Jobber's Corner: Top 10 Most Anticipated Feuds of 2023
2022 was a year to remember for wrestling. AEW continued to build its product through home-grown talent. An AEW pillar left for rival WWE. WWE fans saw the unexpected retirement of CEO, Vince McMahon, who then was replaced by son-in-law Triple H as head of creative. Once Triple H was in charge, WWE then took off. Return after return, banger after banger of premium live events. With all the excitement around wrestling as 2022 closes, what can we be excited about heading into 2023?
Here's to Hoping... Honorable Mentions for 2023 Feuds
HM #1: FTR vs. The Usos
Yes, I know FTR is currently employed by All Elite Wrestling. Yes, I know The Usos are currently employed by WWE. However, with HHH in charge of Monday and Friday nights, and FTR contracts expiring in April of 2023, Dax and Cash could make their way over to WWE.
With that move comes just about a million dream matches for FTR, the biggest being against the Usos. PWI's 2022 Top 100 Tag Teams had The Usos at #1 and FTR at #2. This feud would not need titles at stake, those rankings alone should be enough for a storyline. The feud would most likely be near the end of 2023, but nonetheless, the minimal chance that this could be on WWE television is enough for me to get excited.
HM #2: CM Punk vs. MJF
Picture this. MJF has gone on his reign of terror. He has defended against every challenger that has come his way. AEW All Out in November ends, and MJF has beaten Ricky Starks (yet again), and then.... LOOK IN MY EYES.... WHAT DO YOU SEE! That's right folks, the cult of personality is back, and just in time. MJF has repeated several times he will take his title to more significant opportunities a la Punk in the Summer of Punk. But now Punk is back and competing for a title in December of 2023... And if he doesn't return?? Well... Who doesn't love a little fan fiction...
Top 10 Most Anticipated Feuds of 2023
#10: Christian Cage vs. Jungle Boy
Jungle Boy and Christian Cage have been long rumored to be put in a match, but a Cage injury thrust Jungle Boy into a match with Luchasaurus. Jungle Boy went over in that match and is now partnered with Hook, but fans have to imagine when Cage is healthy, the next step to building Jungle Boy into a superstar will be pinning his long-time mentor.
#9: Dominik vs. Rey Mysterio
Ahhh, who does not love a good family feud. Bring in Steve Harvey as a special guest referee and we could be really cooking...
In all seriousness, Dominik has found his calling as an immature heel with Rhea Ripley as a partner. With the latest video of Rey calling the cops on Dom definitely sets up a feud between father and son that should conclude at WrestleMania.
#8: Swerve Strickland vs. Keith Lee
Swerve in our Glory was a strange partnership to begin both debuts in AEW. However, it will definitely end with creating two stars, one being the biggest babyface on the roster, and one being a heel with real heat.
The match between Keith and Swerve should both show their in-ring skills as solo acts, and both should catapult them into the TNT Title picture. Keep an eye out for this match as we head into 2023.
#7: Kris Statlander vs. Jade Cargill
There were rumors are about AEW having big plans for Kris Statlander before her injury. But my thinking is her injury will give her even more heat when she inevitably comes back. With that heat, maybe she will be the one to dethrone female Goldberg over there on AEW... And possibly save her from a Lil Bow Wow feud...
#6: Rhea Ripley vs. Bianca Belair
As we sit ending 2022, Rhea Ripley feels like the final boss that every superstar on the WWE roster (man or woman) should be afraid of. Bianca saw some of her at WWE Wargames, but with Rhea having some of the best odds to win the Royal Rumble, a date with Bianca at WrestleMania may be in order. Two of the best women in wrestling right now, going at it on the big stage... Please and Thank You.
#5: Eddie Kingston vs. MJF
There is no lack of real-life bad-blood between Eddie and MJF. But Eddie can be one of the most endearing stars in All Elite Wrestling. His ability to blur the lines between reality and an act is unmatched, and what better person to match him up with than another man who has that same skillset, Maxwell Jacob Friedman.
The pure beauty of Kingston is that he is a superstar that thrives off the chase. He does not need a belt, which allows MJF's so-called 'reign of terror' to continue. The promo battles alone can sell this one, but there is more to it than just that.
#4: Bryan Danielson vs. MJF
One of the biggest criticisms of MJF has been his in-ring work. What better way to improve that than putting him with one of the best in-ring workers of this generation? Danielson is looking a retirement tour right in the face, and MJF is one of, if not, the brightest stars in the wrestling industry. Danielson puts over MJF, lets Max display his in-ring ability, and gives us a feud-of-the-year candidate.