The 2019 WWE Top 25: February

Welcome, one and all, to the second edition of the WWE Top 25!

February is now done and dusted, and we’re continuing on the road to WrestleMania. There was plenty of in-ring action to go around, thanks to the usual spurts of WWE TV, as well as Halftime Heat and the Worlds Collide event. And after a loud shakeup, the new WWE Top 25 has some new faces joining the fray.

Before we begin, in case you’re in need of a refresher, here’s January’s WWE Top 25 post. And in case you’re a REALLY new face to the WWE Top 25, here’s my ‘Preseason’ edition that lays out the grading system.

Now, we’re in February, so we’re going to do things a little bit differently to start things off here. This post will be a little bit lengthier as a result. I’m going to lay out the following inside this post, in order:

  • The Top 10 TV matches for FEBRUARY ONLY

  • The Top 10 matches for FEBRUARY ONLY

  • The Top 10 TV matches for ALL of 2019, to this point

  • The Top 10 matches for ALL of 2019, to this point

  • The WWE Top 25 for FEBRUARY ONLY

  • The CUMULATIVE WWE Top 25, which will take center-stage of this post

So, let’s start this post off, shall we?


TOP 10 TV MATCHES (February)

1. Johnny Gargano vs. The Velveteen Dream (NXT, 2/20) - ****¼
2. Daniel Bryan vs. Kofi Kingston vs. Jeff Hardy vs. Samoa Joe vs. AJ Styles vs. Randy Orton (Gauntlet Match, SmackDown Live, 2/12) - ****¼
3. Drew Gulak vs. Matt Riddle (NXT, 2/6) - ****
4. Bobby Roode/Chad Gable vs. The Revival (Raw, 2/11) - ****
5. Bobby Lashley/Lio Rush vs. Finn Balor/Ricochet (Raw, 2/18) - ***¾
6. Noam Dar vs. Tony Nese (No Disqualifications, 205 Live, 2/12) - ***¾
7. Adam Cole vs. Ricochet (NXT, 2/13) - ***¾
8. Aleister Black vs. Andrade (SmackDown Live, 2/19) - ***½
9. DIY vs. The Revival (Raw, 2/18) - ***½
10. Aleister Black vs. Roderick Strong (NXT, 2/20) - ***½


TOP 10 MATCHES (February)

1. Daniel Bryan vs. Kofi Kingston vs. Jeff Hardy vs. Samoa Joe vs. AJ Styles vs. Randy Orton (Elimination Chamber Match, Elimination Chamber, 2/17) - ****¼
2. Johnny Gargano vs. The Velveteen Dream (NXT, 2/20) - ****¼
3. Bryan vs. Kofi vs. Hardy vs. Joe vs. Styles vs. Orton (Gauntlet Match, SmackDown Live, 2/12) - ****¼
4. Drew Gulak vs. Matt Riddle (NXT, 2/6) - ****
5. Black/Ricochet/Dream vs. DIY/Adam Cole (Halftime Heat, 2/3) - ****
6. Bobby Roode/Chad Gable vs. The Revival (Raw, 2/11) - ****
7. Buddy Murphy vs. Akira Tozawa (Elimination Chamber, 2/17) - ****
8. The Boss and Hug Connection vs. Fire and Desire vs. The IIconics vs. The Riott Squad vs. Carmella/Naomi vs. Nia Jax/Tamina (Elimination Chamber Match, Elimination Chamber, 2/17) - ****
9. Tyler Bate vs. The Velveteen Dream (Worlds Collide, 2/2) - ****
10. Bobby Lashley/Lio Rush vs. Finn Balor/Ricochet (Raw, 2/18) - ***¾


TOP 10 TV MATCHES (2019)

