In January, we launched the Wrestling With Words/Puro In The Rough Korakuen Hall Tracker. The goal of this tracker to show the attendance numbers in the most used building for professional wrestling in Japan but also present what the trends would be for Japanese wrestling through charts and to show which wrestling shows fans in Tokyo decide to spend their money on.
For the record, here is the data that I collected for the month of July and these numbers are cross referenced with what Weekly Pro Wrestling Magazine reported and each promotion claimed on their website.
July proved to be a good month for nostalgia shows as Antonio Inoki’s first ever ISM show (that was a Karl Gotch & Muhammad Ali Memorial Show) sold out Korakuen Hall with 1,800 fans and Keiji Mutoh’s Pro Wrestling MASTERS came back to run their 2nd ever show to draw 1,626 spectators. Both brought back old New Japan stars as Scott Norton was in the main event of the ISM show and Hiroshi Hase came out of retirement for Pro Wrestling MASTERS. In regards to the promotion with the King of Sports moniker, all three shows in Korakuen Hall drew over 1,700 fans as they held three straight G1 Climax shows.
If you have read this article in previous months, Pro Wrestling NOAH’s decline in attendance isn’t new but they are the only promotion out of the lower tier of attendance that puts on multiple events a month at Korakuen Hall. Thus, it shows how they were able to draw a combined 1,670 fans in July which four promotions beat that in one show.
For the monthly average, New Japan along with All Japan is increasing as both promotions gear up for shows building up to their Ryogoku Sumo Hall shows in August (New Japan with three straight nights of the G1 Climax and All Japan’s August 27th show). On the flip side, the last three promotions are declining slightly with Stardom dipping back down below 900 fans for the first time since February. This might go back up with the news of company ace Io Shirai coming back amidst rumors of her going to WWE.