Editorials

WDKW100 (40-31)

NOTE FROM SAM: Corwo and Brock have been instrumental when going into the official WDKW100. Brock added some additional blurbs and match recs. Corwo helped with SO MANY match recs it is insane. Lovely humans. Deserve a ton of credit and should be followed immediately. Also, Parm has come to assist!

First year ever for the WDKW100! Are you excited? You probably should be because a fabulous countdown is about to unfold. Earlier this year I talked to my We Don’t Know Wrestling co-host at the time, Tanner, about what was going to be happening here. We were saying how it would be cool if we could do something that was like the WKO100, a list I loved watching unfold for years, but make it a bit more inclusive while still maintaining some sort of barrier to entry. The idea being that we cared more about people putting some sort of effort into their list rather than a bunch of people listing some of their favorite wrestlers of the year real quick. I stuck with the idea and had the backing of Trask and Al to get a forum set up for this project (we should be having a 2017 section going up soon to help kick that off but we are likely being attacked by evil bots).

Let’s get down to what this is, the WDKW100 is a fan voted list of the best in-ring pro wrestling performers of 2016. Your ability to gab doesn’t mean much in these parts. Each ballot consisted of 100 pro wrestlers. We used the Pat LaPrade weighted voting system which works as follows:

1- 125 pts
2- 115 pts
3- 110
4- 105
5- 102
6- 99
7- 96
8- 94
9- 92
10- 90

The more points you scored the better you ranked. Ties were broken by who received the most votes and then who ranked highest on an individual ballot. In any other case there was a tie.

Ah, a sigh of relief. We are in the home stretch. The niche picks have already been removed and now the creme is rising to the top. Or something like that. Some ROH folk, WWE grapplers, and a few globetrotters that I still don’t know where their home promotion is. Funnest part after this is all wrestlers will be on 20 or more ballots going forward. 

  1. Marty Scurll (19 ballots, 1283 points)[HIGHEST RANKED 19 BALLOT WRESTLER]

High Voter: Mark (1)

Recommended Matches:
vs. Will Ospreay (RPW, 1/16)
vs. Will Ospreay (PROGRESS, 1/24)
vs. Timothy Thatcher (RPW, 2/7)
w/Timothy Thatcher & Tommy End vs. Axel Dieter Jr., Big Daddy Walter & Da Mack (wXw, 2/13)
vs. Mark Haskins (PROGRESS, 2/14)
vs. Kyle O’Reilly (PWG, 3/4)
w/Trevor Lee vs. Mike Bailey & Will Ospreay (wXw, 3/13)
vs. Eddie Dennis vs. Mark Andrews vs. Mark Haskins vs. Morgan Webster vs. Paul Robinson vs. Rampage Brown vs. Will Ospreay vs. Zack Gibson (PROGRESS, 3/27)
vs. Will Ospreay (WrestleCon, 4/2)
w/Tommy End & Will Ospreay vs. TJ Perkins, Kota Ibushi & Johnny Gargano (WWN, 4/2)
w/Zack Sabre Jr. vs. Matt Sydal & Ricochet (RPW, 4/16)
vs. Mark Andrews (PWG, 5/20)
vs. Ryan Smile (OTT, 5/28)
vs. Chris Hero (PROGRESS, 6/19)
vs. Mike Bailey (RPW, 7/10)
w/Jordan Devlin vs. Will Ospreay & Ryan Smile (OTT, 8/6)
vs. Chris Hero (RPW, 8/12)
w/Zack Sabre Jr. vs. Michael Dante & Tommy End (wXw, 8/13)
vs. Mark Haskins (PWG, 9/4)
w/Zack Sabre Jr. vs. Chris Hero & JT Dunn (wXw, 10/1)
w/Zack Sabre Jr. vs. David Starr & Shane Strickland (wXw, 10/2)
w/Will Ospreay vs. The Young Bucks (ROH, 11/19)
vs. Will Ospreay (ROH, 11/20)
vs. Dragon Lee vs. Will Ospreay (ROH, 12/2)

“A wrestler I’m expecting to get very divided responses. I have my issues with Scurll, but his resume just keeps stacking up of matches that I really enjoyed.

