WWE Raw has always been considered the top brand in professional wrestling, or sports entertainment if you prefer to use the Vince McMahon approved verbiage. Challenged only by WCW Nitro during the infamous Monday Night Wars — a feud that will forever be inscribed in legend for wrestling fans across the world — WWE Raw has attracted the best sportsmen and most electric characters on the planet. Seen here, in no particular order, are the top 10 WWE superstars currently performing under the red banner.
The “Glorious” Bobby Roode
In 1985 I watched Wrestlemania as a child… 33 years later and almost 2 decades in this business, the day has arrived. It’s time to create my #Wrestlemania moment and make it #Glorious [@realBobbyRoode]
With an unforgettably lavish entrance topped only by a closet filled with unforgettably “ravishing” robes, the “Glorious” Bobby Roode seems to channel one part Rick Rude, one part Ric Flair, and a whole serving of smug backed up by a killer blockbuster. Bobby’s methodical, old-school style of grappling punctuated with stiff shots from the hands and a spinebuster for good measure mean that he’s a skilled and safe worker with a lifetime of experience in the ring. His TNA history speaks for itself. Roode remains the longest reigning champion in the promotion’s history, and can expect to hold the big strap someday. He just needs to go heel. Roode has held the NXT Championship once, and the United States Championship once.
I am destiny manifest #Raw @WWE [@IAmEliasWWE]
Elias is the man with the guitar, no fixed address, and a chiseled physique quite uncommon to most men you might meet living on the streets. Debuting in WWE as simply “the Drifter,” he is a rising star. Whether you love his minstrel ministrations or would rather claw your eyes and ears out when you hear the same chords being plucked on his trusty guitar, it is impossible to deny that Elias has made his way up from the lower-midcard to within striking position of WWE gold. Although he has challenged “The Big Dog” Roman Reigns for the Intercontinental Championship and lost, it would be a mistake to count Elias out. Look for the former drifter to ferret his way into a big match before the summer is out.
Matt Hardy / Bray Wyatt
In a world full of BEDLAM, it takes a truly #WOKEN ENTITY to comprehend… REALITY. [@MATTHARDYBRAND]
Two at a time may be cheating a bit, but the newest iconic duo — apologies to the very talented Billie Kay and Peyton Royce — on the WWE Raw scene has been making big waves as of late. Not only is there a sincere fan thirst for more of the bizarre antics surrounding the Woken Warriors, there has been a big push to go along with it. Not only did Hardy win the Andre the Giant Battle Memorial at Wrestlemania 34 with the assistance of former enemy Bray Wyatt, but when the two teamed up after Wyatt’s conversion to the truth of the Ultimate Deletion, they seemed unstoppable. The Woken Warriors won the tag-team championship at the Greatest Royal Rumble held in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia, and show no signs of relinquishing it anytime soon.
Tonight I defend the IC Title on its 4th continent in 3 weeks. This is what we live for. #wwebournemouth #fightingchampion [@WWERollins]
Seth Rollins was a big deal when he was the bad guy in The Shield; and he’s a big deal when he stands alone as well. With a built-in fanbase, a bad-boyish aesthetic, and an accomplished moveset, Seth Rollins is a readymade superstar for the big show. His music is aggressive and filled with sonic adrenaline, spurring the crowd to their feet when it hits hard. Complimented with a natural charisma and a fast-tempo style of wrestling that lends an aire of excitement to every move he makes, Rollins is always a pleasure to watch for the hardcore fan and the casual viewer alike. It would be a mistake to reunite him with The Shield again. Once was enough, and all three men can hold their own as singles match competitors with a bit more breathing room to show their individual personalities.
Always a ray of freaking sunshine
Little Miss Bliss, as she is affectionately known by her most fervant fans, has had a rollercoaster of a year. She defeated the oh-so-lovable Bayley at Payback last year to strip the hugger of her Raw Women’s Championship, and in doing so became the first woman to have won both the Raw and the Smackdown women’s championships. Throughout trials and tribulations, Alexa prevailed regardless of the challenge and the challenger. Bliss later humiliated Bayley in a lopsided kendo-stick-on-a-pole match, survived a fatal-five way match at No Mercy featuring rivals Nia Jax and Sasha Banks, and retained her title in the first women’s Elimination Chamber match. It was only recently that Bliss dropped the belt. During an emotionally charged disagreement with Nia Jax that spilled over into the ring, Bliss was defeated by Jax at Wrestlemania 34. Due to a shoulder injury incurred during the rematch, it is uncertain when Alexa Bliss will return to action. When she does, though, the Raw women’s roster would do well to recognize the threat that she poses.
Other superstars to watch include the former UFC Women’s Bantamweight Champion Ronda Rousey (irrepressible in her charm and impressive in her early in-ring work), Finn Balor (The Demon King… say no more), Drew McIntyre (back with a new gimmick, a new theme, and a new beard), Ember Moon (the embodiment of charm with a stunning finisher in The Eclipse), and Ruby Riott (the bad girl of punk-rock is going places, with or without her pals Sarah Logan and Liv Morgan).