1. Andrade vs. Rey Mysterio (SmackDown Live, 1/15) — ****¾
2. Johnny Gargano vs. The Velveteen Dream (NXT, 2/20) - ****¼
3. Andrade vs. Rey Mysterio (2/3 Falls, SmackDown Live, 1/22) — ****¼
4. Bryan vs. Kofi vs. Hardy vs. Joe vs. Styles vs. Orton (Gauntlet Match, SmackDown Live, 2/12) - ****¼
5. Drew Gulak vs. Matt Riddle (NXT, 2/6) - ****
6. Bobby Roode/Chad Gable vs. The Revival (Raw, 2/11) - ****
7. Andrade/Samoa Joe vs. Mustafa Ali/Mysterio (SmackDown Live, 1/8) — ****
8. Cedric Alexander vs. Hideo Itami (205 Live, 1/9) — ****
9. Bobby Lashley vs. Dean Ambrose vs. Seth Rollins (Raw, 1/14) — ****
10. Baron Corbin vs. Drew McIntyre vs. Finn Balor vs. John Cena (Raw, 1/14) — ****


TOP 10 MATCHES (2019)

1. Ricochet vs. Johnny Gargano (TakeOver: Phoenix) — ****¾
2. Andrade vs. Rey Mysterio (SmackDown Live, 1/15) — ****¾
3. Asuka vs. Becky Lynch (Royal Rumble, 1/27) — ****½
4. Brock Lesnar vs. Finn Balor (Royal Rumble, 1/27) — ****½
5. Ronda Rousey vs. Sasha Banks (Royal Rumble, 1/27) — ****½
6. Moustache Mountain vs. James Drake/Zach Gibson (TakeOver: Blackpool) — ****½
7. Daniel Bryan vs. Kofi Kingston vs. Jeff Hardy vs. Samoa Joe vs. AJ Styles vs. Randy Orton (Elimination Chamber Match, Elimination Chamber, 2/17) - ****¼
8. Johnny Gargano vs. The Velveteen Dream (NXT, 2/20) - ****¼
9. Undisputed Era vs. War Raiders (TakeOver: Phoenix) — ****¼
10. Andrade vs. Rey Mysterio (2/3 Falls, SmackDown Live, 1/22) — ****


So, now that that’s out of the way, it’s time to showcase the February Top 25. This will be done in a condensed matter, so as to not create too much havoc here. I’ll be doing this monthly, and will have a couple of blurbs below on my thoughts on what happened this month. Anyways, on to it here.

THE WWE TOP 25, FEBRUARY

1. The Velveteen Dream (19.5)
T2. Jeff Hardy, Ricochet (18.5)
4. Aleister Black (18)
5. Adam Cole (17.75)
6. Lio Rush (16.25)
7. Daniel Bryan (15.5)
8. Johnny Gargano (15.25)
9. Randy Orton (15)
10. Tyler Bate (14.75)
T11. Bayley, Finn Balor (14.25)
13. Humberto Carrillo (13.5)
T14. AJ Styles, Drew Gulak, Kofi Kingston, Samoa Joe (12)
T18. Sasha Banks, Tommaso Ciampa, Dash Wilder, Scott Dawson (11)
T22. Nia Jax, Tony Nese (10.5)
24. Cedric Alexander (10.25)
25. Dominik Dijakvoic (8.25)

The Velveteen Dream got his first taste of championship gold to cap off an outstanding performance in the month of February. For Dream’s efforts this month, he became the top performer in the WWE Top 25 this month. Dream worked seven matches, more than anybody this month. He starred in the epic six-man tag on Halftime Heat, and then reached the finals of the Worlds Collide Tournament, a tourney that he won by defeating Tyler Bate in a sensational contest. Then, he capped it off by winning the NXT North American Championship away from Johnny Gargano in the second-best TV match of the month. A well-deserved honor for Dream, to be sure.

Maybe you’re a little surprised to see Jeff Hardy up there. I was a little bit too, but Hardy was part of some pretty great TV matches this month. He partook in the epic Gauntlet Match, was part of a great six-man tag post-Elimination Chamber and was in a fun match with his brother Matt Hardy against The Bar to close the month.

