1. Tetsuya Naito
Los Ignobernables de Japon are the most popular stable in New Japan, and Naito is their leader. In an odd way, Naito turning heel and spitting on NJPW’s hallowed traditions and obsession with respect have turned him into one of the most beloved wrestlers in the world.
This is why he must win the 2017 G1 Climax.
Naito won the G1 back in 2013, but that was when he was still a typical babyface without a discernable character. Ever since he went all Tranquilo, Naito’s charisma and ‘wow’ factor have both increased many times over.
While Naito’s character doesn’t necessarily ‘need’ the IWGP Heavyweight Championship, winning the G1 Climax as a heel would be the perfect way for Naito to further anger the NJPW faithful by being even more disrespectful than before. It wouldn’t be surprising to see Naito smash the G1 trophy just to flaunt his apathy towards NJPW even more, thus making him into the ideal enemy for Okada to destroy at Wrestle Kingdom.
And just like that, NJPW has a masterful main event for their biggest show of the year.