Eli Sairs. Toby Muresianu. The Unstoppable Force. The Immovable Object. The two battlers have been historically dominant over the course of the last few years, laying waste to all challengers on their respective coasts. In New York, Sairs entered May with a 12-1 record – a mark that had remained unblemished since his only loss in October of 2016. As the officially recognized unified Roast Battle champion, he has defended his title repeatedly and won every single time. In Los Angeles, Muresianu entered the month with a 12-3-1 record – a record that once stood at 2-3 following an undercard loss in August of 2015. In the nearly three years since he had racked up a 10-0-1 record, and although Sairs reigns as the on-the-books champion, Muresianu had rightfully spent the last few months being recognized as the West Coast title holder, a People’s Champ type of designation. Both men took to the stage to defend their titles in May. Only one would be victorious.

Los Angeles Top Ten

1. Nicole Becannon 10-4
2. Omid Singh 18-7
3. Toby Muresianu 12-4-1
4. Leah Kayajanian 11-8-1
5. Pat Barker 15-6-2
6. Bryan Vokey 9-3
7. Doug Fager 10-6-1
8. Jamar Neighbors 6-4
9. Sarah Keller 8-2-2
10. Jeanne Whitney 7-4

We start at the top, where Nicole Becannon stands after successfully scoring an overtime win over reigning Belly Room Champ Toby Muresianu. While Muresianu’s history-making undefeated streak has been covered several times in the Roast Report, Becannon has run off a very similar streak and managed to keep it under the radar for the most part. After starting out her battle career at 2-4, she’s reeled off a record tying eight consecutive wins (Toby’s streak of 11 battles included a tie, breaking up the win streak) en route to the title. Staying on the topic of record win totals, Omid Singh preceded the title match with his 18th win, continuing to add victories to the winningest resume in the history of the sport. His win over breakout tournament superstar Bryan Vokey propelled him into the number 2 position. Muresianu drops to 3 with the loss, while Pat Barker rebounds from a brief two battle funk with a win over podcast partner Jeff Sewing and jumps up two spots to number 5 as a result. Vokey drops to 6 with his aforementioned loss, while Sarah Keller makes a well-deserved Top Ten debut following a win over two-time Battler of the Year Keith Carey.

New York Top Ten

1. Eli Sairs 12-1
2. Chris Crespo 5-3
3. Maddy Smith 10-2
4. Dave Sirus 9-2
5. Joel Walkowski 11-6
6. JP McDade 11-9
7. Matt Maran 11-3
8. Kim Congdon 12-4
9. Patrick Schroeder 8-3
10. Erik Bergstrom 4-5

We must begin here with a disclaimer – one, this is the most current rankings (and records) report published on the Roastmasters website. It is NOT up to date; however, after not including the NYC rankings on the last few of these posts, I thought it was important to catch up on what we’ve missed regardless of whether or not it’s included in the rankings listed above. That being said, they could have neglected to update the rankings for the last 18 months and one thing wouldn’t change – Eli Sairs at number one. His latest title defense comes over Winter Tournament winner and fan favorite Chris Crespo, and now we have nothing to do but wonder who exactly will finally take Sairs down. The Roastmasters have publicly announced plans for his next title match (more on that later), but the Roast Report has also heard plenty of rumblings that Sairs has his eye on another NY vs. LA megafight. It seemed that plenty of momentum was building towards Sairs vs. Muresianu and that may very well still be the case despite Toby’s slip up this month – especially since new Belly Room Champ Nicole Becannon already has another battle lined up in a week or two. Of course, before we get too far ahead of ourselves, it’s important to acknowledge that the specter of television looms large and that it’s entirely conceivable that Comedy Central would want a title fight on their airwaves. So really, who the hell knows. The only thing we know for sure is that when someone does finally dethrone Sairs, it’s gonna be a hell of a story.

As for the rest of the Top Ten, let’s see what they’ve been up to since the last time we covered their rankings. Chris Crespo rose two number 2 after defeating Maddy Smith in the tournament – since then, Crespo took the loss to Eli and Smith fell to Kim Congdon. Joel Walkowski scored a win over tournament semi-finalist Matt Maran, but suffered a first-round defeat in the Spring Tournament at the hands of Abby Rosenquist. After his success in the Winter Tournament, Maran also fell in the first round of the Spring Tourney to KP Burke. Rounding out the trifecta over first-round upset victims was Patrick Schroeder, who took a loss to Christine Meehan-Berg.

Los Angeles 11-20

11. Quentin Thomas 8-3
12. Dan Nolan 12-11
13. Alex Duong 10-7
14. Alex Hooper 13-8
15. Keith Carey 15-17
16. Joe Eurell 10-9-2
17. Jay Light 14-13-1
18. Jeff Sewing 6-3-2
19. Mike Schmidt 6-2
20. Rena Hundert 7-2

Quentin Thomas continued a sneaky great Roast Battle career with May wins over April Lotshaw and Evan Cassidy, jumping from 18 to 11 in the process. Keith Carey fell victim to Sarah Keller to drop to 15, while Joe Eurell managed an 11 spot jump from 27 to 16 after delivering a win over Caesar Lizardo and a draw with Robin Tran in a fight that some are calling the best battle of all time. Jeff Sewing drops to 18 following his loss to Pat Barker, while Rena Hundert reemerges in the Top 20 following her win over Heather Marulli.

