Was August 2013 the best month in wrestling history?

Is it possible that August 2013 is the greatest in-ring month in professional wrestling history? Is it fathomable that we were recently apart of the best month ever? To answer the question simply — it is and we were.

August 2013 is not alone in the conversation of best in-ring months in history — there are months throughout the last 20 years that had a high volume of well-worked/well-rated matches. It’s just that August 2013 is the new standard. There was nothing quite like it. August alone saw at the absolute least 30 ***1/2 to **** matches no matter the grader.

Think about that for a second, we’ll put it into more context later but off the top of your head try to think of a month with that many stellar matches.

Dave Meltzer himself gave 21 matches from the first five nights of the New Japan Pro Wrestling G1 Climax a ***1/4 or higher. That’s insane. That’s just a fraction of what NJPW offered in ONE tournament and it already runs laps around most standard pro wrestling months. Throuhgout the G1 alone we were privileged to see multiple Match of the Year candidates including Kota Ibushi vs. Shinsuke Nakamura and Katsuyori Shibata vs. Tomohiro Ishii on August 4 and Hiroshi Tanahashi vs. Tomohiro Ishii on August 2.

While NJPW’s G1 Climax turned this month into something of lore, other promotions around the world also stepped up to the plate. Dragon Gate had a sure-fire Match of the Year contender with Mad Blankey (Akira Tozawa & BxB Hulk) vs.World-1 International (Naruki Doi & Ricochet). IWGP Champion Kazuchika Okada made a voyage to the DDT promotion to take on Kota Ibushi and produced another great match that would stand out in any other month but has no legs in August. Stateside, World Wrestling Entertainment’s SummerSlam 2013 gave us two potential Match of the Year candidates in Daniel Bryan vs. John Cena and CM Punk vs. Brock Lesnar.

To look at the month in full, we’ll be using the Host of the DKP show at Wrestling Observer and noted match grader Alan’s (@Alan4L) ratings. Alan is a notoriously favorable grader but don’t let that steer you wrong, the ratings may be a little high, but most everyone agrees he has a definitive list of the top matches of the month. Maybe one of his **** matches was a ***1/2, but that’s not the real point. (Please Note: Alan has not yet watched Pro Wrestling Guerrilla’s Battle of Los Angeles so we will be using Voices of Wrestling reviewer Larry’s ratings) 

The real point is, holy crap there’s 45 matches on here with legitimate claims to be **** stars or better. I won’t be using Alan’s ratings in the rest of this piece; going forward, I’ll be using Dave Meltzer’s Wrestling Observer star-ratings. No offense to Alan, but Meltzer’s go back nearly 30 years so it allows us to have a set context for these match ratings. People sometimes take umbrage to “one man’s opinion” but it’s Meltzer, he’s done it forever and he’s about the best control group we can get in wrestling ratings. Meltzer doesn’t have as complete of match rankings from the G1 Climax, so we’ll opt to use Alan’s list for now but go back to Meltzer when we look at the other best wrestling month contenders.

Anyway, let’s begin with Alan’s list of the top matches of the month:

World Wrestling Entertainment: 

  • Daniel Bryan vs. John Cena (8/18) ****3/4
  • Brock Lesnar vs. CM Punk (8/18) ****3/4
  • Alberto Del Rio vs. Christian (8/18) ****1/4
  • Sami Zayn vs. Antonio Cesaro (2/3 Falls) (8/21) ****1/4
  • Randy Orton vs. Christian vs. Rob Van Dam (8/2) ****
  • Randy Orton vs. Rob Van Dam (8/9) ****

Japan (Promotion): 

