A Best of 2007 series wouldn’t be complete without a trip to the squared circle.
But due to the lack of votes for the WWE category, I had to go to the streets to get people’s opinions.
While I was on vacation in Dallas, I managed to find a bevy of wrestling fans gathered in Victory Park. Special thanks to Emmitt Smith for giving a few seconds of his time to shoot the breeze about Florida Gators football.
But I digress; here are the winners of the WWE Best of 2007 Awards...
2007 Best WWE Superstars (1st Half): John Cena, RAW/Bobby Lashley, ECW/Undertaker, SD!
Arguably one of the greatest WWE Champions in history, John Cena has made a living entertaining the fans. From his hit debut album to his on-screen debut as John Triton in “The Marine,” Cena has prospered both in and out of the ring.
He isn’t just all about talk, though.
One of his greatest matches was at the 2007 Royal Rumble, where he had a Last Man Standing Match against Umaga that saw “The Champ” choke out the Samoan Bulldozer with his patented STFU and the ring ropes that Armando Estrada loosened.
But Umaga was more than just making noise on Raw. It turns out not even ECW was safe.
Bobby Lashley is a former member of the Armed Forces who won multiple wrestling championships in college and in the Army. Lashley quickly became a force in the WWE when he defeated the Big Show in an Extreme Elimination Chamber Match at ECW’s December to Dismember Pay per view.
He went on to face Umaga at Wrestlemania in the famed “Battle of the Billionaires,” in which Vince McMahon found himself on the short end of a haircut as he left his own creation bald!
As for the Undertaker, that’s obvious. The Deadman finally won the Royal Rumble and wasted no time in improving his undefeated streak at Wrestlemania by defeating Batista for the World Heavyweight Title.
Runner Up: Batista, Shawn Michaels, CM Punk
2007 Best WWE Superstars (2nd Half): Triple H, RAW/CM Punk, ECW/Edge & Batista, SD!
No one made more of an impact upon his return than Triple H.
After defeating King Booker at Summerslam, the Cerebral Assassin set his sights on his 11th World Championship after John Cena was put on the shelf with a severe injury.
The Game good quick on his promise by defeating Randy Orton to become champion once again.
CM Punk has been making an impact in the Land of Extreme ever since Wrestlemania. After coming up short on multiple occasions against John Morrison, Punk finally laid claim to the ECW Championship during an ECW taping in Cincinnati.
The Straight Edge Extremist finally got over the hump known as “The Shaman of Sexy” and won the title with his patented GTS.
Batista claims a portion of this award due in large part to his triple-threat match at Unforgiven against Rey Mysterio and The Great Khali. The Animal took extreme to another level when he not only speared the Punjabi Giant, but also used Mysterio as a tackling dummy to secure yet another championship reign.
Speaking of Extreme, the man known as the Ultimate Opportunist proved this theory correct not once, but twice in 2007. Edge first defeated Mr. Kennedy for his Money in the Bank contract on Raw, then went to Smackdown to defeat an already bloodied and battered Undertaker to become the World Heavyweight Champion.
Following an injury that sidelined him for several months, Edge returned and immediately made an impact by costing the Deadman his title shot at Survivor Series and defeating Batista at Armageddon in familiar fashion to win it for the second time.
Runner Up: Randy Orton, John Cena, Rey Mysterio, John Morrison
2007 Best Diva (1st Half): Candice Michelle, RAW
From Playboy to www.GoDaddy.com, no diva created more buzz in 2007 than Candice Michelle.
The Milwaukee native not only improved her style away from the ring—she also improved her in-ring style by defeating Melina to win her first Women’s Championship.
Michelle may have had to share the spotlight with the likes of Melina, Mickie James, Kelly’s Expose, and recent Playboy cover girl Ashley, but she had no problem leaving her own kind of impact on the fans and the industry.
Runner Up: Ashley, Torrie Wilson, Kelly’s Expose, Mickie James
2007 Best Diva (2nd Half): “The Glamazon” Beth Phoenix, RAW
Being a diva isn’t just about sex appeal, as Chyna proved when she was a member of DX.
Beth Phoenix improved that standard by not only winning matches, but just flat out dominating the Divas of RAW, Smackdown, and ECW.
From Kelly Kelly to Michelle McCool and even Maria, no diva was safe from the clutches of the perfect combination of strength and beauty.
The downside of all this was that if you were to stick Randy Orton in a blonde wig, you would get Phoenix.