Hardy shares the honor of second place with none other than Ricochet. Remember when we were talking about match volume for him last month? Well, getting serious burn on Raw, SmackDown Live AND NXT will absolutely help The One and Only going forward. The same can be said about Aleister Black, who finished out the month at #4. Adam Cole got the nod at #5 after a heck of a run in Worlds Collide, a great performance in Halftime Heat, and partook in a great match with the aforementioned Ricochet on NXT TV.

Lio Rush was nothing if not consistent this month. Rush worked two really fun matches with Finn Balor, was involved in a tag match with Bobby Lashley against Finn and Ricochet, and was involved in the Handicap Match at Elimination Chamber where Finn won the IC Title.

Daniel Bryan’s ascent up these rankings should be fun to follow, as he was #7 this month. As we mentioned with Black and Ricochet, you shouldn’t be too surprised going forward if Johnny Gargano makes a big run. Randy Orton had essentially the same luxury as Jeff Hardy, but partook in one less match, which is why he found himself 9th. And Tyler Bate certainly had a great month between NXT UK showings and the Worlds Collide Event.

Going down the rest of the rungs here, we don’t find too many other surprises. But there was one shift at the end. Dominik Dijakovic kicked Mandy Rose out of the Top 25 after a tremendous match against Keith Lee on the final episode of NXT TV in February. Talk about coming down to the wire.


JUST MISSED THE CUT

Cesaro - 18 Points
Akira Tozawa - 17.25 Points
Lio Rush - 16.75 Points
AJ Styles, Sarah Logan - 15.75 Points
Liv Morgan, Trent Seven - 15.25 Points
Jordan Devlin, Mandy Rose, Nikki Cross - 15 Points

Now, the moment you’ve ALL been waiting for…

Presenting: The WWE Top 25, CUMULATIVE!


25. RANDY ORTON
Last Month:
NR | Points: 19
Notable Showing: Elimination Chamber Match (Elimination Chamber, 2/17)

Randy Orton isn’t working as much as he used to, but Orton made the most of every chance he got last month to get himself in the Top 25.

It started in a very solid singles match against Mustafa Ali at the beginning of the month. Then, Orton… okay, yes, he was in the Gauntlet Match for like, 30 seconds at most. But if you’re in a match, you get the points, so he earned 4.25 points for that effort. Then he was in the Elimination Chamber and had a very solid showing in what was a very good match. Orton rounded things out with a good showing in the six-man tag match on the penultimate SmackDown Live of February.

Orton should be a fascinating case going forward. Like we mentioned, he’s obviously not working as much as he used to. But, he did have a match every single week but one in February. So, will we see that kind of output in March? Perhaps we will, and if we do, we could see The Viper slither up the rungs.

T23. BECKY LYNCH, BOBBY LASHLEY
Last Month:
5th (Becky, -18) // 15th (Lashley, -8) | Points: 19.5
Notable Showing: vs. Finn/Ricochet w/ Lio Rush (Raw, 2/18)

We’ve got ourselves a tie at 23rd.

Becky Lynch has the unfortunate honor of having the biggest drop of anyone in the rankings. Considering she had no matches in the month of February though? It’s not too surprising that she took this pitfall. Given the scope, you should expect a steady rise back up the charts as time goes on for her.

Bobby Lashley, meanwhile, falls down to 23rd after sitting at 15th last month. Lashley’s best effort was in a tag team match with Lio Rush against the team of IC Champion Finn Balor and Ricochet. Other than that though, the cupboard ran pretty dry. His IC Championship Handicap Match was solid enough, but his six-man tag with Drew McIntyre and Baron Corbin against Balor, Kurt Angle and Braun Strowman was a lengthy match that missed the mark.

But considering how things have gone for both of these two, I wouldn’t expect to see either of them tied in the same spot after March.