  • Kota Ibushi vs. Shinsuke Nakamura (8/4) (NJPW) *****
  • Hiroshi Tanahashi vs. Tomohiro Ishii (8/2) (NJPW) *****
  • Katsuyori Shibata vs. Tomohiro Ishii (8/4) (NJPW) *****
  • Tetsuya Naito vs. Hiroshi Tanahashi (8/11) (NJPW) ****3/4
  • Hiroshi Tanahashi vs. Kazuchika Okada (8/10) (NJPW) ****3/4
  • Togi Makabe vs. Kazuchika Okada (8/4) (NJPW) ****1/2
  • Tetsuya Naito vs. Kota Ibushi (8/2) (NJPW) ****1/2
  • Kota Ibushi vs. Minoru Suzuki (8/10) (NJPW) ****1/2
  • Sekimoto vs. Madoka (8/27) (BJW) ****1/2
  • Kazuchika Okada vs. Kota Ibushi (8/18) (DDT) ****1/4
  • Satoshi Kojima vs. Kazuchika Okada (8/11) (NJPW) ****1/4
  • Tetsuya Naito vs. Karl Anderson (8/11) (NJPW) ****1/4
  • Tomihiro Ishii vs. Togi Makabe (8/10) (NJPW) ****1/4
  • Tetsuya Naito vs. Shinsuke Nakamura (8/10) (NJPW) ****1/4
  • Katsuyori Shibata vs. Satoshi Kojima (8/2) (NJPW) ****1/4
  • Hiroshi Tanahashi vs. Davey Boy Smith Jr. (8/3) (NJPW) ****1/4
  • Tetsuya Naito vs. Minoru Suzuki (8/4) (NJPW) ****1/4
  • akatsuki vs. Mad Blankey (8/1) (DG) ****1/4
  • Taiji Ishimori vs. Zack Sabre Jr. (8/4) (NOAH) ****1/4
  • World-1 International vs. Mad Blankey (Naniwa Elimination) (8/23) (DG) ****
  • Shingo Takagi vs. YAMATO (8/23) (DG) ****
  • Lance Archer vs. Satoshi Kojima (8/10) (NJPW) ****
  • Kazuchika Okada vs. Tomohiro Ishii (8/8) (NJPW) ****
  • Yuji Nagata vs. Shinsuke Nakamura (8/7) (NJPW) ****
  • Hirooki Goto vs. Hiroshi Tanahashi (8/7) (NJPW) ****
  • Satoshi Kojima vs. Davey Boy Smith Jr. (8/4) (NJPW) ****
  • Hiroshi Tanahashi vs. Prince Devitt (8/4) (NJPW) ****
  • Karl Anderson vs. Shinsuke Nakamura (8/1) (NJPW) ****
  • Hirooki Goto vs. Kazuchika Okada (8/2) (NJPW) ****
  • Prince Devitt vs. Lance Archer (8/2) (NJPW) ****
  • Tetsuya Naito vs. Yuji Nagata (8/3) (NJPW) ****
  • Hirooki Goto vs. Satoshi Kojima (8/3) (NJPW) ****
  • Masaaki Mochizuki vs. Kotoka (8/1) (DG) ****

Pro Wrestling Guerrilla:  

  • Kyle O’Reilly vs. TJ Perkins (8/9) ****1/2
  • The Young Buck$ vs. The Inner City Machine Guns vs. The Dojo Bros (Ladder Match) (8/9) ****1/2
  • Kyle O’Reilly vs. ACH (8/31) ****1/2 (Rated by VOW’s Larry — Alan has not watched PWG BOLA 13) 
  • Michael Elgin vs. Johnny Gargano (8/31) ****1/4 (Rated by VOW’s Larry)
  • Mack/Candice/B-Boy vs. Ryan/Avalon/Taylor (8/9) ****
  • Kevin Steen vs. Johnny Gargano (8/31) **** (Rated by VOW’s Larry)
  • Michael Elgin vs. Kyle O’Reilly (8/31) **** (Rated by VOW’s Larry)

Ring of Honor: 

  • Michael Elgin vs. Paul London (8/3) ****1/4
  • Adrenaline Rush vs. C&C Wrestle Factory vs. The Young Buck$ (8/3) ****

That’s 45 (45!) matches with at least a **** rating or better. Insanity. As mentioned, Alan is a notoriously easy grader (or at least has that reputation) so we won’t use **** or better as our criteria going forward, instead we’ll go with *** 1/2. I think that’s a fair amount to reduce given Alan’s reputation and the perceived bias of Meltzer towards certain wrestlers or styles. Some guys are just not capable of getting a **** rating from Meltzer, that’s rarified air. It requires a certain length of match and a placing on the card but ***1/2 though? Anybody has the potential to get there, it’s more indicative of a typical good match be it main event or lower to mid card.

