Kazuchika Okada Loses IWGP World Title At Sakura Genesis
For Ric Flair or John Cena to be a sixteen-time champion of the world meant one thing for sure, they lost the title at least fifteen times. And now Kazuchika Okada is almost halfway to that total after losing his championship at Sakura Genesis.
SANADA earned his IWGP World Title shot against Okada by winning the New Japan Cup in March 2023, defeating David Finlay in the final. SANADA has made major changes in his career lately, leaving Los Ingobernables de Japon to join up with TAKA Michinoku’s Just Five Guys faction.
At Sakura Genesis in Ryogoku Sumo Hall, SANADA took on Kazuchika Okada for the IWGP World Title for the first time since New Japan Pro Wrestling’s King of Pro Wrestling in the same venue in October 2019. This time proved to be more fruitful for the IWGP US Champion as he defeated Okada to become IWGP World Heavyweight Champion for the first time in his career.
SANADA has defeated Kazuchika Okada & is your new IWGP Heavyweight Champion. Congrats! pic.twitter.com/bJ6dSvoyvi
— Dark Puroresu Flowsion (@PuroresuFlow) April 8, 2023
Also at Sakura Genesis, Mercedes Mone saw off the challenge of both Hazuki and STARDOM’s High-Speed Champion AZM to retain her IWGP Women’s Championship. After the bout, Mone’s next challenger revealed themselves as Mayu Iwatani will challenge for the gold at STARDOM’s All Star Grand Queendom show on April 23rd.