yes (beat down on Tama Tonga at Wrestling Dontaku 2023 was a turning point for me), and I think it’s in contrast to who I used to be. I think if you look at my career in New Japan, I think it was a couple of years there where I honestly struggled to find my footing, you know? And when I finally did, it was with Juice Robinson but again, it’s someone right there with me and the spotlight was never on me, never fully on me and the people always saw me as this fun, loving guy who likes to mess around, likes to have a good time but that doesn’t make money. I’m in this to make money. I grew up in a mansion. (If I) have kids one day, they deserve to grow up in a mansion too. Can’t have them living in a small house so that was like, I told you motherf*ckers. That’s not the guy I am, this is who I’m capable of (being). I am a Finlay. My father made a legacy of snapping people’s thumbs for asking the wrong question. I am more dangerous than him. I am more dangerous than anybody and that’s why I was standing tall there because I proved it, no denying, undeniable, I’m not the guy to mess with. 

Finlay will have the opportunity to win his second singles title in New Japan at Wrestle Kingdom 18. He’ll be part of a three-way with Jon Moxley and Will Ospreay to determine the first IWGP Global Heavyweight Champion

If the quote in this article is used, please credit Cultaholic’s Desert Island Graps podcast with an H/T to POST Wrestling for the transcription.

About Andrew Thompson 8465 Articles
A Washington D.C. native and graduate of Norfolk State University, Andrew Thompson has been covering wrestling since 2017.