22. DREW MCINTYRE
Last Month:
9th (-13) | Points: 19.75
Notable Showing: vs. Dean Ambrose (No Disqualifications, Raw, 2/25)

2019 has been a mixed bag for Drew McIntyre, but his stock certainly took a downturn. After placing 9th in the January rankings, McIntyre stands 22nd in the rankings after the month of February.

His best performance certainly came in a No DQ match on the final episode of Raw in February. Before that though was a lot of not-so-good. Part of that is perhaps due with how stale the Raw upper-card has gotten over the past few months, but like with many other cases: I can only grade what I see in front of me. And he had four matches that were given two stars or less this month.

Drew Mac has a chance to right the ship and do better in March. By the looks of things, he may very well have that chance. There’s plenty of potential there for better, but he had the second biggest drop of anyone in the rankings, and he did so despite wrestling five matches this month. So “disappointing” is definitely the word for Drew’s February.

21. HUMBERTO CARRILLO
Last Month:
NR | Points: 20.25
Notable Showing: vs. Velveteen Dream (Worlds Collide, 2/2)

Humberto Carrillo is becoming a bit of a cult favorite on 205 Live, and for good reason.

Carrillo has been shining for a bit now. He nearly made it into the Top 25 in January, but fell just a little short. But there was no denying him after his February. He performed very well in the Worlds Collide event, shining especially against the winner, Velveteen Dream. He had a good match against TJP, in what wound up being TJP’s final match with the company, and was in a fun tag on NXT with newcomer Stacey Ervin Jr. against the high-energy tag team known as The Street Profits.

Reading between the lines, a big run in the Cruiserweight Championship #1 Contender’s Tournament could be in the works for Carrillo. He’s starting off against the great Oney Lorcan, which could absolutely help his cause for March. He’s a rising star, and you should probably be paying lots of attention to if you already aren’t.

20. SHEAMUS
Last Month:
14th (-6) | Points: 20.5
Notable Showing: vs. DIY w/ Cesaro (SmackDown Live, 2/19)

While his teammate Cesaro is on the outside looking in this month, Sheamus remains inside the Top 25 after February has come and gone.

Sheamus worked two matches this month, and that’s all he needed to be in the mix. He did slip from 14th to 20th, but a light workload will certainly do that. The Bar definitely performed well in those tag matches, competing against DIY and The Hardy Boyz in some fun TV tags on SmackDown Live.

Everything in the SDL tag scene will become clearer after Fastlane comes and gone, most likely, so we’ll see what happens with Sheamus going forward. But for now, he stays in the mix despite the very light effort in February.

19. RONDA ROUSEY
Last Month:
8th (-11) | Points: 20.75
Notable Showing: vs. Ruby Riott (Raw, 2/18)

It wasn’t the best month for Ronda Rousey.

Despite wrestling five matches in the month of February, two behind the leader in Velveteen Dream, only one of them got a grade of three stars or better from me. She three matches that didn’t go no more than five minutes, dusting up all of Riott Squad in the process. That included a total dud against Ruby Riott at Elimination Chamber, a disappointment in just about every facet.

The two more than made up for it the following night on Raw, but Rousey ended with a whimper in a tag match against Riott Squad with Natalya by her side. The match really just did not hit with me, and as a result, Rousey slid way down to 19th after being 8th last month.

There’s zero telling of what’s to come as far as TV matches go for her this month. It doesn’t appear likely that she’ll be wrestling at Fastlane, so she’s going to have to show out and perform better in March to avoid slipping out entirely. There is plenty of competition behind her, but she’s certainly capable of much better. It wasn’t her fault entirely, but I can only judge what I see. And she had a disappointing month, and found herself just on the inside of the Top 20.

18. ADAM COLE
Last Month:
NR | Points: 21.5
Notable Showing: Halftime Heat Six-Man Tag (Halftime Heat, 2/3)

Much like his other peers from NXT who made their way on this list this month, the only thing stopping Adam Cole from showing up around here was Adam Cole.

