Why Tommy Dreamer Says The Criteria For The PWI 500, 'Bothers' Him A Bit

ECW legend Tommy Dreamer weighed in with some of his concerns regarding the methodology behind this year's PWI 500 list during a recent episode of "Busted Open Radio." Utilizing Undisputed WWE Universal Champion Roman Reigns as an example, Dreamer expressed the disconnect he saw between someone's placement on the list and the outlined criteria. For reference, Pro Wrestling Illustrated's evaluations were based on a wrestler's win–loss record, championships won, quality of competition, major feuds, prominence within a wrestler's promotion(s), and overall wrestling ability. The evaluation period for the 2023 PWI 500 was from July 1, 2022 to July 31, 2023.


While the PWI 500 tries to apply facts to a "non-factual sport," as Dreamer describes it, Dreamer believes some non-listed factors may have led Reigns to be catapulted to the No. 2 spot on the list. Based solely on the criteria, though, Dreamer thinks Reigns — who wrestled only 17 matches during the evaluation — should rank somewhere in the 300s.

"Again, this criteria thing, and there's two things in that really bother me," Dreamer said. "Jokingly, 'Oh, just give an answer.' I cannot because I know it's not real. I need to know, cool then who won the most matches right then and there? That's my criteria then. But if you put Roman Reigns — the entire industry for that for this year has been led by Roman Reigns, where every wrestler should walk up to Roman Reigns say, 'Hey man, thank you. Thank you for leading the industry.'"


Dreamer later reiterated that he didn't know Reigns' full statistics throughout evaluation period, but he does feel a part of Reigns' ranking could have also been motivated by his ability to produce strong magazine sales as well."Outside of all of the rest, I'm trying to go facts in a non-factual sport. Based on these facts, Roman Reigns is 300 and down. Based upon real numbers, Roman Reigns is top-five," Dreamer concluded.

If you use any quotes from this article, please credit "Busted Open Radio" with a h/t to Wrestling Inc. for the transcription.