Kazuchika Okada Announced As Tokyo Sports MVP For 2019

Okada takes the top honour for the fourth time.

While 2019 started off with a loss for Kazuchika Okada at Wrestle Kingdom 13, the Rainmaker has more than redeemed himself as the year has gone on. He reclaimed the IWGP Heavyweight Championship at the ROH/NJPW G1 Supercard show, defeating Jay White. Since then he has defended the title on four occasions, overcoming SANADA, Minoru Suzuki, and Chris Jericho.

Now Okada can end the year on a high, having been named Tokyo Sports MVP for 2019. His opponent at Wrestle Kingdom 14, Kota Ibushi, was also in the running for the award, along with Will Ospreay, Jay White, and Kento Miyahara. However, the Tokyo Sports Selection Committee agreed that Okada had done the most to expand professional wrestling in 2019.

This is the fourth time Okada has won the award, tying him with The Great Muta and Hiroshi Tanahashi. Antonio Inoki has still won the most, however, with six.

The IWGP Heavyweight champion also won the Match of the Year category for his bout against SANADA at King Of Pro Wrestling. This is the sixth time in a row Okada has won the award, the first wrestler to ever do so.

The full list of awards can be read below:

  • MVP: Kazuchika Okada (NJPW)

  • Best Bout: Kazuchika Okada vs. SANADA from NJPW King Of Pro Wrestling

  • Best Tag Team: Suwama & Shuji Ishikawa (AJPW)

  • Outstanding Performance: Kento Miyahara (AJPW)

  • Technique: Kota Ibushi (NJPW)

  • Rookie: Strong Machine J (Dragon Gate)

  • Women: Mayu Iwatami (Stardom)

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Aidan Gibbons

Written by Aidan Gibbons

Journalist/Editor-in-Chief of Cultaholic.com Twitter: @theaidangibbons