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411’s Wrestler of the Week 12.11.12: Year Eight, Week 36

December 11, 2012 | Posted by Larry Csonka

Welcome to WEEK 36, YEAR EIGHT of 411’s Wrestler of the Week. A quick overview of the rules to kick things off for us as a reminder…

Each writer chooses FIVE wrestlers from any promotion and each wrestler gets a point total attached to that ranking. It looks a little like this…

1st – 5
2nd – 4
3rd – 3
4th – 2
5th – 1

Then we tally up the votes and the official 411 Wrestler of the Week is crowned. But wait, there’s more! Each week the top SIX vote getters get a points value for their ranking which looks something like this…

1st – 15
2nd – 12
3rd – 9
4th – 6
5th – 3
6th – 1

…and they go towards the 411 Wrestler of the Year award to be announced each year around WrestleMania. This will be posted every Monday (the voting week runs Monday through Sunday). Let’s see who wins this week…

Larry Csonka
1) Jeff Hardy
TNA closed out their PPV in 2012 with Jeff Hardy successfully retaining the world title against Bobby Roode. The match played well off of the attack from Impact, and was worked very well by both men. Hardy looks to close out the year as champion, and makes it three months in a row for good PPV matches. Again, he may not be my first choice, but he has been doing well, minus the inner monologue. Seriously, who thought that up?

2) Johnny Gargano: Defeated SAMI Callihan at EVOLVE 18 in a really good match to retain the DGUSA Open the Freedom Gate title. While it is all the rage to marvel at CM Punk’s WWE Title reign, and I get why people do, Gargano has held his title since November 13th, 2011. He is “the guy, brother” for DGUSA, and is closing in on BxB Hulk’s 426 day title reign.
3) Christopher Daniels: Defeated AJ Styles at Final Resolution, clean and in the middle of the ring, in what was billed as their final encounter. LET THE GLOATING BEGIN!
4) Devon
5) Antonio Cesaro

Ryan Byers
1) Kenta Kobashi
One of the most storied careers in the entire history of professional wrestling came to an end this past Sunday, when Kenta Kobashi of Pro Wrestling NOAH announced his retirement on the company’s show from Sumo Hall. Kobashi, who first made his name in All Japan Pro Wrestling before splitting off from that company with the bulk of its native roster in 2001, has perhaps the strongest resume of in-ring performances of any wrestler in the modern era, be they Japanese, Mexican, or American. He also proved to be a legitimate drawing card for both AJPW and NOAH over the years, checking all of the boxes necessary to becoming a bona fide legend. We’ve seen one of the greats step down, and he deserves some kudos here.

2) Antonio Cesaro: Cesaro had his second very good week in a row, coming out on top in a four-way match against Kofi Kingston, Wade Barrett, and R-Truth on Monday Night Raw. That means he defeated essentially the entire upper-midcard in one bout, perhaps signalling that he’ll be the first of them to break through to the main event. Granted, he also dropped a fall on WWE Main Event, but who watches that show?
3) The Shield: The Shield continued to look strong all week long, laying out numerous members of the WWE roster and getting a solid vignette on Smackdown.
4) Koji Kanemoto & Minoru Tanaka
5) Sheamus

Francisco Ramirez
1) Jeff Hardy
Like it or not, Jeff Hardy is still the TNA World Champion. Successfully defending the championship against Bobby Roode at Final Destination.

2) Devon: Defeated Samoa Joe to become the TV Champion once again.
3) Kenta Kobashi: Japanese legend announced his retirement.
4) Antonio Cesaro
5) The Shield

TJ Hawke
1) Kenta Kobashi
One of the best wrestlers of all time announced his retirement.

2) Johnny Gargano: Gargano successfully defended the Freedom Gate Title against Sami Callihan at Evolve 18, which guarantees that he will be the longest Freedom Gate Champion ever.
3) Jeff Hardy: He successfully defended the TNA Heavyweight Championship.
4) AR Fox
5) Matt Tremont

Jeremy Thomas
1) Jeff Hardy
You know what, I was against his winning the title as much as anyone when it happened, but I think at this point we have to consider him a pretty successful World champion for TNA. He’s consistently maintained a high quality of matches (against high-quality opponents, admittedly) and pulled that off again last night with Robert Roode to retain the belt. TNA and Hardy seem to be a perfect fit at this point.

