Honourable mentions are always many on lists like this, so vast is the modern pro-wrestling talent pool.
Carmella's union with R-Truth has transformed her from a tedious, outdated heel to a genuinely fun midcard act, with her in-ring game significantly sharper than at the start of the calendar as well. An incredible indie run has destroyed all memories of Jordan Devlin's dodgy UK Championship Tournament in 2017, justifying his 'Irish Ace' nickname. Juice Robinson continues to grow as a big-match performer in NJPW. Randy Orton went from half-arsed babyface to SmackDown sociopath, Drew McIntyre is performing up to his impending monster push, Elias' crowd control mastery is still growing, and the list goes on.
Found within are the men and women whose 2018 performances almost make their 2017 efforts look embarrassing. Granted, most have benefitted from stronger booking, but that doesn't detract from their progression. Skill, graft, and smarts have helped them take their respective games to the next level. They've spent the past 12 months snapping at the heels of those above them, and in some cases, taken their spots, setting them up for even more great leaps forward as we head into 2019...
WhatCulture's big bad wrestling news baron. A fan since 1992, still geeking out for everything from WeeLC to mid '80s Jim Crockett Promotions. Give him a follow @andyhmurray. You'll have a great time. Maybe.