The most recent edition of the Wrestling Observer Newsletter included the star rating for the main event of New Japan Pro Wrestling’s Wrestling Dontaku Night Two. The match between Kazuchika Okada and Hiroshi Tanahashi for the IWGP Heavyweight Championship received a historic rating of 5 1/2 stars.

The match was the conclusion of the Kazuchika Okada vs. Hiroshi Tanahashi rivalry that has spanned over six years dating back to Wrestle Kingdom VI in 2012. The match was nothing short of magical and certainly deserved its praise and its rating.

This marks the first time ever that a match has received a 5 1/2 star rating. Dave Meltzer made the decision to rate matches beyond the traditional 5 star limit following last year’s epic match between Kenny Omega and Kazuchika Okada at Wrestle Kingdom 11. Since then there have been matches that have been rated 6 1/4 stars, 6 stars, 5 3/4 stars, and now 5 1/2 stars. Either Kazuchika Okada or Kenny Omega have competed in every 5+ star match since January 2017.

The rating makes this match the highest rated match of 2018 so far, and the highest rated match since the G1 Climax Final between Kenny Omega and Tetsuya Naito from last year.

The other 5 star matches from 2018 so far include Chris Jericho vs. Kenny Omega from Wrestle Kingdom 12, Andrade ‘Cien’ Almas vs. Johnny Gargano from NXT Takeover Philadelphia, The Golden Lovers vs. The Young Bucks from Strong Style Evolved, Marty Scurll vs. Will Ospreay from Sakura Genesis, the NXT North American Championship ladder match from NXT Takeover New Orleans, and Tommaso Ciampa vs. Johnny Gargano, also from NXT Takeover New Orleans.

What did you think of the Okada vs. Tanahashi match? Did it deserve 5 1/2 stars? Let us know in the comments or on Twitter here!

5 years ago by Tempest


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