Here we go with the Top 10 independent stars of the world as well as the top five tag teams of the world this week on the Indy Power Rankings on The Barbwire Blog; where we rank the best professional wrestlers from the Atlantic to the Pacific, from Canada to Mexico, from Europe to Japan. we’ll count down the 10 most popular wrestlers as well as the 5 most popular tag teams in the world this week, hot off the votes from the online poll as well as the votes from independent wrestling writers for the week ending May 25, 2015. Now, on with the countdown!
Indy Power Rankings for the Week of May 25th, 2015
#1 Raymond Rowe (@RaymondxRowe)-It was a VERY close vote this week as the JLIT Tournament Winner for 2015 ran into some stiff competition from Santana Garrett. That being said, Raymond Rowe came out on top, coming no lower than #2 on any of the official voters’ ballots. This is his not his first #1 ranking as he had one in very early 2014 but it’s his first in quite some time. Over the weekend he defeated Rickey Shane Page at AIW on 5/22, then defeated Nick Gage on 5/23, then defeated Tracy Williams the same night, and then defeated Josh Prohibition and Louis Lyndon to win the tournament to go 4-0 for the week. With his frequent ROH work still ongoing, we still hope to see more of him in 2015 on the indies!
#2 Santana Garrett (@BrittanyTNA)-Inarguably the most dominant female in independent wrestling in 2015…she grabs yet another high ranking this week. With her holding titles such as the SHINE, NWA Women’s, JCW Women’s, and the Battling Bombshell’s Women’s Title she went into the weekend and added even more prestige to her already phenomenal year. She defeated Nikki Adams at Masters of Ring Entertainment on 5/23 in the first round, then defeated Ronnie Nicole in the semifinals and Kacee Carlisle in the final to win the tournament to go 3-0 for the week. We say no other female has been more dominant but at this point, very few males have been as dominant. Look for her to continue to crush her competition going forward.
#3 Roderick Strong (@RoderickStrong)-If we were balloting for “Wrestler of the Year” right now, Roderick Strong would have to be at or near the top of the list. The PWG World Champion defeated Chris Hero and Brian Cage on 5/22 to retain the title and then travelled to PROGRESS in Europe and defeated Tommy End to go 2-0 for the week. With wins in 9 of his last 11 matches outside of ROH, Roderick Strong has experienced a career revival this year. Very few wrestlers in the U.S. have been as hungry and motivated as Strong this year and if you’re in his path, look the hell out.
#4 Davey Vega (@DaveyVega85)-The AIW Intense Champion had another stellar weekend as he defeated Heidi Lovelace at AIW on 5/22, then beat BJ Whitmer on 5/23 to go 2-0 for the week. With some great competition in front of him this week, he was unable to crack the Top 3, but this was highest ranking this year. After getting his first #1 ranking in 2014 in a bit of a surprise, he’d slow down a little bit in terms of getting ranked. That all changed this week as he garnered a ton of support after a flawless weekend.
#5 People’s Champ. Bryan Skyline (@BryanSkyline)-Without the fan vote, he would have been ranked, but he solidified his spot this week by dominating the online voting competition, securing more than double the votes of the 2nd place finisher. He had a very good weekend as the UPW American Champion defeated Shannon Moore on 5/22 to retain the title and then defeated Rhino and Joseph Schwartz on 5/23 to retain the title to go 2-0 for the week. Skyline has been showing a lot of potential this year and finally proved how good he can be with a very good ranking AND a win in the online voting competition with 110 votes.
#6 Shynron (@Dragon_Shynron)-One of the best high-flyers in the world makes his return to the Top 10 this week after he defeated Lukas Sharp at NEW on 5/23 and then teamed with Argus, Eddie Kingston & Ophidian at Chikara on 5/24 to beat The Wrecking Crew (The Devastation Corporation (Blaster McMassive, Flex Rumblecrunch & Max Smashmaster) & Jaka to go 2-0 for the week. Despite no fan turn out in the online voting competition this week, he has had one hell of a 2-year run as one of the very best in the world in terms of putting on an absolute show. This is his 2nd highest ranking in 2015.
#7 Samoa Joe (@SamoaJoe)-Despite his appearances on NXT, Samoa Joe is STILL tearing it up on the indies vs. some of the best talent available anywhere. Over the weekend he defeated someone who is a perennial Top 10 contender in Johnny Gargano on 5/23 at AIW. It was that STRONG win that impressed people enough to get him into the Indy Power Rankings this week with just one win. We hope to see more of him in 2015, but as most know, his time may be limited very soon.
#8 Princess Kimber Lee (@Kimber_Lee90)-Whatever her moniker she’s competing, 1/2 of Shimmer, Shine and WSU Tag Team Champions always shows up to compete. Over the weekend she defeated Juan Francisco at Chikara on 5/23; and then teamed with Jervis Cottonbelly on 5/24 to beat The Gentleman’s Club (Chuck Taylor & Orange Cassidy) to go 2-0 for the week. She’s having a FANTASTIC 2015 and this week was just further proof of that undeniable fact.
#9 Muhammed Yone-Surprisingly this is the first Top 10 ranking for this NOAH-based talent. On 5/21 he won a Battle Royal at NOAH and then followed that up when he teamed with Katsuhiko Nakajima at NOAH on 5/23 to beat Super Crazy and Captain NOAH to go 2-0 for the week. With victories in 6 of his last 8 matches, Yone has been doing good things in NOAH lately. Can he build on this ranking? We shall see.
