AEW officials continue to be proud of those on the roster who have stepped up during the coronavirus pandemic. One high ranking official told me that he believes AEW is putting on some of the best matches in their entire history given the circumstances. It has been a difficult road for AEW as they've had to change venues due to the shelter-at-home orders. But they've remained cool under pressure and want to continue to deliver shows in an effort to put big smiles on faces.
AEW Power Rankings - Week 26
1. Hikaru Shida
Shida proved herself as the top contender by knocking off the tough Britt Baker. I can tell you that officials loved seeing this side of Shida. They wanted her to have an edge because they felt she went too easy on Riho when she previously challenged for the AEW Women's Title. So showing no mercy against Baker by breaking her nose proved to officials that she won't be a pushover against Nyla Rose and will hold her own. Shida wanted this match because Baker had been getting under her skin and she knew this would be the match to show that she does have a mean streak in her. Officials now want Shida to take it easy to protect the fight against Rose. We'll see if she listens.
I can confirm that Cody did not want this matchup in the quarterfinals. He felt he was already above Spears after beating him at All Out and didn't think Spears had done enough to even be in the tournament, much less face him. But Spears pushed hard for this match and got his wish due to the circumstances. Cody wanted to prove a point by beating him with the figure four, a pinfall finish that hasn't been seen in years. After the match, Cody was overheard saying, "What have I been telling you for almost a year? Solid hand."
3. The Best Friends
Chuckie T and Trent believe they deserve a title shot as they did beat one half of the tag team champions. But with Hangman self-isolating, that title shot is unlikely to come anytime soon. The Best Friends were mainly happy to prove that they are the true Best Friends in professional wrestling.
4. Brodie Lee
Another win for Lee but those under his leadership remain confused. I've been told that the moment Lee shows a sign of weakness in the ring, he could have a revolt on his hands. But as long as he keeps winning, no one will go against him.
5. Lance Archer
A dominant victory for Archer as he builds momentum heading into the TNT Title tournament.
6. Kenny Omega & Michael Nakazawa
Omega was happy to re-unite with his friend Nakazawa for this match, but one person who wasn't happy was Hangman Page. I spoke with Hangman after the match and he told me, "Kenny is an idiot. What is he doing? We're the tag team champions and he's out here losing tag team matches because, why? Doesn't he know there's a global pandemic? I gave him an explicit set of rules and guidelines to follow and he's out here hugging everyone he sees. Social distancing, partner. Now I need to find a new partner because he's going to be out of commission when all of this is over. Maybe I'll call Kota."
7. Britt Baker
Baker lost, but she remains at the top of many stock boards in the AEW war rooms. Fighting through the broken nose showed a lot of heart and she was given big hugs once she got to the back, not only for her effort, but for also following protocol by trying to put a glove on before stick her hand in Shida's mouth. As a dentist, Baker is very cognizant of what is going on in the world right now and does not take it lightly. In fact, it's a big reason why she took this match. She viewed it as a win-win. Either she wins or, she wouldn't lose anything in a loss due to the circumstances. Along with her personality and talent, her brain is a big reason why those high up in the AEW brass are big on Britt.
8. Allan Angels
Angels might get a shot on Dark. But he did not impress officials in a tough bout.
9. Lee Johnson
He will get another shot on a future episode of Dark.
10. Shawn Spears
Spears had everything to gain and almost nothing to lose in this match, but right now he needs to take a hard look in the mirror and figure out where he's going. Cody seems to be right about his ceiling in AEW and those close to him say Spears has known that since All Out, which is why he's been trying to find a tag team partner. But even that hasn't gone so well for him. Spears is jusr floating in the wind right now, stuck in mediocrity. Not good enough to win a championship and not bad enough to justify a rebuild. The worst place you can be as a wrestler.
*These rankings are a satirical take on pro sports power rankings and treat AEW as such. Any reference to sources or reports should not be taken seriously.