It's that time of the week again: time for Power Rankings. And you know you love it. After all, what would your week be without WWE Power Rankings?
If you're a regular reader, you already know how this works. If not, here's the rundown. Holding a title, a Money in the Bank briefcase, or being a number one contender count most in the rankings. Wins and losses in the preceding week account for most of the movement up or down on the list. "Getting the better of someone" counts about like a win.
I only rank the top 10 on the WWE roster, and a handful more are on the Watch List. But anyone not in the top 10 are considered unranked.
OK, so let's get down to business. First stop: Watch List.
The Watch List consists of those Superstars considered for a spot in the top 10, but ultimately missed the cut. Here's who to keep your eyes on this week, in no particular order:
-Rob Van Dam
OK, now onto the top 10.
Previous Rank: 6
Movement: Down 4
Damien Sandow sure has had a rough go of it lately. He attacked Cody Rhodes on SmackDown, but otherwise his bad fortune continues. He still has no briefcase, and it's not clear if he can actually cash in a contract that's probably dissolved in the salt water of the Gulf of Mexico.
Sandow's future looks almost as uncertain as it could at this point. And this week, he was barely able to hold his spot in the top ten.
Previous Rank: 8
Movement: Down 1
The Shield may have scored a win over Mark Henry and The Uso's, but they were immediately run off. A win is a win, no doubt. But the lasting image of the match is Dean Ambrose, Seth Rollins, and Roman Reigns hightailing it over the barricade while fleeing from the people they just defeated.
They could not have looked weaker in a win and, had other superstars not had better weeks, they may have held their spot at eight. But this week, they drop one spot.
Previous Rank: 9
Movement: Up 1
Cody Rhodes keeps moving up. After solid wins over Wade Barrett and Jack Swagger, Rhodes is looking like he'll be a contender for a major title in the near future.
He's in the spot Sandow wishes he was in right now. And he shows no signs of slowing down. For that, he moves up the list.
Previous Rank: 5
Movement: Down 2
Curtis Axel had another slow week and, as I said last week, if he didn't do much, he'd drop in the rankings. Well, a win over R-Truth just wasn't enough to maintain his spot on the list, especially since so many others had far better weeks.
He was beat down by CM Punk on Raw, right after defeating R-Truth, and didn't make up for that. He drops from number five to seven this week. He's still Intercontinental Champion though, and could easily move right back up with an impressive performance.
Previous Rank: 7
Movement: Up 1
CM Punk is firing on all cylinders. With a win over Fandango in a surprisingly competitive matchup, he looks ready to take on anyone.
But Brock Lesnar is not Fandango.
CM Punk may still need one signature win heading into SummerSlam to build the momentum he needs to take on Lesnar, but he looked impressive enough to move up a slot.
Previous Rank: 10
Movement: Up 5
Christian skyrocketed into the top five this week after winning a triple threat match on SmackDown against Rob Van Dam and Randy Orton that earned him a shot at the World Heavyweight Championship. That, after pinning World Heavyweight Champion Alberto Del Rio on Raw.
As strange as it may seem, the only person more on a roll than Christian is Daniel Bryan. And come SummerSlam, he could gain his third World Heavyweight title in WWE. He shook up the rankings this week, and we'll see if he can stay on this tear heading into SummerSlam.
Previous Rank: 4
Keeping Alberto Del Rio in the number four slot was a tough choice. I decided to do so despite his less-than-ideal week. But as World Heavyweight Champion, he gets the benefit of the championship.
Much like last week when I moved Curtis Axel up a spot despite being idle, Del Rio's ranking has less to do with what happened to him and more to do with what others did. Another poor week for Del Rio and I'll have no choice but to drop him.
Previous Rank: 2
Movement: Down 1
Randy Orton is still just a quick cash-in away from his tenth world title reign. But this week, he had an amazing opportunity, and couldn't "cash in," so to speak.
Had he won the triple threat against RVD and Christian on SmackDown, he would have earned a World Heavyweight Championship match at SummerSlam. But obviously that's not happening. He got rolled up to take the pin after hitting RVD with an RKO, and I just couldn't leave him at number two. Especially since Cena had a good week.
Previous Ranking: 3
Movement: Up 1
John Cena, after being idle for two weeks, came back with a vengeance. He put Ryback through a table in a Tables Match on Raw. Ryback, who seems to have become Cena's whipping boy lately, gave Cena a run for his money, but in the end, could not overcome the WWE Champion.
Cena needed this win to establish himself heading into SummerSlam. After all, we may not see him in a match again until then, which would have meant he would not have competed in about a month. That just would not do.
In any case, the reigning WWE Champion got a strong win over a tough opponent and moved closer to regaining the top spot in the Power Rankings.
Bryan is the hottest thing going in WWE, and that did not change one bit this week. He's still looking like he's destined to be WWE Champion, and in just two weeks, we'll see if that's the case. Until then, Bryan enjoys a wave of support unprecedented in recent years.
This week, he reigns supreme. Well, at least in the Power Rankings.