Was August 2013 the greatest in-ring month of all time? I said yes at the beginning but why don’t we see if there are any contenders — are their any months in history that even stand a chance or get anywhere near?

March 1991

The first contender is March 1991 coming in with eight matches scoring *** 1/2 or above. This month was propped up by a spectacular WCW/NJPW SuperShow which saw the top ranked match of the month The Steiner Brothers (Rick & Scott) taking on Hiroshi Hase & Kensuke Sasaki. This was the first of three WCW/New Japan SuperShows and took place in front of a reported crowd of 64,500. Interestingly enough, this pay-per-view was known as Starrcade in Japan. The show was held on March 21, 1991 but did not make it stateside until April 1991. Five of the eight *** 1/2 and above matches came from this show while the other three were brought to us by the WWE, specifically WrestleMania VII. The top being the Ultimate Warrior vs. “Macho King” Randy Savage Career vs. Career match. I was surprised to see The Rockers vs. Barbarian/Haku on the list, which is somewhat of an underground classic among segments of wrestling fans including VOW’s own Joe Lanza.

April 1992

This month was brought to our attention by a listener/reader Mr. Intensity, who submitted to us that this month stood out to him as a true contender.

“April 1992 I think is a sneaky candidate for greatest month. You have the following matches, plus some other good Dangerous Alliance stuff.”

Here are the matches given to us by Mr. Intensity:

  • Jushin Liger vs. El Samurai (NJPW Best of the Super Juniors Final 04/30/92)
  • Octagoncito, Misteriocito & Mascarita Sagrada vs. Espectrito, Piratita Morgan & Pequene Pierroth (CMLL 04/17/92)
  • Blue Panther vs. Love Machine (CMLL 04/03/92)
  • Aja Kong vs. Bull Nakano (AJW 04/25/92)
  • Atlantis vs. La Fiera (CMLL 04/03/92)
  • Ric Flair vs. Genichiro Tenryu (SWS 04/18/92)
  • Stan Hansen vs. Toshiaki Kawada (AJPW 04/19/92)
  • Jushin Liger vs. El Samurai (NJPW 04/16/92)
  • Jumbo Tsuruta vs. Mitsuharu Misawa (AJPW 04/02/92)
  • Randy Savage vs. Shawn Michaels (WWF Munich 04/14/92)
  •  Wild Pegasus vs. 2 Cold Scorpio (NJPW 04/16/92)
  • Mitsuharu Misawa, Kenta Kobashi, Toshiaki Kawada & Tsuyoshi Kikuchi vs. Jumbo Tsuruta, Akira Taue, Masa Fuchi & Rusher Kimura (AJPW Fan Appreciation Night 04/18/92)
  • Rick Rude, Steve Austin & Arn Anderson vs. Ricky Steamboat, Barry Windham & Dustin Rhodes (WCW Pro 04/04/92)
  • Bret Hart vs. Roddy Piper (WWF Wrestlemania VIII 04/05/92)
  • Mitsuharu Misawa vs. Terry Gordy (AJPW 04/26/92)
  • Ric Flair vs. Randy Savage (WWF Wrestlemania VIII 04/05/92)
  • Manami Toyota vs. Kyoko Inoue (AJW 04/25/92)
  • Eddy Guerrero vs. Negro Casas (NJPW 04/16/92)
  • Akira Maeda vs. Volk Han (RINGS 04/03/92)

Using our criteria, April 1992 would not be a contender as Meltzer only rated two matches in the month *** 1/2 or above (Bret Hart vs. Roddy Piper and Ric Flair vs. Randy Savage  – both from WrestleMania 8)

January 1993

The WCW/NJPW SuperShow strikes again with eight matches this month the best being the Great Muta vs. Masahiro Chono (****1/4). Other matches from the “Fantastic Story” were Tenyru vs. Riki Choshu, Jushin Thunder Liger vs. Ultimo Dragon and Hawk and The Power Warrior (Kensuke Sasaki) vs. The Hollywood Blondes (Brian Pillman and Steve Austin) among others. It was a stacked show to say the least. The Royal Rumble 1993 also helped this month become one of the best in-ring of all time including a highly rated Shawn Michaels vs. Marty Jannetty match, which I didn’t think was all that great due to Jannetty’s, well, state,  during the match (Jannetty was high as a kite). What really made this month stand out was the presence of a Clash of the Champions show which was very highly-rated and lead by a ***3/4 Shane Douglas/Ricky Steamboat vs. Hollywood Blondes match.