Matches against Mark Andrews, Chris Hero, Cedric Alexander, Mark Haskins, Mike Bailey, Kyle O’Reilly, Johnny Gargano and Tommy End. I’ve enjoyed all of the Ospreay matches from this year. He had a very good match with Timothy Thatcher on RevPro TV. His tag work with Zack Sabre Jr has been top notch, specifically in the wXw tag league. And in BOLA I thought he had a tremendous run the whole weekend against Pentagon Jr, Cody Rhodes, Mark Haskins, and the final. When I look at everything I realized I had to have Scurll in my upper half. He has his faults and does things that annoy me sometimes, but the good just outweighs the bad with him. Lock for top 50 for me and I could even see him cracking top 30.”

“The biggest strength of Scurll is that he works big. When I see him love he actually feels like a star, that I’m seeing someone special, and that’s because he is. Started the year off strong winning the Progress Championship, ended the ROH TV Champ, and is currently having the best matches in whatever company he is in.”

“He’d feature very high on my ballot. Seems to be great wherever he works from progress to rev pro to wXw. I’ve yet to get through BOLA as that things a slog that always takes multiple sittings to get through, but I had Marty down as my favourite guy from PWG this year before that weekend, especially after the Andrews and KOR matches.”

  1. Kevin Owens (23 ballots, 1310 points)

High Voter: Mike W (4)

Recommended Matches:
vs. Dean Ambrose (WWE, 1/24)
vs. Neville (WWE, 3/7)
vs. AJ Styles (WWE, 3/21)
vs. Dolph Ziggler vs. Zack Ryder vs. Sami Zayn vs. Sin Cara vs. Stardust vs. The Miz (WWE, 4/3)
vs. Chris Jericho vs. AJ Styles vs. Cesaro (WWE, 4/4)
vs. Cesaro (WWE, 4/11)
vs. Sami Zayn (WWE, 5/1)
vs. Sami Zayn vs. Cesaro vs. The Miz (WWE, 5/22)
vs. AJ Styles (WWE, 5/23)
vs. Sami Zayn vs. Cesaro vs. Chris Jericho vs. Dean Ambrose vs. Alberto Del Rio (WWE, 6/19)
vs. Cesaro vs. Finn Balor vs. Rusev (WWE, 7/25)
vs. Big Cass vs. Roman Reigns vs. Seth Rollins (WWE, 8/29)
vs. Seth Rollins (WWE, 10/30)
w/Chris Jericho, Roman Reigns, Seth Rollins & Braun Strowman vs. AJ Styles, Bray Wyatt, Dean Ambrose, Randy Orton & Shane McMahon (WWE, 11/20)
vs. Seth Rollins (WWE, 11/21)

“Kevin Owens has had a solid year with a great high-end catalog. He’s had good-great matches with Jack Swagger, Dolph Ziggler, The Big Show, Dean Ambrose, AJ Styles, Cesaro and Neville. He’s had a high-end that consists of multi-man matches from WrestleMania, Money in the Bank, Extreme Rules for the Intercontinental Title and Raw for the Universal Title. He’s also had a series of matches vs. Sami Zayn, with Battleground being a MOTYC.”

“KO is the *** king. Almost always puts out a good performance and even if his match or program is dragging you’re guaranteed to be entertained by him in some fashion. He gets the little things more than most in the WWE.”

“I think after the Zayn match at Battleground, Owens has been pretty lackluster. Too much of his matches seems entail locking a chinlock, saying some banter, and just waiting until they can start the finishing stretch. And the Rollins feud has been a no-go in-ring and has gone on for the past 4 months. The first half of the year was good enough that he’d probably make my list but his Universal title reign has been shmediocre at best and not just because of booking.”

