The emotional Best of the Super Juniors Final years in the making.

2020 MATCH OF THE YEAR ARCHIVES

VOICES OF WRESTLING MATCH OF THE YEAR ARCHIVES

#7
Hiromu Takahashi vs. El Desperado
12/11
NJPW

Overall Points: 340
Total Votes: 55
% of Ballots: 32.5%
4 First-Place Votes

Identity is assuredly one of the most arduous themes to exploit in professional wrestling, thanks to the labyrinthine constructs of identity that, in large part, define the medium. And worse, it is all relative. In real life, El Desperado is a character played by a main event level Junior Heavyweight mainstay. That much was clear, until 2018. That was when Hiromu Takahashi introduced his relative notion, into canon, that El Desperado is a character played by his old dojo buddy (a main event level Junior Heavyweight mainstay), thus adding a third layer of reality: a person playing a character that is playing a character.

These two have built one of the most extensive stories in wrestling by taking every interaction and building upon it, no matter how insignificant. Hiromu once longed to expose Desperado, but by 2020, his inspiration has developed: he now wished to rehabilitate Despy. To change his identity, as he sees it. Desperado remained firm in his lust to gleefully vanquish and disgrace Hiromu. His interviews and backstage comments exhibit self-awareness and diffidence, but also resolve and conviction. This is someone who confidently grapples with his self-identity.

This match was the most recent high point of this push-pull dynamic, and it is that dynamic which makes this match memorable.

On repeat viewings, it all comes across as exquisitely structured. At first, this the match seemed a bit mechanical. Despy worked the leg, Hiromu fought through. This was subterfuge.

Everything intensified until Despy induced a 2020 New Japan Ref Bump and low-blowed Hiromu. Hiromu, indignant over Desperado’s treachery, had seen enough of this character. The moment of the match, and one of the moments of the year, followed. Hiromu ferally tore at Despy’s mask, removing over half of it. Desperado, with resolute defiance, took the rest of mask off entirely. It evoked some of the hottest COVID Crowd responses we’ve witnessed.

The two traded remorseless slaps and exhilarating counters, replete with a razor-thin El Es Clero 2-count and numerous corner DVDs from Hiromu, the final into an exposed turnbuckle. Despy was valiant, but ended up with a sliced back and a defeat. El Desperado defined who he was. The labyrinth was solved. He is El Desperado in any ontological sense. Hiromu will have to deal with that. This was an apex but there’s still more to climb.” -J. Michael Mastro

“Desperado was truly the story of 2020, and this match seemed to highlight his breakout year. Hiromu and Despy came from the same class of Young Lions, and so they knew each other well enough to provide an emotional rollercoaster of a fight. Both men proved they were willing to do anything to win, including Despy removing his own mask.” -Kristen Ashly

“On this night, El Desperado reached the potential so many saw in him. This felt like two megastars colliding for the Super Junior trophy, and it ruled. The spot with Desperado ripping the mask off will stay with me for a long time.” -Suit Williams

“That moment Despy unmasks…and the fans forget they’re not supposed to cheer out loud.” -Matt Carlins

“It is kind of crazy how a single act of attacking a wrestler’s mask can elevate a match so much. This Best of the Super Junior’s Final was humming along at a very enjoyable level, explosive action, a fast pace, everything we expect from a New Japan Junior Heavyweight match. However the second Hiromu started to claw at El Desperado’s mask and then Despy, in response, pulled it off and cast it aside, electricity crackled in the air. The tension immediately skyrocketed, this blasphemous act changed the entire stakes of the match, from a pure block final to what felt like a career defining moment for both wrestlers. What followed was a blistering ten minutes of wrestling, hard-hitting, passionate and intensely personal. In a year where Hiromu featured in many high profile spots as the ace of the junior division and El Desperado got his highest-profile singles features, together they saved their best for last.” -Sam Brown

“Far beyond the usual high level Junior Heavyweight fare, this was a personal and visceral battle that elevated both men throughout.” -Liam Wyatt

“I’ll be honest; during the pandemic, if you managed to make a live New Japan crowd audibly react, you had my attention. I don’t think this match would chart this high in a regular year. However, the intensity and gutsy performances from these two, in the finals of a tournament that had no real hype or interest, is a testament to going hard to get the most out of the least.“ -Shane

“The final of the Best of the Super Junior tournament saw Hiromu taking on an unlikely Budokan Hall main eventer in El Desperado. But Desperado ended up putting on the performance of his life in the biggest match of his career, turning in heel tactics to take control of the match over arguably the best babyface in the entire world of wrestling. This match was essentially wrestling 101 and performed beautifully to the delight of the fans live and across the world on Twitter, with the climax of the match being with Desperado’s mask getting ripped off, the man behind the character exposed and with no semblance of honor left in him, was essentially ignored in perfect ways. The only thing that mattered for El Desperado was winning. A simple detail that appears passé in so many other matches, this to me was the match where the win took center stage more than any other. After a tournament that largely disappointed, a testament to both men to capture the audience and make it feel like one of the biggest matches of the year. Career match for Desperado and one of the best for Hiromu.” -Dylan Fox

“Fantastic storytelling that proves once again Hiromu’s rightful place at the top of the junior division and shows just how great El Desperado can be given the right situation. Of course, Desperado taking his mask off and still brawling with Hiromu will always be iconic.” -Jason Oun

“I usually don’t watch wrestling in December. To me it’s a dead month for wrestling. But this was a lost treasure in a huge empty area. The match itself gave me more than I expected. Hiromu’s leg selling and mimicking is perfect. Feels like he is really hurt. But the star of the match was Desperado. The moment he took off his mask was epic. Stuff like this shows us the emotion , importance and story in the match. He literally reached to another level with that match. The whole BOSJ tournament felt dead this year. They made the whole thing meant something with a classic. Yes this was a classic and shows what wrestling needs to be. The match takes you to an emotional ride and makes you care about every single thing they do. A real masterpiece for sure.” -Kaan Ünverdi

