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Opinion

Ranking The Top 10 Championships In Wrestling Today

The Chairshot crew comes together to rank the top championships in wrestling today. Do you agree? Did AEW get snubbed? Was NXT overvalued? What about Japan?

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Finn Balor NXT Championship

The Chairshot crew comes together to rank the top championships in wrestling today. Do you agree? Did AEW get snubbed? Was NXT overvalued? What about Japan?

Last week’s edition of the Greg DeMarco Show was a fun experiment where Andrew Balaz joined Miranda Morales and myself (Patrick O’Dowd was out sick) to rank the Top 10 Championships in Wrestling Today. The concept was spawned by a text exchange between Andrew and myself, where a picture of IWGP Heavyweight and Intercontinental Champion EVIL was sporting new silver/grey hair and new gear. I added the following comment: there’s the #3 champion in the world today.

Andrew replied asking who is above him: “Drew and Keith?” I assumed the two WWE world championships would rank ahead in terms of modern day importance, but my assumption seemed to be met with a surprised response. Thus, a concept was born for the following week’s Greg DeMarco Show.

The Top 10 Championships In Wrestling Today

Throughout the process, there was a definite tiered approach that revealed itself. The top two championships stood out above the rest:

#1 – WWE Championship

Currently held by Drew McIntyre, this title combined legacy with worldwide recognition to take the top spot, but it wasn’t without argument.

#2 – IWGP Heavyweight Championship

Currently held by EVIL, this title has it all: history, workrate, prestige. In fact, I was willing to concede that it’s likely the most prestigious championship, but not necessarily the most important.

After these two, the list got interesting. As you can hear in the podcast linked below, I started asking about the AEW World Championship, but it wouldn’t appear in the next tier.

#3 – WWE Intercontinental Championship

Long considered the “workhorse championship” and a predictor for future success, the modern day Intercontinental Championship is, at times, treated like a third world title in WWE. Currently held by AJ Styles, this belt has made performers like Randy Savage, Ricky Steamboat, Shawn Michaels, Triple H, The Rock, “Stone Cold” Steve Austin, and many others. Today, it’s sometimes a mid-card belt and sometimes can main event a PPV. But history wins out and it got the #3 spot.

#4 – NXT Championship

I was really surprised at the level of support shown for Miranda’s suggestion of putting the NXT Championship this high. But a great point was made: it’s basically the new Intercontinental Championship. A predictor of success for a high percentage of title holders, amazing workrate in matches, and held in high regard among fans across many sub-groups. Keith Lee is the current champion, and you won’t find many who don’t think he’s amazing.

#5 – NXT Women’s Championship

Even though WWE didn’t stick with the equal naming of this title–and I wish they had)–Io Shirai’s NXT Women’s Championship is really an equal to the NXT (Men’s) Championship. It’s a predictor of success, the matches tend to be great, and several future Hall of Fame talents have held that championship.

Next we moved into the third tier, with me still surprised that no one would bite on the AEW World Championship. AEW is the #2 company in America, airs on TNT, and was rolling along strong before the pandemic shut down live crowd wrestling. But alas…

#6 – All Japan Triple Crown Championship

When the PWF World Heavyweight Championship joined with the NWA United Heavyweight Championship and the NWA International Championship–kinda like Voltron–in 1989, the Triple Crown Championship was born. The holder carried around all three belts through 2013, when a new singular belt was crafted. Legendary performers like Stan Hansen, Kenta Kobashi, The Great Muta, Vader, Mitsuharu Misawa, and several Mount Rushmore level names in Japan and beyond have held the Triple Crown, currently held by 7-time champ (and that’s a record) Suwama. The championship made the list for legacy and prestige, but was penalized for relevance today.

#7 – Raw Women’s Championship

The second women’s championship to hit the list, Sasha Banks’ Raw Women’s Championship was the same title won by Charlotte Flair in front of 100,000+ fans at WrestleMania 32, which really cemented the Women’s Revolution/Women’s Evolution. It fell below the NXT Women’s Championship because it’s less protected, but it’s place in history can’t be argued.

