AEW Power Rankings I Men's Rankings I December 17th 2021
Better late than never, here is the latest edition of the AEW Power Rankings for the Men's Singles Division.
Since our last rankings that took place in the aftermath of the awesome Full Gear, Winter Is Coming has happened and with Battle Of The Belts due in 3 weeks, lets see how the Men's Singles Division shapes up heading to Christmas and the end of 2021.
#1- Hangman Page (Non Mover)
#2- Bryan Danielson (Non Mover)
The first title defence of the Hangman Page reign saw the champion go the full hour with No.1 Contender Bryan Danielson and defend the title as per the rules of professional wrestling. However Page didn't get away with one on Wednesday night like many champs who have retained via draw in the past as Hangman hit the Buckshot Lariat only to run out of time before covering Danielson.
Would The American Dragon have kicked out? Would he have got a foot on the ropes considering his ring position at the time. We'll never know but you'd put money that Bryan will say that he would have.
AEW General Manager Tony Khan has said that Danielson is still the No.1 Contender with Battle Of The Belts or the debut episode of Dynamite on tbs the likely hosts of that match but the dynamic between the pair might have changed with the hour draw.
There was a good argument to say that Page was the underdog going into the match with his lack of experience in big matches compared to Danielson but having hit his finisher in the dying thralls of the contest, it's Hangman who will feel the most confident with Danielson with it all to prove after his second consecutive time-limit draw against a champion in AEW. A loss for the Dragon puts him back to the drawing board with so many behind him looking for a shot at the Master of Cowboy Shit.
#3- CM Punk (Non Mover)
#4- Maxwell Jacob Friedman ( Up 3 places)
Whoever wins Hangman-Danielson II could end up having to watch the game tape of the eventual match between CM Punk and MJF in preparation of a World Title defence. The verbal battle between the pair which might have been more anticipated than the physical battle has lived up to the hype but they are going to have to battle it out sometime in the ring down the line and with Punk publicly talking about keeping an eye out on the Winter Is Coming match between Page and Danielson and MJF three-peating the Dynamite Dozen Diamond Ring and the pair having one loss between them since the start of August, don't be surprised if the winner of this match faces the winner of the Page-Danielson rematch.
Should that happen, we could have dream first-time match-ups but also rematches from the past which both Punk and MJF like their chances in with Punk having successful WWE Title defences against Bryan on his record and MJF having beat Page to start his now three-year possession of the Diamond Ring. Whatever happens, the aftermath of AEW's two biggest feuds will be captivating for sure.
#5- Sammy Guevara ( Re-entry)
After a slow start to his reign as TNT Champ after being distracted by his stablemates feud with American Top Team, Sammy has defended the title twice since Full Gear coming out victorious against former Ring Of Honor World Champion Jay Lethal and former WWE Crusierweight Champ Tony Nese but his next challenge will be his toughest with a defence on Christmas Night against the inaugural TNT Champion Cody Rhodes with Ethan Page and Scorpio Sky in the background wanting a shot at The Spanish God in early 2022 should Sammy get past The American Nightmare.
Should Sammy's Christmas wish of retaining the title come true, his New Year's resolution of defending the title throughout 2022 will have a roster of wrestlers eager to break the resolution for Sammy.
#6- Wardlow (New Entrant)
Wardlow's last month can be associated with the word domination with the bodyguard of MJF using the powerbomb to go through his opponents like a knife through butter. ECW fans have compared Wardlow and his powerbomb to 911 and his chokeslam with Wednesday's performance against Matt Sydal a perfect case of evidence to back that up with the fans wanting more from Wardlow only to be thwarted by his boss.
Tensions between Wardlow and MJF escalated with Maxwell accidentally eliminating his employee in the Dynamite Dozen Battle Royal and MJF wondering aloud on Twitter where Wardlow was in the post-match melee after the MJF-Martin Diamond Ring Final despite his request that he go and find celebration drinks for Max's self-predicted win.
While fans are pining for Wardlow to have a "thumbs down" moment in his 2022, could the fact that Wardlow is on a MJF exclusive contract prohibit Wardlow from unleashing his destiny upon MJF.
#7- Cody Rhodes (Up 6 places)
Instead of a thesis on Cody's yearning to be loved, I'm just going to evaluate Cody's past 5 weeks by his in-ring results and dare I say it but he's actually been good the last 5 weeks from his performance in the 8-man tag with the Death Triangle versus Andrade and his friends from his former workplace to that completely chaotic Streetfight in Atlanta. The next week, Cody took up Sammy Guevara's open challenge for Christmas Night with a different attitude than we've seen the couple of years.
While one of the AEW fanbase's New Year resolution's is for Cody to start coming out of the heel side tunnel, one of the original OG's of AEW might take advantage of the absence of his fellow AEW originals to climb the ranks of AEW but what philosophy will The American Nightmare show the AEW public in 2022 as he tries to achieve his goals.
#8- John Silver (New Entrant)
Even with a couple of wins on the YouTube shows, it could be argued John Silver's biggest contribution to his first showing in the Men's Singles Power Rankings was his showing against Bryan Danielson the week before Winter Is Coming when he had Danielson in trouble at points in the match and in likelihood put damage on Bryan's knee which inhabited The American Dragon in the final 20 minutes of the World Title match against Hangman Page.
Silver is on the longlist of Most Improved Wrestler in 2021 with his fiery comebacks and all-around character being loved by the masses but 2022 is the most important year of his career. With expectation being higher with his friend Page being World Champ, can John Silver take TNT gold and be the second Dark Order member to win the TNT gold in AEW.
#9-Dante Martin (Up 1 Place)
To say Dante has had an eventful last month is an understatement. He joined Team Taz then turned on them and then lost the Dynamite Diamond Ring Final to MJF. The last month has certainly been the desert to finish off Dante's 2021 which has seen Dante take on massive improvement after having to take on unchartered waters after his brother Darius' injury in early 2021.
With Darius due to be back in 2022, Dante is going to have make some decisions with the high-flyer taking on Lio Rush as his mentor. Does he carry on in the tag ranks where he has to make a decision between Darius and Lio being his regular partner or does he go for singles gold. Maybe a new path could be forged for him with the formation of Trios Titles in AEW and a team of Top Flight and Lio Rush going for those belts.
#10- Adam Cole ( Up 5 places)
Adam Cole is finishing his 2021 feuding the Best Friends but his 2022 could end up being defined by his best friends, but which ones with Bobby Fish coming into AEW and rumours of another member of Undisputed Era, Kyle O'Reilly also joining the company.
Would Adam's Superkliq buddies, The Young Bucks be cool with Adam's friends from his previous place of work coming in? Are we going to see a dispute between The Young Bucks and O'Reilly/Fish?
What is without question is that Cole's last month has seen him pick up singles wins over Wheeler Yuta and Anthony Greene, wrestlers that have great reputations on the independent circuit but yet to have a big win in All Elite Wrestling. Those wins might look better this time next year should Yuta and Greene have great 2022's but for now Cole needs a big singles win early next year if he wants to climb the ranks of AEW and get a shot at his former friend and his World Title.