Welcome to 2014, everyone. These are the first rankings of the new year, and there are some big changes—but not in the top two positions, since both John Cena and WWE World Heavyweight Champion Randy Orton were idle.
But for a holiday Raw this past Monday, we had some important events occur. The biggest of all was perhaps Brock Lesnar's return and the announcement that he is the No. 1 contender for the World Heavyweight Championship. He will face the winner of Cena vs. Orton at Royal Rumble.
We also saw Daniel Bryan join the Wyatt Family. A quick note on that: As of now, I have not combined Daniel Bryan and The Wyatt Family in the rankings. They are still separate, but that could change going forward if Bryan becomes firmly entrenched with The Wyatts.
More on all that later. First, here's how the rankings work.
Holding a championship, being No. 1 contender or having a Money in the Bank briefcase counts for much of a wrestler's ranking. Wins and losses account for much of the week-to-week movement. "Getting the better" of someone—like beating someone down—as well as "getting got," counts as well, though not as much as wins and losses.
Only the top 10 wrestlers are ranked, and every other wrestler is unranked. Wrestlers on the "Watch List" were considered for top-10 status but ultimately were nixed. They too are unranked, and their listing is in no particular order.
Generally speaking, the rankings do not break kayfabe, though any major non-storyline information (serious injury, WWE Wellness Policy violations, legitimate hirings, firings and contract information, etc.) may be included.
Remember to check out last week's rankings here.
On to this week's rankings.