Next up we shifted into tier 4, where any number of championships could have made the cut. there could only be three, and these are them!

#8 – IWGP Intercontinental Championship

Also held by EVIL (the only person holding two championships on this list), this title has headlined WrestleKingdom in the Tokyo Dome and has, at times, been treated as a second world title in New Japan. 2020 booking has dropped it down a notch, as the double champion concept often hurts the secondary title involved.

#9 – GHC Heavyweight Championship

The top title in Pro Wrestling NOAH is filled with prestige and spectacle, currently held by Go Shiozaki. The recent acquisition of NOAH actually helped it’s status, as the future outlook for this title is brighter than it’s recent history.

#10 – ROH World Championship

Much like the two spots above it, many titles could be in the #10 spot, but the ROH World Championship won out based on history. A veritable “Who’s Who of Pro Wrestling” have held this championship, including CM Punk, Samoa Joe, Nigel McGuinness, Seth Rollins, Kevin Owens, Roderick Strong, Adam Cole (BAY BAY), Kyle O’Reilly, Eddie Edwards, Cody Rhodes, and many others.

What about the AEW World Championship?

Along with the AAA Mega Championship, NWA World’s Championship, Smackdown Women’s Championship, United States Championship, Impact World Championship, Impact Knockouts Championship, the AEW World Championship did not make the cut. Unlike the other 6 listed alongside it, this one was the most surprising to me.

The AEW World Championship, currently held by Jon Moxley, has only had two title holders in it’s short history, and that was a big crux in the argument against it’s inclusion. Much like the WWE Universal Championship–also not on this list–it’s still lacking in being taken seriously, even at times by its own company.

Did it deserve to be on the list? If this was my personal Top 10 I believe it would have been on the list. But that’s not how you make a strong list, you have to have a group effort. I think it’s fair to call it a snub, but you gotta listen to the podcast version and hear us make this list. Outside of myself, neither Andrew or Miranda (who often defends AEW) had any inclination to include this title. If we went to #11 or #12, I still don’t think it makes the cut.


Hear us develop this list by listening to last week’s Greg DeMarco Show!
The process is as entertaining as the list itself.


So there you have it, our Top 10 Championships in Wrestling Today! Let us know in the Chairshot Facebook Group, or on social media @ChairshotMedia what you think!


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Opinion

AJ’s Thoughts: Five Potential Returns

With Trips in charge and already starting to bring back some people that didn’t work in Vince’s picture, AJ got an idea. Who else could we see on the horizon radar?

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With Trips in charge and already starting to bring back some people that didn’t work in Vince’s picture, AJ got an idea. Who else could we see on the horizon radar?

With everything going on with WWE, the one thing we have all been hyped about are all of these returns. Dakota Kai made her return at SummerSlam alongside Io and Bayley and now on last SmackDown, Karrion Kross and Scarlett made their returns in a big way against Drew McIntyre and showed the Hourglass to The Bloodline.

With all of that, there have been things in the pipeline saying Triple H’s foot isn’t off the pedal so these are 5 returns from either NXT, main roster or even Try-Outs that I would love to see happen with the new regime.

1. Johnny Gargano

Now this is a name that people have been saying, “Maybe Impact or MLW” but, what about a return? Gargano didn’t renew his contract, most likely to be with his family which is a valid and amazing reason, will never disrespect that. If he were to return, there would be a handful of great reasons. Maybe a singles run with the Intercontinental or United States but with Ciampa getting limelight in the main roster from RAW, what if we get a tag team reunion?

WWE is hurting for Tag Teams and what better than to scare off The Bloodline, loosen  the stranglehold of championships with some Do It Yourself action. DIY reunion could be amazing, especially with newer faces showing up to get championship aspirations like Kross and Ciampa. Want to break the hierarchy? Do It Yourself.

