The independent scene continues to shine, so much so that WWE wants a piece of it. We run down the nominees for the best non WWE wrestler of 2016.
The Trent Seven army stormed British wrestling this year from Mustache Mountain this year, with Seven putting on a phenomenal run of performances, which led to him fighting for the ICW World Title in the UK Wrestling biggest show in over 30 years. A top 2016 was capped off in style with a place as one of the favourites in the WWE UK Championship tournament next month.
Ibushi. Ricochet. Balor. Some of top names to have won the NJPW Best of the Super Juniors in the past. We can now add a 23 year old from Havering to that list, after Will Ospreay last defeated Ryusuke Taguchi to claim the preciousous crown. The sky is the limit for the young man, who produced one of the most talked about matches of the year on route to becoming the worlds top super junior against Ricochet, a match that highlighted his high flying ability.
In recent years, Kenny’s game has improved as a member of NJPW’s Bullet Club. However, in the last 12 months, he has went to a completely different level since dethroning AJ Styles to became the lead man in wrestling’s top stable. Omega has held championship gold regularly throughout the year, holding the IWGP Intercontinental title, as well as the NEVER open 6 man titles, and in August, he made history becoming the first non-Japanese wrestler to win the G1 Climax tournament, earning him a shot at the IWGP Heavyweight title at Wrestle Kingdom 11.
The question I ask is simply; where you TNA be this year without Matt Hardy. Hardy has reinvigorated his career in the last year, with his new gimmick of ‘Broken Matt Hardy’ earning rave reviews despite its extremely silly nature. His feud with his brother Jeff, capped off by their battle at Matt Hardy’s home, dubbed ‘The Final Deletion’ was a viral sensation and made TNA the talk of the industry for the first time in years. His 2016 was topped off with two more battles at the Hardy complex, ‘Delete or Decay’ against The Decay, and ‘Total Nonstop Deletion’, an entire Impact show at Hardy’s home.
For as long we remember, Scurll has been a standout performer on the UK independent circuit, with his appearance on the first TNA UK Bootcamp showing his potential to a worldwide audience. That potential was truly fulfilled this year as Marty defeated five of the top wrestlers on the indie circuit to win the Battle of Los Angeles tournament, following in the footsteps of the likes of Zack Sabre Jr and Sami Zayn. He followed that up by winning the Ring of Honor TV title in his debut weekend with the company, successfully defending it at their top PPV event of the year. A man who has perfected the heel gimmick to a tee, the sky is the limit for Scurll.
Voting in the Suplex Retweet best of 2016 awards opens next week.
The founding father and ‘higher power’ of the ESSR army, Steven oversees the operation of the Suplex Retweet podcast series and is the show’s primary host. With a broad knowledge of the industry, Steven leads discussions on a wide range of subjects from stables to WCW.
For some reason, he thinks John Cena’s real name is Allen Jones and is madly in love with Becky Lynch.