Imagining Kazuchika Okada's presentation if he signed with WWE

Kazuchika Okada is making the move to AEW but its understandable why many wonder what his time in WWE would have looked like over time.

New Japan Pro-Wrestling - G1 CLIMAX 33 Final
New Japan Pro-Wrestling - G1 CLIMAX 33 Final / Etsuo Hara/GettyImages
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It was well-reported that free agency was going to be a big deal in 2024. Multiple names have landed in AEW, with WWE picking up a few along the way. Then there are individuals like Jacob Fatu entering the market to add to the list of potential big signings. Kazuchika Okada is one of the names secured by AEW, and that was an expected outcome. However, there’s an understandable curiosity of what his time in WWE would look like, as it would be drastically different than anything seen in his career to date. 

Okada is going to do some excellent work in AEW. There’s an opportunity for fans to see some great action against the other men on the roster. Individuals like MJF, Adam Cole, Ricky Starks, Swerve Strickland, and Samoa Joe immediately come to mind. Then there’s the opportunity for more entries in rivalries against others like Jay White, Bryan Danielson, and Kota Ibushi. The opportunity is there for greatness and the AEW fan base is going to love every moment of it. That’s why it made sense that he elected to sign with that organization as reported by several media outlets. But was an opportunity to do something different with WWE missed? 

AEW excels in professional wrestling. That company continues to put on exceptional matches each week. That’s its strong suit and where the organization gets the most praise. WWE shines in the presentation and in some ways, the storytelling behind the action in the ring. There are times when it's been very bad, but the work to turn around the company’s creative since 2022 has been noticeable. There’s no telling how Okada would have fit in that space. But in today’s WWE, he certainly would have fit. 

Sure, there will be naysayers that point toward WWE’s problematic nature of booking international stars from other organizations. That’s especially true with Asian wrestlers. Shinsuke Nakamura’s run on the main roster has been far from what many expected. Then again, that remains a time before this iteration of the organization. Asuka, IYO Sky, and Kairi Sane are in the middle of the most important story in the women’s division and most consistent angle shown on SmackDown. GUNTHER is another international name that has been presented as a superstar throughout his main roster run. Cody Rhodes’s return to WWE shows that the organization is willing to present stars from other organizations in a main event light. It took a while to get there, but he’s poised to defeat Roman Reigns at WrestleMania 40 in what will be the single most important win in wrestling. 

Back to Kazuchika Okada. Think of Okada with the promotional backing of the biggest organization in professional wrestling. What would he look like on the WrestleMania stage, the biggest event in the industry? Then there’s the dream matches that would get the fans in the seats or in front of a screen to watch. Imagine him taking on Seth Rollins, GUNTHER, Roman Reigns, Andrade, Carmelo Hayes, or even Chad Gable. Each of those would be exceptional in their own ways. Different from what AEW will present, but that doesn’t mean one is less than the other. That’s the greatness of professional wrestling and sports entertainment, there’s something for everyone. 

The best thing about free agency is when a performer can take the option that fits their needs the best. That is what Kazuchika Okada did with selecting AEW over WWE. But there’s still space to wonder what one of the greatest performers in the industry would look like in the biggest company in the world. 

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