IWGP Heavyweight Champion Kazuchika Okada def. Kenny Omega
When you hear so many glowing reviews of something, you tend to have high expectations when you go to see it for yourself, and oftentimes, it falls short of meeting those lofty expectations. Well, I can safely say this match between Okada and Omega was every bit as epic as it had been hyped up to be. Some may criticize the long length of the matchup at nearly 50 minutes, but the beauty of this bout to be was that it didn't drag whatsoever, and those near-50 minutes felt like 10 minutes. That's a tremendous testament to the phenomenal pace they worked and especially that exceptional second half. I wouldn't label the first half as "boring" but rather a beautiful build to what was to come, and those table spots were excellently executed. Had Omega been slightly off on that moonsault to the outside, he could have seriously hurt himself, so thankfully that went off without a hitch. I also loved how The Young Bucks were able to appear at ringside without tainting the quality of the contest by getting involved in any way. Then again, this is New Japan Pro Wrestling and they don't normally water down matches with interference, so that didn't entirely surprise me. But the constant counters were incredible and Omega was the real star for me in this match given Okada was already established. Following the fantastic year he had in 2016, I personally would have gone with Omega as the new champion, but Okada successfully retaining didn't hinder my enjoyment of the match, and he put over Omega afterward in a major way. I know Omega has had people talking with whether he'll be leaving Japan or not, but I think he will re-sign with NJPW and eventually capture the belt. To call this the greatest wrestling match of all-time is absolutely arguable, but what can not be denied was that this was a masterpiece of a match.
Even if you watched the live feed of Wrestle Kingdom 11, this version on AXS TV is well-worth checking out if only for the commentary provided by Jim Ross and Josh Barnett. This entire episode is devoted to this one match, which was wise of them to do considering the massive amount of buzz surronding it at the moment. The next few editions of NJPW on AXS TV will feature other matches from Wrestle Kingdom, so if you have yet to see those matches as well, check them out. Needless to say, go out of your way to watch this monumental match as it has been the talk of the town over the past week and a half and I'm thrilled I finally had the opportunity to see it for myself.