Cole had a great month of February that started off in the Worlds Collide event. Cole had some great showings, including a match against Tyler Bate that caught my attention and many others. He also had a very good match against Keith Lee in that tournament that drew attention his way, as well.

Undisputed Era’s leader shined in the Halftime Heat spectacle and had a very good TV match against Ricochet. While he wasn’t pegged for primetime like is other peers, Cole should continue to be a focal point on NXT TV going forward. And hopefully enough to keep him in contention for this spot going forward.

17. ALEISTER BLACK
Last Month:
NR | Points: 21.75
Notable Showing: Halftime Heat Six-Man Tag (Halftime Heat, 2/3)

After a quiet January, Aleister Black has finessed his way into the Top 25.

Black was part of some very good NXT matches this month. He partook in the celebrated Halftime Heat encounter, and also fought Roderick Strong in what was a very good TV match on the penultimate episode of NXT TV in February.

Aleister also jumped into the fold on Raw and SmackDown and had some very good showings there, as well. His match against Andrade, in particular, was a stirring performance, as was his tag match with Ricochet against The Revival on Raw on February 25.

Black certainly has plenty of potential to make moves if this type of production continues. He had a terrific month of February and certainly deserves plenty of recognition for it.

16. SETH ROLLINS
Last Month:
4 (-12) | Points: 22.25
Notable Showing: N/A

Despite not working a single match in February, Seth Rollins still winds up in the rankings.

Rollins now sits 16th after a fabulous month of January that had him all the way up at 4th. But them’s are the breaks when you don’t work at all.

That will likely change come March, as it seems they’re holding him off a bit so that he’s ready to rock for WrestleMania. You should probably expect a better finish for him after March has come and gone as a result.

15. DEAN AMBROSE
Last Month:
7th (-8) | Points: 22.5
Notable Showing: vs. Drew McIntyre (No Disqualifications, Raw, 2/25)

It wasn’t the greatest month for Dean Ambrose, but he still managed to not lose too much ground.

After a Top 10 finish in January, Ambrose finished the month of February at 15th. This with his highest-graded match being 3.25, and it came on the final Monday of the month, no less, in a No DQ match against Drew McIntyre.

Given that it seems in the cards that Ambrose will be working with the same, usual suspects, it is a wonder what will happen to him after March. I’d project a slide here, but honestly, I didn’t expect him to be in the Top 10 and the Top 15 in the first two months of the year. So really, anything is possible as long as he gets the workload and no one behind him catches up to him.

14. KOFI KINGSTON
Last Month:
NR | Points: 22.75
Notable Showing: Gauntlet Match (SmackDown Live, 2/12)

Kofimania is the real deal, baby. Kofi Kingston’s February effort lands him 14th in the WWE Top 25.

Kingston wasn’t supposed to be here, and that means multiple things in this instance. Given how things transpired, it’s probably likely that his spot here would be Mustafa Ali’s. Remember: Ali was tied for 19th last month, having racked up 11.5 points. Given that Kingston picked up 12 points, 23.5 would’ve once again tied Ali with Samoa Joe for a Top 10 appearance.

But that’s purely a what-if. We deal with realities, and the reality was that Kingston had a tremendous showcase this month. Between the Gauntlet Match, the Elimination Chamber and the Six-Man Tag that he was involved in, Kingston showed out in a big way. His performance in the tag team match on the final SmackDown of February sealed up his spot inside the Top 15 and assured him that he’ll continue ticking onward as March approaches.

Given what’s on the horizon, it’s very possible that Kingston could land in the Top 10 very, very soon.

T11. DANIEL BRYAN, JEFF HARDY, THE VELVETEEN DREAM
Last Month:
NR- | Points: 23
Notable Showing:
Bryan - WWE Championship Elimination Chamber Match (Elimination Chamber, 2/17)
Hardy - Gauntlet Match (SmackDown Live, 2/12)
Dream - vs. Johnny Gargano (NXT, 2/20)

We have ourselves a three-way tie featuring some big, big stars. And for the second month in a row, we have a tie at the #11 position.