  1. Kenny Omega (21 ballots, 1327 points)[HIGHEST RANKED 21 BALLOT WRESTLER]

High Voter: Tom Ray (5)

Recommended Matches:
vs. KUSHIDA (NJPW, 1/4)
w/AJ Styles vs. Shinsuke Nakamura & YOSHI-HASHI (NJPW, 1/5)
vs. Mark Haskins (4FW, 1/23)
vs. Hiroshi Tanahashi (NJPW, 2/14)
w/The Young Bucks vs. Katsuyori Shibata, Kyle O’Reilly & Bobby Fish (ROH & NJPW, 2/19)
w/The Young Bucks vs. ACH, KUSHIDA & Matt Sydal (ROH, 2/26)
vs. ACH (ROH, 2/27)
w/The Young Bucks vs. Hiroshi Tanahashi, Juice Robinson & Michael Elgin (NJPW, 3/20)
vs. Michael Elgin (NJPW, 4/27)
vs. Michael Elgin (NJPW, 6/19)
w/The Young Bucks vs. Matt Sydal, Ricochet & Satoshi Kojima (NJPW, 7/3)
vs. YOSHI-HASHI (NJPW, 7/22)
vs. Michael Elgin (NJPW, 7/30)
vs. Katsuyori Shibata (NJPW, 8/4)
vs. Tetsuya Naito (NJPW, 8/13)
vs. Hirooki Goto (NJPW, 8/14)
vs. YOSHI-HASHI (NJPW, 9/22)
vs. Hirooki Goto (NJPW, 10/10)
w/Adam Page vs. Kazuchika Okada & Tomohiro Ishii (NJPW, 12/10)

“He rules the world!”

“Definitely in my top ten.”

“Top 10 easily. No chance he drops out. One of the MVPs of wrestling this year. Big role in one of the best matches I’ve ever seen vs. Naito. Tremendous all around anytime. Omega is the man.”

“I’ve been a big Omega mark for years, and always thought his NJPW junior stuff was underrated. This year has been really great for him too. His G1 was very good, he’s toned down the comedy a bit, and has generally shined with a new spotlight on him. He’s in my top 30.

That being said, I wouldn’t really be upset if he was left off a few ballots. His schtick has been very repetitive and certain points in the year, the constant interference has killed a lot of his big matches, and his comedy still has more downs than ups. He’s lucky to have the Naito match as a defining moment, because vs Tanahashi really sucked hard. Honestly I can see the logical case for him as a bottom 25 guy before I see a case for him as a top 5 guy.

The reason he is so high for me despite the negatives is mainly due to his less heralded stuff. I liked the Kushida match at WK a lot, and his performance in the New Year’s Dash tag was excellent. Also his match with Yano is awesome fuck you.”

“He’ll be on my list. His big game performances have earned him that. Still though fundamentally he makes bad choices in matches a lot. To me he’s the most frustrating worker out there. He’s a Dave Kingman of wrestling. A lot of homeruns, but is prone to strike outs.”

“Will do really well for me. Won’t quite crack top 10 but he’s not far off. From the KUSHIDA match, Tanahashi match, the Elgin matches (minus the ladder match), Elite trios work, his G1 where I thought he was already the best guy of the tourney before he went bonkers and had one of the best 24 hour stretches for a wrestler I can recall on the last two nights, and his matches post G1 defending the briefcase against Yoshi-Hashi and Goto. He’s responsible for some of my favorite moments/performances of the year and I think at his best there’s no other wrestler I enjoy watching more than him.”

“Never been a favorite of mine but he’s been really good this year. Seeing the G-1 stuff made think he could be the next big star in New Japan if they went other than Okada. Definitely a top 50 guy.”

“Kenny really impressed me this year. I wasn’t crazy about the Tanahashi match, but he had some solid early matches in the G-1 before absolutely knocking it out of the park with the Naito match and both Goto matches. I even liked the ladder match. He’ll most likely make my top 10.”

