11/11 Pruett's Weekly Power Rankings: Will Pruett uses his biased eye and tremendous discernment to break down the top ten wrestlers in WWE, TNA, ROH, PWG... hell, the entire industry
Will Pruett's Weekly Power Rankings normally run on Sunday afternoon. If you enjoy this week's edition of the power rankings, take a moment to check out Will's past power rankings in his editorial section.
By Will Pruett
These rankings are scientifically calculated by the Rank-o-matic 4000 and verified by four out of five top scientists in the wrestling arts. They are to be taken solemnly and with absolute seriousness.
1. Bobby Roode. This week on Impact, Roode looked more confident and was more compelling than he has been since losing the TNA Championship in July 2012. I'm not sure if it is the feud with Angle, the new creative direction of the company, or some great coffee backstage in Cincinnati, but Roode was on his game. We need more of this version of Bobby Roode. His work with Angle should be the centerpiece of TNA for the next couple of months while A.J. Styles tours the world with his emotions.
2. Kurt Angle. If recovering from head trauma were the essence of professional wrestling, Kurt Angle would be the definition of it. I think he's had, and forgotten about more concussions than I will ever experience (my own lifetime total is three-ish) in the last year. Angle was down and out when Impact went off the air last week, but when it came back this week, he was strutting out with his Mafia brethren in wrestling gear. His dedication to recovering from concussions, even exceptionally severe ones, is inspiring to all of us. Let's all hope Aaron Rodgers and his shoulder can learn from Kurt Angle and his head.
3. The Young Bucks. The most exciting tag team on the U.S. indie scene is currently on a tour of Japan with NJPW and they are quite literally taking the world by storm (well, not actually literally, because they are not mutants like Storm). In the last week they have won the 2013 Super Jr. Tag Team Tournament and the IWGP Jr. Tag Team Championship. We've known for a long time just how good this tandem is, but the world is now taking notice. This has been a career week for The Bucks who basically have every tag title not in WWE and TNA around their waists (or being used as a faux guitar).
4. WWE's Board of Directors. Finally, there are babyfaces in WWE we can all believe in, and they are the Board of Directors. These brave men and women have stepped forward to assure the elderly-man-punching giant, Big Show, can have his job back and negotiate nonsensical contracts in the middle of the ring. We knew someone would have to end Triple H's reign of terror, and the BoD has began the process. All of this authority drama sure is worth it when a major star, like WWE's Board of Directors, steps forward.
5. Ken Anderson. Look, I don't like ranking Anderson, who has varied between tolerable and obnoxious over the past three years, on this list any more than you like seeing him here, but great work can't be denied. On the mic, he seems to be finding himself away from weird announcing and bad impressions of Steve Austin. In brawls, he is showing a nice intensity. He could actually be coming into his own as a character as he battles against the forces of the Aces and Eights. Just deal with it.
6. Jeff Hardy. If I gave rankings for facepaint (and as you'll read later, sometimes I do), Hardy would constantly be fighting for a top spot on this list. Sadly, my rankings do account for actual wrestling and presentation (occasionally). Hardy had a nice Full Metal (and some wood) Mayhem match with Chris Sabin in round one of TNA's Championship tournament this week. This was right inside of Hardy's comfort zone, as he was able to jump and fall through and off of a whole lot of things.
7. Luke Harper. This surprised me, but this week I actually realized Harper might be the best wrestler in The Wyatt Family. Sure, he was in the ring with a man who calls himself the Best in the World and another guy who might actually be the best in the world, but Harper looked really good. He also knows his character inside and out. This giant may be the surprise standout star of Bray Wyatt's intriguing stable.
8. Big E Langston. While I was tempted to give him place number five, based on his theme music and NXT gimmick, I had to settle for placing Big E at number eight. Langston won a fan vote (which might have been legitimate) to face Randy Orton and didn't instantly job to him. He also received as good of an organic crowd reaction as he has on the main WWE roster. All Big E needs is for his often teased match with Curtis Axel to actually happen.
9. Goldust. It's rare to see a veteran star who has had as many personal issues as Goldust has doing his best work in the twilight of his career. Goldust, in every match he is in, is giving a master class not just in wrestling, but in engaging a crowd. Even better than his work, is his current facepaint, which is really making him look awesome. Goldust, after all this time, is the total package of beautiful work and a pretty face.
10. The guy that made the Smackdown opening video package. I didn't want to watch Smackdown, but when I hit play on my DVR and saw the gem of a video package put together for The Wyatt Family and their burgeoning feud with Bryan and Punk, my heart began to soar. This was a uniquely produced piece of video masterwork from WWE. In all honesty, this three minute package was the best thing on WWE TV this week.
Just missing the cut: John Cena, C.M. Punk, A.J. Lee, A.J. Styles, Chris Sabin, The Wheel of Dixie, Austin Aries, Daniel Bryan, Bray Wyatt, Abeyance (mostly because I couldn't think of a humorous abeyance paragraph), and El Torito.
Nowhere near this list: The guy that made the lawsuit video packages on Raw, WWE's creative team, Triple H, Big Show, Dixie Carter, Dewey, and B-Boy.
Will Pruett writes about wrestling in a facetious and often humorous way. Feel free to email him at email@example.com or to follow him and interact on twitter at twitter.com/itswilltime.
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