The people at Pro Wrestling Illustrated put a ton of work into their PWI 500 every year, but something about it just seems too elitist.

At GuysNation, we’ve taken their list of 500 and re-worked it a bit.  We’ve included some of our comments along the way, and as questions and comments arise, we may update this article with more of our comments, but here is our top 200, which we won’t change unless you can make a seriously compelling argument.

200. Mephisto
199. Gregory Helms
198. TJ Perkins
197. Sean Morley
196. Jack Evans
195. Prince Nana
194. Paul Birchill
193. Jimmy Rave
192. Alex Koslov
191. Nicho El Millionario
189. Slam Master J
189. Jonny Puma
187. Max Buck
187. Vampiro
186. Jeremy Buck
185. Masakatsu Funaki
184. Austin Creed
183. Steve Corino
182. Cade Sydal

Seeing is believing.  This guy’s got talent.

181. Petey Williams
180. Naruki Doi
179. Magnus
178. Grizzly Redwood
177. Bobby Dempsey

One of the best parts of Ring of Honor.

176. Rocky Romero
175. Averno
174. Jon Moxley
173. Sonjay Dutt
172. Shawn Daivari
171. Kiyoshi

He could be the perfect guy to feud with Douglas Williams… if TNA would give him the chance.

170. Bison Smith
169. Brodie Lee
168. Brent Albright
167. Jun Akiyama
166. Rhett Titus
165. Katsuhiko Nakajima
164. Kenny King
163. Stevie Richards
162. Takeshi Morishima
161. Erick Stevens
160. Tomko

Somebody get him to a treadmill.  Tomko is way better than what he has shown the past year.

159. BxB Hulk
158. Sean Waltman
157. Tommy Dreamer
156. Brett DiBiase

Injury has kept him from being on WWE television, but I’ve heard he’s ready.

155. Raven

Just when I thought he was retired, TNA finds a way to put one of my all-time favorites back in the ring.

154. Marco Corleone

If MTV 2 keeps showing Lucha Libre USA, he’ll be much higher on this list next year.

153. Adam Pearce
152. Kenny Omega
151. Kevin Steen
150. Jimmy Jacobs
149. Tyler Reks
148. La Sombra
147. Yuji Nagata
146. Keiji Muto
145. El Generico
144. Mike Knox
143. Takeshi Rikio
142. Volador Jr.
141. Eli Cottonwood
140. Michael Tarver
139. Rhino
138. Cibernetico
137. Orlando Jordan

One of the most controversial gimmicks of the year.

136. Darren Young
135. Shannon Moore
134. Colt Cabana

Another huge talent who needs the chance to showcase his abilities in the big-time.

133. Jesse Neal
132. Tajiri
131. KENTA
130. Finlay
129. David Otunga
127. Carlito
127. Brian Kendrick

VERY under-rated.  He must have an attitude backstage, or else he’d get more of a chance to showcase his abilities.

126. Titus O’Neil
125. Joe Hennig
124. Percy Watson

His gimmick is probably better than his in-ring ability, but he has shown flashes of real wrestling talent.

123. Scott Steiner

It’s highly possible we’ve seen the last of Scott Steiner in the ring, which would mean he shouldn’t be on this list, but in the off chance he comes back, this is where he belongs on the list.

122. Karl Anderson
121. Delirious
120. Homicide

It pains me to put Homicide this low, although TNA is clearly showing that they don’t understand his appeal.  Maybe they’ll stop pushing Hernandez as a singles wrestler and LAX can get back on the tag team scene.  Hernandez has been playing up that part of his persona more, as of late.

119. Chris Masters
118. Jeff Jarrett

When’s he going to stop wrestling and just be an authority figure?  It’s about time…

117. Skip Sheffield
116. Mohammad Yone
115. Chavo Guerrero
114. Joey Mercury
113. Curt Hawkins
112. Trent Beretta
111. Caylen Croft
110. Kaval
108. Jimmy Uso
108. Tiger Mask IV
107. Giant Bernard

He might not have ever amounted to much in WWE (aside from getting to hang out with Trish Stratus back during her AWESOME days), but he’s a legend in Japan, and I’m sure he’s loving every minute.

106. Primo Colon
105. Phil Shatter
104. Electroshock
103. Jay/Jules Uso
102. Mesias
99. William Regal
99. Vance Archer

Formerly Lance Hoyt from TNA, it seems that Vance Archer’s teaming with Curt Hawkins could actually be a decent part of the tag team division for WWE in the next year, and thus far he’s been getting a fairly quiet push.

99. Santino Marella

Sure, he rarely ever wins, but he’s always entertaining.

