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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

NXT Minus 6: Let’s Make History!

Bradley Jay makes history in this week’s edition of the NXT Minus 6. What kind of history is he making? Well, that’s for you to read and see!

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WWE NXT Undisputed Era Breezango

Bradley Jay makes history in this week’s edition of the NXT Minus 6. What kind of history is he making? Well, that’s for you to read and see!

This will be the most historic column in the history of history!

Less than half of Americans know that alcohol is a carcinogen. Big Booze wants to keep it that way.

6. Did you notice how many people want to make history? It’s all anybody talked about this week. I turned it into a drinking game. Every time someone said they wanted to make history, I took a shot. After 10 minutes, I died from alcohol poisoning. So much history.

NXT's Shotzi Blackheart Reveals Ember Moon as Women's Dusty Classic Partner

5. Shotzi Blackheart will make history as the first person with green hair to win a Dusty Rhodes Tag Team Classic tournament. Kayden Carter & Kacy Catanzaro will become the first tag team in history to win a DRTTC whose collective weight would qualify for 205 Live. Ember Moon will make history as the first person to leave NXT, return and win a tournament that didn’t exist the first time she was there. BTW, the tag team I want to see is Kayden Carter & Ember Moon.  

MSK Revealed After Debut on Tonight's WWE NXT

4. Johnny Gargano and Austin Theory will make history as the first mentor/mentee team to win the DRTTC. KUSHIDA will make history as the first wrestler to win in all caps! MSK will make history as having the most God-awful name of any team to win. Unless it’s a shout out to Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center, then the name is doo doo on a stick.

Killian Dain | WWE3. Grizzled Young Veterans are sssssooooooon to make history as the first team to lose in the finals and win it the next year. Killian Dain by himself will be the hairiest team ever to win the DRTTC. Bollywood Boyz will make history as the first…I can’t finish that sentence. Those gomers aren’t winning Jack Squat. 

WWE NXT Releases the 2021 Dusty Rhodes Tag Team Classic Bracket

2. Overall, it was a good start to the tournament. Every match was 3.5 stars. Nothing memorable, nothing horrible. Breezango versus Undisputed Era was the best of the bunch. It would have been better without the horribly overbooked end. I’m not sure the point of it all if Breezango couldn’t use it to pick up a victory.   

Video: Wade Barrett sits down with Tommaso Ciampa and Timothy Thatcher before NXT Fight Pit on WWE NXT - Wrestling Inc.

1. “You look like a man who is questioning if he’s still got it.” It was a filler line, but that’s the story! I’m slightly excited for Tommaso Ciampa versus Timothy Thatcher, primarily because of the Fight Pit. Right now, it’s two tough guys wanting to beat each other up. I want to see Ciampa fighting to prove he’s still got it. I want to see Thatcher fighting to crush the soul of the locker room leader. That’s the story.  


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NFL

Cook: Breaking Down The 2021 NFL Divisional Round

Steve Cook breaks down the NFL Divisional Round Playoffs, getting you ready for one of the best football weekends of the year!

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NFL Divisional Round Playoffs Aaron Rodgers Green Bay Packers

Steve Cook breaks down the NFL Divisional Round Playoffs, getting you ready for one of the best football weekends of the year!

Many experts say that the Divisional Round is the best weekend of the NFL season, and I agree with them. The Wild Card Weekend gets rid of all the riff-raff, and we’re left with teams that deserve to be there. A bitter pill to swallow for me as a Cincinnati Bengals fan whose team can never win one playoff game when they get there, due to the Bo Jackson Curse. I still have to swallow it because it is what it is. The cream rises to the top, and any team that manages to win one playoff game has earned their position on the stage.

I know everybody out there is wondering who will win these games. Fortunately, I’m here to break it down for you, and let you know what’s going to happen. After all, I did win 3 out of the 3 fantasy leagues I was in this season. Just saying, I know what these folks are capable of statistically. Ask anybody here on The Chairshot. I broke them all down and made them humble at some point during the fantasy season. Laid waste to all these folks, who all are intelligent in their own right. No disrespect to anybody I was up against. Their arms were just too short to box with God.

Saturday, 4:35 PM: LA Rams at Green Bay Packers

You know it’s a stacked weekend of action when this is the curtain-jerker. We got the best defense in the NFL going against Aaron Rodgers, on the frozen tundra of Lambeau Field. Where there will be 6,000 ticketed fans, along with first responders. Not enough to make a difference like a typical Packers home game.

As good as that Rams defense is, you don’t like them nearly as much when Aaron Donald is off the field. Donald says he’s ready to do, so does Jared Goff, so the Rams are heading into Green Bay with all hands on deck. I went with the Rams at +6.5, largely because they’re looking as healthy as possible heading into this one, and you have to be impressed with what they did in Seattle. That being said, the Packers represent much stiffer competition. And I don’t care if Aaron Rodgers has only won one Super Bowl, I’m still picking his team to win in Green Bay. They don’t have to leave Wisconsin until the Super Bowl, though they might want to leave before then.

Yeah, I know. Kentucky guy talking state smack.

Cook’s Pick: Green Bay Packers

Saturday, 8:15 PM: Baltimore Ravens at Buffalo Bills

Lamar Jackson finally got that monkey off of his back and won a playoff game. I was in a tough spot seeing Lamar compared to Andy Dalton, a perfectly competent Bengals QB that couldn’t win a postseason game. This is the closest line right now, because Vegas and everybody knows this: Once you let Lamar Jackson out of his cage, he’ll pile the bodies to the sky. One of the most fun athletes to watch of my, or anybody else’s, lifetime. I mean, if you don’t like Lamar, what do you like?

I’m a big fan of the Bills’ story, and I’d like for them to go a long way. Josh Allen is a talented SOB and fun to watch. I’m not sure he’s as fun as Lamar Jackson, but then I’ve seen many more Lamar Jackson games. This will be a big game for the future of both men, and might not be the last time we see them face off in the playoffs. I picked Baltimore at +2.5 largely because of my Lamar Jackson fandom, and the fact that the Ravens are just one of those franchises that excel in the playoffs. You always see them making a deep run. Buffalo? Well, they had four pretty deep runs, and you don’t mention any of those in Buffalo if you want to get out alive.

Cook’s Pick: Baltimore Ravens

Sunday, 3:05 PM: Cleveland Browns at Kansas City Chiefs

One of those games that will be closer than it should be for most of the game. Imagine the Browns going into an overly loud Arrowhead Stadium against Patrick Mahomes. It would be ugly. The fact that this stadium won’t be crowded as usual kind of gives Cleveland a chance. The spread is -10. I’d typically take Cleveland on those odds in this environment. Except…man, that offense is pretty awesome and I bet KC wants to put on a show. Pittsburgh couldn’t do it because they’re awful, but Kansas City definitely can.

Browns fans are hoping that the Chiefs overlook them, and the team itself is trying to use Chiefs quotes as bulletin board material, but I just don’t see Kansas City overlooking these guys. The “NOBODY RESPECTS US!” motivational tactic is as old as time and more often than not is based off of nothing. Listen, if you’ve made it to this point of the NFL season, there is somebody out there that respects you. This is the best Browns team since the days of Bernie Kosar. Just don’t ask Cleveland fans of a certain age what happened when they played an AFC West team in the playoffs. Still a touchy subject.

I’m kind of hoping the Browns go away for one simple reason: It’s awkward being a Bengals fan and seeing everybody in love with these guys. Not to be “NOBODY RESPECTS US!” guy, but I sure don’t remember the Bengals getting the same type of good vibes from the people when they were good. What’s up with that?

Cook’s Pick: Kansas City Chiefs

Sunday, 6:40 PM: Tampa Bay Buccaneers at New Orleans Saints

We got Tom Brady & Drew Brees up past their bedtime. Nah, we need to get past the old people jokes, as honestly I’m pretty happy to see a game with two quarterbacks older than me playing in it. Makes me feel not quite as old. They still got skill too, both men were in the top 10 QBR rankings for the 2020 regular season. I’m pretty sure QBR gives Brady & Brees 50 points just based off of being Brady & Brees, but they still had impressive seasons. We’re talking about their buddy Ben Roethlisberger possibly retiring, but nobody’s really talking about either of these guys doing it. Unless they just want to go out on top, which with Brees is definitely a possibility.

The Saints won the first two meetings, and we all know the old saying about teams that meet three times. We also know that it’s dang near impossible to beat a Tom Brady-quarterbacked team in the postseason. Dude’s won more postseason games than some teams have won games over the past twenty years. OK, a little exaggeration, but would you be surprised if it’s true? Betting against Tom Brady in the postseason is like betting against Undertaker at WrestleMania. You just don’t do it.

Unless it’s in New Orleans.

Wrestling Fans

See what I did there? I like the Saints because I like their skill position players better. Alvin Kamara looks good and recovered from the rona. Michael Thomas is back in the mix, which can only be a good thing for the Saints’ passing game. They also have a slightly better defense, and we all know that as much as we talk about the shiny quarterbacks, defense wins championships. Saints in a barn burner to end the weekend on a good note.

Cook’s Pick: New Orleans Saints

Thanks for reading! Fun to do the ol’ sports again, maybe I’ll do more of it in the future…


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