• Wrestling On Earth 2013 Year End Awards

    2013 is over. We’re hear to give our very, very, very prestigious awards.

    A few weeks ago, we gave our Whammy Awards for the lesser wrestlers, moments and memories of the year. So why not do a positive one? We are equal opportunists and love smile inducing things in pro wrestling.

    Two categories excluded were the Match of the Year and Wrestler of the Year. We’ll go more in depth with a top 5 list for those in the next few days so be on the look out for that!

    Without further ado, members of the site @TimWelcomed, @typicalROHfan and @TomBlackett give their picks for each award.

    Promotion of the Year

    Tim:

    PWG

    PWG

    There’s really nothing else that comes close to them. NJPW is great but it hasn’t been as consistent, especially lately. Hopefully in 2014 will see more competition.

    typicalROHfan:

    PWG

    I wanted to go with another option to give a different perspective from my two Earth brothers but there’s nothing else. I don’t watch NJPW enough anymore to view them on an equal footing. The other American promotions endure large ups and downs. PWG is consistently fun; all I can ask for in a wrestling promotion these days.

    Tom:

    PWG

    So, yeah, no surprises here. I’ve heard good things about the antics of the Bullet Club in NJPW but since I’m a) extremely lazy and b) deeply xenophobic, I haven’t gone out of my way to get into all that business. Meanwhile, PWG’s been really good on a consistent basis – probably not as good as previous years, but still the best thing going.

    Show of the Year

    Tim:

    WWE Summerslam

    Summerslam may have been the last WWE PPV that I enjoyed more than one match on this year. We had a decent Alberto Del Rio vs Christian match, Brock Lesnar vs CM Punk, and of course, Daniel Bryan vs John Cena followed by Orton’s cash-in. Everything since then has been a blur outside of The Shield.

    typicalROHfan:

    ROH A Night of Hoopla

    elgin

    While WWE had an excellent year in terms of television content, every PPV aside from Summerslam failed to deliver. The few TNA PPV’s did not deliver.  PWG had some a lot of very good shows but none really stood out from the others. I give Night of Hoopla the edge as it was such a unique show, especially from a company like ROH who has been hesitant to take any risks such as this one. I highly advise anyone who has yet to see this show to find it. The only show I’ve been able to watch from top to bottom twice this year. (I DID skip the quick lap dance and Satan segments and would advise that too. Otherwise, you have a glorious show.)

    Tom:

    WWE Summerslam

    What a dreadful year for pay-per-view. If ROH’s Death Before Dishonor XI had worked, then that might have been my pick but… well, it’s a Ring of Honor iPPV, so my abiding memory will be one of frustration and disappointment.

    Anyway, Summerslam. I liked it more than most and it’s certainly the best WWE show of the year, but I’m still not sure how well I’d rank it against some of WWE and TNA’s stronger PPV outings from 2011 / 2012. What’s most depressing that I can’t think of any stand-out PPV matches or moments from TNA this year – even when Impact was truly dreadful in previous years, their PPVs were generally a fun watch and had some great matches. Not so much in 2014.

    Tag Team of the Year

    Tim:

    Young Bucks

    I tried really hard to think outside of the box for this one but I would feel incredibly wrong giving this to anyone else. They are on a whole different level than every other tag team around. If Bad Influence had been booked in more exciting matches with decent opponents, then I would have had a harder time making this decision because they are pretty damn entertaining.

    typicalROHfan:

    Young Bucks

    No one else is even close to them right now. Sorry. They make me smile just about every show I see them on.

    Tom:

    Cody Rhodes & Goldust

    YEAH, I DIDN’T PICK THE YOUNG BUCKS, FUCKING DEAL WITH IT. Could this be my big play to cement myself as Wrestling On Earth’s most controversial and outspoken pundit?!? Maybe! Anyway, Cody & Goldust have been great this year. Their dynamic’s something different, there’s some real emotion behind them as a team and the reactions they’ve been getting have been insane. I’m not sure how long they can keep momentum, but hopefully for a while!

    Best Feud

    Tim:

    The Rhodes Family vs The Authority

    rhodes

    I had a huge problem thinking up feuds I have enjoyed this year. This has not been a good year for me and pro wrestling. The only one I thought was okay and well-done was The Rhodes Family vs The Authority. It was simple, had some emotional elements in it, and led to some great matches.

    typicalROHfan:

    Sami Zayn vs. Bo Dallas

    I feel I should clarify first that I think NXT is not a good program. As a whole, I’m grateful it’s an internet show with the ability to fast forward. Aside from the rare appearances from main roster talent and other random Zayn matches, the Zayn vs. Dallas feud is the only thing I would recommend.

    The main factor in this is that no feuds were that good. Rock vs. Cena? Bryan vs. Triple H and crew? TNA vs. Aces and Eights? ROH vs. SCUM? It wins by default with some stellar promos, an excellent blow off match and a red hot crowd. The new venue has the feel of a PG ECW. Bo Dallas confirmed to be the new Sabu?

