Pro Wrestling Illustrated have announced that based primarily on his three WWE World Heavyweight Championship victotries, Roman Reigns has topped Pro Wrestling Illustrated’s 26th annual “PWI 500” list, with all of his accomplishments falling within the “PWI 500” evaluation period of July 1st, 2015 to June 30th, 2016.

When told about the news by Pro Wrestling Illustrated, Reigns noted that he was thrilled stating, “Thank you, man, it’s crazy. Last year, was I what, three or four? To just remain in that same company, to be in that class with those guys, it’s world class. It’s a great honor and it goes with a lot of hard work. It’s very flattering. It just shows that if you keep your head down and stick to your day-to-day, you grind it out and take the long road, good things happen. It’s a great achievement and another great accolade.”

Meanwhile, PWI publisher Stu Saks said that he anticipates some backlash from fans over the choice stating, “Our cover headline comes right out and states it, Half Of You Will Hate This! Roman Reigns Is No.1. Reigns is certainly not the sexy choice, but based on what he accomplished during the time frame for evaluation, we think he’s the right choice.”

The entire Reigns ¬†interview can be found on iTunes and pwi-online.com, while the print and digital edition of the “PWI 500” magazine can be found¬†at PWI-Online.com.