Dave Meltzer has released his star ratings for NJPW’s 17th annual Wrestle Kingdom event that took place earlier this week on January 4th 2023.
Dave Meltzer NJPW Wrestle Kingdom 17 Star Ratings Revealed
The 17th annual NJPW Wrestle Kingdom event took place on January 4th 2023 emanating live from the Tokyo Dome in Tokyo, Japan. It featured a two blockbuster main events as Will Ospreay took on the returning Kenny Omega for the IWGP United States Heavyweight Championship and ‘Switchblade’ Jay White defended his IWGP World Heavyweight Championship against Kazuchika Okada.
Wrestle Kingdom 17 was a night of shocks as former WWE superstar and multi-time Women’s Champion Sasha Banks made her New Japan Pro Wrestling debut rebranding herself ‘The CEO’ Mercedes Mone before attacking IWGP Women’s Champion KAIRI [formerly Kairi Sane in the WWE].
The event was a major milestone for NJPW setting the record for most unique live viewers with 92,409 unique users watching the event live including an impressive 30% watching English feed of the event overseas.
In the latest edition of the Wrestling Observer Newsletter, Dave Meltzer has given his ratings for all eleven matches on the card [excluding the exhibition match] , which includes two pre-show matches.
- New Japan Ranbo – **
- Yuji Nagata, Satoshi Kojima and Togi Makabe vs. Tatsumi Fujinami, Minoru Suzuki and Tiger Mask – **1/4
- Catch 2/2 (TJP and Francesco Akira) vs. LiYoh (Lio Rush and Yoh) – ***3/4
- Kairi vs. Tam Nakano – ***1/4
- Bishamon (Hirooki Goto and Yoshi-Hashi) vs. FTR (Dax Harwood and Cash Wheeler) – ***3/4
- Zack Sabre Jr. vs. Ren Narita – ****
- Tama Tonga (with Jado) vs. Karl Anderson – **3/4
- Keiji Muto, Hiroshi Tanahashi and Shota Umino vs. Los Ingobernables de Japon (Tetsuya Naito, Sanada and Bushi)- ***1/4
- Hiromu Takahashi vs. Taiji Ishimori, El Desperado, and Master Wato – ****½
- Kenny Omega (with Don Callis) vs. Will Ospreay – ******1/4
- Kazuchika Okada vs. Jay White – ****½
Kenny Omega vs. Will Ospreay was the highest rated match of the night coming in at 6.25 stars making it the joint second highest rated match of all-time, sitting only behind Kenny Omega vs. Kazuchika Okada from NJPW Dominion 2018.
The match also represents a major milestone for Will Ospreay who after receiving his 25th five star (+) rated match, ties Mitsuharu Misawa as the most decorated wrestler of all-time [based on WON match ratings] a record he is sure to add to as his career continues into 2023 and beyond.