MR. TITO: The Problem with the Miz as WWE Champion Submitted by Mr. Tito on 02/23/2021 at 08:58 AM
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Welcome back to the EXCELLENCE IN COLUMN WRITING for another edition of Mr. Tito's columns posted exclusively at NoDQ.com. And I'm sure that the following column will be met with pure hatred among the loyal WWE and Vince McMahon loving fans who defend each and every move that they make. YET, in just a few weeks or even a few months, we'll hear a "Tito Echo Syndrome" of my same opinions on the haters' Tweets, Message Boards, or elsewhere. I just hope that many remember WHO to credit for the early adopter takes...
So, the WWE recently pulled the trigger on Miz winning the WWE Title. This becomes his 2nd World Title and actually the 2nd one won from cashing in the Money in the Bank briefcase either after or towards the end of the match when the champion is vulnerable.
Since Miz's first WWE Title run FAILED from late 2010 to shortly after Wrestlemania during 2011 (thankfully in time for "Summer of Punk"), he's been mostly a midcard wrestler. He's an 8 time Intercontinental Champion, 2 time United States Champion, and has been Tag Champion 8 times. Then, suddenly, he screws Otis out of the Money in the Bank briefcase, which didn't win legitimately, and then cashes the briefcase to become champion at Elimination Chamber 2021. Do you see the problem yet? Forever a midcarder and then suddenly wins the top promotional title. SAME argument that I made for Kofi Kingston during 2019 and Jinder Mahal for 2017. The World Title does NOT create a Main Event wrestler. Becoming an organically made Main Eventer is how you earn the World Title.
Between the 2 World Titles, Miz has been nothing but Midcard fodder and has been treated as such by the WWE itself, fans, and even his co-wrestlers. There are many quotes out there of his co-workers, past and present, who struggle working with the guy...
HOWEVER, there was 1 window of time where the Miz could have got over and developed into a Main Event star. Go back to 2016 and the newly split Smackdown brand. If you go back to August 2016, the Miz got angry on Talking Smack at a then-retired Daniel Bryan who said that Miz "wrestles like a coward" or wrestled the "soft WWE style". Miz snapped and delivered the shoot-like promo of a lifetime where he completely tore Daniel Bryan down. Miz finally captured something in a bottle and had a great feud with Dolph Ziggler. Then, he had a Mixed Tag match for Wrestlemania during 2017 with Miz/Maryse vs. John Cena/Nikki Bella. Miz and Maryse had hilarious segments where they heavily mocked the ridiculousness of John Cena and Nikki's relationship being pushed so heavily. Miz was finally on the cusp.... AND THEN HE LOST to John Cena/Nikki Bella and was moved to the RAW roster via the stupid "Superstar Shake-up" which broke the WWE during 2017 from the chemistry that formed among the rosters.
Since mid 2017, the Miz has been nothing but a Midcarder while participating in whatever Corporate event that the WWE asked him to do. He's a favorite of the WWE's Corporate officers because he speaks well, doesn't have an opinion of his own, and stays on point to promote whatever the WWE wants. He's a Corporate Shill and that's probably many wrestlers dislike him. Miz has the favor of WWE's marketing officers for his squeaky clean look and communications abilities. If the WWE needs him to attend the Kelly Clarkson show to spread cheerful stuff about the WWE, he'll do it... Problem is that he does these corporate things while he's in a storyline as a heel. That's right, as he was bullying Otis over his Money in the Bank briefcase, he's on Kelly Clarkson acting like a babyface and corporate shill.
The problem with the Miz is he is NOT authentic as a wrestler. What you see out there is 100% what the WWE Creative Team wants him to do or say. Whatever ridiculous thing that Creative wants him to do, he'll do it... In return, Vince will appreciate that loyalty and put him in a few WWE Films movie properties, let him appear on NBC gameshows, or appear on any talk show as a babyface and corporate spokesperson DESPITE how his character is portrayed on television. We used to call the Rock as the "Corporate Champion" but that was only because he was a member of the storyline driven "the Corporation". Miz is squeaky clean guy that many marketing types within the WWE Corporation dream as being their top guy and Miz will say or do anything to remain that guy. Now, he's World Champion.