Daniel Bryan, Jeff Hardy and The Velveteen Dream are all knotted up at 23 points after the month of February. The biggest surprise here may very well be Jeff. It’s well known that Daniel Bryan is the best wrestler on the planet, and February was extremely kind to him in that regard. Bryan worked a lot more than he did in January, and showed out tremendously in each effort he had. Especially so in his segments with Kofi Kingston in the Elimination Chamber and the Gauntlet Match on SmackDown Live. These types of efforts are the norm, and it won’t be surprising if he makes it into the Top 10 after March.

Dream, meanwhile, was merely a victim of lack of opportunity in January. He shined in February, as we already mentioned. He gained serious ground with the seven matches he competed in, notably the one where he became the North American Champion. Velveteen won’t be short on opportunities as TakeOver: New York looms in the distance, so expect him to have a heavy presence here.

Jeff Hardy though? Jeff has been a great TV worker this year and is showing tremendous versatility. He was the second-best worker per #TheMath this past month, tied with Ricochet, as we already profiled. It’s really extraordinary when you put everything into perspective. But Hardy is having a tremendous renaissance in 2019. As long as good fortune continues to bless him, we’ll likely continue to see his name here going forward.

10. SAMOA JOE
Last Month:
19th (+9) | Points: 23.5
Notable Showing: WWE Championship Elimination Chamber Match (Elimination Chamber, 2/17)

Samoa Joe obviously isn’t the worker that he once was. But Joe is still doing well enough and participating enough to get himself Top 10 status after February.

Joe partook in three great matches this past month. He first showed out in the Gauntlet Match before Elimination Chamber. He certainly had a great effort in that, helping Kofi Kingston look like a million bucks. And while he was eliminated early on in the Elimination Chamber match that ensuing Sunday, Joe still received 4.25 points for that match, which helped lift him up in a big way.

What sealed up his spot was the six-man tag that took place two nights after Elimination Chamber. Joe and Co. received enough points to gain serious enough ground to sneak into the Top 10.

What comes next for Joe is yet to be seen. He doesn’t seem to have a Mania feud locked in, given that Mustafa Ali’s status is hanging int he balance, and others appear to be gaining traction. But Joe should likely be able to compete in his first-ever WrestleMania, so we should expect to see him get more opportunities in March as the road to ‘Mania marches on. And so far? You should expect him to make the most of them.

9. NIA JAX
Last Month:
11th (+2) | Points: 25
Notable Showing: Women’s Tag Team Championships Elimination Chamber Match (Elimination Chamber, 2/17)

Nia Jax? In The Top 10? She barely made it possible, but Jax snuck in to get in the mix.

Jax competed in three matches this month and her showings were good enough to put her in this spot. She helped lead her and Tamina to victory in a Triple Threat Tag before Elimination Chamber. Then, Jax competed inside the Elimination Chamber that ensuing Sunday. While she and her partner didn’t become the first-ever Women’s Tag Team Champions, Jax still received four points for the match, which very much helped her cause.

Her match against Bayley on the final Raw of February sealed up her fate. She and Bayley had a strong showing in that singles encounter, the usual for the two of them, as they have great chemistry with each other. Jax probably won’t be short on chances going forward, so she’ll likely be in this standing unless others storm ahead. Right now, she’s tied with Bayley for the second-most women’s matches in 2019 so far, so that doesn’t look like it’s going to happen anytime soon.

8. SASHA BANKS
Last Month:
10 (+2) | Points: 26.25
Notable Showing: Women’s Tag Team Championships Elimination Chamber Match (Elimination Chamber, 2/17)

Sasha Banks took a two-spot increase after a pretty solid month at the office.

Despite the fact that she didn’t participate much in two of the three matches she worked this month, she still obviously received points for being part of two Raw tag team matches. Then there was, of course, her sparkling showing inside the Elimination Chamber, a match that she and her tag team partner Bayley won to become the first WWE Women’s Tag Team Champions.