“When wrestling fans talk about “in-ring storytelling,” I don’t think any match in 2020 encapsulated it more than this one. Starting as an athletic, high-stakes tournament final, it morphed into a personal and emotional fight between two men whose history bubbled up from their Young Lion days. Not to mention that I’m a sucker for a breakthrough performance, in this case by Despy, whose stock rose a hundredfold with this fight. Loved every moment of this match.” -Warren Hayes

“On December 9, 2013, NJPW announced the upcoming debut of a new masked wrestler named “El Desperado”. Immediately speculation began as to who this man was. At Wrestle Kingdom 8, when this mysterious luchador came down the Tokyo Dome ramp wearing a new white mask and a black suit and carrying a guitar case (similar to the character El Mariachi from the Mexico Trilogy films), entered the ring after Kota Ibushi had become the new IWGP Junior Heavyweight Champion and gave him a bouquet of flowers, people instantly gravitated to him. It was something different. A character who jumped off the page.

Fast forward to 2020 pre-COVID and the 36-year-old Despy had settled into his role as a perennial “forgotten” member of the roster with a cult fan following. But the limited roster due to Covid, created new opportunities and it resulted in my favorite wrestler finally getting the biggest singles push of his life and reaching the BOSJ Final for what was by far the biggest match of his career. It is still surreal to think that he got to Main Event Budokan Hall in a match that will go down in his career legacy as his pièce de résistance. Whether it be Kushida/Ricochet(2014), Kushida/Kyle O’Reilly(2015), Ospreay/Taguchi(2016), Ospreay/KUSHIDA(2017), Hiromu/Ishimori(2018) or Shingo/Ospreay(2019); the BOSJ Final has already established itself as the safest bet in wrestling (aside from Tokyo Dome main event maybe) and this one may have been the best one of all time.

Desperado and Hiromu’s history starts in their rivalry during their Young Lion days. Both men then went on excursion to CMLL and brought the lucha influence back to NJPW. Since coming back they’ve had 4 singles matches. In 2018, Desperado defeated Hiromu in the BOSJ Korakuen Main Event using nefarious means to earn himself a Junior Title shot before losing to Hiromu a month later in his most recent Junior Title challenge. In 2020, history repeated itself. Once again Despy used nefarious means to defeat Hiromu in the main event of Korakuen Hall. The two men met again in the Final. Desperado brought back his old white mask, beat the shit out of Hiromu’s leg and tried Numero Dos, used nefarious means, gasped with a primal scowl after a 2.999 using the El Es Culero roll up, sacrificed his mask and put it all on the line. But, alas it wasn’t enough to beat Hiromu at the big stage. And well as far as Hiromu goes, what more needs to be said, he hasn’t skipped a beat after returning from a broken neck and may be the best wrestler in the world. He may already be the biggest Junior Heavyweight superstar in NJPW history.

2021 brings more questions than answers for Despy. Was this a one off or an Elevation? Will he ditch the mask and/or return to his old name? Will he ever beat Hiromu in the big one? A lot of people want him to beat Hiromu next year in the BOSJ Final or for the Junior Title. But not me. That’s not his story. He should always defeat Hiromu in the BOSJ block competition but never win the big one. Most of his fans want him to be pushed to the top and win the Title that has eluded him his entire life, but not me. Many of his fans want to see him rise to the top of the Juniors, but not me…

…Because if he’s a top guy then he’s no longer El Desperado.” -PW_IND

“So once again Hiromu Takahashi finds himself in my top ten matches of the year this time in the Best Of The Super Junior Finals against El Desperado. This match is still fresh in people’s minds as it happened late in the year, I remember everyone being puzzled as to how El Desperado made it to the finals, because no one thought he would be here including me. I wasn’t against it but I just thought it was odd, it was different but that’s how the year 2020 panned out once NJPW came back after having to pause shows for a while thanks to the year that was 2020. The match would begin in the ring as the two would trade chops and some exchanges, eventually they made their way to the outside and El Desperado would throw Hiromu back first into the guardrail. Desperado was always on the attack and would constantly focus on the back of Takahashi. El Desperado would then shift his focus to the knee of Hiromu, Desperado would then return to the floor and take Takahashi with him to slam him on the floor and once again work over the knee. Hiromu would fight through the pain and hit Desperado with a huricanranna at the ten minute mark. Hiromu would then take over on offense He would pull Desperado out of the ring and slam him straight down to the floor with a wheelbarrow slam. He would then dropkick Desperado into the guardrail as Hiromu would continue to sacrifice his own wellbeing in his efforts to put Desperado away. Desperado would eventually take over on offense and continue to go after Hiromu’s knee until Hiromu dumps him upside down into one of the corner pads. Later on Hiromu would take Desperado’s head off with a kick after Desperado comes at him off of the ropes. Later on in the match they would find themselves on the outside. Hiromu find himself on the floor and a relentless Desperado would hit him repeatedly in the knee with a chair. Back In the ring Desperado tried to lift Hiromu up and Takahashi was able to turn Desperado’s attempt into a Destroyer. Red Shoes got trapped in the corner and Desperado shoved Hiromu into him which allowed Desperado to hit Hiromu with a desperation low blow. Hiromu would rip half of Desperado’s mask off and then Desperado would remove the rest of the mask himself before he and Hiromu would trade blows in the center of the ring. From there the two would absolutely beat the shit out of each other, late in the match Desperado would get a really close near fall but Hiromu would kick out. Desperado would attempt the Pinche loco but he would get driven into one of the corners that was exposed. Desperado’s back was cut open and his mouth was as well but his heart was still in it and he did his damndest to make sure that he would get it done. This was one of the best efforts from El Desperado that I’ve ever seen but eventually the Time bomb went off and El Desperado’s efforts would prove futile as Hiromu would win the Best of the Super Juniors tournament for the second time in his career. Phenomenal stuff!” -Nathan Neumann

