Title: Get Ready for Another All-Time Classic from Kenny Omega and Kazuchika Okada
Date: June 7, 2018
Original Source: Vice
Synopsis: For my latest at Vice, I wrote about NJPW Dominion, an incredible years-long feud between Kazuchika Okada and Kenny Omega, and a fourth installment that could threaten “best of all time” status.
Once the words were out of his mouth, it immediately felt like it should have been obvious all along. With no No. 1 contender lined up for his IWGP World Heavyweight Championship, of course Kazuchika Okada would want to square off with Kenny Omega one more time at Dominion, one of New Japan Pro Wrestling’s showcase events. After all, Okada is now defined by his dominance, and Omega is the one competitor left who has any claim to assail Okada’s unimpeachable status.
His challenge to Omega was coming on the heels of a victory over Hiroshi Tanahashi, a victory that helped Okada break Tanahashi’s own record for most successful defenses of the title in a single reign. It was the latest notch in Okada’s assault on the NJPW record books; he is also the longest-tenured IWGP Heavyweight Champion of all-time (1,511 days and counting over four reigns), with his current reign of 715-plus days standing as the new benchmark in New Japan, and among the longest reigns anywhere in modern wrestling history.
Okada has defeated nearly every legitimate contender as he’s truck-sticked through the division since winning the title back from Tetsuya Naito at Dominion in 2016. He beat Naito again this year at Wrestle Kingdom, with Naito completing a years-long redemption arc to get back to the main event only to come up short. He’s defeated Naomichi Marufuji, Minoru Suzuki, Zack Sabre Jr., and Katsuyori Shibata, dispatched Bad Luck Fale and Cody of Bullet Club, and cleaned out Los Ingobernables de Japon with wins over EVIL and SANADA.
Continue reading at Vice.