98. Alex Riley
97. Dos Caras Jr. / Alberto del Rio

After having seen what this guy has done elsewhere, I’m ready to start seeing him in the ring for WWE.

96. Minoru Suzuki
95. Vladimir Kozlov
94. Shelton Benjamin
93. Goldust
92. Brother Ray
91. Heath Slater
90. Brother Devon
89. Roderick Strong
88. Eric Young
87. Necro Butcher

He’s brutal, yes, but he does it with style.

85. Yoshi Tatsu
85. Shad Gaspard
84. Satoshi Kojima
83. Christopher Daniels
82. Kazarian
81. Zach Ryder

He’s got some great offensive moves… when WWE lets him do something other than just get squashed.

80. Luke Gallows

He was hugely under-rated as Festus if you took the time to watch him wrestle, and now he’s showing more of his talents in the Straight Edge Society… when WWE lets him.

79. JTG

His split from Shad Gaspard when Cryme Time disintegrated should’ve led to a decent little push for JTG, who actually has a decent moveset hidden behind his non-athletic entertainment value.

78. Mark Henry
77. Amazing Red

He carried the X Division Championship for half this year and is arguably a better choice for the belt than Douglas Williams.

76. The Great Khali
75. Jerry Lynn
74. Bret Hart

His return, “make up” with Shawn Michaels, defeat of Vince McMahon, short run as RAW GM, United States Championship reign, and now his time with Team WWE against Nexus for SummerSlam?  Bret Hart deserved at least one last chance to be a part of this list.

73. Rob Terry

His wrestling skills have come a HUGE way from where they were a year ago.  His lackluster run with the Global Championship wasn’t actually his fault.  He almost had a good feud with Orlando Jordan, too.

72. Matt Hardy
71. Justin Gabriel

Easily the second best part of Nexus.

70. Ezekiel Jackson

Were it not for an injury and a personal situation, he’d probably be in the top 30, the way WWE was moving.  I still think he would’ve been a great tag team partner for THE Brian Kendrick.  Too bad WWE doesn’t like tag team wrestling.

69. Sting
68. Mr. Anderson

Hopefully he can keep from getting injured and TNA can show him more “golden” love than WWE ever did.

67. Montel Vontavious Porter

Seriously under-used.

66. Mark Briscoe
65. Claudio Castagnoli


64. Jay Briscoe

It’s only a matter of time before the Briscoe Brothers end up in TNA or WWE.  For now, Ring of Honor is happy to have them.

63. Robert Roode
62. Hiroshi Tanahashi
61. Prince Devitt
60. Chris Hero

If you like tag team wrestling at all, you need to see what the Kings of Wrestling do over in Ring of Honor.

59. Jay Lethal

He has wins in the past year over AJ Styles (PPV), Ric Flair (PPV) and Kurt Angle.  If he hadn’t had such a long layoff when Hogan showed up, he’d be much higher than this.  Put the X Division title on him as soon as possible.

58. Davey Richards
56. James Storm

A very under-rated wrestler who has been kicking ass and drinking beers for years and years, though the fact that it’s in the tag division keeps him from being more highly rated.

56. Hernandez
55. Mistico

If you like Rey Mysterio, you need to know more about Mistico.  Some people think he’s better than Mysterio.

54. Bryan Danielson/Daniel Bryan

It almost pains me to put him this low on the list, but the past year has not been great for Danielson (who I almost refuse to refer to as “Daniel Bryan”).  He rightfully jobbed his way out of Ring Of Honor (a company he carried as Samoa Joe and CM Punk left) and then spent a fair bit of the year down in FCW before putting over everyone in the WWE when he came up to NXT.  They fired this guy because of a tie-pulling incident?  Something tells me he’s showing up again soon.

53. Togi Makabe
52. Desmond Wolfe
51. Ted DiBiase Jr.
50. Go Shiozaki
49. Cody Rhodes
48. Samoa Joe
47. Ryota Hama
46. R-Truth
45. Kevin Nash

For a guy who is often criticized for his work-rate and his selfishness, the past year has told a much different tale for the aging big-man.

44. Dolph Ziggler

If it hadn’t taken WWE this long to give him the Intercontinental Championship, he’d be higher on this list.  If he’d get more of a chance to talk instead of letting Vickie Guerrero (one of the best heels currently in wrestling), he’d be higher on this list.  His ring-work keeps getting better the more they let him win matches.

43. Chris Sabin

He’s the second best member on the best tag team in the sport today, but the voting was REALLY close.

42. Evan Bourne
41. Alex Shelley

The best tag team in the sport today are finally rewarded for their phenomenal work over the past few years.