“A dramatic match between two guys who hate each other, headline Budokan Hall and fight for a trophy. What do you need more? Not much. Desperado and Hiromu put on a Junior Heavyweight classic, intense and full of hate towards each other. The absolute key moment in this match is definitely the unmasking of Desperado, who wants to face his nemesis face to face as Kyosuke Mikami, after Hiromu ripped his mask in pieces. An absolute great match which exceeded my expectations to a new limit and showed what Desperado is capable of if he gets opportunities.” -Christian Gascoigne

“Hiromu on one of the biggest stages a junior in New Japan can be on, main eventing Budokan Hall. This is probably my favorite Hiromu match ever and a large part of it is because of his opponent Desperado. A long running feud between these two that got rignited this year after Hiromu continuously failed to defeat him all year. This match continued along that same theme for the first half with Hiromu just being dominated by Desperado until Hiromu nearly tore off his mask. Desperado snapped after that, removing his own mask off completely, and gave up on his game plan which was working and lost because he let his anger get the better of him.” -TJ Folk

“New Japan to some may have had a rocky road in terms of storytelling in 2020 but the story of Hiromu Takahashi and El Desperado showed that there’s still plenty of magic left in the company. With the two having a history book of backstory to work from heading into the Best of the Super Juniors final, everyone who’d been invested in their story for the past number of years were expecting something special. They delivered. Using the easy cop out of saying “words can’t do this match justice” can apply here, with a beautiful story of love and betrayal being performed in front of our very eyes, it was everything I could’ve wanted from this final and thus making it my match of the year.” -Sarah Flannery

“While this bout has recently bias in its favor, it would be shocking if it didn’t show up on most people’s top ten lists. When you get two guys who always produce strong matches (and who also have a long history with each other), in a big tournament final, in one of the most prestigious wrestling venues in all of Japan, you have all the makings of a truly epic match. Hiromu was excellent as always, but El Desperado more than held his own in what will likely end up being one of the highlights of his career. The moment where he takes off the rest of his mask to fully reveal himself (after Hiromu already tore part of it away) will definitely be one of the top wrestling moments of 2020.” -Sean Sedor

“An example of how a BOSJ final should be. Final 10 minute ruled.” -Salih Arandı

“Loved this match. Despy, the middle level junior, showed up and had an all timer with this match. I absolutely loved how much the first half of the match played off their very good match earlier in the tour which led into the violent second half of the match. You felt the hatred of both men towards each other especially after Despy threw off his war torn mask. This is the hate filled shit wrestling was missing in 2020.” -Christopher Duarte

“These two have a history – same Young Lion generation, dojo mates and friends and now bitter rivals. Every time they face each other it’s a contest prenant with context and meaning. And this was filled with all that and more including the best moment in wrestling in 2020 for me with Despy taking off his own mask after Takahashi tore it apart. This match was satisfying in it’s own right but also made me want to see their next singles match.” -WH Park

“Perhaps not what the planned final was meant to be, but these two played well off of a) the match they’d had earlier in the tournament and b) their lengthy history. Yeah, we didn’t have the arena-wide brawls like we had in BOSJs of old (I mean, there’s no way they were going to do Hiromu taking a ‘rana down the arena steps in the middle of a pandemic), but they did deliver on the drama front. Culminating in Hiromu tearing Desperado’s mask… only for Desperado to rip the remainder of it off and continue the match au naturel (well, above the waist at least), some had tagged this as Desperado’s coming out party, and the precursor to a run as a singles junior. That likely isn’t going to be the case, but in a year where New Japan’s depth has been exposed, this was a more than pleasant surprise of just what’s in the back pocket that’s hardly ever used.” -Ian Hamilton

“”Desperado beats Hiromu” is one of those classic NJPW refrains, a fantastic little twist on a rivalry that says that even if one wrestler (Hiromu) has established himself high on the card, his opponent (Desperado) always seems to have his number. Yet for the first 15 minutes of this match, that refrain didn’t really stick, as the match was relatively back-and-forth (and not exactly thrilling, to be honest). But when Hiromu made it personal and decided to absolutely tear into Desperado’s mask, a switch flipped, creating the most exhilarating wrestling sequence of 2020. The *enmascado* Desperado ripped off his damn mask and was suddenly Kyosuke Mikami, the Young Lion who pinned or submitted Hiromu in each of the latter’s first seven matches of his career. Even though Hiromu won the match and the tournament, this was a star-making performance from Desperado, who elevated himself from “good, reliable hand” to “cornerstone of the division.”” -Parker Klyn

“Sometimes I worry I rate this match too high? Was it truly greater than some of the matches on this list? It’s a fair question and critique to throw at me as I place it #1, but then I think back to El Desperado having that stare of murder and disdain in his face before standing up to Hiromu and then voluntarily removing his mask and no, I have no bones making it this my number. If for no other reason that was one of my faovorite in match moments of the year, and stuff like that can always bring a match up to another level to me, and that’s exactly what that did. The body of the rest of the work is excellent as well and this was more than a worthy finals to the BOSJ.” -Jeri L. Evans

“Desperado had a career defining match as he wrestled with an extra level of focus and vigour. Everything from his limb work, the well-timed cheating spots and that moment where he took off the mask and just loses it. Takahashi also had a ton of fire and intensity as he always does in big matches. The result was a very special Budokan main event from two guys with sensational chemistry.” -ScoripCorp

“Angry, unmasked Desperado. My god I hope we see him more often.” -Steven Case

“This match was really, really good, El Desperado and Hiromu share a special in-ring chemistry. Desperado did his best trying to destroy Hiromu’s leg. Takahashi selling was on point while still doing some of his crazy spots. However, that closing stretch with Desperado unmasking and going full berserk elevated this whole match to another level.” -Gin Malkavar

“Desperado taking off his mask and beating the snot out of Hiromu is a spot in this match that I will always remember. It wasn’t as excellent as some BOSJ finals have been in recent years, but I think this final was more memorable for that specific spot. Tremendous storytelling.” -Bryan Rose