And how did we get to this point where a MIDCARDER instantly becomes World Champion?
I've already addressed this in my 02/02/2021 Column - "Triple H's Incompetence Helped Edge Win Rumble". When you do NOT have a deep bench of developed and younger superstars ready to become World Champion, you resort to going back to what is comfortable. Seriously, Miz was last champion 10 freakin' years ago... That's a HUGE gap on deciding whether a guy is a Main Eventer or not. But before Miz won the WWE Title, they tried Randy Orton just last year. And before that, it was a bunch of Brock Lesnar title reigns. Oh, some 50 year old Bill Goldberg sprinkled in there. Let's try to push Bray Wyatt/Fiend as a top guy for the 100th time and make him even spookier than before!
What did the NXT Developmental System hand the WWE lately?
- Finn Balor - Where is he lately? Oh that's right, he was demoted back to NXT and is their current champion.
- Samoa Joe - Love the guy, but he's an older version of himself and has an injury history from being older with lots of mileage.
- Shinsuke Nakamura - WWE purchased an older version of himself with lots of mileage.
- Sami Zayn - Forever a midcarder in the WWE, stayed home for a while.
- Bobby Roode - Midcarder, NXT bought an older version of him from Impact.
- Andrade Cien Almas - I cannot remember the last time I saw this guy wrestle.
- Tommaso Ciampa & Johnny Gargano - They are comfortable staying in NXT.
- Keith Lee - Struggling badly on the WWE roster.
- Kevin Owens - I like the guy, consider him a solid worker and talker... But is he a top guy? And has he already used up his chances to be a top guy?
- Baron Corbin - One of the more disliked wrestlers on the WWE roster and not for storyline purposes.
- Braun Strowman - Not fully trained enough to hang with the top guys, bad attitude at times (like saying he paid dues while at the Performance Center while Indy guys struggled to find work during a Pandemic).
THAT is how the WWE resorts to trying the Miz as a World Champion. THAT is why the WWE has to push Edge as the 2021 Royal Rumble winner. THAT is why the WWE keeps going to Randy Orton repeatedly. THAT is why Brock Lesnar can be a part-time WWE Champion. THAT is why an older Bill Goldberg, despite being in poor cardio conditioning, can come back at any time and have a top spot, even become champion! If John Cena could return as part-time, they would... And that is also why guys like Seth Rollins, Bray Wyatt, Roman Reigns, Daniel Bryan, Braun Strowman, now Drew McIntyre, and even the Miz are seeing repeat World Title reigns passed to them like a hot potato. The guys coming up from the NXT Developmental System since Triple H took over during mid 2012 are NOT GETTING OVER.
That's why it baffles me why CM Punk just doesn't return to the WWE already... They are DESPERATE right now for star power. Of course, the WWE would probably bury him again for leaving abruptly during 2014 and Triple H will always carry a grudge over what was said afterward.
Miz is just the "next guy in line" to past a World Championship title to because NOTHING great is coming up from the NXT Developmental System. The Performance Center and Triple H running it lacks scouting, proper training, managerial skills, and discipline to create the WWE superstars of tomorrow. All we're getting now is gothic or biker types that are coming up with terrible wrestler names to boot.
It's not so much that Miz earned the WWE Title because he was over... HELL NO. It was because Vince McMahon looked around the locker room and was baffled at what his son-in-law has developed him through the farm system. He saw Miz sitting there with his million dollar smile bragging about his latest reality show episode on USA Network or how his gameshow is doing on NBC. Vince realized "hey, he's hasn't been champ for a while. Why not?". That's on top of the WWE marketing group probably adding their 2 cents.