2) Kenta Kobashi: Much respect to a true legend of the ring hanging it up.
3) The Shield: The Shield have become the hottest angle in WWE right now. We all know how that went for most of the Nexus, but so far at least the ‘E has avoided boning the pooch with these three. Hopefully that trend continues.
4) Devon
5) Antonio Cesaro

James Gold
1) Antonio Cesaro
Cesaro had another great week in the ring yes he went 1-1 but who cares about stats, even though I think he does not fully believe in his character his in ring work is still top notch

2) The Shield: Another strong week for the three upstarts gaining the main event slot at there first PPV is a huge show of trust in them, lets hope they knock it out of the ballpark
3) R Truth: Great Dusty Rhodes style promo on Smackdown made me care about his upcoming title match against Cesaro.
4) Kenta Kobashi
5) Big Show

1) Christopher Daniels
Whether or not it truly is the *ahem* “Final” encounter between the two, Daniels won, not only to frustrate AJ Styles even further, but stuck a pin in it by using the Styles Clash. That’s how a cocky-ass heel ends a feud!

2) Antonio Cesaro: He may have lost a tag match and got upstaged by Truth on Smackdown, but Cesaro put in a hell of a performance on RAW in the Fatal 4 Way for his US Championship.
3) Jeff Hardy: Gutted it out and retained the TNA Championship, despite a massive beatdown by Aces & Eights.
4) The Shield Put a hurting on pretty much anyone and everyone in their path, and gave a solid promo this past Friday.
5) Tara/Mickie James: Mock me if you will, but these two put in an admirable performance, as I expected in my predictions, and showed that at the very least the Knockouts Division is on steady life support.

Jack McGee
1) Jeff Hardy
Jeff Hardy defeated Bobby Roode in a good match at the Final Resolution PPV. I think Hardy has been good as TNA champion and starting with the win at Bound for glory, has been having good main event matches.

2) Devon: Won back the TNA TV Title that he never lost.
3) RVD: Retained the TNA X-Division Title at the Final Resolution PPV.
4) Johnny Gargano
5) Christopher Daniels


  • Special Mention…Johnny Gargano – 10 Votes
  • Fifth Place…Devon – 12 Votes
  • Fourth Place…The Shield (Rollins, Reigns and Ambrose) – 13 Votes
  • Third Place…Antonio Cesaro – 17 Votes

    The US Champion continues to impress…

  • Second Place…Kenta Kobashi – 19 Votes

    The legend officially retired this week…

  • Wrestler of the Week…Jeff Hardy – 26 Votes

    Still your current, reigning and defending TNA Champion…

    Year-End Standings~!
    And here are the standings after week 36…

    1. CM Punk – 131 points (WWE)

    2. Daniel Bryan – 87 points (WWE)

    3. Sheamus – 69 points (WWE)

    4. Jeff Hardy – 67 points (TNA)

    5. Samoa Joe – 62 points (TNA)

    6. Austin Aries – 60 points (TNA)

    7. Brock Lesnar – 55 points (WWE)

    8. Dolph Ziggler – 54 points (WWE)
    8. James Storm – 54 points (TNA)

    10. Bobby Roode – 53 points (TNA)

    Bully Ray- 51 points (TNA)
    Big Show – 51 points (WWE)

    Kevin Steen – 45 points (ROH)

    John Cena – 40 points (WWE)
    The Ryback – 40 points (WWE)
    Kane – 40 points (WWE)

    Hiroshi Tanahashi – 36 points (NJPW)

    Antonio Cesaro – 33 points (WWE)

    Johnny Gargano – 31 points (US Independent)

    Alex Shelley – 27 points (US Independent)
    Kazuchika Okada – 27 points (NJPW)
    Alberto Del Rio – 27 points (WWE)

    KUSHIDA – 24 points (NJPW)

    Kofi Kingston – 21 points (WWE)
    Christopher Daniels – 21 points (TNA)
    Kazarian – 21 points (TNA)
    Kenny King – 21 points (TNA)
    Christian – 21 points (WWE)

    Player Uno – 19 points (US Independent)
    Stupified – 19 points (US Independent)
    Damian Sandow – 19 points (WWE)

    Adam Cole – 18 points (ROH)
    Wade Barrett – 18 points (WWE)
    Chuck Taylor- 18 points (US Independent)

    Hirooki Goto – 15 points (NJPW)
    Masata Tanaka – 15 points (ZERO1)
    CIMA – 15 point (Dragon Gate)
    Ryusuke Taguchi – 15 points (NJPW)
    Nick Jackson- 15 points (US Independent)
    Matt Jackson- 15 points (US Independent)
    Tyson Kidd – 15 points (WWE)
    Rhett Titus – 15 points (ROH)
    Portia Perez – 15 points (US Independent)
    Nicole Mathews – 15 points (US Independent)

