10. The Plot Doesn't Hinge On Setting Up Infinity War
While the first Guardians of the Galaxy was undeniably an amazing film, it still had just a hint of the phase one MCU feel about it. Which is to say that the plot seemed to rely just a bit too heavily on setting up a future film.
In the first Guardians, Thanos was waiting in the wings and acted as the driving force that helped move things along, all while not really doing too much of anything. At least not anything that will be relevant until Infinity War hits theatres in the summer of 2018, that is.
It originally looked as though Thanos would actually play a bigger role in the first Guardians, but in the end, his involvement was little more than a teaser for the third Avengers film. Meanwhile, the Infinity Stone itself was simply a plot device that drives this point home.
In Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 however, Thanos does not appear whatsoever and is only very sparingly mentioned. And when his name does come up, it actually serves a purpose - to help develop both Gamora and Nebula's respective character arcs.
More importantly, without Thanos acting as a quasi-chessmaster, Vol. 2 is far more self-sufficient than its predecessor. Therefore, it's able to tell its own unique, well-rounded story without having to devote too much time to setting up another film.