New York 11-20

11. Mike Feeney 8-3-1
12. Zac Amico 10-6
13. Rosebud Baker 10-5
14. Katie Hannigan 7-3
15. Aaron Berg 4-3
16. Paul Hooper 2-4
17. Pedro Gonzalez 5-2
18. Myka Fox 4-4
19. Mike Recine 4-5
20. Leo Vulf 4-2

Zac Amico and Keith Carey delivered perhaps the best New York Battle of the Year at the end of April, a battle from which Carey emerged victorious. Pedro Gonzalez pulled off a win over Rob Ryan that same month, but the biggest impact from the bracket has to go to Paul Hooper. Once 0-4 in competition, Hooper beat JP McDade, Leo Vulf, and then dominated the Spring Tournament to earn a title shot against Eli Sairs at Skankfest next month. Seriously, if you’re not listening to the Roastmasters podcast, seek out the episode with the tournament finals and try not to be impressed with Hooper delivering two great performances in the same night. He will surely prove to be tough competition in his title match.

Los Angeles 21-30

21. Caesar Lizardo 9-5
22. Galina Rivina 7-4
23. Albert Escobedo 8-2
24. Isaac Hirsch 6-2
25. Evan Cassidy 6-4
26. Ramsey Badawi 5-3
27. Jacob Trimmer 7-4
28. Brett Erickson 5-0
29. John Michael-Bond 7-3
30. Jonathan Rowell 5-5-1

Caesar Lizardo drops to 21 with the loss to Joe Eurell, while Evan “The Cass Man” Cassidy falls to 25 after the loss to Quentin Thomas. The rest of the bracket is unaffected.

New York 21-30

21. Kerryn Feehan 4-8
22. Rob Ryan 5-3
23. Raanan Hershberg 1-2-1
24. James Pontillo 8-2
25. Chloe McGovern 3-1
26. Elon Altman 5-8
27. SallyAnn Hall 5-1
28. Ian Fidance 2-3
29. Sean Finnerty 3-1
30. Davidson Boswell 1-4-1

When the New York ranks are updated next, expect a lot of movement in this bracket. Kerryn Feehan will most likely fall from 21 after her main event loss to unranked Allison Klemp. Rob Ryan will also fall from 22 after his loss to Pedro Gonzalez, and there will be a definite shake-up in the mid-20s after #24 James Pontillo beat #25 Chloe McGovern before losing to #30 Davidson Boswell. McGovern rebounded with a first round tournament win over #27 SallyAnn Hall before getting bounced from the tourney by #29 Sean Finnerty, who went all the way to the finals (and beating #23 Raanan Hershberg in the process). After his win over Pontillo Boswell took an L to Lindsey Jennings, leaving his top 30 ranking in jeopardy.

Los Angeles 31-50

31. Brian McDaniel 5-0
32. Tony Bartolone 7-8
33. Katrina Davis 5-3
34. Valerie Tosi 4-2
35. Paige Wesley 6-5
36. Logan Guntzelman 3-1
37. Armando Torres 4-2
38. Brent Duncan 5-5
39. Ashley Johnson 4-1
40. Robin Tran 3-6-1

Brian McDaniel’s win over Eric Hollerbach wasn’t particularly impressive given Hollerbach’s performance, but a 5-0 record is. Hopefully McDaniel’s next fight is against someone more in his weight class. Paige Wesley and Armando Torres delivered a killer undercard, and after Wesley’s win they flip in the rankings with Paige going from 42 to 35 and Armando falling from 36 to 37 (side note: this was a good month to lose a battle, since four people from last month’s rankings dropped out due to inactivity). Much like McDaniel v. Hollerbach, Ashley Johnson’s bludgeoning of Spence Griffeth was a pretty one-sided battle. Johnson jumps from 45 to 39 with the win. And lastly, Robin Tran. It would take a special performance for a 3-6 battler to score a tie and jump into the Top 40, and that’s what we got. Her fight with Joe Eurell is certain to win One Round Battle of the Year at the Roasties, the same award Tran won last year for her clash with Keith Carey. That classic match moves her back into the rankings at the 40 spot.

41. Zach Stein 6-4
42. April Lotshaw 4-3
43. Guam Felix 7-6
44. Billy Anderson 3-0
45. Heather Marulli 6-6
46. Gary Curtis 2-0
47. Andrea Guzzetta 2-0
48. Lonnie Johnson 5-4
49. Movses Shakarian 4-4
50. Paul Elia 2-3

April Lotshaw falls to 42 after her loss to Quentin Thomas, while Heather Marulli drops to 45 following her loss to Rena Hundert. The rankings make room for three new additions this month, as Billy Anderson clocks in at 44 following a win over Mateen Stewart, Gary Curtis debuts at 46 after defeating Kal Hamilton, and Paul Elia takes the 50 spot after a second consecutive win, this time over Scott Kidd.

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