April 1994

I will once again defer to commenter Mr. Intensity who felt April 1994 was a contender right off the bat:

“Here is another month where there was some top in stuff and when I did my own personal rankings I had 15 **** and above matches”

Here is his list for April 1994:

  • Rock & Roll Express vs. Heavenly Bodies (SMW Bluegrass Brawl 04/01/94)
  • Chris Candido vs. Tracy Smothers (SMW Bluegrass Brawl 04/01/94)
  • Rock & Roll Express vs. Brian Lee & Chris Candido (SMW TV 04/02/94)
  • Stan Hansen vs. Kenta Kobashi (AJPW Championship Carnival 04/10/94)
  • Kenta Kobashi vs. Jun Akiyama (AJPW Championship Carnival 04/11/94)
  • Mitsuharu Misawa vs. Toshiaki Kawada (AJPW Championship Carnival 04/11/94)
  • Stan Hansen vs. Akira Taue (AJPW Championship Carnival 04/11/94)
  • Toshiaki Kawada vs. Akira Taue (AJPW Championship Carnival 04/14/94)
  • Stan Hansen vs. Steve Williams (AJPW Championship Carnival 04/14/94)
  • Steve Williams vs. Kenta Kobashi (AJPW Championship Carnival 04/15/94)
  • Mitsuharu Misawa, Kenta Kobashi & Jun Akiyama vs. Stan Hansen, Giant Baba & Takao Omori (AJPW 04/16/94)
  • Steve Williams vs. Toshiaki Kawada (AJPW Championship Carnival 04/16/94)
  • El Samurai vs. Great Sasuke (NJPW Super J Cup 04/16/94)
  • Jushin Liger vs. Great Sasuke (NJPW Super J Cup 04/16/94)
  • Wild Pegasus vs. Great Sasuke (NJPW Super J Cup 04/16/94)
  • Ric Flair vs. Ricky Steamboat (WCW Spring Stampede 04/17/94)
  • Dustin Rhodes vs. Bunkhouse Buck (WCW Spring Stampede 04/17/94)
  • Vader vs. The Boss (WCW Spring Stampede 04/17/94)
  • Cactus Jack & Maxx Payne vs. Nasty Boys (WCW Spring Stampede 04/17/94)
  • Sabu vs. Terry Funk (ECW TV 04/19/94)
  • Jerry Lawler vs. Dream Machine (USWA Mid-South Coliseum 04/25/94)
  • Great Sasuke vs. Jinsei Shinzaki (Michinoku Pro 04/29/94)
  • Vader vs. Cactus Jack (WCW Worldwide 04/30/94)

August 1995

It’s hard to argue with Mr. Intensity here, especially when the month was led by a spectacular All Japan Pro Wrestling Championship Carnival show. Unlike April 1992, Meltzer was in accord as Mr. Intensity as April 1994 had 11 highly rated matches due in large part to a stellar TripleMania II show and the aforementioned NJPW Super J Cup. Meltzer’s top match of the month was Wild Pegasus vs. The Great Sasuke, which was given the rare *****. Sasuke had an especially great month as his showdown with Jushin Thunder Liger produced a ****3/4 making him the true standout star of the month. The surprise of the month may have come from World Championship Wrestling’s Spring Stampede 1994 which came to the table with some great contests including Cactus Jack & Maxx Payne vs. Nasty Boys in a Chicago Street fight and yet another great Flair vs. Steamboat battle.

