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2020 YEAR IN REVIEW

All week we have been revealing our Picks for favourite Wrestlers, matches, Shows and PPVs of the 2020 over on the Facebook Page. Now, in more detail, we give you, here on the website, our picks for 2020.

2020 Male Wrestler of the Year

NEIL VAN DAM – CODY RHODES
The TNT open challenge was the best thing on Dynamite every week. We then got the swerve of Cody getting squashed by Brodie Lee. Let to a great payoff with the dog collar match. The year long will he turn heel question. Unbelievable year for Cody.

ADAM VAN DAM – ROMAN REIGNS
Scoff all you want but there’s no better pro wrestler on the planet right now than the former Shield member. Roman had such X-pac heat not too long ago that even cancer couldn’t get him over. Enter the Tribal Chief. Enter Heel Roman. Enter Paul Heyman. Since coming back at Summerslam, and even with the rest of WWE being terrible, Roman’s been the best thing on wrestling television. With a new mouthpiece, (Heyman not those glorious pearly whites) a new attitude and a new stable, expect Roman to continue to Reign throughout 2021.

JEFF JOHNSON – ORANGE CASSIDY
Yeah, I’m going there. Until the very end of the year, the guy, even in the pandemic, had the highest selling shirt of 2020. He is a merch magnet as much as Jericho is and he was in MULTIPLE high profile matches this year. Pac, Jericho, Cody and Brodie all had great matches with him.

2020 Female Wrestler of the Year

NEIL VAN DAM – MARIA MANIC
Due to COVID shutting down Ring of Honor, I will not punish Maria for her lack of work this year. She is the female version of Brock Lesnar in my opinion. Definitely do out of your way to watch the next big thing in female wrestling.

ADAM VAN DAM – BAYLEY
Women have come along way from being the bathroom break match to putting on consistently good wrestling. And no turn has coincided better from curtain jerk to curtain closer than Bayley’s turn from face to heel. No longer boxed in with a gee wilakers goody two shoes gimmick, Heel Bayley may just be the best woman’s wrestler on the planet right now.

JEFF JOHNSON – DEONNA PURRAZZO
She is the very reason I started watching Impact again. She went from not being used in NXT to being the leader of a division in Impact. Impact made her Knockout and Wrestler of the Year for a reason.

2020 Tag Team of the Year

NEIL VAN DAM – KENNY OMEGA & HANGMAN ADAM PAGE
Held the AEW tag titles for over 200 days. Incredible matches with the young bucks, Lucha brothers and FTR among others during this run. Incredible story-telling which led to the demise of the elite. Incredibly memorable year for both guys.

ADAM VAM DAM – KENNY OMEGA & HANGMAN ADAM PAGE
What makes a tag team successful? To me, a good team needs a good name and gimmick. It goes a long way in establishing team credibility. There’s nothing more annoyingly overused in tag team wrestling than 2 stud single wrestles coming together to win the tag team belts by burying the rest of the division. Having said all that, I’m gonna go against my own grain and dip into the pot of excellent tag teams and take 2 stud wrestlers who the whole time had no interest in being a tag team. Until the Page was turned on this storyline this was the Alpha team of AEW, my 2020 tag team of the year, Hangman Page & Kenny Omega.

JEFF JOHNSON – FTR
They were finally let go from WWE and we got to see just what they could do. Their match against the Young Bucks, regardless of build before hand, was one of the best tag matches of the year. Hangman and Page were great, but it was a story, these two are a TEAM.

2020 Event of the Year

NEIL VAN DAM – AEW DYNAMITE “WINTER IS COMING”
A super fun show to close the year. Capped off with Kenny Omega reaching the top of AEW. A man called Sting returned which was also epic. Entertaining under card with Cody and Darby vs Team Taz. Jericho and Frankie also had a nice little match. Good stuff.

ADAM VAN DAM – WRESTLEMANIA 36 NIGHT ONE
While the lack of crowd certainly disappointed me at the time, I’ve grown to really respect what WWE put on here. It was by no means perfect, but it worked under the circumstances. Night 2 had its own share of gems but from the top to the bottom of the card (including the much talked about Boneyard match) Wrestlemania night one was fantastic and thus is my Event of the year.

JEFF JOHNSON – NXT TAKEOVER XXX
Top to bottom, the best show of the year. There are shows which may have one or maybe two better matches on it but there is not a bad match on this card and enjoyed every second of watching it. WWE Hell in a Cell and AEW Revolution are close seconds, though.

2020 Weekly Show of the Year

NEIL VAN DAM – AEW DYNAMITE
Didn’t get much competition from an entertainment standpoint. RAW has been awful. Smack down not much better. NWA and ROH don’t have the production nor roster to compete. With that said Dynamite has been entertaining more often than not.

ADAM VAN DAM – AEW DYNAMITE
As someone whose watched weekly WWE television consistently for going on nearly 20 years now, this year I just couldn’t do it anymore. So I stopped. Cold turkey. The PPVs WWE put on still have value, but at this point I’d rather watch weekly WWE programming through their outstanding video packages. Weekly shows though? As of now, Raw and Smackdown are dead to me. That leaves Dynamite and NXT. And while NXT puts on consistently good tv, I gotta go with AEW Dynamite here. On top of consistently entertaining wrestling, you still get the old school moments like Sting returning from exhale and old legends like Jake, Tazz and Arn entertaining us as managers. This was a close battle but ultimately the best weekly show of the year goes to AEWs Dynamite.

JEFF JOHNSON – AEW DYNAMITE
Most improved, most entertaining and most can’t miss show right now and pretty much all year. Impact Wrestling have had some really fun stories and some really good wrestling on a regular basis but just not as can’t miss as Dynamite. NXT UK almost gets there too but just the hiatus hurt it.

2020 Match of the Year

NEIL VAN DAM – DANIEL BRYAN VS. AJ STYLES – INTERCONTINENTAL CHAMPIONSHIP MATCH – SMACKDOWN
This match was the reason I tuned in. It had 3 commercial breaks but the guys held me through with unbelievable story telling and great work. It is a must watch match for those who haven’t already watched it.

ADAM VAN DAM – ROMAN REIGNS VS. JEY USO – WWE UNIVERSAL CHAMPIONSHIP HELL IN A CELL I QUIT MATCH – HELL IN A CELL
While the lack of a full live crowd has certainly tempered a lot of the excitement great wrestling brings, 2020 still left lots of solid matches to choose from and while my pick might raise a lot of eyebrows – especially from wrestling purists – I’m gonna go with a match that made up for pure wrestling with pure emotion. Were there better wrestling matches? Sure. From a storyline perspective though nothing beat my pick for match of the year: Roman Reigns vs Jey Uso “I Quit” match at Hell in a Cell.

JEFF JOHNSON – WALTER VS. ILJA DRAGUNOV – NXT UK CHAMPIONSHIP MATCH – NXT UK
This is just the kind of match a real champion needs to have. Even in defeat, Ilja Dragunov was elevated to a new level in this match. Ilja played the role of the young gun with everything that just won’t say die. Both men put on a classic that more people need to see.

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