95. Will Ospreay vs Shingo Takagi (NJPW G1 Climax 32)

So, my first foray into the G1 Climax 32 left me disappointed. Tanahashi and KENTA contested a mediocre match. The only match I’ve heard a lot of hype about from the event thus far was between Will Ospreay and Shingo Takagi. Dave Metlser rated it 5.5 stars!!! I’m sure he rates matches over 5 stars just to rile to IWC up. But then again, if Spinal Tap can turn it up to 11, then Meltzee can do whatever he wants. While I thoroughly enjoyed the match, I wouldn’t class it as a 5 star match…

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94. Hiroshi Tanahashi vs KENTA (NJPW G1 Climax 32)

This year’s G1 Climax tournament (number 32, if you are keeping track!) is ongoing, so I thought I’d take a dip into it. And what did I come across? Hiroshi Tanahashi against Hideo Itami…I mean KENTA! I’ve seen the great Tanahashi in action several times before, but I’ve only witnessed KENTA in WWE NXT. That was the sanitised version of KENTA…so I needed to see the real deal. But while this match had oodles of potential, it never reached it.

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93. John Cena vs Rey Mysterio Jr. (WWE Smackdown 6.11.2003)

There are only two John Cena vs Rey Mysterio singles matches in WWE hisyory. I recently rewatched their 2011 Raw clash for the WWE Championship, and while it is a decent match, it’s nothing to shout about (click here for my review). So what about their earlier clash in the fall of 2003? They both debuted in the WWE in 2002, and by that time Cena was a fully fledged heel with his ‘Doctor of Thuganomics’ rapper persona. Mysterio, as always, was a babyface. But this match is more notable for being Cena’s last ever match as a proper heel than anything else…

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92. 123 Kid vs Hakushi (WWE Summerslam 1995)

Some matches are so ahead of their time that, 30 years on, they wouldn’t look out of place on Monday Night Raw. Summerslam 1995 gave us one such match. No, I don’t mean the awesome (and better than their Mania X match?!??) Ladder rematch between HBK and Razor Ramon. I mean the ten minute undercard clash between the 123 Kid and Hakushi. I’m not saying this is an all-time classic or anything like that, but back in 1995 it would have been something radical for the WWF audience of the time.

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91. Roman Reigns (c). Vs Brock Lesnar (Last Man Standing Match for the Undisputed WWE Championship, WWE Summerslam 2022)

Summerslam 2022 has been and gone…and, let’s face it, there were only two contenders for Match of the Night: the opening bout and the closing bout. The opening bout, a WrestleMania rematch between Bianca Belair and Becky Lynch, was almost as great as their Mania clash. However, it merely met my (admittedly high) expectations. The main event, between Roman Reigns and Brock Lesnar, exceeded my (admittedly low) expectations. Truly, it was the quality bout I always knew they could achieve together!

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90. Rey Mysterio Jr. Vs Eddie Guerrero (Ladder Match for the Custody of Dominick, WWE Summerslam 2005)

It’s Summerslam tomorrow! Oh wait, WWE have moved their Premuim Live Events (PLEs) to Saturday night…so it is actually tonight! With Rey Mysterio’s 20th anniversary in the WWE celebrated this week, I thought about the ‘Littlest Big Guy’s’  Summerslam matches. Two immediately sprang to mind. His awesome opening bout against Kurt Angle at Summerslam 2002…and his Ladder match against Eddie Guerrero at Summerslam 2005. I love the former match, but the latter match is something else…

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89. Rey Mysterio Jr. (c) vs John Cena (WWE Championship match, WWE Raw 2011)

It’s twenty years since the master of rhe 619, Rey Mysterio Jr, debuted in the WWE. In those twenty years, he’s had classic matches against Kurt Angle, Randy Orton, Chris Jericho, Undertaker, Eddie Guerrero, CM Punk, HBK…hell, he even had a cracking bout against Sabu! However, he’s only had two singles matches against another person who celebrates twenty years in the WWE this year…one John Cena! And one of them was for the WWE Championship…

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88. Kenny Omega vs Tetsuo Naito (NJPW G1 Climax 2017)

Now we come to the second singles match between Kenny Omega and Tetsuo Naito, a year later at G1 Climax 2017. They had an awe-inspiring match at G1 Climax 2016; could the two do it again (click here to read my review)? I’ve read plenty of praise about this one, many people preferring it over their first clash. And while a lot of that praise is warranted, I still prefer their first clash. In the final stretch, this one veers into absurd overkill.

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87. Kenny Omega vs Tetsuo Naito (NJPW G1 Climax 2016)

Google ‘Kenny Omega’s Top 10 NJPW Matches,’ and I can guarantee the first three places will be taken up by his famed matches against Kazuchika Okada. So, that only leaves seven other places…and it seems two of those are mostl taken up with Omega’s G1 Climax clashes against Tetsuo Naito. Their G1 Glimax 2017 clash is usually rated higher than their earlier 2016 clash, but I’m all in favour of absorbing media in chronological order. Thus, I found another NJPW classic with Omega vs Naito at G1 Climax 2016!

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86. Kazuchika Okada (c) vs Kenny Omega (2/3 Falls Match for the IWGP World Heavyweight Championship, NJPW Dominion 2018)

So now we come to the fourth and final match between Okada and Kenny Omega. Their first was a stone cold classic; their second still very good, but bloated and full of under/no-selling; their third a (relatively) brief second stone cold classic. Their fourth, this time a 2/3 Falls Match for the IWGP Heavyweight Championship, had no time limit…so I feared both wrestlers’ penchant for excess would be nurtured. I was right…

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