Moments of 2016: Top Guys

Moments of 2016 is a series of articles that detail the year in review for WWE, whether it be specific moments, matches or superstars who've stood out on the WWE main roster and NXT, one way or another. You'll see this series of pieces go through to the end of December.

So I'm going to be upfront here: while the first time I saw The Revival was their match against Finn Balor and Samoa Joe during the 2015 Dusty Rhodes Classic at NXT Takeover Respect and while I saw them in subsequent matches since on NXT TV, Takeover London and even their only main roster appearance to date against Enzo and Cass for the NXT tag titles, the first time I truly took notice of them and their potential was their standout match against American Alpha at NXT Takeover Dallas.

When you focus on one or two superstars specifically, as I was at the time with Bayley and Finn Balor (and Samoa Joe also), others can kind of slip into a peripheral view. But in Dallas, Dash Wilder and Scott Dawson came out of peripheral view right into vision big time in their title defense against Jason Jordan and Chad Gable. In seeing the two pairs go up against one another at Takeover, I know I had just seen the best tag match of the year in itself.

And then again at the rematch at NXT Takeover: The End and then subsequently ending on TV in a two-out-of-three fall match.

They had somehow managed to raise the bar once again in one of the best feuds of the year across any promotion and any tag division. When the quality is so consistent, you can't really complain of the output. And of total, in terms of big matches this year, you genuinely can not in the slightest bad mouth what Dash and Dawson have managed to achieve this year.

In 2016, they became the first ever 2x NXT Tag Team Champions - and the first to hold NXT belts more than once - had two amazing barnburning feuds with American Alpha and DIY and had two Match of the Year candidates at two consecutive NXT Takeovers back-to-back against the latter.

That last bit really needs emphasising because that in itself shows their talent.

They had two. Overall Match of the Year candidates. Against Johnny Gargano and Tomasso Ciampa. Back-to-back. At two consecutive NXT Takeovers.

And lets be honest, you could pick between their match in Brooklyn or Toronto, flip a coin on it and no matter how it turns out, it wouldn't be a wrong or a bad answer either way. That's how good these matches were. Now, it'd be a diservice to say Gargano and Ciampa doesn't deserve a ton of credit as well for those two matches in New York and in Toronto. They had as much a big part to play in them as Dash and Dawson did. They're as equally responsible for making those two matches as amazing as they were.

But at the same time, when you hear how The Revival is the best tag team on the planet right now - for my money, they're the best tag team on the planet for 2016 at least - it's backed up big time. They are effective heels, they fight hard (all day and all night) and they truly live up to their manta in entertaining fashion - no flips, just fists.

To say The Revival have earned their ticket to the main roster would be selling them lightly. They deserved it a while ago and here's hoping we see them sooner than later. The only question is do we see them go to Raw to be shot to the moon and take The New Day's tag titles after setting the record for the longest reigning tag team champions in WWE history?

Or do they go to Smackdown to reignite their hot feud from NXT with American Alpha? Of course, considering how Raw has treated teams like even Gallows and Anderson, it'd be natural to have skepticism of them succeeding there.

But when you help put on five of the best tag team matches of the year, including two outright Match of the Year contenders, the case is there for them to finally go up sooner than later. It's nothing less than they deserve.

Top guys? Say yeah.


Day One: The Phenomenal Year (AJ Styles)
Day Two: Grateful (Daniel Bryan)
Day Three: Here Comes the Money (Shane McMahon)
Day Four: The Rising Sun (Shinsuke Nakamura vs Sami Zayn)
Day Five: The Queen - Making history (Charlotte - 1/4)
Day Six: Fight Forever (Sami Zayn vs Kevin Owens)
Day Seven: The Boss - A new era (Sasha Banks - 2/4)
Day Eight: Shootin' from the lip (The Miz)
Day Nine: The Hugger - Our girl, Bayley (Bayley - 3/4)
Day Ten: Believe in The Shield (The Shield)
Day Eleven: The Lasskicker - Grand slam (Becky Lynch - 4/4)
Day Twelve: CHAMP, OWENS, CHAMP (Kevin Owens)

Johnny Cullen writes about games for a living and has written for the likes of Eurogamer, VG247 and Official PlayStation Magazine UK and also podcasts about games for My Favourite Game. You can follow him on Twitter - for mostly games hijinks but also WWE tweets (and be a bit obsessive over Bayley), The Last of Us, Metal Gear Solid 3 and Jonsi & Alex) - @JohnnyCullen.

The FanPosts are solely the subjective opinions of Cageside Seats readers and do not necessarily reflect the views of Cageside Seats editors or staff.