We will lose some sleep in the next few days as professional wrestling fans for Wrestle Kingdom, but it will be totally worth it to do so.
Wrestle Kingdom, the biggest show of the NJPW calendar year, is back on its traditional January 4 date despite the ongoing pandemic. For the second straight year, we will have two nights of Wrestle Kingdom.
It all leads to nine title matches, emotional singles matches, and two historic main events to determine the next dual IWGP World Heavyweight and Intercontinental Champion in New Japan Pro Wrestling.
Wrestle Kingdom 15 has many matches that could be among the very best of 2021. If you add in the New Year’s Dash show on January 6, it will be three of the best days of the professional wrestling year.
As we prepare for what should be an unbelievable two days of wrestling, let’s present the five most anticipated matches of Wrestle Kingdom 15. It is always hard to limit this annual list to just five matches over the two nights in the Tokyo Dome.
#5 Hiromu Takahashi vs. El Phantasmo - Wrestle Kingdom 15
This is quite the way to open the Wrestle Kingdom shows in the Tokyo Dome.
Hiromu Takahashi completed his amazing comeback from a neck injury to win back his Junior Heavyweight title at last year’s Wrestle Kingdom in an incredible match against Will Ospreay. It seemed like the beginning of a great year for the best Junior Heavyweight in the world. But, the pandemic had other ideas.
Hiromu had an emotional 2020 watching Los Ingobernables implode and losing his Junior Heavyweight title to Taiji Ishimori at Summer Struggle. The road to a comeback was grueling for Takahashi but was begun with a Best of Super Juniors tournament victory.
El Phantasmo of the Bullet Club had a much different path. He missed most of 2020 thanks to the pandemic. He was able to compete in the Super J Cup in December after a nearly ten-month absence and defeated Lio Rush, Blake Christian, and ACH to win the tournament for the second straight year. That sets up this Wrestle Kingdom opening match between the two on Monday night in the Tokyo Dome.
This will be the first ever meeting between these two talented Junior Heavyweights. We should expect to see some fireworks and a high flying match to start a great year of New Japan Pro Wrestling.
If you add a shot to fight for the Junior Heavyweight Championship on January 5 for the winner, then expect these two to go all out.