This month, not unlike August 2013, was held up by a fantastic G1 Climax tournament, which accounts for 11 of the 12 highly rated matches of the month. Highlighted by Mutoh vs. Hashimoto and Koshinaka vs. Mutoh, the G1 was filled with spectacular matches; however, it wasn’t a NJPW match that tops the month. Instead, Meltzer thought the Shawn Michaels vs. Razor Ramon Ladder Match from SummerSlam 1995 was the top match of the month coming in at ****3/4.

August 1996

C’mon, you know the drill now. G1 rules. Choshu vs. Hashimoto highlights a month that sees nine G1 matches account for 13 highly rated matches for the month. What’s more notable though is America’s influence in making August 96 a contender. WCW Hog Wild gave us two matches in Chris Benoit vs. Dean Malenko (****1/4) and Rey Misterio Jr. vs. Ultimo Dragon (****3/4) and WCW’s Clash of the Champions gave us a Rey Misterio Jr. vs. Dean Malenko contest. WWE jumped in with one match, again, I’ll disagree with Meltzer here but Shawn Michaels vs. Vader from SummerSlam 1996 checks in at ****.

October 1997

Next on the list is a month that gave us nine highly rated matches highlighted by a ***** Hell in a Cell match between Shawn Michaels and The Undertaker at Badd Blood as well as a ****3/4 classic between Rey Misterio Jr. and Eddie Guerrero at WCW’s Halloween Havoc pay-per-view. NJPW contributed six of the nine matches on their NJPW Typhoon tour headlined by Takaiwa/Otani/Kanemoto vs. Kashin/Liger/Samurai (****3/4) and Otani vs. Jushin Thunder Liger (****1/2).

October 2002

Our first contender of the new millennium October 2002 marks almost five years since the last top-tier month in professional wrestling. The Attitude Era really dragged America down from an in-ring standpoint but by this time, they had recovered. The WWE No Mercy pay-per-view gave us two of the 11 contenders with Angle/Benoit vs. Mysterio/Edge (****3/4) as well as an awesome Brock Lesnar vs. Undertaker Hell in a Cell Match (****). Two new companies make their first appearance on this month’s list as NOAH’s Navigation Against the Current gives us Saito Akiyama vs. Kobashi/Shiga as well as Kikuchi/Kanemaru vs. KENTA/Suigiura and NWA-TNA makes joins the fray presenting an AJ Styles vs. Amazing Red match in addition to Styles vs. Jerry Lynn and Styles vs. Syxx-Pac. All Japan Pro Wrestling gives us two contenders as well (Kojima vs. Hase and Muta vs. Tenryu).

April 2006

April 2006 gets a bit of an unfair advantage as it featured two major WWE pay-per-views as both WrestleMania 22 and Backlash took place in April. Regardless, it had great matches and was rewarded as such. Cena vs. Edge vs. HHH from Backlash tops the list of eight at ****1/4. Kobashi vs. Marufuji comes from NOAH Spring Navigation comes in second at **** while Edge vs. Foley and the Money in the Bank match from WrestleMania 22 round out the **** matches. TNA also joins the fray with a Christian vs. Abyss match at the Lockdown pay-per-view.

October 2007

Our first all-American month in the list October 2007 comes in with eight highly-rated matches with Orton vs. HHH at No Mercy and Austin Aries and Roderick Strong from Ring of Honor’s Undeniable (both ****1/4). The month is nothing if not consistent as ***3/4 matches round out the month including HHH vs. Umaga at WWE’s Cyber Sunday, Nigel McGuinness vs. Takeshi Morishima at ROH’s Undeniable and Homicide/Hernandez vs. Elix Skipper and Senshi (Low-Ki) from TNA’s Bound for Glory.

June 2008

Ring of Honor took center stage in June of 2008 as its Respect is Earned II show accounted for three of the eight highly-rated matches of the month. The top two being Jimmy Jacobs and Tyler Black (Age of the Fall) vs. Austin Aries and Bryan Danielson and Roderick Strong vs. Erick Stevens (both of which received ****1/4). Sasaki/Nakajima vs. Kobashi/KENTA from NOAH Great Voyage also came in at ****1/4. The list is rounded out by a few major American promotions as John Cena vs. HHH and Edge vs. Batista from Night of Champions made the cut, as did AJ Styles vs. Kurt Angle and the King of the Mountain match from TNA’s Slammiversary pay-per-view.