  1. Timothy Thatcher (26 ballots, 1337 points)[LOWEST RANKED 26 BALLOT WRESTLER]

High Voter: Mayafacetico (7)

Recommended Matches:
vs. Drew Gulak (PWG, 1/2)
vs. Zack Sabre Jr. (wXw, 2/6)
vs. Marty Scurll (RPW, 2/7)
w/Tommy End & Marty Scurll vs. Big Daddy Walter, Axel Dieter Jr. & Da Mack (wXw, 2/13)
vs. Jack Gallagher (PROGRESS, 2/14)
vs. Tyler Bate (wXw, 3/5)
vs. Sami Callihan (wXw, 3/12)
vs. Chris Hero (EVOLVE, 6/10)
vs. Tracy Williams (EVOLVE, 6/11)
vs. Roderick Strong (PWG, 7/29)
vs. Matt Riddle (EVOLVE, 8/19)
vs. David Starr (wXw, 9/29)
w/WALTER vs. David Starr & Shane Strickland (wXw, 10/1)
vs. Drew Gulak (EVOLVE, 10/16)

“One of the most polarizing guys who will be nominated. I’ve largely been let down by Thatcher in EVOLVE this year but he’s had matches I’ve enjoyed quite a bit with Chris Hero, Tracy Williams, and Matt Riddle. Outside of EVOLVE he’s done very well. In PWG he’s had great matches with Drew Gulak and Roderick Strong, he had a very good match with Jack Gallagher at PROGRESS, a match I thought was good with Marty Scurll in RevPro, and has been consistently great in wXw facing the likes of Tyler Bate, Marius-Al Ani, David Starr, and his run in the wXw tag league with WALTER produced some good stuff.”

“The perception of Thatcher and what he really is differs greatly. I still think his work is great, and now that he’s a heel in EVOLVE, I think that’s gonna do wonders for his perception. Will watch him work anyone because he’s that intriguing to me. 2016 hasn’t been as good as his 2015, when I think he had a lot of Top 10 arguments, and maybe even Top 5 depending, but he’s still a Top 100 candidate pretty easily.”

  1. Asuka (25 ballots, 1359 points)[LOWEST RANKED 25 BALLOT WRESTLER]

High Voter: Another Spammer (4)

Recommended Matches:
vs. Emma (NXT, 1/27)
vs. Bayley (NXT, 4/1)
vs. Nia Jax (NXT, 6/8)
vs. Bayley (NXT, 8/20)
vs. Mickie James (NXT, 11/19)
vs. Nia Jax (NXT, 12/3)

“What Asuka lacks in a long list of “great” matches, she makes up for with a presence unlike any other in WWE. It’s probably not as effective to people more familiar with her Japanese work than myself (and I’m no slouch as far as joshi is considered), but her appearances are explosive and enthralling, a sort of odd violence that is just as interesting as it is fearsome. And for what it’s worth, she had my favorite WWE match of the year in Brooklyn.” Brock!

“Pending on your wrestling intake and how you view Asuka as a top 100 worker, she very well could make lists. With all the squashes on TV with excellent character work in-ring came big matches for her this year, with one more to come vs. Mickie James in November (I’ll update when that happens as it WILL be a banger). Her big match resume includes matches vs. Nia Jax and Bayley.”

“Asuka’s NXT run has been frustrating to me. She’s quite good at putting matches together. Her aura is one of the best in wrestling & gives many of her matches that much needed edge that most matches don’t have. I think she’s also pretty great at delivering in big spots & moments of matches. However, what’s been frustrating me is how she’s held back offensively since coming to NXT. Kana is such a violent worker, but in contrast Asuka works light as a feather. I thought she was too soft in the Bayley series & think her offense looks downright bad in a number of her squashes. She still has a damn good shot of making the back end of my list but I struggle to remove the Kana comparison out of my head.”

“Asuka’s had a bit of a tough year. She’s definitely an elite worker but her dominant booking has been a bit of a detriment. Her squashes have been fun to watch, but because NXT has been dragging their heals when it comes to pushing talents like Billie Kay and Peyton, she hasn’t had much competition. She’s also not someone who can get a 3 star affair with just anyone, getting only an OK match with Nia. Still, the Brooklyn match with Bayley was great and arguably one of the best this year.”

