Pro Wrestling Illustrated‘s PWI 500 is still somehow a thing we read and react to every year, with its kayfabe ranking of the 500 best pro wrestlers in the world; mostly the United States, with a cursory glance toward Japan and an even more cursory glance toward Mexico. The top 10 list always brings ragings of, “HOW COULD ____ BE RANKED BELOW ____, DO THEY EVEN WATCH WRESTLING, THIS LIST IS STUPID AS _____.”
Still, here we are. This year’s list is topped by Seth Rollins, who is officially four wrestlers better than Kazuchika Okada, but only one wrestler better than Daniel Bryan. Bryan is two wrestlers better than Kofi Kingston who, of course, is four wrestlers better than last year’s #1, Kenny Omega. It’s science. Here’s the top 10:
1. Seth Rollins
2. Daniel Bryan
3. AJ Styles
4. Kofi Kingston
5. Kazuchika Okada
6. Johnny Gargano
7. Roman Reigns
8. Kenny Omega
9. Hiroshi Tanahashi
10. Will Ospreay
— PWI (@OfficialPWI) August 29, 2019
By topping the list, Rollins makes history, as he’s one of only four men to ever top the PWI 500 more than once. WWE interviewed Rollins about the accomplishment, and this is what he had to say.
A thrilled Rollins told “PWI,” “As difficult as it can be, this is all I ever wanted — to be in this position, to be having this conversation with you — talking about being the absolute best wrestler on the entire planet. I don’t think there is a single part of me that would trade any second of it.”
The Beastslayer joins Bret Hart, Stone Cold Steve Austin, Triple H, and John Cena as the only Superstars to earn the No. 1 spot twice.
“Those guys obviously are elite,” Rollins said. “They are in a class all their own. They are Hall of Famers. So, to be mentioned amongst them is pretty special.”
Join us again for next year’s list, where we’ll all have to pretend we didn’t see Shane McMahon’s #1 ranking coming.