“I am partial to Chekhov’s Gun being employed in a wrestling match, but it must be used in a meaningful place for it to be truly effective. This match certainly does that. The gun was embodied by the exposed corner-pad, set up in the opening moments, its eventual, climatic use towards the crescendo of the match delivered great drama. The suspense driven up due to the avoidance of interacting with the corner-pad, interspersed with slight moments of tease, erupted into the thrilling conclusion this match delivered. The match stands out for me as a highly emotional affair, encased by El Desperado and Hiromu Takahashi’s years-long storyline – threads of which are visible in this encounter – rewarding the long term viewer immensely.” -Jamie Johnson

“Since the day they were young lions Hiromu and Desperado have been rivals. They’ve had a lot of matches against each other and most of them were won by Desperado, including one earlier in the tournament. Fast forward all these years later and Hiromu is now ahead of Desperado career-wise. This match is a perfect encapsulation of their rivalry. The performances from both wrestlers were outstanding. We all know Hiromu is one of the best wrestlers in the world today but Desperado showed everyone that he can step up and perform at the next level when needed.” -Rene Martinez

“Hiromu was great as always, but I was most happy to see Despy come across as a breakout level star in this match. When Hiromu tried to rip off Despy’s mask, Despy responded by taking off his own masks and encouraging Hiromu to hit him in the face again. Even in an era where NJPW crowds are not allowed to get too invested in matches, this moment drew audible reactions from the crowd. I’ve been big on Desperado’s work for the last few years and have felt he deserves a push as the junior or even openweight champion. This match highlighted that he deserves that push even more.” -Nick Davidson

“I was very happy for these two getting the opportunity to headline Budokan. Takahashi and Desperado knew they had to up their game and thrive under pressure and that’s exactly what they did in this match. I became an even bigger fan of El Desperado this year so this was exactly the spot I wanted him to be in and my god, the way he relentlessly worked over Hiromu Takahashi’s leg with the precision of a surgeon was simply fascinating. Takahashi’s selling at points was over the top I thougt, but still so good that it drew me in completely. At the exact right point in the match they went to the next act of their saga as THE mask spot happened. Hiromu first ripping off the mask was breathtaking to begin with, but Desperado then willingly taking his mask off was even more unbelievable. Even though he just went back to wear the mask on the next tour, this is a moment that a lot of people – including me – will remember forever.” -STRIGGA

“This match blends speed, technique, and intensity into a beautiful fusion of a match. Desperado shines as a hell with his shenanigans and tactics coming off despicable without being cowardly – instead possessed of an unmatched ruthlessness. Hiromu performs as the undeniable star of the New Japan Juniors Division in contrast, and demonstrates why he’s one of the world’s best. Moves flow smoothly and crisply, with spots coming off clean but also brutal and impactful as well. The fan ovation at the end of this match says all it needs to about the quality, especially in the COVID era.”-Reuel Castillo

Voices of Wrestling 2020 Match of the Year
(261-11)

