10. Prince Devitt vs. Kota Ibushi – Wrestle Kingdom 8
While not the best Finn Balor match in New Japan, this match may have been one of his most important as a character. His entrance and demonic facepaint were more a representation of how far Prince Devitt had fallen from being a kind-hearted babyface a year earlier. Now, he walked to the ring consumed by hate and jealousy, with Bullet Club marching behind him.
Kota Ibushi was a perfect opponent to stand up to Devitt as he was as pure a babyface as you could find. Their match was loaded with interference from the Young Bucks, Tama Tonga, Doc Gallows and Karl Anderson. It was distracting but if you look at the bigger picture this was a story of Bullet Club not being the answer for Devitt. He was unable to overcome his anger and it cost him the IWGP Junior Heavyweight Championship.
9. Finn Balor vs. Kevin Owens – NXT Takeover: Brooklyn
In another transitional match in NXT history, this was the proper coronation of Finn Balor. He had won the NXT Championship a month earlier in Japan but this was his big main event ladder match. It would also prove to be Kevin Owens final appearance in NXT for over four years.
While the match has been overshadowed by the fantastic Sasha Banks vs. Bayley match that preceded it, this was one of Balor’s best performances in NXT. Owens was set on causing as much damage to Balor as possible. Unfortunately for Owens, that strategy only took him so far. Instead, Balor was able to retain his title after hitting the Coup de Grace from the top of the ladder.