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The Elite
Elitelogo
The Logo of The Elite
Stable
Members See below
Name(s) The Elite
Bullet Club Elite (NJPW)
Debut January 5, 2016
Disbanded January 4, 2019
Years active 2016-2019
Promotion(s) DW[1]
FCP[1]
NJPW[2]
OTT[1]
PWG[3]
ROH[4]
RPW[1]
The Elite (stylized as The ELITE) was a professional wrestling group, made up of Kenny Omega and The Young Bucks (Matt Jackson and Nick Jackson). Though primarily working in the New Japan Pro Wrestling (NJPW) promotion, the trio has also worked together in the American Ring of Honor (ROH) promotion as well as several independent promotions in Japan, the United States, United Kingdom and Australia.

The Elite was formed in January 2016 as a subgroup within Bullet Club. Oemga and The Young Bucks held the NEVER Openweight 6-Man Tag Team Championship on two occasions and also defended the ROH World Six-Man Tag Team Championship under the "Bullet Club Rules", while Omega has also won the IWGP Heavyweight, Intercontinental and United States Heavyweight Championships once and The Young Bucks the IWGP Tag Team and Junior Heavyweight Tag Team Championships and ROH World Tag Team Championship twice, Cody the IWGP United States Heavyweight Championship and with The Young Bucks the ROH World Six-Man Tag Team Championship as part of the group.

The stable would become its own separate stable in October 2018, with the addition of with the addition of Cody, Marty Scurll and Hangman Page, who also joined the stable. The Elite were recognized as part of the Bullet Club and being called Bullet Club Elite until January 4, 2019, where Chase Owens and Yujiro Takahashi joined the stable for one time only. Wrestle Kingdom 13 in Tokyo Dome on January 4, was notable for being the last appearance of The Elite in NJPW.

BackgroundEdit

Prior to the 2016 formation of The Elite, Kenny Omega and The Young Bucks (Matt Jackson and Nick Jackson) had known each other for years.[5] They originally met in Japan in 2008, when Omega was on his first tour with the Dramatic Dream Team (DDT) promotion and The Young Bucks were on their first tour with the Dragon Gate promotion.[6] They became close friends after later meetings in other promotions, including California promotion Pro Wrestling Guerrilla (PWG).[6] Omega has stated that the three had always thought that they shared the same brain, having the same thoughts about what a wrestling match should be.[7] Matt Jackson has described the creative chemistry between the three as unlike anything they have experienced before, adding "[t]here's magic there".[8]

Omega, who has called The Young Bucks, his best friends and closest allies in professional wrestling, has stated that the three have "an open line of communication sending messages all day". The Elite was created as a result of one of these "think-tank sessions", during which, the three came up with the idea of filming their moments away from the ring and sharing them with their fans.[9] These moments, some only loosely tied to professional wrestling, were used the create Being The Elite, a show produced by The Young Bucks and released on both Twitter and YouTube.[7][8][10]

In 2016, the three were affiliated with each other in the New Japan Pro Wrestling (NJPW) promotion as members of the Bullet Club stable, but in Omega's words, they felt that the stable had been watered down and wanted to create something new.[9] Omega claimed that whenever people were saying that Bullet Club had been doing "some really cool stuff", they were in fact always talking about the three of them and not the other members of the stable.[9] Wanting to be together both in the ring and outside of it, the three decided to go full-bore as The Elite.[7] They had come up with the name The Elite as a joke years earlier, when trying to come up with a list of the most elite wrestlers in the world.[5] Omega stated that he and The Young Bucks wanted to push themselves as The Elite, but accepted if NJPW continued calling them Bullet Club "in parentheses" as the stable was their "cash cow" and a "pop-culture phenomenon". Omega has described The Elite as "a place you can go to watch the most ridiculous and entertaining stuff in pro wrestling".[7]

HistoryEdit

Trio (2016-2018) Edit

On January 5, 2016, Kenny Omega took over the leadership of Bullet Club, turning its members, including The Young Bucks, on previous leader A.J. Styles and kicking him out of the group.[11][12] According to The Young Bucks, they and Omega created The Elite that night without ever asking permission from NJPW bookers. After the rest of Bullet Club had left the ring after turning on Styles, Omega allegedly asked The Young Bucks if just the three of them should return to the ring to continue the attack on Styles as a "signal to the audience that [they were] the three guys". The three agreed to return to the ring and The Elite was born.[5]