“Asuka has not only been one of the most dominating forces in WWE history, she has also brought a immense breath of fresh air with her style, working great on top during her series with Bayley and can cut a great promo that is unique to WWE.” Parm!

  1. Kota Ibushi (25 ballots, 1433 points)

High Voter: Matt Rogers (8)

Recommended Matches:
w/Gota Ihashi vs. KENSO & Michael Nakazawa vs. Jun Kasai & Sanshiro Takagi (DDT, 3/21)
w/Johnny Gargano & TJ Perkins vs. Marty Scurll, Tommy End & Will Ospreay (WWN, 4/2)
vs. Cedric Alexander (CWC, 7/14)
vs. Jiro Kuroshio (WRESTLE-1, 8/11)
vs. Brian Kendrick (CWC, 8/26)
w/Sanshiro Takagi & Gota Ihashi vs. Antonio Honda, Dick Togo & Takashi Sasaki (DDT, 12/4)

“This man said no to NJPW to work for the biggest pro wrestling company in the world, then said no that company to work small indie matches against a clown and shoot fireworks while on top a car. Has had the best TJP, Cedric Alexander and The Brian Kendrick match this year, and all his Puro indie matches have been great.” Parm!

“Having just returned a while back, not wrestling too much, Ibushi still has a marvelous top 100 case. His high end matches from the CWC (Brian Kendrick, Cedric Alexander and TJ Perkins) were all out of this world amazing. He’s had a great return match in DDT where he piledrove Gota Ihashi through a toilet. He’s also faced Ikemen in W-1 and is working as Tiger Mask W which is amazing.”

“Ibushi is incredibly hard for me to rank for the fact that he has maybe 8 matches that have made tape this year? The fact that all 8 have been very good to great, with standouts being the WWN 6 man tag, vs Cedric and vs Kendrick, makes it hard to rank him as one of the BITW vs someone like a Chris Hero who has all those highs like Ibushi, but also has padding to add to his case. The question isn’t does Ibushi make my list, it’s where he places on it, could legit be anywhere from 30-70.”

“Ibushi’s run in the CWC was great, not a single bad match. The Cedric, Kendrick, and TJP matches were all outstanding. He’ll definitely rate highly.”

“Ibushi feels like the replacement of Lesnar this year in terms of high-end quality overriding the scarcity of matches. It’s arguable tho that, in each of his CWC matches, he basically did what he always does and it was his opponents’ performances that made the matches feel special.”

“Said a few times already but will be hard to rank. Pretty much will be ranking him based on the strength of one tournament but he looked great in that tournament. Not as high on the Cedric match as others though which may be a decider here. Feels like he will make my list but can’t fathom putting him too high. Has to be outside the Top 50.”

  1. Mascara Dorada (23 ballots, 1479 points)

High Voter: Quentin Moody & Sam DiMascio (5)

