What a month January 2017 has been in the world of Pro-Wrestling. It’s been amazing throughout. New Japan kicked it off with Wrestlekingdom which was phenomenonal and included 4 of the best matches you’ll ever see back to back to close the show. But then the rest of the world followed their lead and show after show, match after match, we’ve seen some amazing things.
This post isn’t going to be a comprehensive write up of the month, although if thats what you want my podcast cohost @ChimeraRouge has done that here. I’m going to run down my top 5 matches. And I’m going to follow that up with a list of all the matches I’ve loved, do check them out if you haven’t seen them. I feel I should mention here that I haven’t seen everything, so if you loved a match, or an event, that took place in January 2017 and it isn’t listed please let me know and I will endeavour to check it out. There are still a couple of things I may add to this list without prompting,as I do hope to watch WXW London, NJPW Fantastic Maina and Smash wrestling’s latest offering.
5. Marty Scurll, Pete Dunne and Travis Banks vs Will Ospreay, Ryan Smile and Shane Strickland
This match was really something special. 6 phenomenally talented guys who had come.off amazing years in 2016 going at it, hell for leather. There were some awesome spots, some fantastic bits of technical wrestling, some great double and triple teams and some excellent comedy – Scurll and Co selling T Shirts at ringside during the match springs to mind!
4. Shinsuke Nakamura vs Bobby Roode – NXT Takeover: San Antonio
This match was incredible. Bobby Roode is a master or ring psychology and storytelling and this match was a clinic in it. Both wrestlers are amazing and I think this was, from a purely storytelling point of view, the best I’ve seen in years. I look forward to seeing more of Bobby Roode at the top of the NXT card.
3. John Cena vs AJ Styles – WWE Royal Rumble
I feel that this match was booked in response to the amazing matches at Wrestle Kingdom. It felt like it should have been saved for mania, to be honest, but that didn’t matter too much. It was still an incredible, incredible match. It had everything and it was something special. The best WWE main roster match, probably since Cena Punk at MITB 2011, in my view.
2. Okada vs Omega – New Japan Wrestle Kingdom
The match that had the whole world talking. Dave Meltzer called it the beat match in professional wrestling history and gave it six stars. It was incredible from start.to finish. It built well, it included amazing sections covering pretty much every style you can imagnetic and had a great nara time throughout. It inspired me to spend an entire day watching previous Okada matches. I didn’t think I’d see a match anywhere near as good as this for ages.
1. Marty Scurll vs Zack Sabre Jr – RevPro High Stakes
This match was incredible and blew me away entirely. I’ve followed both guys for a while and seen them wrestle with and against each other many times. Knowing a bit about that history and seeing it play out in the ring was incredible. My friend called it “the best British wrestlingarch ever”, I’m inclined to think that that under sells it a bit. Incredible match and I don’t remember ever seeing one that I enjoyed more.
It is worth noting that Pete Dunne has in fact been in the highest number (4) of matches this month that I have felt the need to put on the list Marty Scurll appears 3 times and ZSJ, Shibata, MAndrews and Matt Riddle all appear twice in singles matches (Marty appears 4 and MAndrews appears 3 times if you count the Thunderbastard!). Also, the London Riots appear twice. What a great month of matches.
The full list of matches I’ve massively enjoyed in January 2017
- Slater vs Muscle cat – RISE BRUDENELL
- 12 man Rumble – RISE BRUDENELL
- Kushida vs Takahashi WK11
- Shibata vs Goto WK11
- Naito vs Tanahashi WK11
- Okada vs Omega WK11
- Conners vs MAndrews WWEUKCT
- MAndrews vs Dunne WWEUKCT
- Bate Vs Dunne WWEUKCT
- End vs Neville WWEUKCT
- Gallows and Anderson vs Sheamus and Cesaro – RAW 16.01.17
- Spud vs Paul Robinson – PROGRESS 42
- Rampage vs Riddle – PROGRESS 42
- Pete Dunne vs Yoshi Hashi – High Stakes
- ZSJ vs Marty Scurll – High Stakes
- Shibata vs Riddle – High Stakes
- Seth vs Sami – Raw 23.01.17
- Scurll, Dunne and Banks vs Ospreay, Strickland and Smile –Live at cockpit 12
- ZSJ vs RJ Singh – Live at cockpit 12
- Nakamura vs Roode Takeover San Antonio
- DIY vs Authors of Pain – Takeover San Antonio
- Owens vs Reigns – Royal Rumble
- AJ vs Cena – Royal Rumble
- Rumble Match – Royal Rumble
- Morrison vs Mysterio – Dominant Dundee
- Sean Carr vs Anthony Henry – CZW Awakening
- Dave Crist vs Sami Callihan – CZW Awakening
- Tim Dunst vs Tony Deppen – CZW Awakening
- Ricky Shane Page vs Joe Gacy – CZW Awakening
- Thunderbastard Match – PROGRESS 43
- London Riots vs Kings of the North – PROGRESS 43
- SPPT vs Ringkampf – PROGRESS 43
- Mystico vs Euforia – Fantastic Mania
- Axel Deiter Jr vs Marty Scurll – wXw London Calling
- London Riots vs A4 – wXw London Calling