Ranking the promotions outside of WWE
WWE is the top wrestling promotion in the world, you can not argue that. However, the wrestling world is full of countless amazing promotions that put on extraordinary matches. I have taken on the task of narrowing down the top 5 Wrestling companies outside of the WWE. Let's get into it!
#5. Ring of Honor
We kick off the list with Ring of Honor at #5. Ring of Honor has been the stomping ground of some of the best talent in the world including Samoa Joe, Daniel Bryan, Kevin Owens, Seth Rollins, just to name a few. At the height of Ring of Honor's popularity, they were producing wrestling that was revolutionary at the time and as I mentioned, has pumped out many of WWE's main event scene. While Ring of Honor is going through a rebuilding phase right now after losing The Elite, they are still one of the top promotions in wrestling. They are not the most popular promotions currently, but I believe once they rebuild and build more talent, they will re-claim their spot in the wrestling world, similar to how they started.
#4. All Elite Wrestling
This may be a bit controversial, because besides All In, they have yet to have a show with Double or Nothing a couple weeks away. That being said, even though they have not produced a show under the AEW banner, they are already one of the top wrestling promotions in the world. With signings like Chris Jericho, PAC, SCU, and The Lucha Bros, they have one of the most stacked rosters in the wrestling world. Also with them (allegedly) close to reaching a deal to air on TNT, their weekly shows will be extremely accessible. Many wrestling fans are displeased with the current WWE product, AEW is in the position to be an alternative. They are low on the list because of the fact they haven't had their first show yet.
#3. IMPACT Wrestling
Many people are sleeping on IMPACT and they need to stop. They have been putting on amazing PPV's and weekly TV for a year and a half now, and the fact they don't get the views they should is super frustrating. IMPACT, also known as TNA, has had a rocky past with a golden age of Samoa Joe, Christopher Daniels and AJ Styles to the Hogan era, many people have give up on the company. However, they are one of the best wrestling companies in the world and have been putting on some of the most solid shows in wrestling as of late. With a roster consisting of Tessa Blanchard (future WWE Women's Champion), Brian Cage, OVE, and LAX, their roster is extremely solid. They also seemed to have fixed the backstage issues they have become famous for, and as a business are slowly rebuilding. I think IMPACT suffers with not having a good TV deal and airing at like midnight on Twitch, but if people gave their PPVs and shows a chance, they would find what they've been missing. It's such a shame how underrated they are and they often get left out of lists like this, but after the past year or so of content, I could not leave them off it.
#2. Evolve Wrestling
If you want to talk about the best wrestling companies in the world that are severely underrated, Evolve is on the top of that list. Evolve as a company has always flown under the wrestling radar, but since they developed a relationship with NXT, they have been killing it. While their shows are not as big and flashy as the other promotions, they consistently put on solid - great shows, and that NXT relationship puts it over the edge for them. Seeing guys like Adam Cole, Kyle O'Reilly, Velveteen Dream, and Johnny Gargano competing against guys outside of the WWE brand is always interesting. This company might be even further under the radar than IMPACT, but the in-ring action could compete against any of the companies on this list. I also think in the coming years, Evolve will almost serve as a developmental to the developmental brand of NXT, which has been the case for former Evolve Champion, Shane Strickland. The level and consistency of their shows makes them one of the best in the world. They are one of the top independent wrestling promotions in the world.
#1. New Japan Pro Wrestling
Was there any doubt which company would be #1 on this list? New Japan is the best promotion outside of WWE in the world and in my opinion when it comes to alternatives to WWE, they are the measuring stick. I could go on for hours about why this company is #1 on this list, Bullet Club, Omega vs Okada, Styles vs Nakamura, Prince Devitt (Finn Balor), their roster (past and present), and level of wrestling is unmatched. As I mentioned with guts like Omega, Okada, Devitt, Styles, Ibushi, they are and always have been rich with top tier talent and stories. I feel like this entry speaks for itself in a way because they are so good and have been the top company outside of WWE for so long. I don't see that changing either. AEW may compete with them, but they will have to work extremely hard to replace the King of non-WWE wrestling.