2. James Storm

This one is a little bit weird and off. On one hand, who doesn’t love the Tennessee Cowboy, Jimmy James Storm? On the other, he is 45 and getting some nagging injuries as of late. So why would I say Triple H should bring James Storm back and give him something for the main roster? One of the things I said for Gargano, we have a lack of something and The Usos might need to watch two things in the rearview.

Watch your Money and your Alcohol.

Beer Money showing up in WWE would be amazing in my personal opinion. The Bloodline jump Roode, someone in a hoodie or jacket comes up and jumps them to even the fight and as soon as one Uso remained in the ring, the figure goes down and the old stomping goes off and we hear “BEER…” and Roode looks around and gets hyped up and shouts, “…MONEY!”

3. Big Cass



Since his departure from WWE, he has done something I have said since they split him off from Enzo. Take him through the Kevin Nash School of How To Big Man. ROH and Impact are great examples that he actually cleaned up and worked on what he has to do to be good in the ring. He can work the microphone, he can work the ring so we got a new big boy to take on the WWE once again.

Now I could have said Enzo and Cass to rejoin but, I’m sure the antics of Enzo will get Cass in deep water along with the fact that I already made two tag team predictions, we don’t need another. Cass brings a lot to the table and was kind of unproven in WWE because he was just the big enforcer to the more charismatic Enzo. Give this man about six months in the ring and you have your next MASSIVE problem in the IC or US Championship scene or even more.

4. Bronson Reed



The big man from down under is a former NXT North American Champion. He looked to have a good push going with that championship but he got release. If you wonder where he went… he actually made a pit stop in Impact Wrestling as JONAH with the most fire theme song in recent history I swear… I will link the theme song and Trips… please. Get rights to this theme song. I will be a bigger Bronson Reed fan.

Bronson to me is the weird man in all of this but, I think with Triple H involved, he could get something going for him with a good singles champion run or a big threat to go through like a gatekeeper of sorts. Big boy with a great amount of athleticism? Can’t really hate on that considering the last time we saw athletic bigger people were Keith Lee and… what was that one guy? Sherman Tank with a Ferrari Engine…?

5. Bray Wyatt

And the last one is the obvious one in all of this. Yes… we have Judgment Day as the somewhat supernatural dark group but we know the true successor of the supernatural and that is “The Eater of Worlds”, “The Fiend” Bray Wyatt. This time around, I don’t think we will get the Jekyl and Hyde, Mister Rogers gimmick. I believe this time around we get full darkness and mayhem. We get the darkness and the theory of reverting back to your prime.

To make a refresher… Miz went back to being the cocky narcissist after fighting The Fiend. Finn turned back to the Prince and much more. With guys like Edge returning, maybe we see the return of the Heel Ultimate Opportunist, maybe a Fiend fight with AJ Styles to get the TN-AJ perhaps. Possibilities are endless and with a great mind like Wyatt for character and execution, I think Hunter will pick up the phone and Let Him In.

– There are clearly others that I could say, or maybe even didn’t think about, but hey, that’s the Chairshot way of Always Using Your Head. Those are just five returns that could happen and hopefully you read this before RAW or SmackDown and who knows if I get any of these right, maybe I missed an obvious one or maybe we get a giant signing that nobody thought possible. Let me and all of Chairshot know!


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Opinion

King’s Greatest Hits Of Jeff Hardy

As he battles his demons, Chris King looks at some more positive moments in Jeff Hardy’s career!

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Jeff Hardy WWE Smackdown

I’m sure by now you’ve heard the disturbing news that former WWE superstar and recent AEW signee Jeff Hardy, was arrested again for multiple charges including a DUI.  Hardy has had a hard and tragic road of recovery throughout the years in multiple wrestling promotions.

Not too long ago, Hardy walked out on WWE after they were rumored to have offered the former world champion to go to treatment for his substance abuse issues. Hardy refused and said that he was better but, as we saw the demons are still lurking and got the best of him again.

I have seen some nasty comments and even some distasteful memes about the AEW superstar and felt compelled to go against the grain. Instead of kicking a man when he’s down, I’m going to put together a greatest hits for the “Charismatic Enigma.”