On February 11 at The New Beginning in Osaka he Young Bucks lost the IWGP Junior Heavyweight Tag Team Championship to Matt Sydal and Ricochet in a three-way match, also involving reDRagon.[13][14] Three days later at The New Beginning in Niigata, In the main event of the show, Omega defeated Hiroshi Tanahashi to win the IWGP Intercontinental Championship, which had been vacated following Shinsuke Nakamura's departure from NJPW.[15][16] The Elite won its first title as a trio on February 20, during the NJPW and Ring of Honor (ROH) co-produced Honor Rising: Japan 2016 show, when they defeated The Briscoes (Jay Briscoe and Mark Briscoe) and Toru Yano for the NEVER Openweight 6-Man Tag Team Championship.[17][18] They went on to defend the title in the United States for ROH.[4] The Elite lost the NEVER Openweight 6-Man Tag Team Championship to Hiroshi Tanahashi, Michael Elgin and Yoshitatsu on April 10 at Invasion Attack 2016,[19][20] only to regain it from them on May 3 at Wrestling Dontaku 2016.[21][22] On June 19 at Dominion 6.19 in Osaka-jo Hall, The Young Bucks won the IWGP Junior Heavyweight Tag Team Championship for the fifth time by defeating Matt Sydal and Ricochet, reDRagon and Roppongi Vice in a four-way elimination match.[23] Later that same event Omega lost the IWGP Intercontinental Championship in NJPW's first ever ladder match to Michael Elgin.[23] Their second reign ended on July 3, when they were defeated by Matt Sydal, Ricochet and Satoshi Kojima.[24]

On August 14, Omega made history by becoming the first non-Japanese wrestler to win NJPW's premier tournament, the G1 Climax, defeating Hirooki Goto in the finals.[25][26] For the rest of the year, The Elite was largely inactive with Omega defending his newly-won status as the number one contender to the IWGP Heavyweight Championship,[27] while The Young Bucks concentrated on tag team matches, winning the ROH World Tag Team Championship in September.[28] On January 4, 2017, The Elite was involved in two championship matches at NJPW's biggest event of the year, Wrestle Kingdom 11 in Tokyo Dome. Early in the show, The Young Bucks lost the IWGP Junior Heavyweight Championship to Roppongi Vice (Beretta and Rocky Romero),[29][30] while in the main event of the show, Omega unsuccessfully challenged Kazuchika Okada for the IWGP Heavyweight Championship.[29][31] The main event match earned acclaim from journalists and industry veterans with some ranking it among the greatest professional wrestling matches ever.[32][33][34][35]

After months of inactivity as a trio, The Elite reunited in April 2017 by embarking on a tour of the United Kingdom, during which they wrestled for Discovery Wrestling, Fight Club: Pro, Over the Top Wrestling and Revolution Pro Wrestling.[1][8] Meanwhile, a storyline had started involving a tension between Omega and Bullet Club stablemate Adam Cole, who had formed his own trio named "Superkliq" with The Young Bucks, who were now caught in the middle of Omega and Cole.[36] The storyline culminated on May 12, when The Young Bucks, after teasing dissension with Omega, turned on Cole, who was fired from Bullet Club by Omega.[37][38] On June 11 at Dominion 6.11 in Osaka-jo Hall, The Young Bucks regained the IWGP Junior Heavyweight Tag Team Championship from Roppongi Vice.[39] In the main event of the show, Omega and Kazuchika Okada wrestled to a 60-minute time limit draw for the IWGP Heavyweight Championship. Over the weekend of July 1 and 2 at G1 Special in USA, Omega defeated Michael Elgin, Jay Lethal and finally Tomohiro Ishii to win an eight-man tournament and become the inaugural IWGP United States Heavyweight Champion.[40] On August 13, The Young Bucks lost the IWGP Junior Heavyweight Tag Team Championship to Funky Future (Ricochet and Ryusuke Taguchi) and also in the main event Omega lost in the finals to Tetsuya Naito.[41] On September 2, The Elite returned to the United States, making their debut for The Young Bucks' Southern California home promotion Pro Wrestling Guerrilla (PWG) and defeating Flamita, Penta 0M and Rey Fenix in a six-man tag team main event.[42]

