It's been a while since I've done a proper Let's Speculate ... post and after watching this month's Shounen Club episodes I can't help but think about how the Juniors are going to be. They are now without not only Kis-My-Ft2 around, as it seemed rather clear that they are being moved on and won't be appearing much on the program now, but with the debut of Sexy Zone one of the more popular Junior groups is being disbanded. And yes by now I am completely convinced SZ is not a one-off group, there would be no point to sign them to a non-Johnny's label if they were only going to release one single, plus they fill the every-four-years pattern for volleyball unit career debuts.
Much like when HSJ debuted the groups that are still intact will probably benefit for a while, so I expect to be seeing more A.B.C-Z and Hip Hop Jump for a few months. A.B.C-Z though probably has been heading for such a boost with Kis-My-Ft2's debut as they are now one of the few older groups still around and have their upcoming solo concert. other than that there will probably be a lot of shuffling of non-grouped Juniors until some new groups are formed. I wouldn't be surprised to see Question? and Mis Snow Man get to do a bit more, that is if they're not busy with supporting the tours of debuted groups like they usually are.
I think the Juniors, that aren't debuting of course, we saw most of in the October episodes are probably the ones we'll see the most of in the coming months. That is when we don't have SZ members being pushed to the front as I don't doubt they'll remain a big part of SC post debut for a while much like HSJ was right after their debut. But I am quite happy with the thought of seeing more of Kyomoto Taiga (who had an awesome solo in October's second episode) and Tanaka Juri (especially if it means more HHJ).
Morimoto Shintaro probably won't ever be able to reclaim his spot as most promoted younger Junior anymore if just because he's getting too old. I find it interesting that he's being placed with HHJ lately and would not mind to see him join the group, as I think if he's to continue on that would be better for him now instead of being solo without really getting solo lines anymore. Plus he seems to get along well with the members of that group so I think it would be a good fit.
As for who will take up the most promoted younger Junior spot I think Kuramoto Kaoru is the most likely candidate. He's gotten a good deal of promotion recently, he's the right age at 10 years old, and shows signs of promise. That and he's just an adorable child that makes me think of puppies and kittens when I see him and since I love those I would love to see more of him.
Speaking of B.I. Shadow I think Koichi Yugo and Matsumura Hokuto will probably stay with the agency. Yugo has been out because of an injury which is why he hasn't been on SC but I suspect he'll be back once he's healed. Hokuto I would just like to see more of. It's been a bit sad that even though he and Nakajima Kento have been in the past two months' SC he's been pushed to the back still while Nakaken has kept his spotlight. But he's still young and can have a second (or third depending on how you view the Nakayama Yuma w/B.I. Shadow/NYC boys one shot single) chance. If anything both have a good deal of fans from being in B.I. Shadow and it would be waste not to get them into a new group or start promoting them more now that Nakaken and Kikuchi Fuma have made their debut.
But once SZ stops dominating SC and once they start having their own concerts I can see the Juniors getting shuffled into new groups to be promoted as Johnny's keeps looking for the next group of stars to debut in years to come.