Recommended Matches:
vs. BUSHI (CMLL & NJPW, 1/22)
vs. Mephisto (CMLL, 2/19)
vs. Negro Casas (CMLL, 3/1)
vs. Extreme Tiger (Lucha Memes, 3/6)
w/Dragon Lee, Mistico & Valiente vs. Fujin, Raijin, Okumura & Kamaitachi (CMLL, 3/18)
vs. Barbaro Cavernario (CMLL, 3/28)
vs. Extreme Tiger (LLE, 3/30)
vs. Volador Jr. (LLE, 4/27)
vs. Mephisto (CMLL, 5/3)
w/Mistico & Caristico vs. Euforia, Rey Escorpion & Ultimo Guerrero (LLE, 5/4)
w/Maximo Sexy & Rocky Lobo vs. Magno, Rey Escorpion & Ultimo Ninja (LLE, 5/11)
w/Volador Jr. vs. Caristico & Flamita (Liosos Lucha Laredo, 5/16)
vs. Hechicero (Fighters NICE, 5/22)
vs. Caristico (LLE, 6/2)
w/Rey Cometa & Titan vs. Rey Escorpion, El Barbaro Cavernario & Dragon Rojo Jr. (CMLL, 7/8)
vs. Tajiri (CWC, 7/14)
vs. Rey Escorpion (LLE, 7/28)
vs. Akira Tozawa (CWC, 8/26)
w/Atlantis & Caristico vs. El Barbaro Cavernario, Felino & Negro Casas (CMLL, 9/2)
w/Hechicero vs. Angel Blanco Jr. & Flamita (CaraLucha, 9/3)
vs. Zack Sabre Jr. (CWC, 9/14)
vs. TJ Perkins (CWC, 9/14)
vs. Dragon Lee vs. Dragon Rojo Jr. vs. El Barbaro Cavernario vs. Euforia vs. La Mascara vs. Maximo Sexy vs. Mephisto vs. Mistico vs. Negro Casas vs. Valiente vs. Volador Jr. (CMLL, 9/23)
w/Atlantis & Valiente vs. Dragon Rojo Jr., Felino & Polvora (CMLL, 10/7)
w/Dragon Lee & Guerrero Maya Jr. vs. Euforia, Gran Guerrero & Niebla Roja (CMLL, 10/14)
w/vs. Caristico vs. Titan vs. Volador Jr. (Lucha Libre Boom, 10/16)

“Regardless of which name you prefer, Dorada has been a man possessed since returning to Mexico in February and is maybe the best candidate coming from Mexico. High volume of very good-great singles matches between CMLL and Elite with people like Mephisto, Volador Jr, Caristico, Rey Escorpion, Barbaro Cavernario, but also was a constant show stealer in trios matches. Add on his great run in WWE’s Cruiserweight Classic and it’s even harder to deny his resume.”

“I’ve been pounding the drum for Dorada/Metalik on other forums as one of the main contenders for Most Outstanding Wrestler of the year just because of him delivering quality matches in New Japan, CMLL, Elite and WWE. Being great 3 of the biggest companies is going to make me have him in the top 5 right now.”

“His “most underrated” case that reached insane heights during his NJPW run definitely got more eyes on him, but he’s still underappreciated this year. He was the MVP of every single New Japan tag he was in. His run with a belt in CMLL produced great singles matches and much of the most essential trios stuff of the year. His non-CMLL lucha is the best singles work of his career.

My fear is that most will think of him solely for his CWC run, which was really solid but not on the level of his best work this year. Even worse, with the way the Cruiserweights are currently handled, I’m guessing the rest of his year in WWE could be a bust. Regardless, he will be in my top 15 at minimum, and it would be an upset if he didn’t make it into my top 10 or so.”

  1. Sasha Banks (23 ballots, 1505 points)

High Voter: Charles Dulaney (5)

Recommended Matches:
vs. Naomi (WWE, 2/9)
vs. Charlotte vs. Becky Lynch (WWE, 4/3)
vs. Charlotte (WWE, 7/25)
vs. Charlotte (WWE, 8/21)
vs. Charlotte  vs. Bayley (WWE, 9/25)
vs. Charlotte (WWE, 10/3)
vs. Charlotte (WWE, 10/30)
vs. Charlotte (WWE, 11/28)

“She’s coming off of one of the best years for a WWE performer in recent memory with 2015 so it would be hard to follow it up in 2016. Big difference last year was that she was a heel and was one of the best heels in wrestling. Her babyface run as a whole package with promos and other stuff hasn’t lit the world on fire but last night’s HIAC showed that she might be one of the best babyface in ring workers in the company.”

“For an in-ring focused poll like this, she will probably make my ballot at a decent spot if she finishes the year strong. People seem definitely down on her as a whole because her character work and promos haven’t been excellent, and the booking of the women in general has been abysmal, especially on Raw. Also because there was a big push to recognize her as a top tier worker last year, and her work hasn’t been quite as good as the heights she reached then.

