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Top Guys return to the top of PWI’s tag team rankings

All Elite Wrestling

The last Pro Wrestling Illustrated list of the year arrived earlier this week. The latest edition of the magazine has its 2023 tag team rankings, aka the PWI 100. Actually, for the first three years of its existence, this one was known as the PWI 50, but last year they expanded to 100 teams.

In what certainly could be seen as an indication of tag wrestling’s standing in the modern business, the top ranked team doesn’t get the cover. There’s just a blurb for the whole list above the issue’s star, AEW’s Toni Storm in her breakout “Timeless” gimmick.

Inside, we learn that the fourth PWI Tag Team ranking is headed up by the same duo who won the first, Dax Harwood & Cash Wheeler of FTR. They also finished second last year, when their old WWE rivals The Usos topped the list.

The criteria PWI’s selectors consider are mostly kayfabe: in-ring achievement, influence on the sport/promotion, technical ability, quality of competition, and activity. The rankings cover the period from Oct. 1 of the previous year to Sept. 30 of the current one, a stretch during which FTR held AEW, Ring of Honor, AAA, and New Japan’s Tag titles. So the case for putting them first is pretty clear.

Here’s the top ten, which includes teams from AEW, WWE, New Japan/Stardom & Impact. It also applies the Freebird Rule to a couple entries:

1. FTR
2. Aussie Open (Kyle Fletcher & Mark Davis)
3. Kevin Owens & Sami Zayn
4. Bishamon (Hirooki Goto & YOSHI-HASHI)
5. Motor City Machine Guns (Alex Shelley & Chris Sabin)
6. ABC (Ace Austin & Chris Bey)
7. The Acclaimed (Max Caster & Anthony Bowens)
8. Judgment Day (Finn Balor, Damian Priest, Dominik Mysterio)
9. Damage CTRL (Bayley, Dakota Kai, IYO SKY)
10. 7Upp (Nanae Takahashi & Yuu)

Dax & Cash are the only team in this year’s top ten who were in last year’s, so quite a bit of turnover in the overall tag scene. They join Seth Rollins and Rhea Ripley atop the magazine’s 2023 rankings.

Let us know what you make of PWI’s latest PWI in the comments below. You can order a digital copy of the Toni Storm/Tag Team issue here, or preorder the print copy from Pro Wrestling Illustrated here.

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