Banks may have seen herself go up even further had they handed her a match on Raw this past week. However, that honor went to her tag team partner. But it’s evident so far that she remains one of the best in-ring talents in WWE when she gets the opportunity to show it.

7. TYLER BATE
Last Month:
15th (+7) | Points: 27
Notable Showing: vs. Velveteen Dream (Worlds Collide, 2/2)

Jumping into the Top 10 this month is Tyler Bate.

After a great effort as a tag wrestler in January, Bate got a chance to showcase his singles skills in the Worlds Collide event on the first Saturday of February. Needless to say, Bate impressed and impressed a lot. He was responsible for two of the best matches of the entire tournament.

The final against Velveteen Dream was an enthralling contest, and his match with Adam Cole was also fantastic. Efforts against Cedric Alexander and Dominik Dijakovic sprinkled in helped to lift Bate up to this spot.

He did have a match on the final day of TV against Gentleman Jack Gallagher that, quite frankly, didn’t really hit with me. Had it hit with me though, Bate would’ve ascended into the Top 5, and it certainly would’ve been deserved. Now, going forward, it will be about producing hits rather than misses. And if he can do so, expect Bate to be a familiar face on these rankings, especially within the Top 10.

6. REY MYSTERIO
Last Month:
2nd (-4) | Points: 27.625
Notable Showing: vs. Andrade, R-Truth (SmackDown Live, 2/26)

Despite competing in only one match in February, Rey Mysterio stays in the Top 10.

Mysterio battled in a Triple Threat Match on the final episode of SmackDown Live of February. In that match he, Andrade and R-Truth fought over the United States Championship. The match was strong enough to allow Mysterio to stay within this high range and go down to 6th after being at 2nd in February.

There’s obviously no denying what Rey is capable of doing. Even at 44, he’s still among the best in the entire world at the rate that he’s going right now. He will obviously have to see a workload increase if he wants to avoid falling further down the chute. But even still, you have to take stock in just how impressive he is so far in 2019.

5. BAYLEY
Last Month:
11th (+6) | Points: 28.25
Notable Showing: Women’s Tag Team Championships Elimination Chamber Match (Elimination Chamber, 2/17)

The Ace. Is. Back.

As I wrote last month, the perception around Bayley sunk way to the bottom over the last few years. But 2019 has been absolutely kind to her. She had a great January that was compounded by arguably an even better February, which has now propelled her all the way up to the #5 spot on the rankings. She was at 14.5 points last month and 14.25 this month, so we’re really splitting hairs here. But it’s evident to me that her confidence is back in a big way.

She practically got here all by herself, too. In her two tag matches prior to the Elimination Chamber Match, Bayley basically played it solo while Sasha Banks was taken out. She willed her way to a win over Alicia Fox and Nikki Cross, then fell on the sword in a Triple Threat Tag the following week. She and Sasha helped to make the first-ever Women’s Tag Team Titles Elimination Chamber Match a strong success, as did the fact that they went over in the match.

Bayley capped off her month with a very good showcase in a rare singles match against Nia Jax on the final Raw of February.

Not only is Bayley making her mark as a tag team wrestler, she’s also starting to shine yet again in singles competition. Thus far, the only woman who’s been in more matches than her (8) this year is Ronda Rousey (9). And frankly? Bayley hasn’t missed once yet. She earned a reputation as an ‘ace’ in NXT, and it seems like she’s found her confidence on the main roster. At this rate, she’s going to have a superb year and the first two months are a huge indication of that.

4. RICOCHET
Last Month:
18th (+14) | Points: 30.375
Notable Showing: Halftime Heat Six-Man Tag (Halftime Heat, 2/3)

It will be fascinating to see what happens going forward for Ricochet. His workload will probably have to increase for him to stay into the Top 25, but NXT can only provide him so much. That being said, if he can deliver (and the man has YET to not) in the minimal spots that he has, then he has a very steady chance of maintaining his spot in the Top 25 going forward.”