40. Wade Barrett

Great as the mouthpiece / leader of Nexus.  When the storyline-ban on Nexus being involved in title situations is over, he’ll get some gold.

39. Matt Morgan
38. D’Angelo Dinero
37. John Morrison
36. Abyss
35. Hirooki Goto
34. Christian

He carried ECW and now he’s biding his time on Smackdown, helping make people look better through good in-ring performances.

33. Blue Demon Jr.
32. Drew McIntyre

His Intercontinental Championship reign was over-rated in my eyes, but that doesn’t mean he’s not talented.  He’s fairly good on the mic and even better in the ring.

31. David Hart Smith
30. Jeff Hardy
29. Eddie Edwards

See:  Ring Of Honor World Tag Team Champion & Ring of Honor Television Champion.  He owned both of those divisions the past year.

28. Edge
27. Batista
26. Tyson Kidd

He didn’t get to this spot because he’s currently one-half of the WWE World Tag Team Champions… though that helps.  He’s a great wrestler with a bright future and a fairly bright past/present.

25. Ultimo Guerrero
24. Dr. Wagner Jr

Yes, he held the NWA World Title for a really really long time, but there’s speculation that money exchanged hands to make that happen.  Wrestling is a business, so some of that is to be expected, however GuysNation thinks he doesn’t deserve to be in the top 20, especially when his matches aren’t readily available for viewing like most of the others on this list.

23. Triple-H

Unless I’m missing something, not once did Triple H hold a World title over the past year.  Not in the singles division, anyway.  Nope, he’s been working with Shawn Michaels on the final run for DX, which included a World Tag Team Title reign which largely ignored the fact that they had the belts, and then he moved on to helping put over Sheamus.  Not the best year for Triple H, but something tells me that if his acting career doesn’t go through the roof and he can stay healthy, he’s likely to be in the top 10 on this list a year from now.

22. Yoshihiro Takayama
21. Naomichi Marufuji

If you don’t know about Marufuji, it’s time you went to YouTube and got a clue as to why he belongs in the top 25.  Having seen him wrestle live a few times and countless times on screen, I know how good he is.  His accomplishments over the past year would speak for themselves, but something tells me that once you view what he can do inside the ring, you won’t even need to do the research.

20. Kofi Kingston
19. Douglas Williams

Whether it was defending the X Division Championship in TNA or competing as one-half of the British Invasion and helping revamp that division, Douglas Williams has been one of TNA’s biggest assets the past year.

18. Kane

For part of the year, Kane made other people look better.  The past couple months, the storyline Kane has been involved with has been carrying Smackdown, and he finally gets his second reign with the World Heavyweight Championship… 12 years after the first time.

17. Austin Aries

He had a reign with the Ring of Honor World title longer than Tyler Black, and most people would tell you he’s more talented.

16. Tyler Black

His extremely long Ring of Honor World title reign caused WWE to take notice (and give him a contract), so you might want to start learning more about him.

15. Shinsuke Nakamura
14. Takashi Sugiura
13. The Big Show
12. Rey Mysterio Jr.

Yes, he got another World Title reign, 4 years after his last one, but he didn’t look like a champion while holding the belt.  At least WWE gave him his own signature 7-11 straw…

11. C.M. Punk

We’d love to put C.M. Punk closer to #1 on this list.  We’ve been fans for years, with Ring of Honor DVDs to prove it.  Being a fan doesn’t mean we have to inflate him up this list higher than he should be.  He lost at Wrestlemania, failed to take the Straight Edge Society to the World Tag Team Championships, and is stuck in a lower gear currently than his talent warrants, but he’s still one of the most entertaining parts of Smackdown.

10. Jack Swagger
9. Kurt Angle
8. The Miz

He’s had two runs with the World Tag Team Championships, a substantial amount of time as the United States Champion, and although he didn’t get it at Wrestlemania The Miz did win a Money In The Bank ladder match.

7. Randy Orton

6. Rob Van Dam

5. The Undertaker

Sure, The Undertaker has been gone for a little while, but that doesn’t change the fact that he had a fairly substantial run with the World Heavyweight Championship over the past year AND he continued his Wrestlemania winning streak by winning Match Of The Year yet again.

4. Sheamus
3. Chris Jericho

He is the best in the world at what he does… but unfortunately for him, a fair amount of “what he does” is to help other people look better, so I can’t rank him any higher than this.

2. John Cena

Love him or hate him (and we’re guessing that if you’re reading this, you probably hate him), but John Cena is one of the top guys in the business.

1. AJ Styles

In our opinions, PWI got it right with their #1 overall.  AJ Styles had a great year, he’s a great talent, and no one’s going to take that top spot from him.  Not until at least next year.

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