Neji Hyuga, who sparked fascination among the hearts of the viewers due to his mysteriousness, plays a vital role throughout the series.
With his destiny sealed early in the series, Neji was a member of the Hyuga clan’s branch house. He would represent the main house, regardless of how much he may achieve in his life. The “customary cursed seal,” branded upon Neji, would prevent the secrets of the Byakugan from being stolen upon his death. However, the seal led him into denial that it served the purpose of reminding him that he is forever bound to the branch house.
His father’s death solidified this belief of his due to which he soon began to resent the entirety of his clan. He’d take every opportunity to impair Hinata, who was also a member of the Hyuga clan. For years, this carried on, as Neji fell into an eternal abyss he could not escape alone.
A genuinely kind child in his youth, Neji’s drastic development for the worse left him isolated. His sentiments took control over him until his fierce battle with Naruto Uzumaki in the Chunin Exams. Receiving a beat down by Naruto, Neji soon realized that his fate was for him to direct. This change of heart matured him as a person, and his bond with his teammates and comrades began to revamp as he started to believe in Naruto and Rock Lee and what they felt.
Neji went on to become a renowned Shinobi of the Leaf who ended up sacrificing his life in the 4th Shinobi War to protect Naruto and Hinata. With his sacrifice, he engraved his legacy in the years to come.
Neji was a prodigy with limitless potential and exemplified this throughout his life, to the point expectations were that he’d surpass everyone originating from the clan. Despite being a Taijutsu user, he had a sufficient amount of talent in three of the chakra natures: Fire, Water, and Earth.
A staggeringly competent shinobi, Neji was also gifted with the distinctive dojutsu of the Hyuga clan, Byakugan. This ability granted him the terrific ability to see almost 360 degrees upon activation. Byakugan also came in handy for tracking as such a vigorous dojutsu could spot enemies from anywhere.
Furthermore, his Byakugan complimented his “Gentle fist” fighting style, which he attained in his youth. Gentle fist’s true potential was only unlocked through the combined use of Byakugan, allowing him to cut off the chakra flow of his opponents using swift pokes.
His versatile fighting style was only able to nurture due to his proficiency in numerous Hyuga clan jutsus. He efficiently developed his “Eight Trigrams Sixty Four Palms” technique throughout the series, which enabled him to not only attack several targets simultaneously but also deflect projectiles launched at him. To divert various amounts of projectiles, Neji used “Eight Trigrams Palms Revolving Heaven” to secure himself from all threats. He also became fond of “Eight Trigrams Vacuum Palm” and used it whenever he wasn’t in a suitable range for close combat.
Neji’s excellent and unique fighting style, which he gradually developed, sent shivers down the spines of his enemies. You may think that Neji’s death made him look weak, but his will of fire outshone the others through his sacrifice.
One would expect that a Taijutsu user would only be able to excel in short-range but Neji being an exception, could fight in medium ranges. Byakugan’s outrageous feat not only lets him keep track of his opponents but also aided in dictating the style of battle.
However, Byakugan has a weakness; It’s a blind spot. On the first look, it may seem like a subtle weakness, but upon discovery, it could change the outcome of the fight. Neji knew of this weakness, so he emitted chakra around that blind spot to counter it from being exploited.
Interestingly enough, Neji had a wide variety of bad matchups, especially those that can fight at long ranges, henceforth, making a battle problematic for him. A prime example was most evident during the contest of Kidomaru and Neji, where he struggled throughout the battle because of the exposure of his weaknesses.
Neji’s prowess against Taijutsu user is genuinely remarkable as his valiant fighting style is superior to most Taijutsu fighting styles. You may ponder over the question, “Who could be a good matchup for Neji?”. Analytically speaking, it has to be none other than Hinata. Having fought previously in the Chunin exams, a matured version of both would produce a daunting yet an even battle between the two as both possess the same fighting style.
Neji has been a part of Team Guy, Sasuke Recovery Team, Konoha 11, Star Guard Team, and Second division. His specialty was rightly used among all these teams as he served as a sole Taijutsu user who not only did hand to hand combat but also assisted his teammates though his visual prowess.
Not limited to a particular role, Neji had the freedom to provide support to his team according to the situation. This freedom makes him an easy pick for any team due to his versatility and adaptability; He could support through his incredible defense or go head-on with his explosive power.
If teamed with someone with the ability to fight long-range, his weaknesses would be less of a problem. Temari of the sand could be a vital asset to the team leading to more flexibility as Neji can fight at a short-range while Temari can assist him if put up against a long-ranged opponent.
Lacking a Ninjutsu user, the team can greatly benefit from someone like Orochimaru, who had an accord of being proficient purely in Ninjutsu. He will be able to provide a vast amount of move sets to the team through his Ninjutsu. Thus, creating the perfect balance.
Lastly, no one in their right mind would want to face such a thunderous team who would cause an unsettling atmosphere among the hearts of the Shinobis.