There's been quite a few additions to the already large faction roster since Revolution. This installment sees three new groups in contention.
Note: With ROH taping shows again it's obvious that many workers from AEW will also feature heavily on ROH programming. The faction rankings will only recognize win/losses that occur on AEW programming.
How Rankings are Determined:
Strength: For the win-loss records this year I am tracking all win/losses on my own. For supplemental research I use cagematch.net. Win's and losses are a team effort, if the Elite win a trios match, that counts as 3 wins towards the team. If Kenny Omega wins a singles match, that counts as one. 100%-80% gets a "high", 79%-60% gets a "mid", while anything lower gets a "N/I" (needs improvement).
Cohesion: Ability of a group to work together. If they can avoid tripping over each other or hitting each other with moves they will score higher. Points will be lost if cracks are starting to form within the group. Cohesion will be lost if a member starts working outside the group. This category is fairly subjective.
Purpose: Even if not expressly stated, most groups have some form of a "mission statement". This could range from winning championships to simply the love of violence.
Attainment: The ability to win championships. Currently there are championships from AEW, ROH, and NJPW in play although titles from Impact and AAA have also been featured in the past. I will only count belts that have been featured on camera on AEW programing. Non AEW titles will not be given the same prestige as official AEW titles.
Factions that did not place:
Death Triangle- Despite boosting their attainment score with a ROH Tag Team Championship, it remains to be seen if Death Triangle will still be a group when PAC returns.
Butcher, Blade, Bunny (also Kip and Penelope?)- I would love to include this group but Bunny only has one match this year and the relationship of Kip/Penelope with the group is tangential at best.
Baddies- Just need another member and they can be in the rankings. If Jade losses the TBS Championship it's a moot point however.
Top Flight- Dante's leg injury is a major blow to this group as his recovery will take a while. I almost put them in the official rankings, but without a 3rd member they don't technically qualify.
Los Faccion Ingobernable- I've waited months hoping that LFI would jump into these rankings and while Dralistico finally got a match on AEW programming, I'm going to need to see more before they can be contenders.
Mogul Embassy- With the announcement of a merger between Shane Strickland and the Embassy, it shouldn't come as a surprise when this newly formed group works its way into the rankings next month. As of now it's just too early.
#14 Spanish Announce Project (no change)- Technically they're down two spots due to more factions debuting this month. Last place is last place however and these perpetual basement dwellers haven't budged. A Serpentico win would be a legit surprise at this point, but Luther and Angelico aren't helping. Strength: 0%
#13 Wingmen (down 3 spots)- Yep, still here. There's potential with this group and I would like to see them involved in a mini-story on Dark, or even a pre-show feud for a PPV. Strength: 28%
#12 Trustbusters (down 1 spot)- Is Ari Davari still a member of the group he founded? He spends more time with the Varsity Athletes, yet on the ROH show he came out in support of Slim J. Lucky for me, Mark Sterling took time on a recent episode of Dark to explain that Davari is a member of both. He is unique among the roster in that he claims membership with two factions, so his stats will contribute to both. Strength: 30.4%
#11 Varsity Athletes (NEW, previously unranked)- I like this group. I like the members, I like Mark Sterling as a mouth piece, and I like their overindulgent entrance. Admitting to liking them may be like admitting to "unflavored" as my favorite ice cream flavor but I think they're a solid heel group. Strength: 42.4%
#10 Triple J (down 1 spot)- If you believe Jeff Jarrett, this team should be draped in titles if it were not for one Ref Aubrey Edwards. As it is they have zero belts and a not very good strength score. Strength: 44%
#9 The Firm (down 4 spots)- The April 5th edition of Dynamite was disaterous for The Firm. Matt Hardy openly attacked Ethan Page, costing Page in his match against Hook. Cohesion score plummeted to a "NI" (a rarity in these rankings) which is what happens when you employ people against their will. Then, in the main event, the Gunn Club lost the AEW Tag Team Championships to FTR. Attainment score also dropped into the lowest category. Hathaway needs to take stock of his group because they don't have much further down they can go. Strength: 60.3%
#8 Dark Order (down 1 spot) Despite their win % being higher than some, their purpose is still lacking. Just one successful recruitment is all it would take. Strength: 78.7%
#7 The Outcasts (NEW, previously unranked) - It's great to get an all women faction and a bad-ass heel one as well. Right now they're locked into a feud with mega-faces Riho and Willow, but it remains to be seen if this group will still be making trouble later in the year. Strength: 69.6%
#6 JAS (no change) This group lacks narrative focus, and I don't mean that as a negative. Jericho's feuding with Keith Lee, Anna Jay went after Julia Hart, Daddy Magic and Parker are trying to recruit the Acclaimed, etc. Oh, and Sammy's challenging for the World Title. Strength: 70.2%
#5 The Elite (down 1 spot)
Strength: 66.7% Mid
Cohesion: High- I can't think of any other group that has less chance of breaking up. Which will make it all the harder if Don Callis drives a wedge between them.
Purpose: High- Still Elite.
Attainment: Mid - Kenny Omega (IWGP US Title)
#4 Blackpool Combat Club (down 1 spot)
Strength: 81.8% High
Cohesion: High- Now that Danielson is firmly on board with being a hooligan, this group is a threat to the entire AEW roster.
Purpose: High- Be a threat to the AEW roster.
Attainment: Mid- Claudio Castagnoli (ROH World Champion)
#3 QTV (NEW, previously unranked)
Strength: 83.3% High- This high strength score is all Hobbs. His win total is in the double digits which is considerably higher than QT and Aaron Solo's match total combined. Hobbs may break backs, he also carries QTV up the faction rankings on his massive frame.
Cohesion: High- The QTV offices look cozy.
Purpose: Mid- Make some skits that really only work for half the AEW audience? QT's group needed a rebranding, I'm not sure this was the way to go.
Attainment: High- Powerhouse Hobbs (TNT Champion) Hobbs has a mountain to climb if he wants to make the TNT title relevant again, but his journey with the title is still in the early stages.
#2 Best Friends (no change)
Strength: 77.8% Mid
Attainment: High - Orange Cassidy (AEW International Champion) How much longer can Cassidy keep his incredible run going? He's been the fightingest of fighting champions but it can't last forever.
#1 House of Black (no change)
Strength: 86.2% High
Cohesion: High- Would it be unfair to lower their score unless Matthews and Hart get covered in tattoos?
Purpose: High- A promo from Black would be nice to reiterate the group's philosophy, but it's not necessary.
Attainment: High- House of Black (AEW Trios Championship)
Now that we're three installments into this year, we can see the ebbs and flows among the factions (except for Spanish Announce Project who have flatlined). Blackpool Combat Club made a solid gain and they started off strong in January. House of Black has some singles losses that lowered their score, same goes for Dark Order. QTV joins the rankings at a high mark but I can only see that going down.
Wins and Losses
I put Mogul Embassy on this chart because I was curious how they stacked up with the other groups.
That wraps up this installment, we'll check in again with AEW's factions after Double or Nothing late next month.