PlaceMatchDatePromotionOverall PointsTotal Votes% of ballotsHighest Vote
1Hangman Page & Kenny Omega vs. The Young Bucks2/29AEW106912272.2%1st
2Tetsuya Naito vs. Kazuchika Okada1/5NJPW93610662.7%1st
3Kazuchika Okada vs. Kota Ibushi1/4NJPW8319958.6%1st
4WALTER vs. Ilja Dragunov10/29WWE (NXT UK)5658349.1%1st
5Will Ospreay vs. Hiromu Takahashi1/4NJPW5087846.2%1st
6Go Shiozaki vs. Takashi Sugiura12/6NOAH4345633.1%1st
7Hiromu Takahashi vs. El Desperado12/11NJPW3405532.5%1st
8Katsuhiko Nakajima vs. Go Shiozaki11/22NOAH3074224.9%1st
9RED vs. Toryumon Gen12/20Dragongate2763721.9%1st
10Kenny Omega vs. PAC2/26AEW1713420.1%1st
11Stadium Stampede5/23AEW1662816.6%1st
12Kazuchika Okada vs. Shingo Takagi10/10NJPW1463520.7%2nd
13Villano III Jr. vs. Aéreo3/1AAA1452414.2%1st
14Santana/Ortiz vs. Best Friends9/16AEW1422917.2%1st
15Kota Ibushi vs. Minoru Suzuki10/10NJPW1232213.0%1st
16Jon Moxley vs. Minoru Suzuki2/9NJPW1152816.6%1st
17Mayu Iwatani vs. Takumi Iroha2/8Stardom1142112.4%2nd
18Mizuki vs. Yuka Sakazaki11/7TJPW1111911.2%1st
19FTR vs. The Young Bucks11/7AEW1092514.8%2nd
20Tetsuya Naito vs. Hiroshi Tanahashi9/20NJPW1032213.0%2nd
21Go Shiozaki vs. Kazuyuki Fujita3/29NOAH91137.7%1st
22Kento Miyahara vs. Zeus10/5AJPW811810.7%2nd
23Yuki Ishikawa vs. Daisuke Ikeda3/7wXw80116.5%1st
24Adam Page, Alex Reynolds & John Silver vs. MJF, Ortiz & Santana 12/30AEW771810.7%1st
25Mayu Iwatani vs. Takumi Iroha10/18Stardom75116.5%1st
26Sasha Banks vs. Bayley10/25WWE66105.9%1st
27Zack Sabre Jr. vs. Will Ospreay2/14RevPro61158.9%2nd
28Kaito Kiyomiya vs. Go Shiozaki1/4NOAH59116.5%3rd
29Hiromu Takahashi vs. Ryu Lee2/9NJPW58116.5%2nd
30Kenny Omega vs. Laredo Kid12/12AAA51105.9%2nd
31Mike Bailey vs. Bandido3/7wXw5074.1%1st
32Brodie Lee vs. Cody10/7AEW49158.9%6th
33Shingo Takagi vs. Will Ospreay9/27NJPW49116.5%5th
34Daniel Bryan vs. Drew Gulak3/8WWE4974.1%1st
35Finn Balor vs. Kyle O'Reilly10/4WWE (NXT)47116.5%3rd
36PAC vs. Orange Cassidy2/29AEW4695.3%1st
37Fred Yehi vs. Jeremy Wyatt6/27St. Louis Anarchy44105.9%2nd
38Matt Tremont vs. Rickey Shane Page10/30H204274.1%1st
39Kento Miyahara vs. Suwama3/23AJPW3895.3%1st
40Kota Ibushi vs. Tomohiro Ishii9/27NJPW3884.7%4th
41Kota Ibushi vs. Taichi10/16NJPW3884.7%5th
42Butcher & Blade vs. Natural Nightmares11/11AEW3774.1%1st
43Kaito Ishida vs. Keisuke Okuda11/3Dragongate3763.6%1st
44Eita vs. Naruki Doi8/2Dragongate3674.1%2nd
45Hideki Suzuki vs. Katsuhiko Nakajima2/16NOAH3674.1%4th
46Go Shiozaki vs. Kenoh8/10NOAH3653.0%2nd
47Chessman vs. Pagano12/12AAA3453.0%1st
48Hangman Page & Kenny Omega vs. The Lucha Brothers2/19AEW3195.3%4th
49Kagetsu & Mayu Iwatani vs. Jungle Kyona & Momo Watanabe1/26Stardom3153.0%4th
50Jake Lee vs. Kento Miyahara1/3AJPW2974.1%5th
51Tetsuya Endo vs. Daisuke Sasaki11/3DDT2942.4%1st
52Tomohiro Ishii vs. Jay White10/16NJPW2784.7%4th
53Katsuhiko Nakajima vs. Kaito Kiyomiya10/11NOAH2742.4%1st
54Cody vs. Eddie Kingston7/22AEW2742.4%3rd
55Wotan & Mascara Sagrada Jr. vs. El Hijo de Fishman & Mr. Condor2/15Lucha Strong2731.8%1st
56Zack Sabre Jr. vs. Will Ospreay2/2NJPW2674.1%4th
57Will Ospreay vs. Dowie James1/11MCW2642.4%1st
58Kzy vs. Naruki Doi2/7Dragongate2642.4%2nd
59Rickey Shane Page vs. Nick Gage2/15GCW2584.7%3rd
60AJ Styles vs. Daniel Bryan6/8WWE2574.1%2nd
61Shingo Takagi vs. Tomohiro Ishii9/30NJPW2553.0%1st
62Adam Cole, Bobby Fish, Kyle O'Reilly & Roderick Strong vs. Alexander Wolfe, Fabian Aichner, Marcel Barthel & WALTER1/25WWE (NXT)2542.4%2nd
63Minoru Suzuki vs. Yuji Nagata6/17NJPW2484.7%4th
64Brodie Lee vs. Cody8/22AEW2374.1%5th
65Arisa Nakajima vs. Yoshiko7/13SEAdLINNNG2263.6%6th
66Yuya Aoki vs. Fumenori Abe2/11BJW2253.0%4th
67Roman Reigns vs. Jey Uso9/27WWE2053.0%5th
68Emi Sakura vs. Yuna Mizumori6/30Gatoh Move2021.2%1st
69Tomohiro Ishii vs. Minoru Suzuki9/19NJPW1953.0%4th
70Jun Akiyama vs. Konosuke Takeshita11/3DDT1942.4%3rd
71Hiromu Takahashi vs. Tomohiro Ishii7/2NJPW1842.4%4th
72Mayu Iwatani vs. Jungle Kyona7/24Stardom1821.2%1st
72Daniel Bryan vs. Drew Gulak5/11WWE1821.2%1st
74Lee Moriarty vs. Jonathan Gresham10/10GCW1742.4%5th
75Mayumi Ozaki vs. Saori Anou8/28OZ Academy1731.8%3rd
