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VOTE: Who has been the best WWE wrestler of the 2010s?

Daniel Bryan and Triple H were involved in a program which culminated in a WrestleMania main event
Image: Is Daniel Bryan your choice as WWE's best wrestler of the past decade?

Just a handful of episodes of Raw and SmackDown remain on the WWE calendar for the 2010s as the bell rings on another decade of WWE.

The 1980s will be remembered for Hulkamania running wild, the 1990s saw the birth of the Attitude Era and the 2000s were all about Ruthless Aggression.

So how will the 2010s be remembered? We have picked out five key players from the past 10 years in a bid to find the best of the bunch.

Make your selection from this elite group of five competitors as we bid to crown WWE's top wrestler of the decade…

CM Punk was hugely popular during his time in WWE, which came to a controversial end in 2014
Image: CM Punk was hugely popular during his time in WWE and in many ways a pioneer for today's style

CM Punk

It is interesting to contemplate what WWE would look like today if CM Punk had never existed.

The 'Chicago made' superstar stands alone as the single most influential in-ring competitor of the past 10 years, a man whose differences from those around him drove the company to become expansive and inclusive in ways previously unseen.

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Image: Punk has been out of WWE for several years but his legacy and popularity endure

There would be no Daniel Bryan, no Kevin Owens and maybe even no Seth Rollins if there had not been a CM Punk, a wrestler who proved main-event level stars did not need to be musclebound giants to become the most popular people in the business.

Such a strategy had been in place since the mid-1990s (for very obvious reasons) but no man since the days of Mick Foley had more success with it than Punk.

Today, he remains the last name on the list of stars to make a comeback. There is a great deal of romance when looking back at Punk's time, but if he remains retired, his story will stay perfect forever.

Daniel Bryan was pinned clean in the main event of this week's SmackDown
Image: Daniel Bryan has been a stand-out performer for the past decade despite missing three years through a medical 'retirement'

Daniel Bryan

Daniel Bryan, widely considered to be the best wrestler on the planet today, made his WWE debut in January 2010 and his story has been threaded through the not-always-rich tapestry of sports entertainment for the entire decade.

Under his real name, Bryan Danielson was a star of the independent scene for 10 years prior to his WWE arrival, the American Dragon setting new standards in his Ring of Honor matches against Christopher Daniels, Samoa Joe, Nigel McGuinness and countless others.

Daniel Bryan's in-ring psychology is almost second to none in today's WWE
Image: Bryan's in-ring psychology is almost second to none in today's WWE

In his early days he proved that 'indie darlings' could transition to the bright lights of WWE and carved a path which has since been followed by almost every member of today's roster.

Even neck surgeries and a forced retirement in February 2016 does not diminish Bryan's standing. He came back from all of that and finishes up the second as the best in the business, seamlessly transitioning from face to heel and back again.

Not many wrestlers will leave the legacy that Bryan does - and he's still going strong on a nightly basis.

AJ Styles held the WWE title for more than a year after winning it in Manchester in November 2017
Image: AJ Styles won the WWE title in Manchester in November 2017, providing British fans with a truly great wrestling moment

AJ Styles

For the vast majority of his career, AJ Styles was cast in the role of the 'one that got away' from WWE, enjoying a long association with TNA and following that with a spell in Japan in which some of his best work was done but during the autumn of his career.

Styles made his WWE debut at the 2016 Royal Rumble at the age of 38 and with more than 17 years of experience as an in-ring competitor under his belt.

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Image: Styles has recently reformed 'the Club' with Luke Gallows and Karl Anderson

At the time, the more critical observers in wrestling saw the move, somewhat cynically, as a final payday for a man whose best years were behind him, but Styles has proved such scepticism wrong by continuing to perform at the highest of levels.

Now aged 42, he accepts there are very few years ahead of him and this year commented he has now signed his final contract in sports entertainment.

But even today there is nobody quite like Styles, as a 'seller' of moves and as a man capable of captivating the crowd's attention either as a heel or a face.

Roman Reigns is now a SmackDown competitor after making the move from Raw in the Superstar Shake-up
Image: Love him or hate him, there is no denying Roman Reigns has been a highly dominant force in WWE in the past decade

Roman Reigns

As someone who is neither a much-loved favourite from the independent scene or a highly-skilled veteran overlooked for far too long, Roman Reigns' inclusion on this list is very eye-catching.

But you simply cannot argue with the man's record. He was part of the enormously-popular Shield faction, eliminated 12 people at the 2014 Royal Rumble and then won the event in 2015, and is a triple crown and Grand Slam champion.

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Image: Reigns headlined four WrestleManias during the 2010s

Reigns has headlined WrestleMania four times - from 2015 to 2018 - and has been right at the top of the company's merchandise sellers throughout that time.

He will forever be affected by his long positioning as 'the guy' the company pushed hard to succeed, and even after recovering from leukaemia the booing for that has not entirely subsided.

In the ring, he may be the weakest worker on this list, but there's no denying Roman Reigns has been a hugely important figure in WWE in the 2010s.

Charlotte Flair again demonstrated her new intensity against Peyton Royce and Billie Kay
Image: Charlotte Flair has become a 10-time women's champion in the past decade

Charlotte Flair

AJ Lee and Paige may have stronger claims from a legacy perspective, and Ronda Rousey made an enormous splash in her 12 months in the business, but Charlotte Flair has won 10 women's titles and has been the dominant female force of the past decade.

A competitor schooled entirely in the NXT laboratory and with no independent experience whatsoever, Flair is a total product of the current WWE farm system and marries that background with the DNA of being the daughter of one of the greatest of all time.

Charlotte Flair defeated Asuka to become the SmackDown Women's Champion.
Image: Flair has been involved in some huge matches in the 2010s, including a history-making WrestleMania main event

Flair will almost certainly overtake her father's record of 16 world title, having amassed 10 in the space of four-and-a-half years.

Throw in the small matter of a history-making WrestleMania women's main event and the impact Flair cannot be understated.

Who is your selection for the WWE wrestler of the decade? Vote here...

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