That passage came to us from last month’s edition of the WWE Top 25. At the time, Ricochet was 18th and got into the mix with only one TV match.

Well, suffice it to say, his workload increased by a bundle. Ricochet is up to 4th after a strong showing in the month of February. He finished as the second-best performer of the entire month and his output got him here at this standing.

He, like others who are now in the mix, was boosted by the Halftime Heat showing. Then, like his fellow contemporaries, he got a chance to work Raw and SmackDown Live. He unsurprisingly dazzled in just about every showing, helping to boost his profile in a big way. He had a pretty terrific match with Adam Cole on NXT TV, as well, to help put a bow on a great February.

Given that he’ll be participating in the Dusty Classic, Ricochet should see himself stay up near the top of these rankings after March. He’s only scratching the surface at this point as well too, and he could be in for an absolutely huge year if all goes well.

3. ANDRADE
Last Month:
2nd (-1) | Points: 31.125
Notable Showing: vs. Aleister Black (SmackDown Live, 2/19)

When you work two matches in the entire month of February, and still stand in the Top 3, it says a lot about what you’ve done.

Andrade sits #3 in the WWE Top 25 despite a very minimal workload. He competed in two matches in the final two weeks of the month, working against Aleister Black and then in a Triple Threat US Championship Match against Rey Mysterio and R-Truth. Those were shiny enough performances not to cause him to lose significant ground like some of his peers did.

Andrade’s monster January certainly helped to keep him in this spot. With the action beginning to churn up around him, and things starting to heat up behind him now, he’ll likely need a really strong March to stay in the Top 3. But that being said, there’s a reason why many consider him one of the greatest in-ring talents in the world today.

2. JOHNNY GARGANO
Last Month:
6th (+4) | Points: 34.125
Notable Showing: vs. The Velveteen Dream (NXT, 2/20)

This probably shouldn’t come as much of a surprise. As I predicted last month, the more that Johnny Gargano works, the more he’ll be able to rise in these rankings. And after a strong February, Gargano is all the way up to #2.

It began with Halftime Heat and concluded with an unsuccessful defense of his North American Championship. But Gargano’s match with Velveteen Dream was arguably the best TV match of the month and one of the best on NXT TV in recent memory.

Now that Gargano appears to be splitting time between Raw, SmackDown Live and NXT, March could very well be a big month for him. In addition to that, Gargano will be in the Dusty Classic, and could be in line for some very strong performances. While the #1 man on this list has a big lead, it wouldn’t surprise many if Gargano either catches him or usurps him by month’s end. That’s just the kind of talent he is, and that’s just the kind of talent he’ll continue to be.

1. FINN BALOR
Last Month:
1st (—) | Points: 41.75
Notable Showing: vs. Lashley & Lio Rush (Elimination Chamber, 2/17)

The king stays the king.

Although he didn’t have any super-glowing performances like he did in January, Finn Balor did just enough to not only maintain his spot at the top of the WWE Top 25, but to widen his lead. Last month, he was a mere 3.375 points ahead of both Andrade and Rey Mysterio. But this month, Finn stands 7.625 points ahead of the man in second place, Johnny Gargano.

That will happen when you’re once again a workhorse. Finn worked six matches in February, second-most among all WWE superstars this month. He’s worked 12 total, two more than Tyler Bate and Drew McIntyre, who’ve each worked 10 so far this year. And it’ll especially happen when a majority of your matches are graded three stars or higher. I gave four of Finn’s six matches this month three stars or better.

At this rate, it doesn’t look like this train will stop anytime soon. Finn should continue to be one of the big workhorses of the Raw brand up to and through WrestleMania as Intercontinental Champion. Nobody really poses much of a threat at this juncture to him either, so you should firmly expect him to be at or near the top of this list, unless something drastic happens.