2023 Wrestling Observer Newsletter Awards

(Courtesy of Caldris on Reddit. Reminder the voting is done by fan vote not WON/F4W, and some MMA is mixed in.)

LOU THESZ/RIC FLAIR AWARD
(WRESTLER OF THE YEAR)

  1. WILL OSPREAY (302) 1,814
  2. Cody Rhodes (119) 1,330
  3. MJF (80) 927
  4. Roman Reigns (106) 904
  5. Bryan Danielson (49) 590

MIXED MARTIAL ARTS MOST VALUABLE

  1. JON JONES (57) 474
  2. Islam Makhachev (51) 472
  3. Leon Edwards (34) 332
  4. Israel Adesanya (33) 224
  5. Sean Strickland (18) 139

MOST OUTSTANDING WRESTLER

  1. WILL OSPREAY (548) 3,086
  2. Bryan Danielson (122) 1,773
  3. Kenny Omega (19) 590
  4. Zack Sabre Jr. (15) 282
  5. Kento Miyahara (11) 185

MOST OUTSTANDING FIGHTER OF THE YEAR

  1. ISLAM MAKHACHEV (129) 793
  2. Leon Edwards (26) 367
  3. Sean Strickland (32) 306
  4. Alex Pereira (10) 114
  5. Jon Jones (6) 79

TAG TEAM OF THE YEAR

  1. FTR (344) 2,341
  2. Kevin Owens & Sami Zayn (106) 1,128
  3. Hirooki Goto & Yoshi-Hashi (71) 712
  4. Takuya Nomura & Fuminori Abe (82) 473
  5. Young Bucks (42) 435

BEST ON INTERVIEWS

  1. EDDIE KINGSTON (199) 1,483
  2. MJF (140) 1,441
  3. Christian Cage (148) 921
  4. Jon Moxley (50) 705
  5. Cody Rhodes (51) 626

PROMOTION OF THE YEAR

  1. WORLD WRESTLING ENTERTAINMENT (406) 2,359
  2. All Elite Wrestling (194) 1,965
  3. New Japan Pro Wrestling (17) 1,011
  4. CMLL (90) 965
  5. UFC (52) 580

BEST WEEKLY TV SHOW

  1. AEW DYNAMITE (430) 2,707
  2. AEW Collision (74) 1,483
  3. WWE Smackdown (128) 1,434
  4. CMLL Super Viernes (67) 518
  5. WWE NXT (3) 309

PRO WRESTLING MATCH OF THE YEAR

  1. KENNY OMEGA VS. WILL OSPREAY 1/4 TOKYO (474) 3,018
  2. Kenny Omega vs. Will Ospreay 6/25 Toronto (116) 1,227
  3. MJF vs. Bryan Danielson 3/5 San Francisco (115) 1,065
  4. Swerve Strickland vs. Adam Page 11/18 Los Angeles (33) 464
  5. FTR vs. White & Robinson (5) 266

MMA FIGHT OF THE YEAR

  1. ALEXANDER VOLKANOVSKI VS. ISLAM MAKHACHEV 2/11 PERTH, AUSTRALIA (164) 822
  2. Alexandre Pantoja vs. Brandon Moreno 7/8 Las Vegas (7) 285
  3. Justin Gaethje vs. Rafael Fiziev 3/18 London (2) 171
  4. Geoff Neal vs. Shavkat Rakhimonov 3/4 Las Vegas (3) 91
  5. Jamahal Hill vs. Glover Teixeira 2/21 Rio de Janeiro (8) 83
    ==

