Despite originally being booked to call Wrestle Kingdom in January 2024, New Japan Pro Wrestling announced today that Kevin Kelly has departed the company with immediate effect.
Kevin Kelly’s storied tenure with New Japan Pro Wrestling is officially over. Announced by the company on social media, NJPW gave thanks to Kelly for his contributions while announcing that his original commitment to close out his employment with Wrestle Kingdom 18 would no longer be taking place.
Although he missed that last show, for unknown reasons, Kevin Kelly remains on the commentary team for AEW Collision, alongside Tony Schiavone and Nigel McGuinness. Kelly had complained recently that he’d struggle to adjust back into live commentary and his decision to leave New Japan Pro Wrestling early is undoubtedly influenced by his desire to improve and become more comfortable in the role.
About Kevin Kelly
Kevin Kelly has carved a niche for himself in the dynamic world of professional wrestling. With a career spanning decades, Kelly’s journey from backstage reporter to the commentary booth is a testament to his passion and expertise in the world of sports entertainment.
Born on March 17th, 1967, in New York, Kevin Kelly, whose real name is Kevin Foote, embarked on his wrestling odyssey in the 1990s. He first made a splash in the World Wrestling Federation as a backstage interviewer and commentator. His affable demeanour and keen insights quickly endeared him to fans and colleagues alike.
Beyond his tenure in the WWF/WWE, Kevin Kelly continued to make waves in the world of professional wrestling. He joined the ranks of New Japan Pro-Wrestling (NJPW), bringing his seasoned commentary to a global audience. His partnership with Don Callis in calling NJPW matches added a unique flavor to the broadcasts, enhancing the international appeal of Japanese wrestling.
What sets Kevin Kelly apart as a wrestling commentator is his versatility. Whether calling high flying junior heavyweight matches, technical masterpieces, or all out brawls, Kelly adapts seamlessly to the diverse styles present in the world of professional wrestling. His encyclopaedic knowledge of the sport, combined with a genuine love for the art form, resonates with fans of all ages.
In addition to his commentary duties, Kevin Kelly has ventured into podcasting, further engaging with the wrestling community. His podcast, “The Kevin Kelly Show,” provides listeners with behind the scenes insights, interviews with wrestling personalities, and reflections on the ever evolving world of professional wrestling.
Will you miss Kevin Kelly on the call for New Japan Pro Wrestling? Let us know what you think of the veteran commentator in the comment section below!