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Strongest Traveling Companions?

Strongest companions?

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I'm actually kind of interested on how people weigh in, how do you rank the traveling companions in strength? I think it could be a fun thread discussion. I excluded Max/Masato as he never really had a Pokemon he could proactively rely on for battle at all times.
Its a tie between Dawn and Iris for me. Iris had that long winning streak and Dawn has shown to be really competent in battles and was pretty much even with Ash in their final battle against each other.
If I could rank them, I think it would look like this:

May = Iris > Brock > Cilan = Dawn > Misty > Clemont > Bonnie > Tracey > Serena

I was thinking about it for a while and I think that looks fair, I mainly based it off battles, Pokemon intelligence, natural abilities as well as teams. For example Brock was shown to be extremely exceptional in his knowledge of Pokemon and such, how they fight and everything about their moves and such.
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Red and Blue

Well-Known Member
I'd say Dawn. She proved to be a really powerful trainer outside contests. Second would be May of course

Lord Trollbias

Y'all Salty Bishes
Tossup between Iris or May IMO.


Defo Iris IMO, powerful pokemon and battled alot. Dawn is prolly second place, with Clemont/Cilan/Misty as the third.

Not sure about May, sure her team is mostly fully evolved, but only really Blaziken came across as all that powerful.


Lover of underrated characters
Dawn and May. May has fully evolved Pokemon and most of Dawn's are good too.


Iris' Dragonite was probably the strongest strongest individual pokemon, but can be a little reliant on that raw power and isn't quite ready to fully control dragonite even against Clair. If you include the stuff after she left Ash, May is doing extremely well in her area of expertise, as she seemed to be famous and winning contests in Johto quickly enough to take a detour. At the very least she seems to have become stronger more quickly than any besides maybe Dawn, who doesn't seem to have the power out of contests May does or the on-screen experience of two regions, although it just be that her rivals are much less impressive to me than Soledad and Drew or even Harley so Dawn stands out among mediocrity (even having trouble against Jessie!) while May struggles with the best.

With their full teams Misty and Brock are both above average gym leaders now but Misty seems to have reached her potential as a great water trainer while Brock is likely getting rusty and isn't using powerhouses like his old onix anymore. Clemont is still struggling as a leader so he's just below for now. Likewise Serena isn't that good yet but could surpass others. Cilan and Tracey had unique talents but only one really strong pokemon each and Bonnie and Max aren't trainers at all (but if Max picks up that Mightyena and Ralts, then uses his booksmarts and gets experience... he could be tough).

Overall best trainers: May>Misty>Brock>Iris>Dawn>Clemont>Cilan>Tracey>Serena>Max>Bonnie. For now at least.

Strongest single pokemon:
Iris' Dragonite>Misty's Gyarados>May's Blaziken>Brock's Steelix>Dawn's Mamoswine>Clemont's Heliolisk>Cilan's Crustle>Tracey's Scyther>Serena's Braxien>Max's future Ralts>Bonnie's sorta Dedenne
Defo Iris IMO, powerful pokemon and battled alot. Dawn is prolly second place, with Clemont/Cilan/Misty as the third.

Not sure about May, sure her team is mostly fully evolved, but only really Blaziken came across as all that powerful.
Iris has an OP Dragonite and a tough Excadrill, May's Blaziken is pretty great, from Dawn's side she has Mamoswine but nothing else really wowed me, her Piplup was admirable. I honestly think it's the best of her team, better than Mamoswine, it seems like most view Mamoswine as the strongest because it was large and big but Piplup seemed much better imo.

Iris: Dragonite & Excadrill
Dawn: Piplup
May: Blaziken

I really wished May had used Munchlax more, its personality was pretty GOAT it just never really got much showtime to really battle. I mainly give the edge to Iris because she was trainer at Bonnie's age, gained 100 straight wins, already impressed a Dragon Master in Drayden, Dragon Gym Leader in Clair and Champion in Cynthia and was offered the job of a gym leader by the strongest in Unova. If she could just evolve her Axew and Gible, I think it would really make me 100% on her. Plus she has empathetic Dragon powers that allow her to communicate with them in battle, can't go wrong with that.
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Wicked Witch
Something like this -

High Tier:

Cilian - has the best battle record while traveling with the group
Brock - regularly trained with Ash and seemed to be his go-to for battle advice
May - won many Contest Battles by KO to the point that it hindered her career
Clemont - very talented strategic trainer. his team's a bit young/fresh, though

Mid Tier:

Iris - based on her on-screen wins alone. her Pokemon are very strong, but I'm not convinced she is
Dawn - seems to be a very balanced, middle of the road, trainer. her team isn't star material, though
Misty - very good when she's in her element ... which isn't often

Low Tier:

Tracey - his team is garbage, but he's shown a slivering of potential
Serena - the newbie. I'd guess she'll settle somewhere above Misty by the end of the saga
Bonnie - knows how to handle Dedenne, but will probably not have a proper battle this region

Max Tier:

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