“CATEGORY B” AWARDS

DETERMINED BY FIRST PLACE VOTES
UNITED STATES/CANADA MVP

  1. CODY RHODES 268
  2. Bryan Danielson 139
  3. MJF 135
  4. Roman Reigns 109
  5. Jon Moxley 36

KOICHI YOSHIZAWA AWARD
JAPANESE MVP

  1. WILL OSPREAY 434
  2. Kazuchika Okada 243
  3. Tetsuya Naito 80
  4. Kento Miyahara 67
  5. Yuma Aoyagi 30

MEXICO MVP

  1. MISTICO 416
  2. El Hijo del Vikingo 314
  3. Rocky Romero 68
  4. Volador Jr. 30
  5. Pentagon Jr. 7

EUROPE MVP

  1. WILL OSPREAY 754
  2. Michael Oku 45
  3. Zack Sabre Jr. 26
  4. Spike Trivet 8

HODGE AWARD/NON-HEAVYWEIGHT MVP

  1. EL HIJO DEL VIKINGO 189
  2. Hiromu Takahashi 144
  3. Darby Allin 139
  4. Orange Cassidy 83
  5. Mistico 34

WOMEN’S WRESTLING MVP

  1. RHEA RIPLEY 359
  2. Giulia 162
  3. Athena 114
  4. Tam Nakano 65
  5. Becky Lynch 63

WOMEN’S MMA MVP

  1. ALEXA GRASSO 147
  2. Zhang Weili 45
  3. Amanda Nunes 20

FEUD OF THE YEAR

  1. SAMI ZAYN & KEVIN OWENS VS. BLOODLINE 268
  2. Adam Page vs. Swerve Strickland 119
  3. Kento Miyahara vs. Katsuhiko Nakajima 98
  4. Kenny Omega vs. Will Ospreay 91
  5. Adam Page vs. Jon Moxley 44

BEST BOX OFFICE DRAW MMA

  1. JON JONES
  2. Israel Adesanya
  3. Islam Makhachev

PRO WRESTLING

  1. ROMAN REIGNS
  2. Cody Rhodes
  3. John Cena

MOST IMPROVED

  1. JULIA HART 117
  2. Dominik Mysterio 86
  3. Mariah May 49
  4. Shota Umino 49
  5. Swerve Strickland 47

MOST CHARISMATIC

  1. MJF 162
  2. Roman Reigns 88
  3. Kento Miyahara 81
  4. Giulia 57
  5. Cody Rhodes 49

BRYAN DANIELSON AWARD

(BEST TECHNICAL WRESTLER)

  1. BRYAN DANIELSON 549
  2. Zack Sabre Jr. 427
  3. Josh Alexander 17

BRUISER BRODY MEMORIAL AWARD

(BEST BRAWLER)

  1. JON MOXLEY 383**
  2. Tomohiro Ishii 91
  3. Adam Page 78
  4. Eddie Kingston 74
  5. Gunther 46

BEST FLYING WRESTLER

  1. EL HIJO DEL VIKINGO 595
  2. Will Ospreay 52
  3. Rey Fenix 37
  4. Mascara Dorada 36
  5. Komander 28

ROOKIE OF THE YEAR

  1. YUMA ANZAI 205
  2. Action Andretti 140
  3. Megan Bayne 65
  4. Oleg Boltin 49
  5. Kelani Jordan 38

BEST NON-WRESTLER

  1. DON CALLIS 266
  2. Paul Heyman 198
  3. Prince Nana 175
  4. Renee Paquette 31
  5. RJ City 18

MOST OVERRATED

  1. SANADA 114
  2. Roman Reigns 109
  3. CM Punk 63
  4. Tyrus 62
  5. MJF 55

MOST UNDERRATED

  1. CHAD GABLE 84
  2. Konosuke Takeshita 80
  3. Daniel Garcia 50
  4. Mike Bailey 49
  5. Yota Tsuji 42

BEST TELEVISION ANNOUNCER

  1. EXCALIBUR 183
  2. Ian Riccaboni 139
  3. Kevin Kelly 137
  4. Nigel McGuinness 133
  5. Chris Charlton 89

WORST TELEVISION ANNOUNCER

  1. BOOKER T 198
  2. Kevin Patrick 162
  3. Jim Ross 90
  4. Michael Cole 48
  5. Corey Graves 42

BEST MAJOR WRESTLING SHOW

  1. AEW REVOLUTION 3/5 SAN FRANCISCO 188
  2. AEW/NJPW Forbidden Door 6/25 Toronto 128
  3. AEW All In 8-27 London 111
  4. WWE WrestleMania night one 4/1 Los Angeles 101
  5. AEW All Out 9/3 Chicago 72

WORST MAJOR WRESTLING SHOW

  1. WWE CROWN JEWEL 11/4 RIYADH, SAUDI ARABIA 141
  2. NWA Samhain 10/28 Cleveland 89
  3. AEW Worlds End 12/30 Uniondale, NY 79
  4. WWE Fastlane 10/7 Indianapolis 51
  5. AAA TripleMania 8/12 Mexico City 50

BEST WRESTLING MANEUVER

  1. WILL OSPREAY HIDDEN BLADE 139
  2. Will Ospreay stormbreaker 76
  3. Kenny Omega one winged angel 68
  4. El Hijo del Vikingo second rope step up 630 58
  5. Komander ropewalk shooting star 32