    Tom:

    Daniel Bryan vs. Shawn Michaels

    Originally, I was going to go with The Rhodes Family vs. The Authority as well, but once again, I’m mixing it up and choosing a feud that’s really only been a few teases. So YEAH, I guess you could say I like to think outside the box, thanks for noticing.

    Honestly, I’ve got no idea if a Bryan / Michaels match is ever going to happen, but the hints at it have already made it the thing I’m most looking forward to in 2014. HBK’s done a terrific job of straddling the line between playing a beloved legend and a snarky antagonist in the few appearance he’s made, and Bryan… well, Bryan’s Bryan. Even after his feud with Orton fizzled out, his interactions with Michaels have shown he’s still got all the spark needed to put together something really special on a main event level.

    Best Gimmick

    Tim:

    Bo Dallas

    There were plenty of great gimmicks around in wrestling this year. People like Estonian Thunderfrog, Bray Wyatt, and… well, anything Robert Evans touched but I am going with Bo Dallas because they took him in the only direction possible that could work.

    Will this gimmick be entertaining forever? No. Will it make him a star? Hell no. However, they did manage to take someone that I thought could never interest me at all and made me enjoy him more than I enjoyed most of anything else in 2013. For a few months we all came together as Bo-lievers and angels cried a song of hope for Earth.

    typicalROHfan:

    TIE: Jervis Cottonbelly and Aiden English

    I saw Jervis Cottonbelly at a recent DGUSA show live and instantly fell in love. So charming.

    Aiden English is another NXT entity. It’s a shame he seems to be on the back burner because he was highly compelling in his first few appearances.

    Tom:

    The Young Bucks

    Everything kills me about The Young Bucks. They’ve been incredible in recent years, but 2013 really feels like a breakout for them as characters… and ironically, a big part of that has been through shamelessly ripping off others. However, even when they ‘borrow’ the gestures and attitudes of guys like the nWo and DX, they do it in such a brazen, unashamed way that it feels completely amazing. As an example of this, Nick Jackson casually commenting “hey, you know what’s a shoot… is how I’m getting sick and tired of stealing the show every week”  in the most Scott Hall-ian fashion on one of Kevin Steen’s Weekend Escapades is maybe my favourite moment from wrestling this year.

    Best Attire

    Tim:

    Prince Devitt

    Simple, stylish, classic, and a Jericho-esque jacket taken to the next level.

    typicalROHfan:

    Kevin Steen (as Kevin Steen.)

    It looks more comfortable and socially acceptable than all the other wrestling gear I’ve seen in 2013. Basketball shorts also just seems more practical to wear to a fight than underwear.

    Tom:

    Kevin Steen (as The Young Bucks’ cheerleader.)

    kevin-steen-young-bucks

    Just incredible.

    Best Commentator

    Tim:

    Excalibur

    I was trying to think of someone more “professional” for this but I honestly can’t stand any of the contenders. I could watch anything if Excalibur was talking over it. He jokes around a lot and gets away from the action but for some reason he never takes me away from the match like most would if they tried this. Excalibur is purely amazing.

    typicalROHfan:

    Steve Corino

    I’ve only heard him a few times but he’s so enjoyable as a Bobby Heenan or 90’s Jerry Lawler heel type of commentator; a position many seem to want to fill but can’t. Listening to him during the Final Battle title matches woke me up to just how good he is.

    Tom:

    Kevin Steen

    I would genuinely buy a box-set titled The Best of Kevin Steen on Commentary. A lot of credit has to go to Excalibur for being the perfect foil for when they’re calling PWG matches, but I also love the anarchy of Steen getting to do commentary for random indie shows – the one where he pretty much steamrollered the poor guy he was meant to be calling a Bucks match with was especially great, making an already fun match even better.

    Best Finisher

    Tim:

    Rainmaker

    Yeah, it’s essentially a clothesline but damn if Okada doesn’t make me overly excited every time I see him do it.

    typicalROHfan:

    Styles Clash

    I’m really bad at remembering moves and moves names. The Styles Clash has been awesome through the years including 2013 so I’m going with it.

    Tom:

    Roman Reigns’ spear.

    The spear’s a weird move; like the superkick, it gets used a lot and there’s rarely a guy who can use it in a way that it really feels like a finisher. However, Reigns just throws himself with such intensity that it seems like a match ender every single time.

    Best Merch

    Tim:

    Johnny Gargano’s Power Ranger Themed Shirt

    garganotee

    Usually I’d be like “Ah yeah, I remember the 90’s too” but I must say it fits his style perfectly and is well-done. I wish Power Rangers never existed so he could use it as his own logo.

    typicalROHfan:

    Young Bucks Pillow Case

    youngbuckspillow

    It involves the best tag team on the f’n planet, many of the best wrestlers, Super Mario and sleep. Enough said.

    Tom:

    Kurt Angle’s USA sunglasses

    kurt-angle-usa-shades

    God bless America, and God bless Kurt Angle.

