I’ve noticed that the term “Admiral Level” is always used when people are describing someone they think is lower than Yonko, but above Yonko Commanders. This is a form of downplay that separates the Admirals from the highest tier, where they truly are, alongside the Yonko.
In Marineford, we see the Admirals fighting on par with Whitebeard, the Strongest Man in the World. Oda even showed us that Whitebeard and Shanks were on equal standings when they clashed and the clouds split evenly. Even if you want to downplay Whitebeard to the weakest Yonko, he is definitely still Yonko level. It’s an extremely difficult fight for any of the other Yonko to defeat him. Saying anything else is blasphemy.
The Admirals fought evenly with a Yonko.
Simply think about what Oda is portraying in those moments. That Admirals can fight on the highest tier of the verse. That’s it. In my personal opinion, I think at this point in the story, at the very least in Oda’s mind, Whitebeard was the strongest character in the verse. Yes, even in his old sick age, but again, even if he wasn’t, he is at the highest level still.
Even in this instance, when Whitebeard blindsides Akainu, Akainu still manages to take half of his head off. The portrayal is clear. Even after being blindsided, the Admirals can land devastating blows. And Akainu then falls into the huge pit, that’s it. Wasn’t even unconscious.
Another thing people use as “evidence” is that the Admirals were afraid of Shanks when he arrived. They weren’t. They were surprised another top tier of the verse showed up out of no where. Akainu being surprised, and Kizaru not caring. You would be surprised too.
So the term “Admiral Level” is a form of downplay that has no merit.
*Theory by gifagi1213