MOST DISGUSTING PROMOTIONAL TACTIC

  1. WWE ENABLING VINCE MCMAHON AND HIM BEING BACK IN POWER/TKO KEEPING HIM IN POSITION OF POWER 197
  2. WWE Continued relationship with Saudi Arabia 140
  3. NWA cocaine spot on PPV 89
  4. Powerslap and continuing on TV after Dana White slapped his wife 83
  5. AEW signing Ric Flair 49

WORST TELEVISION SHOW

  1. NWA POWERR 194**
  2. WWE Raw 176
  3. WWE NXT 112
  4. Powerslap: Road to the Title 109
  5. AEW Rampage 80

WORST MATCH OF THE YEAR

  1. BRAY WYATT VS. LA KNIGHT 1/28 SAN ANTONIO 105
  2. Tyrus vs. EC 3 8/27 St. Louis 85
  3. Shane McMahon/Snoop Dogg vs. The Miz 4/2 Los Angeles 58
  4. Baron Corbin vs. Gable Steveson 7/30 Cedar Park, TX 47
  5. Ronda Rousey vs. Shayna Baszler 8/5 Detroit 44

WORST FEUD OF THE YEAR

  1. MJF VS. THE DEVIL 167
  2. Outcasts vs. AEW Originals 114
  3. Tyrus vs. EC 3 74
  4. Ronda Rousey vs. Shayna Baszler 57
  5. Adam Cole vs. Chris Jericho 48

WORST PROMOTION OF THE YEAR

  1. NWA 456
  2. AAA 88
  3. WWE 61
  4. Control Your Narrative 17
  5. MLW 16

BEST BOOKER

  1. PAUL LEVESQUE 360
  2. Tony Khan 146
  3. Juan Manuel Mar 104
  4. Shuji Ishikawa 74
  5. Rossy Ogawa 68

PROMOTER OF THE YEAR

  1. NICK KHAN 371
  2. Tony Khan 239
  3. Dana White 146
  4. Chavo Lutteroth III 112
  5. Rossy Ogawa 34

BEST GIMMICK

  1. TONI STORM 239
  2. Christian Cage 204
  3. Orange Cassidy 48
  4. Bloodline 38
  5. Brochachos 36

WORST GIMMICK

  1. THE DEVIL 76
  2. QTV 72
  3. Toni Storm 49
  4. House of Torture 40
  5. Outcasts 39

BEST PRO WRESTLING BOOK

  1. THE LAST REAL WORLD CHAMPION BY TIM HORNBAKER 77
  2. Tod is God by Tod Gordon 50
  3. Ringmaster by Abraham Josephine Riesman 49
  4. Keirn Chronicles by Steve Keirn and Ian Douglass` 39
    5.Wrestling Observer Complete Collection 1989 by Dave Meltzer 22

BEST PRO WRESTLING DOCUMENTARY

  1. DARK SIDE OF THE RING: CHRIS AND TAMMY 97
  2. VOW: The Life, career and death of Eddie Gilbert 80
  3. American Nightmare: Becoming Cody Rhodes 69
  4. Dark Side of the Ring: Marty Jannetty 65
  5. Dark Side of the Ring: Magnum T.A. 34

https://newsletters.f4wonline.com/wrestling-observer-newsletter/february-26-2024-observer-newsletter-2023-observer-awards-issue/

kralk,

AEW got best weekly show, second best weekly show, 4/5 best PPVs and 5/5 best matches. Best promotion? WWE.

hellothere,

Legit surprised to see the devil as the worst gimmick.

Yknow what, actually, I think I’m happy that I’m that out of touch.

GeekFTW,
GeekFTW avatar

I don't know about worst gimmick (I'd need a wide list to compare lol) but I was definitely, at best, whelmed by it. Not underwhelmed, not overwhelmed, just..whelmed lol.

Zero problems with Adam Cole turning on MJF. Full problems with tacking on the kingdom/Roddy who had been treated as comedy shite for weeks and weeks like they're now magically a threat (along with the 85th attempt at getting me to care about Wardlow and his lack of anything new), plus the timing with Cole injured, MJF out injured, it just kinda fizzled for me.

GeekFTW,
GeekFTW avatar

Also WWE promotion of the year for the first time since 2000.

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