The big and strong powerhouse Lance Archer has proven his strength and brute by dominating his opponents on the NJPW roster. He first entered the company as a member of the Suzukigun and used to insult wrestlers on the instructions of Minoru Suzuki. Since then, Archer has managed to establish a name for himself in the tag team division by winning the G1 Climax Tag League tournament as well as the IWGP Tag Team Championship.
New Japan Pro Wrestling (2011 - present)
After ending his one-year stint with World Wrestling Entertainment (WWE) in 2010, Lance Hoyt signed a contract with the Japanese promotion New Japan Pro Wrestling (NJPW). Hoyt debuted in NJPW at its Attack on East Coast Invasion Tour, as a heel by showing up after an IWGP Tag Team Championship match between Bad Intentions and Satoshi Kojima and Dan Maff. Hoyt attacked Kojima until Montel Vontavious Porter chased Hoyt away.
Hoyt kept a new ring name Lance Archer, which was a mixture of his real name Lance Hoyt and his WWE ring name Vance Archer. Archer joined the newly formed Suzukigun as its newest member under the leadership of Minoru Suzuki. At Dominion, Archer made his pay-per-view debut and competed in his first match in NJPW, teaming with Minoru Suzuki to defeat Satoshi Kojima and Togi Makabe in a tag team match. Archer represented Suzukigun with Taka Michinoku and Taichi in the J Sports Crown 6 Man Openweight Tag Team Tournament. At Tag 1, they lost to Satoshi Kojima and Great Bash Heel in a six-man tag team match in the first round. At Tag 2, Suzukigun defeated Yuji Nagata, Tiger Mask and Kyosuke Mikami. At Tag 3, Suzukigun defeated Koji Kanemoto and Aogi-gun.
Archer participated in his first G1 Climax Tournament in the 2011 G1 Climax to determine the #1 contender for the IWGP Heavyweight Championship. He was placed in Block A. He defeated Togi Makabe and Hideo Saito in the first two matches, while losing to Giant Bernard, Hiroshi Tanahashi and Tetsuya Naito in the next three matches. Archer won his sixth match in the tournament by defeating Yujiro Takahashi and competed against Toru Yano in a losing effort in his seventh match. Archer lost to Yuji Nagata in his eighth match. Archer defeated Yoshihiro Takayama in his last match in the tournament. Archer failed to qualify for the final on the basis of earning 8 points and came eighth in his group.
Archer began a rivalry with Togi Makabe, which culminated in a match between the two at Kantaro Hoshino Memorial Show, which Makabe won. At Destruction, Archer defeated Wataru Inoue. Archer participated in his first G1 Climax Tag League Tournament in the 2011 G1 Climax Tag League to determine the #1 contenders for the IWGP Tag Team Championship. He was placed with his Suzukigun leader Minoru Suzuki in Block A. Suzukigun lost to Bad Intentions in their opening match. Suzukigun defeated Masato Tanaka and Yujiro Takahashi, Aogi-gun and Tetsuya Naito and Tomoaki Honma and Strong Man and Tama Tonga to earn 8 points and came second in their group. As a result, Suzukigun advanced to the semi-final round.
Suzukigun defeated CHAOS in the semi-final round and Bad Intentions in the final round to win the 2011 G1 Climax Tag League and earn an opportunity for the IWGP Tag Team Championship. At Power Struggle, Suzukigun earned an opportunity for the championship but unsuccessfully challenged Bad Intentions for the IWGP Tag Team Championship. At New Japan Alive, Archer and his Suzukigun teammate Yoshihiro Takayama defeated Togi Makabe and Wataro Inoue in a tag team match.
Entering 2012, Suzukigun defeated Togi Makabe, Yuji Nagata, Wataru Inoue, Tiger Mask and Kushida in a ten-man elimination match. Minoru Suzuki, Yoshihiro Takayama, Archer and Taichi survived the match. Archer participated in the New Japan Cup to determine the #1 contender for the IWGP Heavyweight Championship. He lost to Togi Makabe in the first round.
Archer participated in the 2012 G1 Climax to determine the #1 contender for the IWGP Heavyweight Championship. He participated in the Block B. He defeated Togi Makabe in the opening match and lost to Rush in the second match. Archer lost to Shinsuke Nakamura in the third match and defeated Hiroyoshi Tenzan in the fourth match. Archer competed against eventual winner Kazuchika Okada in a losing effort in his fifth match. Archer defeated Hirooki Goto and Tetsuya Naito in the next two matches. He lost to Montel Vontavious Porter in his final match in the tournament. Archer came up second in his block with 8 points and failed to qualify for the final round.
On August 13, Archer formed a tag team with Suzukigun's newest recruit, the debuting Harry Smith. At Destruction, Minoru Suzuki, Archer and Harry Smith represented Suzukigun in a six-man tag team match against Yuji Nagata and TenKoji. Suzukigun won. Archer and Smith called their tag team Killer Elite Squad (K.E.S.) and started representing Suzukigun in the tag team division.
At King of Pro Wrestling, Killer Elite Squad defeated TenKoji to win the IWGP Tag Team Championship. As a result, Archer won his first championship in NJPW. On November 11, KES successfully defended the championship against TenKoji in their first title defense. KES participated in the 2012 G1 Climax Tag League. They were placed in Block B. They lost to TenKoji in the first match and competed against Montel Vontavious Porter and Shelton Benjamin to a losing effort in the second match. KES defeated Muscle Orchestra, Diamante Azul and Rush, CHAOS and Complete Players in the next four matches. As a result, KES came second in their block with 8 points and qualified for the semi-final round.
KES defeated Togi Makabe and Wataru Inoue in the semi-final round and lost to Sword & Guns in the final round. At Wrestle Kingdom 7, KES defeated Sword & Guns to retain the IWGP Tag Team Championship.
Lance Archer's NJPW Photo Gallery: