These Are Your MVPs of WWE and AEW 2 Months into 2021
2021 may only be two months old but that has not stopped WWE and All Elite Wrestling stars from establishing themselves as MVPs in their fields.
Universal champion Roman Reigns has continued his run of excellence in the new year while former Shield teammate Jon Moxley has transformed from the hunted to hunter.
In the process, they have helped shape their respective companies' television products and ensured that they will be major factors in prominent storylines throughout the year.
Who joined those predictable choices as early MVPs and why?
WWE: Roman Reigns
Every conversation involving pro wrestling MVPs here in 2021 begins (and ends) with Roman Reigns.
The universal champion has been the best thing about WWE television, and it's not even close. The Head of the Table has been nothing short of fantastic as the lead heel of SmackDown and the brooding, meticulous, cerebral and egotistical centerpiece of the WWE Universe.
He has not been asked to do as much from an in-ring perspective outside of a physical war with Kevin Owens at the Royal Rumble, but he has been essential to setting up top feuds and the WrestleMania 37 main event.
He figures to remain an integral part of the WWE product beyond WrestleMania, even if a successful title retention is unlikely.
AEW: Lance Archer
Lance Archer's 2020 was not what anyone imagined. He did not quite leave the lasting impression most expected, but early in the new year, he has made up for it.
Aligning himself with Death Triangle in their war with Eddie Kingston's Fam, he has established himself as the unstoppable force so many figured he would be. His dominant win over Kingston and most recent victory over Rey Fenix built on his momentum and, more importantly, set him up as one of the favorites in the upcoming Face of the Revolution ladder match on Sunday's pay-per-view.
The Murderhawk Monster is finally finding success in AEW and, with his imposing nature and unstoppable wrath, is the company's most dominant MVP of 2021.
Time will tell whether he can maintain his hot streak.
WWE: Bianca Belair
Bianca Belair was already red-hot entering the Royal Rumble.
A feud with Bayley had her building confidence every week, not to mention her connection with the WWE Universe. By the time she hoisted Otis on her shoulders during the obstacle course, she had won over even the staunchest critics.
Then came her Rumble win.
Belair impressed, following up her 30-plus-minute appearance in 2020 with a 56:52 showing. She was the fan favorite and did not disappoint. One year after being cast aside in favor of Charlotte Flair and Rhea Ripley, The EST eliminated them to cash her ticket to WrestleMania 37.
Her 'Mania match with Sasha Banks was announced Friday on SmackDown, meaning Belair will be a central figure on the road to wrestling's most prestigious night.
And the future of the industry will be better for it.
AEW: Jon Moxley
For so long, Jon Moxley fended off the competition on AEW television.
From jumpstarting a paradigm shift on his first night with the company to winning the AEW World Championship, Moxley was always on the defensive, battling the greatest threats in the promotion as he attempted to retain his gold.
Then Kenny Omega defeated him under controversial circumstances to end his reign atop the company.
Since then, Moxley has made 2021 a year of reckoning.
He has approached every episode of Dynamite vengefully, sometimes dealing an ass-whooping, sometimes catching one. But he's always made one thing abundantly clear: He will not stop until he has punished Omega and Co. and regained his title.
Preferably at Revolution in an Exploding Barbed Wire Deathmatch.
Win or lose, how he recovers will determine what the remainder of the year holds for Mox and whether he will be in MVP contention come December.
Cesaro has long been one of, if not the best wrestler on the planet.
This year, he has made it a personal goal to remind everyone of that. Shaking off the preconceived notions that he was simply a tag team guy or that there was a definite ceiling on his growth, he defeated Daniel Bryan on two occasions and was the fan favorite to leave the Elimination Chamber with a Universal Championship match against Roman Reigns.
He came up short but immediately segued into a feud with Seth Rollins that figures to give him his greatest exposure in years.
If his performances to this point in 2021 are any indication, this will be a banner year for The Swiss Superman, and his status as MVP will extend far beyond the first two months.
AEW: Hangman Page
Hangman Page is, has been and likely will continue to be the heart of AEW.
He has been its moral compass for the first two years of the company's existence, delivering emotionally complex performances that are not typical of pro wrestlers.
That has carried over into 2021, with Page torn between joining The Dark Order and signing with Matt Hardy. He definitely did not choose the latter option and continues to toy with a faction looking for leadership after Brodie Lee's untimely death.
Page may or may not join the faction, but one thing is for certain: He will continue to earn fans and rave reviews for his work as the complex, anxious, Millennial cowboy whom Tony Khan and the AEW creative forces turn to when it needs a performer who can connect with fans on a level beyond that of an ass-kicker.
Even though he can more than adequately supply one of those.