NJPW’s Bullet Club Has Bulletproof Legacy Through Multiple Companies


Bullet Club is one of the premier stables in professional wrestling, if not the most popular brand in sports entertainment today.

Bullet Club has already cemented their legacy in wrestling history. The stable started as an all-gaijin (foreigner) stable in NJPW but quickly became one of the most popular acts in sports entertainment due to the quality of the in-ring product, mixed with the worked-shoot style promos.

Superstars like AJ Styles, Finn Balor, Kenny Omega, the Young Bucks, Cody Rhodes, Gallows & Anderson and Adam Cole have already made everlasting impacts on NJPW, ROH and WWE. Not only with memorable narratives and moments but with great matches and title wins.

Bullet Club was formed in 2013 by Prince Devitt, better known today as Finn Balor. The future Demon King was the first leader of BC. Other notable leaders include AJ Styles who took over in 2014 and then current leader Kenny Omega who took the reins from the Phenomenal One in 2016.

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In New Japan Pro Wrestling, the crew has dominated to say the least. Since their inception the Club has been influencing the record books. Founder Prince Devitt (Balor), was the reigning IWGP Junior-Heavyweight Champion and won the Best of the Super Juniors tournament in 2013. The Phenomenal One captured the IWGP Heavyweight Championship twice and is the only Good Brother to capture New Japan’s top title.

Bullet Club has won tag team gold with three different teams. The IWGP Tag Team Championships have been captured five times by two different teams. Gallows & Anderson are three-time champions and the Guerillas of Destiny have won the tag titles twice. The Young Bucks have won the IWGP Junior-Heavyweight Tag Team titles five times.

The IWGP Intercontinental Championship has been held by a BC member on three separate occasions. Twice with Kenny Omega and once when Bad Lack Fale defeated Shinsuke Nakamura.

Omega, also known as The Cleaner, has had arguably the most success since becoming elite. On top of the IC title win he is a two-time IWGP Junior-Heavyweight Champion and became the first non-Japanese wrestler to win the promotion’s premier tournament, the G1 Climax.

At Wrestle Kingdom 11, Omega would wrestle Okada for the IWGP Heavyweight Championship. The main event match was immediately considered a classic, with renowned wrestling journalist Dave Meltzer giving it a six-star rating.

Ring of Honor

NJPW and ROH have a great working relationship. So it was only a matter of time before Bullet Club would make their presence known in Ring of Honor. At Global Wars 2016 they did just that, interrupting the main event between Jay Lethal and Colt Cabana for ROH World Championship. The Chicago crowd witnessed the biggest super-kick party as Adam Cole (BAY-BAY) was revealed as the newest member of Bullet Club.

Cole was seemingly the de facto leader of the Bullet Club in ROH, or at least that was the perception. Cole would go on to capture the ROH World Championship (twice) as a member of the SuperKliq, making him the first three-time World Champ in ROH history, as well as the only member of Bullet Club to win Ring of Honor’s most prestigious title.

The only other Club members to win gold in ROH are the Young Bucks. Matt and Nick Jackson have captured the ROH Tag Team Championships three-times and are currently the reigning tag champs after recapturing the straps from the Broken Hardys.

Speaking of Broken Matt and Brother Nero, when the Broken Brothers made their shocking debut in the Honorable Ring they confronted the Bucks of Youth. Before the Matt & Jeff returned to WWE at WrestleMania, they would wrestle classics with Matt & Nick. The Hardys’ expedition of gold and entire ROH run is intertwined with the Elite, which is too sweet to delete.

The same night of the Hardys’ debuted and won the tag belts in shocking fashion, Bully Ray made his ROH debut. The former Bubba Ray Dudley would save the Briscoes and Bobby Fish from the Club by putting ROH champ Adam Cole through a table with a vicious chokeslam. In other words, three future Hall-Of-Famers debuted in ROH in programs with Bullet Club at the same event (Manhattan Mayhem VI).

More from NJPW

Both of the aforementioned Bullet Club beat downs (Bully Ray’s debut and Adam Cole’s debut) were met with some criticism, drawing comparisons to the NWO. However, this comparison to the New World Order of WCW is somewhat unfair. Since the entire wrestling world has been influenced by the NWO since the Monday Night Wars, not to mention Kevin Nash “passed the torch” to Doc Gallows and Scott Hall’s son Cody Hall wrestling for Bullet Club in Japan.

Bullet Club has used the comparisons to both the NWO and D-Generation-X to their advantage. Adopting the Kliq’s hand-sign and “Too Sweet” and “Suck-It” catchphrases, adding “too many” members to the Club brought more comparisons to the NWO and criticism but it can be argued Bullet Club utilized their big name acquisitions better than the NWO did.  When Bullet Club announced Cody Rhodes as their newest member it felt like a big deal.

The Club in WWE

Last but certainly not least, is the Club’s influence in WWE. When the biggest name in sports entertainment acquired AJ Styles, Gallows & Anderson from NJPW, it captured the attention of fans all over the world.

Founder of the Club, Prince Devitt was dominating NXT as Finn Balor and WWE Shop had been selling “Balor Club” merchandise for quite some time. This led to a lot of speculating that the Balor Club merchandise was a sign of things to come. WWE has kept their Demon King away from the Club for the most part but were quick to form The Club, consisting Styles, Gallows and Anderson as a legit stable on the main roster.

Styles would feud with “the face that runs the place” John Cena in one of the best programs of 2016. The Club’s history in Japan was not avoided but highlighted. WWE used their success in NJPW to legitimize them to the fans that were unfamiliar with their work.

WWE pushed the Club into the same tier as New Day and the Shield. The longest reigning WWE Tag Team Champions and a group of future main-event level world champions, respectively. The Phenomenal One would win the WWE World Heavyweight Championship his “rookie” year in WWE and the Club would eventually win the Raw Tag Team Championships.

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The fact that WWE pretty much acknowledged the existence of a stable that was not created in their Universe speaks volumes. Bullet Club dominated the wrestling world literally and has cemented their legacy in NJPW, ROH and WWE in less than five years. Bullet Club has one bulletproof legacy.