Upon returning to the WWE, Phoenix quickly dominated the Diva Division en route to capturing the Women’s Championship from Candice Michelle. Since then, there have been many challengers, but no one has been able to stop the Glamazon Era...yet.
Runner Up: Candice Michelle, Kelly Kelly, Maria, Melina
2007 Best Tag Team: DX
It was unanimous in this category, as Triple H and Shawn Michaels made enough of an impact before injuries sidelined them to be named the best tag team of 2007.
Despite all the incredible talent in the Tag Team Division, no one would dare deny the impact of DX, whether it is for one night or for a whole year.
The Game and The Showstopper both have one thing in common, though it isn’t exactly a good thing: Both faced John Cena at Wrestlemania for the WWE Championship and both tapped out to the STFU.
Despite all that, the most controversial group since the NWO left spray paintings, cheerleaders, fireworks, shitake (clean version of s$#%), logos, and enough of a headache to cause Vince McMahon to bring extra aspirin and up his insurance before he walked out to the RAW crowd.
Simply put, DX has still got it.
And if you ain’t down with that, they just got two words for ya: S*CK IT!!
Runner Up: The Hardys, Cryme Tyme, Rated RKO, London and Kendrick
2007 Best Pay Per View Moment: “Stun” Cold Crazy at Ford Field
Speaking of controversial figures, there wasn’t one single individual who left more of an impact on the WWE this year than the infamous Texas Rattlesnake.
After the Battle of the Billionaires match was made official, it was time to find a referee crazy enough to step into the ring with two giants (Umaga and Lashley). There were three candidates before the fourth was selected.
It wouldn’t be Eric Bischoff. It wasn’t Mick Foley (who was judging some eating contest in Phoenix that night), nor Vince’s son, Shane.
However, when the glass shattered and the beer chugging redneck came out, you could actually see Vince lose his lunch a little.
Stone Cold Steve Austin proceeded to spill beer on his former boss, stun JBL on Smackdown the Friday prior to Wrestlemania, and unleash his own version of justice at the show itself.
Austin had zero tolerance for guys who didn’t listen to him, as the Samoan Bulldozer found out quickly. Austin delivered a Stunner to Umaga, leading to a Lashley Spear and a victory for Donald Trump.
As Vince was carried back into the ring, Austin delivered another Stunner, this time to Vince himself. But the biggest, and probably best, Stunner of the night was reserved for one man.
As McMahon walked towards the back with shaving cream going down his now bald scalp, Austin turned and delivered a Stunner to the wigged out billionaire left in the ring.
The Stunner to Trump left a smile on Rosie O’Donnell’s face while replaying it the next morning. As always, Austin left slamming beers and saluting the sell out crowd.
Now that’s Stun-tastic!
Runner Up: Taker makes history at Rumble and Wrestlemania, Edge strikes gold twice in one wee
Best PPV of 2007: Summerslam
Though Wrestlemania had some exciting moments, the Biggest Party of the Summer had some bigger ones.
Summerslam saw the unleashing of an enraged Champion, the tenacity of a challenger, the vileness of a hungry Legend Killer, the return of a Legend, a high flyer, and The King of Kings.
It was great to see John Cena take care of business in the ring, but it was clear what everyone was waiting for. King vs. King was the title it was given, as the world once again paid homage to The Game as he returned to a raucous crowd to face King Booker.
Also making his return to the ring was none other than Mr. 619, Rey Mysterio. Mysterio got his shot at revenge as he faced off against the man responsible for his hiatus in the first place, Chavo Guerrero.
Both Mysterio and Triple H returned victorious, but it didn’t take either of them long to make it clear that they wanted some gold around their waists again.
The other highlight of the evening was the return of Stone Cold Steve Austin as he stepped in for Matt Hardy at MVP’s beer-drinking contest. Austin had a quick beer before he got started, did a few exercises to get warmed up, then proceeded to stun Smackdown’s Franchise Player.
I think it’s safe to say that this truly was the Year of the Stunner.
And if you don’t believe me, just ask Trump, JBL, MVP, Vince and Shane McMahon, Umaga, and the many men who have felt the Rattlesnake’s venom during this year.
Runner Up: ECW One Night Stand, Wrestlemania, Royal Rumble
That’s the WWE in a nutshell for 2007. Get ready for this year’s Royal Rumble, Sunday January 28th live on pay per view...