76Jake Lee, Shuji Ishikawa & Yuma Aoyagi vs. Kento Miyahara, Suwama & Zeus4/6AJPW1631.8%1st
77Abdullah Kobayashi vs. Toshiyuki Sakuda vs. Yuki Ishikawa6/21BJW1631.8%3rd
78Marcius Pitt vs. Davis Storm3/7EPW1631.8%3rd
79Kazusada Higuchi & Yukio Sakaguchi vs. Naomi Yoshimura & Yuki Ueno10/25DDT1631.8%5th
80Lee Moriarty vs. ACH10/9GCW1542.4%3rd
81Men's Royal Rumble Match1/26WWE1542.4%4th
82Tyler Bate vs. Jordan Devlin1/12WWE (NXT UK)1442.4%7th
83Utami Hyashishita vs. Momo Watanabe12/20Stardom1431.8%3rd
84Giulia vs. Tam Nakano10/3Stardom1431.8%5th
85Jordynne Grace vs. Deonna Purrazzo7/18Impact Wrestling1421.2%4th
86Shotaro Ashino & Kuma Arashi vs. Shuji Ishikawa & Suwama11/18AJPW1410.6%1st
86Baliyan Akki & Mei Suruga vs. Riho & Yuna Mizumori7/5Gatoh Move1410.6%1st
86Mayu Iwatani, Tam Nakano, Starlight Kid & Saya Iida vs. Giulia, Syuri, Maika & Himeka6/21Stardom1410.6%1st
86Daniel Makabe vs. Kevin Ku1/5SUP1410.6%1st
86Jordan Oliver vs. Myron Reed7/25Synergy Pro Wrestling1410.6%1st
86Jack Tucker vs. Thirteen11/13United Pro Wrestling1410.6%1st
92John Cena vs. The Fiend4/5WWE1342.4%3rd
93Titan vs. Soberano Jr.9/25CMLL1331.8%3rd
94Suwama vs. Shotaro Ashino6/30AJPW1321.2%3rd
95Lee Moriarty vs. Daniel Makabe10/9SUP1321.2%4th
96Kenny Omega vs. Hangman Page11/7AEW1242.4%6th
97Riho vs. Nyla Rose2/12AEW1231.8%4th
98Shingo Takagi vs. SHO6/22NJPW1231.8%5th
99DIY vs. Moustache Mountain1/25WWE (NXT)1221.2%3rd
100Arisa Nakajima & Tsukasa Fujimoto vs. Yoshiko & Sareee11/27SEAdLINNNG1131.8%3rd
101Daisuke Harada vs. Dick Togo1/30NOAH1131.8%5th
102MAO vs. Masato Tanaka2/23DDT1131.8%6th
103Kota Ibushi vs. SANADA10/18NJPW1131.8%6th
104Giulia vs. Syuri12/20Stardom1121.2%2nd
105Rich Swann vs. Eric Young10/24Impact Wrestling1121.2%3rd
106Kagetsu vs. Meiko Satomura2/24Kagetsu Retirement Show1121.2%4th
107Wotan & Super Dragons vs. El Hijo de Fishman & Amatheus12/5LLPM1121.2%5th
108Hirooki Goto & Tomohiro Ishii vs. EVIL & Shingo Takagi1/6NJPW1053.0%8th
109Thunder Rosa vs. Priscilla Kelly9/22UWN1042.4%7th
110Wardlow vs. Cody Rhodes2/19AEW1031.8%4th
110Will Ospreay vs. Tomohiro Ishii9/23NJPW1031.8%4th
112Mayu Iwatani vs. Momo Watanabe1/19Stardom1031.8%7th
113Yuki Ueno & Naomi Yoshimura vs. T-Hawk & El Lindaman6/7DDT1021.2%2nd
114MJF vs. Jungle Boy5/23AEW1021.2%6th
114Butcher & The Blade & The Lucha Brothers vs. The Young Bucks & FTR7/8AEW1021.2%6th
116Matt Riddle vs. Timothy Thatcher5/27WWE (NXT)942.4%6th
117Undisputed Era vs. Broserweights2/16WWE (NXT)931.8%4th
118Chris Dickinson vs. Matt Makowski 9/20Beyond Wrestling921.2%4th
118Will Ospreay vs. Bea Priestley3/16WrestleTalk921.2%4th
120Cody vs. Darby Allin11/7AEW921.2%5th
120Mayu Iwatani vs. Syuri10/3Stardom921.2%5th
122Mitch McCarthy vs. Rip Rielly2/29AWL910.6%2nd
122Natsumi Maki vs. Sareee1/4TJPW910.6%2nd
124Yuji Okabayashi vs.  Daisuke Sekimoto11/23BJW831.8%7th
125Hirooki Goto, Tomohiro Ishii & YOSHI-HASHI vs. Taichi, Zack Sabre Jr. & DOUKI10/23NJPW821.2%5th
126LA Park vs. Eddie Kingston2/14RevPro821.2%6th
127Minoru Suzuki vs. Shingo Takagi11/7NJPW821.2%7th
128Jon Moxley vs. Brodie Lee5/23AEW810.6%3rd
128Ace Perry vs. Lee Moriarty3/15Bizarro Lucha810.6%3rd
128Tim Hayden vs. LFB8/15IPW Australia810.6%3rd
128Mei Hoshizuki vs. Maria1/19Marvelous810.6%3rd
128Dangerous Tekkers vs. Golden Aces7/12NJPW810.6%3rd
128Giulia vs. Himeka10/29Stardom810.6%3rd
128Mayu Iwatani vs. Utami Hayashishita11/15Stardom810.6%3rd
128Charlotte Flair vs. Rhea Ripley4/5WWE810.6%3rd
136Masato Tanaka vs. Tetsuya Endo6/7DDT731.8%7th
136Minoru Suzuki vs. Shingo Takagi8/29NJPW731.8%7th
138Jeff Cobb vs. Tomohiro Ishii10/10NJPW731.8%7th
139AZM vs. Starlight Kid10/3Stardom721.2%5th
139Men's War Games12/6WWE (NXT)721.2%5th
141Katsuhiko Nakajima vs. Kenoh9/18NOAH721.2%5th
141Timothy Thatcher vs. Oney Lorcan7/1WWE (NXT)721.2%5th
143Masashi Takeda vs. Toru Sugiura12/25FREEDOMS710.6%4th
143Mei Suruga vs. ASUKA5/23Gatoh Move710.6%4th
143Mei Suruga vs. Ryo Mizunami10/4Gatoh Move710.6%4th
143AZM & Kagetsu vs. Mayu Iwatani & Starlight Kid1/2Stardom710.6%4th
143Ivan Black vs. Ricky Rembrandt9/26United Pro Wrestling710.6%4th