AND I want to emphasize THIS... Miz COULD be a Main Eventer... He's crisp inside the ring, has a great look, speaks well, has some charisma, and has a great finishing move. He's 6'2" and weighs about 220 pounds. Everything is in place...
But he's a Corporate Shill and doesn't present himself as being authentic within the WWE.
You want authentic? Go back to 2016 and watch that Talking Smack promo that he cut on Daniel Bryan. Then, watch Miz mocking John Cena in costume while his beautiful wife Maryse actually shredded Nikki Bella with her impersonation. Then a short time later, he announced that his first child was on the way... WWE fans were legitimately happy for the guy.
Then, he goes back to being the Corporate guy. Need commercials done? I'm there. Need Marine 3, 4, 5, and 6 filmed? I'm on top of that! I won't mock his NBC or USA Network shows, as those are paid gigs outside of his WWE career. HOWEVER, WWE picks and chooses who gets those opportunities as revealed by many wrestlers who were denied roles elsewhere. Then as a wrestler, his character is completely fake and has nothing associated with Michael Mizanin. The guy that we see on Miz & Mrs or appearing on talk shows is 100% different from the character he plays on television.
That is what the Miz misses to connect more with fans... We all have family. He clearly loves and appreciates his parents, which most of us can relate to. Now, Miz is a dad himself... WWE's audience is older and most of us are parents too. AGAIN, let me revisit his September 2017 announcement of Maryse being pregnant with Child #1. Watch the video of their announcement and how the fans instantly popped when Maryse said "we're having a baby". Then, it's turned into a wrestling angle and Miz instantly starts delivering scripted lines... Took the air out of the announcement and anything that we could relate towards the Miz.
Furthermore, look at the Miz's climb in life to being in the WWE. He earned his spot... He climbed his way up the ladder from working the Reality Show circuit, becoming an Indy wrestler, trying out with the WWE through Tough Enough and then working in the developmental territory for 2 years. He was a solid midcarder for the WWE for 4 years until the fateful decision to make him WWE Champion during 2010. I had Miz's back early on because he was immediately inserted into an odd feud with Jerry Lawler but then when surrounding the Rock and John Cena, he really looked small and exposed as a top guy and World Champion. Honestly, since losing his first WWE Title during mid 2011, he's been a reliable midcard talent. There is NOTHING wrong with that. He has a WWE career going on 17 years now and done well for himself, inside and outside of the ring.
My simple issue is this... You cannot just throw a World Title at a guy and expect him to get over because of it. That's NOT how it works. You have to rise up from the midcard and prove that you've outgrown it organically with the fans. Miz has not... Just a few weeks ago at the Royal Rumble, he was letting a musical artist named "Bad Bunny" get the best of him. THINK ABOUT THAT, folks... A musician with ZERO in-ring training and never worked a wrestling event was getting the better of a 17 year veteran and potential World Champion.
Everyone is telling me that this is just "short-term" and Drew McIntyre will regain the title soon. Really? So you'll make Drew a 3-time champion in freakin' 2 years? How stupid does that sound?
That's my opinion on the Miz winning the WWE Title... I'm sure most of you will hate it now, try to marginalize me or my opinion... But then the "come to Jesus" moment will hit you and you'll be repeating my same opinion in a few weeks (without giving me credit, of course).
I don't dislike Miz... But I disagree with giving him the WWE Title when he's been presented as a midcard wrestler for almost 10 years and then suddenly be made into a World Champion. I also feel zero connection with him as a fan because what you see on television is a scripted character acts like a robot for WWE Creative. Miz doesn't inject anything personal into his character nor does he stand up to WWE Creative backstage with any pushback on the ridiculous garbage that they give him. How many damn talking segments can he have, too, without anyone wondering why he still isn't over?
When those viewership numbers bomb heading into Wrestlemania and then afterward (especially, below 1.5 million, here we come), I'll be proven to be right once again.