Jeff Hardy & The TLC Match

Everyone can say that Shawn Michaels and Razor Ramon helped innovate the iconic ladder match and you are right, but Jeff Hardy and his death-defying stunts changed the concept of the match forever. The Hardy Boyz vs. The Dudley Boyz vs. Edge & Christian and their iconic TLC match should have their wing in the Hall of Fame. The risks all six superstars took for the adoration of the crowd could have ended all of their illustrious careers. In the words of Vince McMahon, It’s such good shit!

Jeff Hardy Earns The Undertaker’s Respect

On the July 1st, 2002 episode of Monday Night Raw, Hardy delivered the performance of a lifetime nearly winning the WWE Undisputed Championship from The Undertaker in an incredible ladder match. The young up-and-comer was faced with his greatest task yet, challenging for the most prestigious title in sports entertainment. Hardy showed that without a shadow of a doubt he deserved to be in the main event scene, but came within minutes of defeating Taker. At the time of the match, Hardy was still finding his footing as a singles competitor and earned the respect of the champion and legend.

Swanton Bomb From The Heavens

When I think of the daredevil Jeff Hardy, I can’t help but think of this one crazy-as-hell stunt. At WWE One Night Stand 2008, Hardy faced off against the juggernaut Umaga in a falls count anywhere match. This match was so insane as both superstars fought into the parking lot. Hardy is one of the craziest and bravest superstars, hit a Swanton Bomb off a damn stage truck onto Umaga. It’s one of the wildest things you’ll ever see.

Hardy Wins The WWE Championship 

In 2008, Hardy finally made his way to the main event title picture alongside partner Triple H. HHH was Hardy’s mentor in some sort of way which led to the daredevil achieving his lifelong dream of becoming WWE champion. At the 2008 Armageddon pay-per-view, Hardy would face HHH and longtime rival Edge in a triple-threat match for the title. In what was a great match between all three superstars, Hardy delivered a Swanton Bomb to Edge to win the illustrious championship.

Straight Edge Problems For Hardy

The following year, Hardy found himself in the way of young-up-and-comer CM Punk who is looking to make an example out of him. Punk had won the Money in the Bank briefcase for the second year in a row and took advantage of Hardy to win the world title. What started as mutual respect between both superstars changed drastically, when Punk started throwing jabs at Hardy for his drug and substance abuse real-life issues. Punk would form his infamous stable known as the Straight Edge Society. This is a very underrated feud and you should go back and watch it in its entirety. The promos are gold.

The Hardy Boyz Return To WWE

Both Matt and Jeff Hardy found success in multiple other wrestling promotions including Ring of Honor, and TNA during their time away from WWE. Both brothers were struggling with their vices and made poor life choices but straightened up their act over the years. In 2017, the Hardy Boyz would face longtime rivals The Young Bucks in ROH. The following night the adored tag team would make their incredible return to WWE at WrestleMania 33. Matt and Jeff would be named the final team in the Fatal 4-way ladder match for the Raw Tag Team Championships. The pop these two received was insane and very much deserved. They would go on to win the match and win the titles to capitalize on their momentum.

Jeffery Nero Hardy Makes AEW Debut

From 2017-to 2022 Jeff Hardy would find himself pigeonholed in the mid-card title picture. He would have feuds with a plethora of superstars including Samoa Joe, and Randy Orton. Orton and Hardy had a nasty Hell in a Cell match back in 2018. Earlier this year, Hardy was seen running around after the 24/7 Championship, which was disappointing to see. After being genuinely unhappy in WWE, Hardy would make his AEW debut on the March 9th episode of AEW Dynamite. Hardy would come to the aid of his brother and longtime partner.

This week news broke that Hardy had been arrested for multiple charges including a DUI. While it’s easy to beat a man while he’s down, how about we uplift and try to encourage him to get the help he needs.

As a longtime wrestling fan, I have the utmost respect for Hardy and wish him the best of luck in his battle with addiction.


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