On October 12, The Elite became the ROH World Six-Man Tag Team Champions, when The Young Bucks, who had originally won the title with Bullet Club stablemate Adam Page, invoked the "Elite Rules" and named Omega part of the championship team.[43] Omega went on to also defend the title alongside Cody and Marty Scurll, now invoking the "Bullet Club Rules".[44]

Bullet Club Civil War and Split from Bullet Club (2018–2019) Edit

In January 2018, at The New Beginning in Sapporo, after shoving Matt Jackson, Kenny Omega was betrayed and ousted from his leadership of parent faction Bullet Club by fellow stablemate Cody. On February 24 at Honor Rising: Japan, The Young Bucks announced that they're going to move to the Heavyweight division after Kenny Omega stated that the Golden☆Lovers were the "best tag team in the world", thus disbanding The Elite. Afterwards, Young Bucks warned Omega to watch his back. On March 28, 2018, at Strong Style Evolved, the Young Bucks faced off against the Golden☆Lovers in a losing effort. After the match, Nick Jackson shook hands and embraced with Omega, however, Matt Jackson refused and rolled out of the ring.

On April 7, 2018, during Kenny Omega and Cody's bout at Ring of Honor's Supercard of Honor XII, the Young Bucks interfered and attempted to turn on Cody, but instead accidentally superkicked Omega, causing Cody to get the pinfall victory. After the match, Matt and Nick attempted to explain what had happened to Cody, but he shoved Nick Jackson and left.

On the 100th episode of Being the Elite, "Finale", in anger over the Young Bucks' involvement in his match, Kenny declared their friendship over, and that "There is no Elite", apparently ending the stable. However, this wasn't the case and on June 9, at Dominion 6.9 in Osaka-jo Hall, after Omega defeated Kazuchika Okada to win the IWGP Heavyweight Championship, The Young Bucks reunited with Omega, does not split The Elite. On July 7 at G1 Special in San Francisco, Omega successfully defended the IWGP Heavyweight Championship against Cody, ending their feud over the leadership. Following the match, Guerrillas of Destiny and Haku dubbed as "Firing Squad" attacked Omega and The Young Bucks. Hangman Page, Marty Scurll, Chase Owens, and Yujiro Takahashi, come out to make the save but were unable to help. Tama Tonga offered Cody to attack Omega, but he ended up trying to save them, only to the Firing Squad to attack Cody. Tonga stated that the reason behind the attack was due to Bullet Club started to be a divided group.

Following the G1 Special in San Francisco, Omega's side would be referred as "Bullet Club Elite", while the Firing Squad's side would be referred as "Bullet Club OG", meaning "Bullet Club Original". From July 14 until August 11, Omega and Ibushi took part in the 2018 G1 Climax on block B, while Page on block A. Omega finished the tournament with a record of six wins and three losses, but Omega didn't advance to the finals of the tournament after defeating losing to Ibushi in their head-to-head match. During the tournament, Bad Luck Fale joined the Bullet Club OG's side, during his head-to-head match against Page, where Loa and Tonga interfered and the match ended in a disqualification after Tama Tonga attacked Page, which was followed by Loa and Fale until Omega, Ibushi, and Owens made the save. At the end of the tournament, Page failed to advance from his blocks with a record of three wins and six losses. On August 12, Tanga Loa on behalf of Tonga and Taiji Ishimori challenged Scurll and The Young Bucks to a title match, which was made official by NJPW President Harold Meij who was at ringside, leading to Ishimori and the Guerrillas of Destiny defeating Scurll and The Young Bucks to win the NEVER Openweight 6-Man Tag Team Championship. After the match, the Guerrillas of Destiny attacked The Young Bucks and threw their IWGP Tag Team Championship and the NEVER Openweight 6-Man Tag Team Championship. In the main event, Ibushi was defeated in the finals by Hiroshi Tanahashi.

The Young Bucks lost the IWGP Tag Team Championship to Guerrillas of Destiny (Tama Tonga and Tanga Loa) on September 30 at Fighting Spirit Unleashed. Later that night, Cody defeated Juice Robinson to win the IWGP United States Heavyweight Championship. Following the main event, Omega, Ibushi and Cody decided to face each other in a three-way match for the IWGP Heavyweight Championship on October 8 at King of Pro-Wrestling.