If only the WWE had a GOOD developmental system that could have new superstars for us to get behind and cheer... And also giving Vince valid reasons NOT to keep pushing the same old guys to the top. Miz is 40 years old, by the way... When you give Randy Orton another title reign this year, another 40 year old. If you bring back Brock Lesnar, there's a 43 year old. Try John Cena again, another 43 year old. Bobby Lashley looks like a good option but he's 44 years old (!!). We're happy that Edge is back but he's 47 years old!
If only the WWE had a GOOD Developmental system full of talented and well trained guys to give the WWE an option to NOT be as reliant on Jim Ross or John Laurinaitis's signed wrestlers.
I'm telling ya, folks... WWE Developmental has been a struggle with Triple H in charge of talent. Until y'all get that through your thick skulls, you'll NEVER realize what is wrong with the WWE. Remember, WWE had a HORRIBLE Creative Team during the 2000s as led by Stephanie McMahon. Katie Vick anyone? Lita's pregnancy anyone? HLA? Chuck & Billy? Mr. America? Triple H and Jericho fighting over Lucy the Dog? Shelton Benjamin's mom? The entire freakin' WCW/ECW Invasion storyline?!?!?
Great talent ALWAYS overcomes dumb storyline ideas. Let me prove it... If you would have told anyone in the 1980s that a guy named "Hunter Hearst Helmsley" would be a MAJOR superstar of the late 1990s or early 2000s, every wrestler and fan would have laughed at you. Triple H took that name, gimmick, and character and 100% owned it. Throw him in a Hog Pen Match? Doesn't matter... He made that entertaining. Remember Rocky Maivia getting thrown into the Nation of Domination? Yeah, he made the most of that bad creative decision and broke out of that group by becoming of the biggest superstars ever.
Quit blaming Vince and quit blaming WWE Creative. That is the EASY BUTTON. Fact is that Vince McMahon no longer has a Jim Ross + OVW or John Laurinaitis + FCW that can scout for new talent and then have the right trainers in place to groom them properly. Triple H actually did well with his female wrestling hire in Sara Del Rey and I give him 100% props for that. But Matt Bloom is a disaster as the top trainer and Triple H refuses to scout talent like Jim Ross and Gerald Brisco used to do. Brisco spent YEARS watching Brock Lesnar at University of Minnesota... What does Triple H do now? Announces tryouts at the Performance Center and anyone can attend. Brock Lesnar didn't know that he wanted to become a WWE wrestler until Brisco and then Jim Ross sold it to him. Then, Ohio Valley Wrestling trained him properly.
All of you, sadly, cannot see the major TALENT DEVELOPMENTAL problem in the WWE and that's unfortunate.
The FACT is that the WWE has to rely on pushing older names from the Ross and Laurinaitis era of signings because Triple H's guys are NOT Main Event material. Vince McMahon tried several of HHH's prized guys and they didn't draw money... Hence why we keep going back to the well on Brock Lesnar, Randy Orton, Seth Rollins, and why Vince takes goofy chances on guys like Jinder Mahal. Now, he's giving Company Guy, the Miz, another try because he has ZERO faith in pushing anybody that Triple H signed and developed. FACT.
You'll realize it soon, enough... Just like I'm right that you cannot push a guy as a MIDCARDER for the past 10 years and then suddenly give him the World Title.
And SCREW that Money in the Bank briefcase... That is the WORST idea to make a World Champion, ever, unless the title shot is announced in advance (see Rob Van Dam vs. John Cena). Is there no difference in how the 24/7 Title works and how the Money in the Bank cash-in can work? Miz won BOTH of his titles by taking advantage of a World Champion who just endured a match beforehand. How credible is that to your audience?
Lots of facts presented in this column, but I'm sure that I'll be met with the usual personal attacks, cursing, or other means to marginalize what I just posted.
Then, within weeks or months, that anvil will come down on your head and you'll suddenly realize that I'm right. Next, you'll steal my opinions and post them elsewhere as if they were somehow your own.
I'm right and you know it...
So just chill... Until the next episode!
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