    Best Podcast

    Tim:

    Colt Cabana’s Art of Wrestling

    While my interest in Colt Cabana has diminished significantly over the last two years he still has the best wrestling-related podcast even with competition from names such as Steve Austin.

    typicalROHfan:

    Cheap Heat with Peter Rosenberg and David Shoemaker.

    Rosenberg and Shoemaker provide thought provoking wrestling conversations and offer various mindsets on the Grantland Network. Podcasts with wrestling personalities are becoming easier to find but it’s often a tough task to find a great podcast with two fans going back and forth.

    In terms of a specific episode, the Steve Austin podcast with Daniel Bryan was my personal favorite.

    Tom:

    Some random podcast Paul London did.

    I figured everyone already knows about the Art of Wrestling / Steve Austin’s podcast, so why not bring attention to a pretty enjoyable Paul London interview? You can listen to it here.

    Most Improved

    Tim:

    Brie Bella

    I’ve been noticing that I don’t totally squirm in embarrassment when she wrestles now. Not saying she is great but she can have a competent match here and there unlike in the past. If she keeps improving, eh, it won’t really matter at all because of the little time WWE Divas get to wrestle but it would be nice to have another decent female wrestler on TV while we wait for Paige to get the call-up.

    typicalROHfan:

    Tommaso Ciampa

    In 2010-2011, I was the biggest Ciampa doubter and today I consider myself one of his biggest fans. Ever since his return from injury, Ciampa has been excellent. His TV Title win at Final Battle was a nice cap to his 2013.

    Tom:

    Trent?

    TRENT

    When Trent? first made his PWG debut, I was SO ready for him to fail. I couldn’t remember seeing much of him in WWE, so dismissing him instantly seemed like the easiest option. However, those first matches were really pretty good and, since then, he’s quickly become one of my favourite guys on the indy scene – he has a fun hybrid of styles, he’s likeable, he’s fun and he’s made for a few fresh matches, which are becoming increasingly rare these days.

    Most Underrated

    Tim:

    Alberto Del Rio

    He’s not the most interesting character but you can usually always bet on him having a solid match worth watching. He is very consistent in-ring but never has a storyline that makes you care too much about it.

    typicalROHfan:

    Kofi Kingston

    Kofi’s a pretty good wrestler with potential that has been able to connect with the WWE fans when given an opportunity. That potential has been boxed for so long that it’s forgotten. Hopefully 2014 is kinder to Kingston.

    Tom:

    Candice LaRae

    She’s just so good. I didn’t realise just how much I liked her until she had her PWG match with Adam Cole passed over to Chris Hero, which really bummed me out. She’s managed to make Joey Ryan matches something to look forward to, but I’m really ready for her to have a nice run outside of the tag division – again, her singles matches feel really fresh and interesting, and I’m hoping 2014 is a big year for her.

    Most Likeable

    Tim:

    Kevin Steen

    kevinsteenkoala

    Daniel Bryan is the only other wrestler that comes close to Steen’s level of likability.

    typicalROHfan:

    Daniel Bryan

    bryan

    Every time I see Bryan wrestle or just talk about life, he becomes more and more likeable. It’s impossible to dislike him. He’s like a human kitten puppy hybrid.

    Tom:

    Adam Cole

    colepup

    Possibly my favourite running feature of Kevin Steen’s Weekend Escapades is Adam Cole being ‘overly Adam’. Even with Steen antagonising him, he always seems to react in a very sunny, happy way that makes him seem really likeable.

    Most Likely From A Planet Other Than Earth

    Tim:

    Vince McMahon

    If conspiracy theorists are ever proven right about shape-shifting reptile people living on Earth to dominate the world via wealth, Vince McMahon will no doubt be revealed as one of them.

    typicalROHfan:

    Daniel Bryan

    A difficult task to choose just one. I fully agree with my partners on Earth in that Vince McMahon is definitely a vicious reptilian and Lance Storm is absolutely from another planet set to study our ways and take us down.

    However, Daniel Bryan is just too good at everything to be solely a human being. I’ve mentioned the hybrid puppy/kitten theory already so maybe Bryan came here to save us from disaster aka shows with long Miz matches.

    Tom:

    Lance Storm

    He hates libraries and the BroMans but loves The Big Bang theory. Lance Storm, I don’t understand you. I don’t understand you at all.

    Best Hair

    Tim:

    Adam Cole

    adamcolebaybay

    typicalROHfan:

    Nick Jackson

    nickjackson

    “Man, Nick Jackson’s hair looks really cool. I’m not sure what led me to think of this or why the hell I’m thinking about it at all?” – My thoughts during the middle of every Young Bucks match

    Tom:

    Chuck Taylor

    chuck-taylor-hair

    AKA ‘CM Punk’s current haircut done right’.

    2 thoughts on “Wrestling On Earth 2013 Year End Awards

    1. themosayat

      slammiversary and no surrender are underrated and possibly snubbed, but I agree with everything else.

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