October 2008

It’s amazing to look back and remember just how good TNA was at its peak and 2008 may have been that year. Yet again, we have an all-American promotion list with nine matches topped by Shawn Michaels vs. Chris Jericho at No Mercy (****1/2). WWE makes five appearances on the list including HHH vs. Jeff Hardy at No Mercy (****), Batista vs. Chris Jericho at Cyber Sunday and surprisingly Matt Hardy vs. Evan Bourne, also from the Cyber Sunday pay-per-view. TNA stands out with two ***3/4 matches — Sting vs. Samoa Joe and Jeff Jarrett vs. Kurt Angle from Bound for Glory IV.

October 2010

America rules! Again, we have an all-American month although it’s not only major promotions this go-around as Ring of Honor brings two contenders to the top of the eight-match list. El Generico vs. Kevin Steen and Roderick Strong vs. Davey Richards from Final Battle both come in tied for the lead at ****1/4. Joining them is the four-way match between Edge, Alberto Del Rio, Kane and Rey Mysterio Jr. from the TLC pay-per-view. TNA joins the fray with three matches from their Final Resolution show including Doug Williams vs. AJ Styles (****), Motor City Machine Guns vs. Generation Me (***3/4) and Rob Van Dam vs. Rhino (***1/2).

December 2010

2010 joins 2008 as the only years thus far to have two of the top months notable because a new American wrestling promotion joins the ranks as Gabe Sapolsky’s Dragon Gate USA makes three appearances on the list of eight with Yoshino vs. YAMATO (***3/4), Chuck Taylor/Johnny Gargano/Rich Swann vs. Richochet/Horiguchi/Austin Aries (***1/2) and CIMA vs. Shingo (***1/2) all from the DGUSA Freedom Fight iPPV. The top two matches of the month were both TNA with the Motor City Machine Guns vs. Generation Me (****) and the three-way between Jeff Hardy, Mr. Anderson and Kurt Angle from Bound for Glory. WWE jumped in with two pay-per-views this month getting two matches from the Hell in a Cell pay-per-view (Daniel Bryan vs. John Morrison vs. The Miz and Wade Barrett vs. John Cena) and one match from Bragging Rights (Daniel Bryan vs. Dolph Ziggler).

April 2011

April 2011 is the year WrestleMania Weekend finally became a true “thing”, a weekend when the best wrestling all-across the world was finally on display in one location and that’s evident when you realize the 12 highly rated matches this month are the most since August 1996. Undertaker vs. Triple H from WrestleMania XXVII tops the list (****1/2) but is joined at the top by Ring of Honor’s Briscoe Brothers vs. Kenny King and Rhett Titus from Honor Takes Center Stage – Day 2. Honor Takes Center Stage makes multiple appearances on the list giving us Eddie Edwards vs. Christopher Daniels (****1/4), Davey Richards vs. Roderick Strong (****1/4), Charlie Haas/Shelton Benjamin vs. The American Wolves (****), Kings of Wrestling (Claudio Castignoli/Chris Hero) vs. Adam Cole/Kyle O’Reilly (****) among other. In total, Ring of Honor contributed seven total matches. TNA jumped in with two of their own Jeff Jarrett vs. Kurt Angle and the Lethal Lockdown show while Dragon Gate USA rounded out the list with YAMATO vs. Austin Aries and PAC vs. Akira Tozawa.

April 2013

If you followed Voices of Wrestling around April 2013, you’ll know we started a heavy buzz by saying April 2013 was one of the greatest months in wrestling history, we weren’t outwardly saying it, but it was hinted and stated that we were all witnessing something great. Now looking back, we weren’t off base. April 2013 is absolutely a contender with 15 total matches meeting our criteria. The top match of the month: Kazuchika Okada vs. Hiroshi Tanahashi from NJPW Invasion Attack was a sure-fire ***** match and one that is certain to be near the top of everyone’s Match of the Year lists. Invasion Attack also gave us a ****1/4 affairs between Shinsuke Nakamura and Davey-Boy Smith and Yujiro Takahaski/Masato Tanaka vs. Tomoaki Honma/Togi Makabe as well as a **** match with The Time-Splitters (Shelly/KUSHIDA) vs. Taguchi/Prince Devitt and a ***3/4 tag match between Hirooki Goto/Yuji Nagata vs. Shibata/Sakuraba. Their mini-event Road to Invasion Attack also gave us a **** battle between Devitt and Shelley. NJPW dominated this month, plain and simple.