That being said, it feels like her 2016 isn’t that far off from her 2015 in terms of quality in a vacuum. She’s still been great in TV matches (although I’d like to see her work more), she’s one of my favorite wrestlers at house shows, and her PPV matches have delivered in ring. Obviously it’s hard to care about a lot of her matches nowadays because she hasn’t had a compelling storyline in months, but the idea that she’s regressed as a worker (or was never that good to begin with) is abject fantasy perpetuated by the most markest of marks and also Becky Lynch fanboys.”

“I haven’t been in love with her this year, mainly because I don’t click with her as a babyface for the most part, but she’s done way too much good to not make my list and I thought she gave the best performance of her career in the cell last night. Will probably find a place for her.”

“While almost all of her case this year is reliant on the Charlotte feud (with Becky briefly sprinkled in), I definitely think the Charlotte feud was great enough to carry her well onto the list, although not close to the status of last year. I think the Cell match would be the best Cell match ever if it wasn’t for the heat-killing stretcher spot. The Falls Count Anywhere match is possibly the TV Match of the Year in WWE. The WM Triple Threat was the best match on the show. Even the 30 Minute Iron Match was solid even though a poor choice of stipulation for that stage of the feud. Sasha is still way better as a heel but she’s become a good babyface wrestler, even if Charlotte’s heel work was better this year.”

  1. Charlotte (25 ballots, 1511 points)

High Voter: Gagne West (8)

Recommended Matches:
vs. Sasha Banks vs. Becky Lynch (WWE, 4/3)
vs. Sasha Banks (WWE, 7/25)
vs. Sasha Banks (WWE, 8/21)
vs. Sasha Banks vs. Bayley (WWE, 9/25)
vs. Sasha Banks (WWE, 10/3)
vs. Sasha Banks (WWE, 10/30)
vs. Sasha Banks (WWE, 11/28)

“Other than the Miz, she’s the best heel in WWE cause she gets true heat. She’s turned from a heel earlier in the year that always need outside interference from her manager to the heel that jumps people before the bell starts and mocks everything to get boos. She was incredible last night in HIAC and might make my list.”

“Yeah I think Charlotte has become a genuinely great heel the last few months and the cell match was the best work she’s ever done. I’m not totally sure she makes my ballot but I could see her sneaking in to my bottom 5.”
  1. John Cena (25 ballots, 1535 points)

High Voter: Another Spammer (5)

Recommended Matches:
vs. AJ Styles (WWE, 6/19)
vs. AJ Styles (WWE, 7/16)
vs. AJ Styles (WWE, 8/21)
vs. Dean Ambrose vs. AJ Styles (WWE, 10/9)

“In 2016, Cena had 50 matches, the least he’s had in a single year of his career since 2001. Only 12 of those were televised, with 7 of them against AJ Styles, a man that I don’t really care for. How could I rank him so highly, outranking people who had hundreds of matches? It’s pretty simple, I think: Cena’s matches were must-see TV for me. Not necessarily due to quality, as only three or four of those matches were what I’d consider above “good”, but due to his performances in them. In the waning years of his career, Cena knows how to best make use of his time, creating matches that are just as intriguing as they are simple, even with opponents that I don’t like.” Brock!

“While 2016 doesn’t nearly match 2015 for the now former ace, he’s still had a goodyear since returning in June with all things considered by virtue of big matches. Matches with AJ Styles (HIGH MOTYCs), good matches vs. Seth Rollins and Alberto Del Rio, plus the latest Backlash triple threat round out his case.”

“A weird year for Cena in that he has had a bunch of very good matches but I do think his capacity is slipping somewhat and I constantly came out of those matches thinking of him as the weaker worker. When he was put in a position to perform like those SmackDown main events vs. Del Rio, he turned in such a phoned in performance it would make Tanahashi blush on a Road to show.”

“I liked the AJ feud a lot so he’ll have a spot on my lower end based off of that but yeah can’t put him any higher than say 85. Just not a lot to go off of.”

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