The Elite would leave the Bullet Club in October, with the addition of Cody, Marty Scurll and Hangman Page, who also joined the stable. Chase Owens and Yujiro Takahashi joined the stable in December as members of Bullet Club Elite. Members of The Elite were recognized as part of the Bullet Club and being called Bullet Club Elite until January 4, 2019. At the event on January 4 at Wrestle Kingdom 13 in Tokyo Dome, Page, Scurll and Takahashi took part of a Gauntlet match to determine the #1 contenders to the NEVER Openweight 6-Man Tag Team Championship and were the first team to be eliminated from the match. Later that night, Cody lost the IWGP United States Heavyweight Championship to Juice Robinson. In the main event, Omega lost the IWGP Heavyweight Championship to Hiroshi Tanahashi. The event was notable for being the last appearance of The Elite in NJPW.

Being the EliteEdit

Being the Elite debuted on YouTube in May 2016 and has since aired, on average, once or twice a week. The show is shot and edited entirely on an iPhone with the members of The Elite holding complete creative control over the content. Originally intended as a promotional vehicle and a video journal of The Elite's life on the road, it has since evolved into a hybrid that also includes skits and storyline developments involving both The Elite and Bullet Club. In early 2017, Being the Elite provided the background for an angle that culminated on the War of the Worlds pay-per-view in May with The Elite turning on Adam Cole and kicking him out of Bullet Club. While ROH had previously shown that there was tension between Cole and The Young Bucks, Being the Elite went deeper into the background for the angle with a storyline that involved tension between Cole and Omega and their fight for The Young Bucks' loyalty, while also introducing Marty Scurll, who would go on to become Cole's replacement in Bullet Club.[45]

MembersEdit

* Founding member

MembersEdit

Member Arrival Departure
Cody October 30, 2018 January 4, 2019
Kenny Omega * January 5, 2016 January 4, 2019
Hangman Page

[note 1]

October 30, 2018 January 4, 2019
Marty Scurll October 30, 2018 January 4, 2019
Matt Jackson * January 5, 2016 January 4, 2019
Nick Jackson * January 5, 2016 January 4, 2019

AssociatesEdit

Member Arrival Departure
Brandi Rhodes October 30, 2018 January 4, 2019
Chase Owens December 9, 2018 January 4, 2019
Kota Ibushi, Kota Ibushi June 9, 2018 January 4, 2019

[note 2]

Yujiro Takahashi December 9, 2018 January 4, 2019

Sub-groupsEdit

Affiliate Members Tenure Type Promotion(s)
The Hung Bucks Adam Page
Matt Jackson
Nick Jackson
2017–2019 Trio ROH
Luxury Trio Cody
Kenny Omega
Marty Scurll
2018–2019 Trio NJPW
ROH
Super Villains Marty Scurll
Matt Jackson
Nick Jackson
2018–2019 Trio NJPW
ROH
The Young Bucks Matt Jackson
Nick Jackson
2013–2019 Tag team NJPW
ROH
Independent circuit
Team All In Cody
Matt Jackson
Nick Jackson
2018–2019 Trio NJPW
ROH
Golden☆Elite Kenny Omega
Matt Jackson
Nick Jackson
Kota Ibushi
2018–2019 Stable NJPW

Timeline Edit

In wrestling Edit

  • Omega and The Young Bucks
    • Triple-team finishing moves
      • One-Winged Meltzer Driver[48] (Aided electric chair driver)[49]
      • Tiger Hattori Special (Rolling fireman's carry slam into a springboard moonsault by Omega followed by a high-angle senton bomb by Nick followed by a 450° splash by Matt)[50]
    • Triple-team signature moves
  • Double-team finishing moves
    • The Young Bucks
      • Indytaker (Springboard spike kneeling reverse piledriver)[55][56][57]
      • Meltzer Driver (Springboard somersault spike kneeling reverse piledriver)[58]
      • More Bang For Your Buck (Rolling fireman's carry slam by Matt followed by a 450° splash by Nick followed by a moonsault by Matt)[59][60]

Championships and Accomplishments Edit

References Edit

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External linksEdit


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