When Daniel Bryan announced that SmackDown Live would unveil a “Top 10 Superstars List” it came complete with the reveal of how the whole gimmick would work. Wrestlers on the blue brand would vote for “who they think is best” on the roster and use the following criteria:
- overall talent
- locker room leadership
- athletic skill
They would not be able to vote for themselves, however. The idea, per the initial announcement, was that it would help Bryan and Commissioner Shane McMahon determine “who is most deserving of future opportunities.”
A bit vague, but okay.
This week, they unveiled the first official Top 10 Superstars List, reiterating that it will “influence” how Bryan and McMahon “determine future matchups and opportunities.” See if you notice anything about the list:
10. Tye Dillinger
9. Randy Orton
8. Becky Lynch
7. The Usos
6. The New Day
5. Bobby Roode
3. Shinsuke Nakamura
1. AJ Styles
I suppose I spoiled that lead in with the headline but they’re all babyfaces.
That’s a bit strange, all things considered, but, again, we don’t really know how any of this is going to work.
Here’s Becky wondering how to rise up and how often the list will be voted on:
Natalya feels disrespected and claims the women on the list got their through pity:
Dillinger likes that he’s been recognized but wants to rise up to number one:
Charlotte, too, is eyeing the number one spot:
The highest ranked female on the #SDLiveTop10….a fitting place for the Queen…but don’t you get it wrong, @AJStylesOrg. I’m coming for the top spot! #SDLive— Charlotte Flair (@MsCharlotteWWE) February 7, 2018
AJ Styles is happy to defend it:
The #1 spot on the #SDLiveTop10 is where the #WWEChampion should be. Week in, week out I’m happy to represent #SDLive and fight for my place at the top…no matter how many competitors are thrown my way.— AJStyles.Org (@AJStylesOrg) February 7, 2018
You can never be sure in pro wrestling but all of this sure seems to make it clear there is zero legitimacy to this — I mean, come on, Dillinger over Rusev? — and it’s simply another storytelling tool. We’ll just have to tune in next week to see how they actually use that tool.