143AJ Styles vs. The Undertaker4/4WWE710.6%4th
143The New Day vs. The Street Profits11/22WWE710.6%4th
143Mayumi Ozaki & Saori Anou vs. Aja Kong & Hiroyo Matsumoto2/24ZERO1710.6%4th
151Daniel Bryan vs. The Fiend1/26WWE631.8%7th
152Eddie Kingston vs. Jon Moxley -11/7AEW631.8%8th
153Suzu Suzuki vs. Tsukushi9/20Ice Ribbon621.2%7th
154Masaaki Mochizuki  vs. Kaito Kiyomiya  9/18NOAH621.2%8th
154Takumi Iroha, Rin Kadokura & Mei Hoshizuki vs. Momo Watanabe, AZM & Utami Hayashishita9/28Stardom621.2%8th
156CHANGO & Kaji Tomato vs. Kengo Mashimo & Kunio Toshima5/102AW610.6%5th
156Mei Suruga vs. Mitsuru Konno7/9Gatoh Move610.6%5th
156Emi Sakura & Riho vs. Mei Suruga & Yuna Mizumori9/26Gatoh Move610.6%5th
156Mei Suruga vs. Yuna Mizumori5/27Gatoh Move610.6%5th
156Trish Adora vs. Suge D10/9GCW610.6%5th
156Alex Colon vs. AKIRA10/17ICW610.6%5th
156Kota Ibushi vs. Shingo Takagi10/7NJPW610.6%5th
156Kenoh vs. Katsuhiko Nakajima8/4NOAH610.6%5th
156Lana Austin vs. Yuka Sakazaki1/11Pro Wrestling Eve610.6%5th
156Leon vs. Hanako Nakamori7/26PURE-J610.6%5th
156Jules Canan vs. Craven vs. Ritchie Taylor3/15Wide Bay Pro Wrestling610.6%5th
156Katsuhiko Nakajima vs. Shotaro Ashino2/12Wrestle-1610.6%5th
156Eddie Kingston vs. Daniel Makabe3/6wXw610.6%5th
169Takuya Nomura & Fuminori Abe vs. Kohei Sato & Daisuke Sekimoto8/10BJW531.8%9th
170Kaito Ishida vs. Keisuke Okuda11/15Dragongate521.2%7th
171Mitsuru Konno vs. Mei Suruga7/19Gatoh Move521.2%8th
172Kenny Omega & Hangman Page vs. The Young Bucks vs. Best Friends vs. Santana & Ortiz1/15AEW510.6%6th
172Jon Moxley vs. Darby Allin8/5AEW510.6%6th
172Lee Moriarty vs. Alex Shelley2/7AIW510.6%6th
172RED vs. Toryumon Generation12/6Dragongate510.6%6th
172AJ Gray vs. ACH10/10Glory Pro510.6%6th
172Jay White vs. Tetsuya Naito1/4NJPW510.6%6th
172Jay White vs. Kota Ibushi9/23NJPW510.6%6th
172Shingo Takagi vs. Hirooki Goto2/1NJPW510.6%6th
172Arisa Nakajima vs. Yoshiko1/24SEAdLINNNG510.6%6th
172Arisa Nakajima vs. ASUKA6/13SEAdLINNNG510.6%6th
172Arisa Hoshiki vs. Utami Hayashishita1/19Stardom510.6%6th
172Jake Nova vs. Tim Kade vs. Jackson Cross2/22Venom Pro Wrestling510.6%6th
172Roman Reigns vs. Jey Uso10/25WWE510.6%6th
185TJP vs. Hijo del Vikingo2/4Impact Wrestling421.2%8th
185Shingo Takagi vs. Tomohiro Ishii2/20NJPW421.2%8th
187Ayato Yoshida & Tank Nagai vs. Kaji Tomato & CHANGO3/252AW410.6%7th
187Zac Reynolds & Renegade vs. Wacol's Most Wanted5/93 Count Wrestling Academy410.6%7th
187Daniel Makabe vs. Judas Icarus1/103-2-1 BATTLE!410.6%7th
187The Young Bucks vs. The Butcher and The Blade7/22AEW410.6%7th
187Kenny Omega vs. Jon Moxley12/2AEW410.6%7th
187Tony Deppen vs. John Silver3/1Beyond Wrestling410.6%7th
187Kimber Lee vs. Joey Janela8/23Beyond Wrestling410.6%7th
187KAI vs. BxB Hulk vs. YAMATO vs. Yoshino vs. EITA vs. Big R Shimizu9/21Dragongate410.6%7th
187Hagane Shinnou vs. Keisuke Ishii7/26Ganbare Pro410.6%7th
187Maya Yukihi vs. Suzu Suzuki8/9Ice Ribbon410.6%7th
187Low Ki vs. Masashi Takeda1/4ICW410.6%7th
187The Great Space War12/11Michinoku Pro Wrestling410.6%7th
187KENTA vs. Hirooki Goto1/5NJPW410.6%7th
187El Desperado vs. Taiji Ishimori12/2NJPW410.6%7th
187Edge vs. Randy Orton6/14WWE410.6%7th
187Johnny Gargano vs. Finn Balor2/16WWE (NXT)410.6%7th
187Timothy Thatcher vs. Oney Lorcan7/22WWE (NXT)410.6%7th
187Io Shirai vs. Candice LaRae10/28WWE (NXT)410.6%7th
187Strong BJ vs. Dangan Yankees3/1ZERO1410.6%7th
187Yuji Hino vs. Kohei Sato3/1ZERO1410.6%7th
207Hiromu Takahashi vs. Toru Yano6/24NJPW331.8%10th
207Thunder Rosa vs. Allysin Kay1/24NWA331.8%10th
209Arez vs. Tromba11/6Lucha Madre321.2%9th
210Daichi Hashimoto vs. Yuji Okabayashi1/2BJW310.6%8th
210Yasufumi Nakanoue vs. Yuya Aoki3/21BJW310.6%8th
210Masato Tanaka vs. MAO2/25DDT310.6%8th
210Naruki Doi vs. Susumu Yokosuka3/1Dragongate310.6%8th
210Davis Storm vs. Gavin McGavin12/5EPW310.6%8th
210ASUKA vs. Shota12/26Ganbare Pro310.6%8th
210Grizzly Kal Jak vs. Erik Hammer10/12GCW310.6%8th
210Tsukasa Fujimoto vs. Suzu Suzuki3/15Ice Ribbon310.6%8th
210Tetsuya Naito vs. EVIL7/12NJPW310.6%8th
210Tetsuya Naito vs. Zack Sabre Jr.9/24NJPW310.6%8th
210Kazuchika Okada vs. Tomohiro Ishii10/13NJPW310.6%8th