    Karl Anderson – 13 point (NJPW)
    The Miz – 13 points (WWE)
    El Generico – 13 point (US Independent)
    Devon – 13 points (TNA)

    Tim Donst – 12 points (US Independent)
    Sweet Saraya Knight – 12 points (US Independent)
    Masakatsu Funaki – 12 points (AJPW)
    Magnus – 12 points (TNA)
    AJ Styles – 12 points (TNA)
    Zema Ion – 12 points (TNA)
    Tensai – 12 points (WWE)
    Dr. Wagner Jr. – 12 points (AAA)
    Texano Jr. – 12 points (AAA)
    Kenta Kobashi – 12 points (Retired)

    RVD – 10 points (TNA)

    Samuri Del Sol (aka Octagon Jr.) – 9 points (US Independent)
    Rey Mysterio – 9 points (WWE)
    R Truth – 9 points (WWE)
    Kurt Angle – 9 points (TNA)

    Low Ki – 7 points (US Independent)
    AR Fox – 7 point (US Independent)
    Cody Rhodes – 7 points (WWE)
    Seth Rollins – 7 points (WWE)
    Dean Ambrose – 7 points (WWE)
    Roman Reigns – 7 points (WWE)

    Sting – 6 points (TNA)
    Taiyo Kea – 6 points (AJPW)
    Lance Archer – 6 points (NJPW)
    Davey Boy Smith Jr. – 6 points (NJPW)
    KAI – 6 points (AJPW)
    Adam Pearce – 6 points (US Independent)
    17 – 6 points (US Independent)
    Shard – 6 points (US Independent)
    assailANT – 6 points (US Independent)
    combatANT – 6 points (US Independent)
    Colt Cabana – 6 points (US Independent)
    Ultramantis Black – 6 points (US Independent)
    Hallowicked – 6 points (US Independent)
    Frightmare – 6 points (US Independent)
    Mr. Touchdown Mark Angelosetti – 6 points (US Independent)

    Mark Henry – 4 points (WWE)
    PAC – 4 points (WWE)

    Michael Elgin – 3 point (ROH)
    Paul Heyman – 3 points (WWE)
    Jerry Lawler – 3 points (WWE)
    Gran Akuma – 3 points (US Independent)
    Sara Del Rey – 3 points (WWE)
    Chris Sabin – 3 points (TNA)
    Chavo Guerrero – 3 points (TNA)
    Hernandez – 3 points (TNA)
    Robbie E – 3 points (TNA)
    Christian York – 3 points (TNA)
    Genki Horguchi – 3 point (Dragon Gate)

    Jon Davis – 2 point (US Independent)
    Kota Ibushi – 2 point (NJPW)
    AJ Lee – 2 points (WWE)

    Mick Foley – 1 points (WWE)
    Shuji Kondo – 1 point (Japan)
    Akebono – 1 point (Japan)
    Dick Togo – 1 point (Japan)
    Yujiro Takahashi – 1 point (NJPW)
    Tara – 1 point (TNA)
    Miss Tessmacher – 1 point (TNA)
    Katsuhiko Nakajima – 1 point (NOAH)
    Charlie Haas – 1 point (ROH)
    Shelton Benjamin – 1 point (ROH)
    Layla – 1 point (WWE)
    Dmitrious “The Greek God” Papadon – 1 point (US Independent)
    Sami Callihan – 1 point (US Independent)
    El Terrible – 1 point (CMLL)
    Rush – 1 point (CMLL)

  • Voting began 4.09.12
  • Year-End Rankings Key:

    WWE, Raw, SmackDown and NXT-Contracted Wrestlers are represented in BLUE.

    TNA Contracted Wrestlers are represented in GREEN.

    ROH Contracted Wrestlers are represented in RED.

    US Independent Wrestlers are represented in MAROON.

    Japanese Contracted Wrestlers are represented in BLACK.

    Mexican Contracted Wrestlers are represented in MAGENTA.

    Other International Wrestlers are represented in INDIGO.


    Year One Winner: Ric Flair

    Year Two Winner: Samoa Joe

    Year Three Winner: John Cena

    Year Four Winner: Chris Jericho

    Year Five Winner: CM Punk

    Year Six Winner: The Miz

    Year Seven Winner: CM Punk

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    Larry Csonka