WWE jumped in with a ****1/2 match at WrestleMania 29 between CM Punk and The Undertaker and contributed a generous ***1/2 for the John Cena vs. The Rock rematch. Ring of Honor’s Supercard of Honor VII propped the month up a bit as well, joining the fray with a ****1/2 tag match between reDragon and The American Wolves in addition to a Michael Elgin vs. Jay Lethal contest (****).

Unfortunately due to the uptick in discussions on Bellator, Meltzer likely missed another Match of the Year contender in Johnny Gargano vs. Shingo from DGUSA. It can’t be officially listed under the criteria but the match was spectacular and should be all accounts be attributed to a stellar in-ring month.

June 2013

If we’ve said it once, we’ve said it a thousand times at Voices of Wrestling — 2013 is special. Real special, people. June 2013 becomes a major contender with 12 criteria-fitting matches including the definite match of the month from NJPW’s Dominion iPPV: Hirooki Goto vs. Katsuyori Shibata (****3/4). As with most of these 2013 months, NJPW dominated contributing six of the 12 top matches of the month. Although not the match of the month, the Dominion iPPV saw a ****1/2 Okada vs. Makabe match, a ****1/4 Shelton Benjamin/Minoru Suzuki vs. Ishii/Nakamura tag match and a **** affair between Forever Hooligans and The Time-Splitters.

Whereas April 2013 was dominated by NJPW and ROH solely, WWE helped tremendously in June contributing a ****1/2 match at their Payback pay-per-view between CM Punk and Chris Jericho as well as two ***1/2 matches (Alberto Del Rio vs. Dolph Zigger and The Shield vs. Randy Orton/Daniel Bryan). TNA even joined the party this month with a **** Slammiversary between Kurt Angle and AJ Styles.

—–

No other month in wrestling history boasts the resume August 2013 did, from a complete package all across the world — August 2013 is without much competition the best month in professional wrestling history.There are certainly contenders to the crown but I don’t think any of them hold a candle to August 2013. They just don’t. There were months propped up by fantastic tournaments, multiple big events in a single month and just good fortune but none of them come together like August 2013.

It was the perfect month for any wrestling fan. If you were a fan of major American promotions, you had a downright awesome SummerSlam, if you were a fan of just American indies you had Pro Wrestling Guerrilla and Ring of Honor. If you’re a Puro fan (and seriously after reading this article, you better become one) you were beyond spoiled. That’s the only way to really put it — you were spoiled beyond belief.

As evidenced above, there were other months in the conversation but August 2013 was without competition there is no doubt about it — August 2013 was the best month in professional wrestling history.

 

 

Rich Kraetsch

Author: Rich Kraetsch

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4 Comments

  1. Great piece! The “one man’s opinion” argument against Meltzer’s ratings is a crummy one; he rates matches based mostly on objective criteria. Dave expressed his subjective misgivings in the review of the Doi & Ricochet/Tozawa & BxB Hulk match, but still gave it ****3/4. His match ratings are the gold standard because he does not make them merely a reflection of his personal taste.

    Post a Reply
    • Agreed Ted. It’s a shame so many people just immediately discredit any story that uses his ratings as a baseline like that’s so out of the realm of possibility. Thanks again for reading!

      Post a Reply
  2. Alan Counihan

    only getting around to reading this now guys but just wanted to say hats off on a great piece. You can add 8/27 Sekimoto vs. Madoka to the list by the way. I gave it ****1/2.

    Alan

    Post a Reply
    • Thanks for the endorsement Alan, couldn’t have done it without you. I’ll add Sekimoto vs. Madoka to the list right now.

      Post a Reply

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