WWE’s Reluctancy To Build New Stars Is Infuriating

Fallout From Royal Rumble

This past Saturday we were treated to the first of the “big four” PPVs of the calendar year, Royal Rumble. I use the phrase “treated to” very lightly. The only treat is I don’t work Sundays so staying up until 5am on a Saturday is fine I guess. During the show we seen Lashley toppling Lesnar for the WWE title due to some outside interference which set off a chain reaction. A bad one at that.

So with Reigns screwing Lesnar out of his title surely he’ll be gunning for Reigns and his championship, right? Sort of. Lesnar later enters at number 30 in the Royal Rumble match and goes on to win the whole thing. This results in Lesnar challenging Reigns to a match at WrestleMania but he also wants the WWE Championship back. Brock is now competing in an Elimination Chamber match for the WWE title less than two months before WrestleMania. A match I am nearly sure he’s going to win, which is a shame for Lashley’s current reign.

Reading that just proves the rinse and repeat formula we keep getting with WWE. Like everyone else, before the Rumble I was thinking of potential winners. I actually wrote about five different wrestlers who could benefit from the big win right here on NoDQ. That one was for Mrs. Foley’s baby boy!

As soon as that number 30 flashed on the screen I felt gutted, and not just because I wanted a different entrant. I knew instantly Lesnar was winning when he really didn’t need to. Why not have him run a gauntlet? Enter the Elimination Chamber where the winner gets the title shot? Overall, nobody came out of this year’s Rumble looking particularly good in my opinion.

Take A Chance On Transitional Champs

The Royal Rumble can be considered one big barometer. The perfect setting to test out a wrestler’s potential, judge crowd reaction and tease future feuds. AJ Styles’ Rumble debut in 2016 is a good example. Even though AJ was established worldwide that doesn’t mean anything in WWE terms and he passed their test with flying colours. It really didn’t feel like the springboard to elevate talent this year at all. For example, Bad Bunny lasted longer in the Rumble than former WWE champion, Big E.

There seems to be a real reluctancy to elevate talent to the next level and really let them show their worth. I think back to Big E’s title reign. A feel good moment, for a man who genuinely deserves his time in the spotlight. The booking let him down overall and it was one thing that stood out to me as strange. Big E was presented as a more stoic, serious champion which is good but didn’t feel like Big E. I feel like that was WWE’s way of making him “their” version of a top guy which dampened his character. In turn, he ended up eating the pin from Lesnar to lose his WWE championship in a multi-man match.

From a business standpoint I understand why WWE stick with their pool of top guys. The likes of Reigns, Lesnar, Rollins, Orton etc are all proven money makers for the company. Hell, they would sooner throw the title on a returning Goldberg or Cena than build a new top guy. What happens if these guys move on or go down with an injury? WWE will have to bite the bullet and let others take the main event mantle. Why not try it out now? It’s pro wrestling. It’s scripted. You could literally change the outcome at a drop of a hat if it doesn’t garner interest or revenue. Genuinely speaking it feels like a time warp when I watch WWE and it’s so tiring.

Refresh The Main Event Scene

While I strongly believe a championship doesn’t make a star, I do think we need new stars to freshen up a stale championship scene. Some of the most talented wrestlers in the world are on the WWE roster, let’s start dusting them off. Big E, Balor, Cesaro, Nakamura, Roode, Kofi, Riddle, Montez Ford just to name a few. Some of those guys have been champions yes, but never given the full backing to be seen as established main eventers. Now is the time to elevate in my opinion. There is more than enough talent to hold their own at any level on the card so now is the time to start calling on these guys. Adding even three of those names to a pool including Lashley, Reigns, Styles and Owens would greatly improve the main event scene.

From a creative standpoint WWE is stagnant and has been for quite some time. The lack of innovation coupled with lethargic writing is shocking. As far as an entertainment standpoint goes, it has become borderline unwatchable some weeks. I only watch WWE for the same reason I watch any promotion, too see great wrestlers do their thing. Lately we have seen less of the great and more of the boring though. Between talent cuts and dropping the ball on stars like Malakai Black, Adam Cole, Buddy Murphy and Mustafa Ali it’s blatantly obvious WWE are content with their own standard. All I can do for now is hope for a change of heart from the higher-ups and maybe we’ll see a fresh new main event scene this year.

– Warren Garry

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