#10 Masato Yoshino-1/2 of the Dragon Gate Open the Twin Gate Champions returns to the Top 10 this week as he teamed with Akira Tozawa and Shingo Takagi at Dragon Gate on 5/23 to defeat YAMATO, Cyber Kong and Punch Tominaga and then defeated Masaaki Mochizuki on 5/24 to go 2-0 for the week. With wins in 14 straight matches, very few have been as impressive lately as one of the speediest athletes on the face of the Earth. Yoshino just continues to do his thing at Dragon Gate, racking up wins along the way.
Others missing out/receiving votes:
Zack Sabre Jr.
Ethan Alexander Sharpe
Tag Team Top 5 for the Week of May 25th, 2015
#1 Trevor Lee and Andrew Everett-The Carolinas came up strong this week! It seemed like a little bit of a long-shot, but they travelled from North Carolina to California and won one of the most prestigious tournaments on the independent wrestling calendar when they won the DDT4 Tournament. They defeated Speedball Mike Bailey & Matt Sydal in the first round, then Ricochet & Rich Swann in the second round, and finally The Beaver Boys in the finals to win the tournament. It was a HUGE weekend for these guys as they’ve proven that they’re likely not just a flash in the pan as a tag team. They swept the official voters as they were #1 on everyone’s ballot this week.
#2 Viking War Party (Jake Parnell & Alex Rudolph @VikingWarParty)-The NEW CCW Tag Team Champions take the #2 spot this week after defeating Iron Fear (Shane Mercer & Andrew Hunter) and Tryout Show Rejects (John Wayne Murdoch & Reed Bentley) on 5/23 to win the vacant titles. This combination has been THE money tag team for the Viking War Party as they were the pairing that got themselves ranked #23 in the 2014 Tag Team Top 50. Can they do it again this year? Chances are looking good! They also finished in 3rd place in the online voting competition as they collected 58 votes.
#3 The Lionhearts (Eddie Ryan & Jason LaRusso)-Despite multiple appearances on the Tag Team poll, they had yet to make the Tag Team Top 5…until this week. The AWW British Tag Team Champions added the PWP Tag Team Titles to their collection this past weekend as they teamed with X-Pac at 4FW on 5/23 to defeat Antonio De Luca & The Bruisers (Crippler Gordon & Crusher Lomaxx) and then defeated Pretty Marvellous (Danny Walsh & Mark Walsh) at PWP on 5/24 to win the titles to go 2-0 for the week. Keep an eye on this tag team as they have been doing big things all across the UK this year.
#4 Strong BJ/BJ Strong (Daisuke Sekimoto & Yuji Okabayashi)-This tag team just keeps popping up in the Tag Team Top 5 as they move up from the #5 spot last week. The KO-D Tag Team Champions defeated Super Crazy & Mitsuhiro Kitamiya at NOAH on 5/21 and then teamed with Super Delfin at BJW on 5/23 to defeat Shisa-o, Brahman Shu and Brahman Kei to go 2-0 for the week. With 13 straight wins to their credit, this tag team has been kicking ass and taking names throughout the year. It doesn’t appear like that is going to come to an end any time soon.
#5 El Dream Team (Rey Mysterio Jr., Myzteziz, & El Patron Alberto)-It’s the only 3-man team to make the Tag Team Top 5 this week and with the significance of their victories, it would have been very difficult to snub them this week. They defeated Yoshihiro Takayama, Taiji Ishimori and Atsushi Kotoge in the first round, then defeated ACH, Moose and Brian Cage in the semifinals and then defeated fought Matt Hardy, Mr. Anderson and Johnny Mundo to a time limit draw (but eventually won after Mysterio won an overtime singles match) in Mexico on 5/24 to win the Lucha Libre World Cup. With 2 wins and a draw this week, they found a way to get into the Top 5 for the very first time. Will it be the last? We’ll see if they team again this year.
People’s Champs. Jack Spade & Maru (@MrGrappler)-Give major props to this week’s People’s Champs as they duked it out with Team IOU for much of the duration of the online voting competition and at the end of the day, they came out on top with 168 votes. They are also the NEW RCCW Tag Team Champions after they defeated Butchie Davis & Tre Blackman on 5/22 to win the titles. RCCW has produced multiple People’s Champs over the last few months and this week was no different.
Just missing out/Others Receiving Votes:
Speed of Sounds
Kobayashi, Kodaka, & Miyamoto
Team IOU-#2 in the online voting competition with 113 votes
Hamrick & Tracer X
Le Tabarnak de Team
MEM & Taeler Hendrix-#34 in the online voting competition with 50 votes
Tozawa & Takagi
Jerry Lawler & Bill Dundee
Slim J & Yehi
And there you have it, the 10 of the most popular independent wrestling stars as well as the 5 most popular independent tag teams of the world as voted by the fans as well as independent wrestling writers across the country. To check out their official web site where YOU can participate in the weekly online poll voting, visit indypowerrankingsipr.wordpress.com as well as their Facebook page at http://www.Facebook.com/IndyPowerRankings. They can be found on Twitter @IndyPowerRankin. They can also be found on Instagram @IndyPowerRankings. Don’t forget to buy their shirts at http://prowrestlingtees.com/indypower.
You can follow me on Twitter @matthewhollie as well as The Barbwire Blog’s official accounts: