#1 Akira Tozawa (@TozawaAkira)-Akira Tozawa is just taking it to a new level at this point. Last year it was Ricochet. The year before it was Michael Elgin, Kevin Steen, & Johnny Gargano. Right now Akira Tozawa is THE MAN right now as he teamed with Uhaa Nation on 2/23 at Dragon Gate to beat Dia.HEARTS (BxB Hulk and Kzy) then teamed with Shingo Takagi on 2/25 to beat MAD BLANKEY (Naruki Doi and Gamma) then beat Kzy on 2/28 to win the Dragon Gate Open the Brave Gate Title, and then wrapped up the week when he teamed with Shingo Takagi on 3/1 to beat Millenials (Yosuke (loves) Santa Maria and El Lindaman). A 4-0 record on the week. TWENTY-TWO straight wins and there’s absolutely no way he’s going anywhere any time soon.
#2 BxB Hulk-The Dragon Gate Open the Dream Gate Champion continues to prove that Dragon Gate is crushing the Indy Power Rankings, week in and week out. On 2/25 he teamed with Dragon Kid and Kzy on 2/25 at Dragon Gate to beat Ryo “Jimmy” Saito, Jimmy Susumu and Genki Horiguchi H.A.Gee.Mee!!, then defeated Mr. Quu Quu Naoki Tanizaki Toyonaka Dolphin in a non-title match on 2/28, and then finished off the weekend when he defeated Uhaa Nation on 3/1 to retain the title to go 3-0 for the week. Week after week after week, Dragon Gate has churned out #1 and #2 rankings. What’s next? Check it out next week and see if the domination continues.
#3 Will Ospreay (@WillOspreay)-No support in the online voting competition from the fans, but his 3-0 weekend helps him into the Top 10 this week as the UK once again shows up strong. The SWE Speed King Champion (and RPW British Cruiserweight Champion) teamed with Chris Sabin at SWE on 2/27 to beat Flips And Forearms (Mark Andrews & Pete Dunne) then beat Mark Andrews in a 2 out of 3 falls match on 2/28 to retain his title, and then defeated Jimmy Havoc, Andrew Everett and Johnny Gargano on 3/1 to retain the title again. If you just look at the names he beat, you’ll see exactly why he received so much respect among the official voters this week.
#4 Axel Dieter, Jr.-Germany gets some representation in the Top 10 outside of “Bad Bones” John Klinger for one of the first times. 1/2 of wXw Tag Team Champions (and Grand Bear Champion) teamed with Da Mack on 2/27 to beat French Flavour (Lucas Di Leo & Peter Fischer) to retain the tag titles, then defeated Damian O’Connor by DQ in the Four Nations Cup semifinal on 2/28, and then defeated Timothy Thatcher in the final the same night to win the cup and go 3-0 for the week. Great weekend for a guy who has been seen more in the Tag Team Top 5 than the Top 10, but he changed all that with 3 big wins over the weekend. We’ll look forward to perhaps seeing more of him throughout 2015.
#6 Brian Cage (@MrGMSIB_Cage)-“The F’N Machine” went back to work over the weekend as the FSP and IWF Champion pinned AAA Heavyweight Champion El Patron Alberto (del Rio) in a six-man match (teaming with El Hijo del Fantasma and Pentagón Jr. vs Alberto, Fénix and Myzteziz) at AAA on 2/27. He has won 8 of his last 10 matches outside of Lucha Underground and really shows no signs of slowing down as he is defending and winning titles everywhere he goes.
#6 John Rare-“The Angel of Death” almost died to get into the Top 10 at IWA Deep South’s Carnage Cup 10 as he outlasted a field of 17 total competitors to win the tournament on 3/1. He defeated Colt 45 on 2/28 in Round 1 of the IWA Deep South Carnage Cup, then Chuey Martinez in Round 2 on 3/1, and then beat Spidar Boodrow, Josh Crane, & Bryant Woods in the 4 Way Finals to win the Carnage Cup. No matter what you may think of death matches and death match wrestling as a whole, give some credit to John Rare for putting his body through hell and coming out in the Top 10 on the other side.
#7 Randi West (@ranwestwrestlin)-The 2014 Queen of the Death Matches jumps into the IPR Top 10 this week after 3 big victories. First, she defeated Mistress Burgandi at IWA Mid-South on 2/26, then defeated Thunderkitty & Sadie on 2/27, then finished off her perfect week when she defeated Ian Gauger at UPW on 2/28. Big weekend for Randi West who has been entered into the 2015 IWA Mid-South King of the Death Matches. One thing’s for sure…DO NOT count her out no matter what the field is come June.
#8 Roderick Strong (@RoderickStrong)-The PWG (and FIP) World Champion defeated Trevor Lee to once again retain his title on 2/28. This is the second straight ranking for one of the best in the world and a guy who is absolutely tearing it up on the indies from coast to coast. With titles in both Florida and California, what’s going to be next for the “Messiah of the Backbreaker” in 2015? Time will tell, but with his success so far, anything is possible.
#9 Chris Dickinson (@DirtyDickinson)-Controversy aside, very few had as good of a weekend as “Dirty” Dickinson. Despite no fan support in the online vote, his weekend was solid all the way around as he defeated JT Dunn at HOG on 2/27, then beat Kimber Lee at Beyond Wrestling on 3/1, then teamed with Angel Ortiz, Jaka, Mike Draztik & Pinkie Sanchez the same night to beat New York’s Finest (Cherry Bomb, Colin Delaney, Dick Justice, Jay Freddie & Pepper Parks) to go 3-0 for the week. With wins in 8 of his last 10 matches, he’s starting to become a force to be reckoned with this year.
#10 Kay Lee Ray (@Kay_Lee_Ray)-She is the NEW SWE Queen of Southside Champion after beating Candice LeRae, Nixon Newell, & Saraya Knight in a Fatal Four-Way on 2/28 to win the vacant title. She also teamed with El Ligero at SWE on 2/27 to beat The Righteous Army (Jimmy Havoc & Joseph Connors). With a 2-0 record for the week, it was a good way to really establish herself in the Top 10. Could this be the ranking that sets the standard for her going forward in 2015?
People’s Champ. AC Riley (@ACRileyWI)-He is now a THREE time People’s Champ (twice this year) after just crushing everyone in the online voting competition with 159 votes after defeating Maru at RCCW on 2/27. Very few are as popular as him right now.
1st Honorable Mention. Chris Hero– Defeated Drew Gulak at PWG on 2/27 and then teamed with JT Dunn at Beyond to beat Eddie Kingston & David Starr on 3/1 to go 2-0 for the week.
2nd Honorable Mention. Josh Alexander-NEW DPFC Champion (and AIW Absolute Champion) after he teamed with Ethan Page at PWG on 2/27 to lose to the Young Bucks then defeated Ricochet at AAW on 2/28 and then beat Eric Cairnie at DPFC to win the title.
3rd Honorable Mention. Kongo Kong-IWA Mid-South Champion defeated Mitch Page on 2/26 to retain the title to continue his undefeated reign as champion.
Others missing out/receiving votes:
Thomas Walton III
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Check out the 5th edition of Tag Team Top 5 Reveal on Elite Podcast Network (with guest Crazy Mary Dobson):