TNA’s Top 10 Ranking System – How It Changed The Main Event Scene

Does anyone remember the year 2010 in wrestling? I wrote several articles about it on this site in the past couple of weeks. 2010 was basically “TNA’s year”… or so everyone thought. 2010 marked the debut of Hulk Hogan and Eric Bischoff in TNA Wrestling. TNA changed so much that year from changing the day of when Impact aired to the time it aired. The ring changed and the stars changed. The whole company was flipped upside down. One of the most forgotten moves that happened that year was TNA’s Top 10 Ranking System!

Top 10 Rankings

On April 26, 2010, Eric Bischoff appeared on Impact and announced the debut of TNA’s Top 10 Ranking System. What was it about? Well, there were three people in charge of this system. They were the championship committee. They were Hulk Hogan, Eric Bischoff, and Dixie Carter. There were several factors that went into determining the stars and where they ranked in the system. These included the overall performance and achievements throughout a wrestler’s career, the TNA win/loss record of a wrestler, and online voting by the fans. The person who got the number one spot would be the number one contender for the TNA World Title. It was a big deal. So, who exactly took part in the first ballot?

The ten wrestlers were Kurt Angle, Jeff Hardy, Mr. Anderson, The Pope “D’Angelo Dinero, Sting, Jeff Jarrett, Abyss, Rob Terry, Desmond Wolfe, and AJ Styles. Fast forward to today, March 27, 2013 and look at the difference of the company’s stars!!


The first round of the voting ended on May 3rd. The winner was Desmond Wolfe. He won with 26%. The lowest was Abyss at 2%! He received his title shot on Impact against Rob Van Dam. He lost. The second round started the same night with new stars in the poll. They were Matt Morgan, Brother Ray, Brother Devon, Rhino, and Hernandez.

Now, these are just the polls. That wasn’t the official Top 10 Rankings. The first rankings came out on May 20th. While the polls were for the fans to vote who they wanted to see fight for the title, the rankings would be released after every PPV. So, May 20th rolls around, the Impact after Sacrifice and who is ranked where?

Sting vs RVD

1. Sting
2. AJ Styles
3. Jeff Hardy
4. Mr. Anderson
5 Abyss
6 The Pope “D’Angelo Dinero
7. Desmond Wolfe
8. Rob Terry
9 Samoa Joe
10. Kazarian

Some people may be asking… where is Kurt Angle? He certainly has to be on the list. Well, he was. He was ranked as #2. He didn’t want to be. He pulled himself out of the rankings and said he will work all the way up to the top spot. He will go through each person to get to #1. So, everyone after 2 moved up and Kazarian took the spot after winning a Battle Royal.

Rob Van Dam went on to fight Sting at Slammiversary. There we go! After a PPV and the new rankings came out. June 17, 2010 rolled around and we got our new rankings.

1. Abyss
1. Jeff Hardy
1. Mr. Anderson
4. AJ Styles
5. Sting
6. Samoa Joe
7 Jay Lethal
8. The Pope “D’Angelo Dinero”
9. Desmond Wolfe
10. Kurt Angle

People out: Rob Terry and Kazarian

You might be asking… three number 1s?! Yes! The championship committee, Eric Bischoff, Dixie Carter, and Hulk Hogan, couldn’t figure out who should be #1. They were at a standstill. So, they made it a three way tie! They decided to make a Triple Threat Match amongst the people who took the #1 spot. That ended in a No Contest. Victory Road comes and we have Rob Van Dam defending it in a Fatal Four Way Match. Rob… won!

July 15, 2010 comes and we have our new Top 10 Rankings. Just where do people stand?

1. Abyss
2. Jeff Hardy
3. Mr. Anderson
4. Samoa Joe
5. Jay Lethal
6. AJ Styles
7. Hernandez
8. Kurt Angle
9. The Pope “D’Angelo Dinero”
10. Rob Terry

People out: Desmond Wolfe and Sting.

How in the world can Sting be out? Well, Dixie Carter suspended him. Remember Sting tried to tell Dixie about Hulk and Eric? Did she listen? Nope! He put her hands on her and she took him out. We all know where that led to!

Hardcore Justice

The strange thing is, Abyss was suppose to fight for the TNA World Title at Hard Justice. Hard Justice became Hardcore Justice as it was in dedication to all of the ECW stars.

We never had another Top 10 Rankings after that. It only went on for about 3 months. Was it good? Did it turn into anything great?

I personally think TNA messed this up. When I first heard about the Top 10 Ranking System, I liked the idea. Instead of just naming a new #1 Contender for the title, we see stars earn the top spot. Of course, the rankings have to be logical. Were they?

One thing I did like was how they made Kurt Angle climb his way up. That is just how is character is. Working his way up. I do have a feeling that Hulk and Eric made that decision. They like Kurt and they took advantage of his real life experience of working his way up.

On the flip side, I don’t understand how Abyss got to the #1 spot. Remember when fans voted for Desmond Wolfe to be the #1 Contender? Who had the lowest score? Abyss. TNA decided to push him though even though fans didn’t want him. It’s those “Not listening to the fans” that causes some real heat within management.

The other thing that hurt the ranking system is the predictability. We see who is #1 and know they are #1 Contender for that month. We know it won’t go on any longer. Next month comes and it is completely different. I was excited when the new rankings came out, but that month was the build for that one rivalry. Not any longer.

Did you like the Top 10 Ranking System? Was it a good idea or bad idea? If you didn’t watch TNA then, do you think it is a good idea in general?

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