210Jay White vs. Kota Ibushi11/7NJPW310.6%8th
210Shane Taylor vs. Jay Briscoe12/18Ring of Honor310.6%8th
210Briscoes vs. Bandido & Flamita2/9Ring of Honor310.6%8th
210Jeremy Wyatt vs. Nick Gage1/10St. Louis Anarchy310.6%8th
210Tam Nakano vs. Giulia7/26Stardom310.6%8th
210Mayu Iwatani vs. Tam Nakano9/19Stardom310.6%8th
210Malibu vs. Jack Tucker9/12United Pro Wrestling310.6%8th
210Asuka vs. Sasha Banks8/23WWE310.6%8th
210AJ Styles vs. Jeff Hardy vs. Sami Zayn9/27WWE310.6%8th
230Mei Suruga & Baliyan Akki vs. Emi Sakura & Kaori Yoneyama12/5Gatoh Move221.2%10th
230Hiromu Takahashi vs. Robbie Eagles11/29NJPW221.2%10th
230Yuji Hino vs. Yuji Okabayashi1/1ZERO1221.2%10th
233Yuji Okabayashi vs. Tank Nagai5/232AW210.6%9th
233Penta El Zero M vs. Rey Fenix10/21AEW210.6%9th
233Darby Allin vs. Sammy Guevara2/29AEW210.6%9th
233Chris Jericho vs. Jon Moxley2/29AEW210.6%9th
233Yuki Ishikawa vs. Raito Shimizu2/11BAP210.6%9th
233Daichi Hashimoto vs. Yuji Okabayashi10/21BJW210.6%9th
233Toru Sugiura vs. Yuko Miyamoto2/10FREEDOMS210.6%9th
233Lulu Pencil vs. Kaori Yoneyama6/20Gatoh Move210.6%9th
233Dark Sheik vs. Still Life w/ Apricots & Pears10/10GCW210.6%9th
233Tom Lawlor vs. Homicide10/11GCW210.6%9th
233John Wayne Murdoch vs. Orin Veidt8/30ICW210.6%9th
233Chase Cooper vs. Reaper8/15Impact Pro Wrestling Australia210.6%9th
233Deonna Purrazzo vs. Su Yung11/14Impact Wrestling210.6%9th
233Eric Young vs. Eddie Edwards10/3Impact Wrestling210.6%9th
233Sami Callihan vs. Tessa Blanchard1/12Impact Wrestling210.6%9th
233Shingo Takagi vs. SHO7/12NJPW210.6%9th
233Jay White vs. Shingo Takagi9/19NJPW210.6%9th
233Minoru Suzuki vs. Jay White10/13NJPW210.6%9th
233Go Shiozaki, Katsuhiko Nakajima & Shuhei Taniguchi vs. Takashi Sugiura, Kazuyuki Fujita & Hideki Suzuki1/30NOAH210.6%9th
233Kenou vs. Kaito Kiyomia11/22NOAH210.6%9th
233Ricky Starks vs. Nick Aldis1/7NWA210.6%9th
233Jinny vs. Nina Samuels1/11Pro Wrestling Eve210.6%9th
233Masashi Takeda vs. Brandon Kirk1/8SAW210.6%9th
233Yoshiko & Hiroyo Matsumoto vs. Arisa Nakajima & Tsukasa Fujimoto8/26SEAdLINNNG210.6%9th
233Maki Itoh vs. Hikari Noa1/4TJPW210.6%9th
233Yuji Okabayashi vs. Kuma Arashi 3/15Wrestle-1210.6%9th
233Keith Lee vs. Roderick Strong1/2WWE (NXT)210.6%9th
233Women's War Games12/6WWE (NXT)210.6%9th
261Hikaru Shida vs. Thunder Rosa9/5AEW110.6%10th
261Chris Jericho & Jake Hager vs. Luther & Serpentico10/7AEW110.6%10th
261Naoya Nomura vs. Ayato Yoshida1/19AJPW110.6%10th
261Kento Miyahara & Yuma Aoyagi vs. Jake Lee & Koji Iwamoto12/7AJPW110.6%10th
261Fuminori Abe vs. Isami Kodaka7/14BASARA110.6%10th
261Nick Jackson vs. Matt Jackson4/20BTE110.6%10th
261Volador Jr. vs. Templario9/25CMLL110.6%10th
261Shinya Aoki vs. Sanshiro Takagi11/3DDT110.6%10th
261Kaoru Ito & Tomoko Watanabe vs. Miyuke Takase & Haruka Umesaki8/30DIANA110.6%10th
261Miyako Matsumoto vs. Cypress Ueno6/5Gake No Fuchi110.6%10th
261Anthony Greene vs. Ava Everett8/26Limitless Wrestling110.6%10th
261Chigusa Nagayo & Takumi Iroha vs. Mei Hoshizuki & Masha Slamovich3/20Marvelous110.6%10th
261Yota Tsuji vs. Gabriel Kidd6/15NJPW110.6%10th
261EVIL vs. Zack Sabre Jr.9/20NJPW110.6%10th
261Will Ospreay vs. Minoru Suzuki10/7NJPW110.6%10th
261Kenou vs. Kazushi Sakuraba12/6NOAH110.6%10th
261Thunder Rosa vs. Allysin Kay2/4NWA110.6%10th
261Hoodfoot vs. Erick Stevens10/11Paradigm Pro110.6%10th
261Spike Trivet vs. Jordon Breaks3/14Riptide110.6%10th
261DASH Chisako, Meiko Satomura & Syuri vs. Chihiro Hashimoto, Sakura Hirota & Yuu3/28Sendai Girls110.6%10th
261Giulia, Syuri, Maika & Himeka vs. Momo Watanabe, Utami Hayashishita, AZM & Saya Kamitani7/24Stardom110.6%10th
261Hikari Noa vs. Mirai Maiumi11/7TJPW110.6%10th
261Craven vs. Renegade2/22Venom Pro Wrestling110.6%10th
261Keith Lee vs. Dominik Dijacovik2/16WWE (NXT)110.6%10th
261Sasha Banks vs. Io Shirai7/1WWE (NXT)110.6%10th
261Io Shirai vs. Rhea Ripley11/18WWE (NXT)110.6%10th
261Timothy Thatcher vs. Tommaso Ciampa12/6WWE (NXT)110.6%10th

 

Voices of Wrestling 2020 Match of the Year
(Archives)

Visit voicesofwrestling.com/match-of-the-year to view our Match of the Year archives.