By Haydn Gleed
Well, well, well, it’s been a while since I’ve written one of these. In case you weren’t aware, I moved back to my homeland. I’ve barely had time to keep up on the wrestling business let alone write about it, so I’ve had a lot of opinions that have been festering and now I finally get to share them.
Brock Lesnar: My, oh my, how the mighty have fallen. One minute, arrogant “sports entertainment” promos, the next you get accused of being a cheat. Everything that needed to be said in terms of how this affects Brock and his future has been said, but has anybody thought about the poor soul who had to deliver the news to him?! He’s either still trying to unfold his now accordion-like body or if he delivered the news over the telephone. Can you imagine how much that guy is fearing for his safety that Brock might find him one day?! Seriously, though, Brock not only let down UFC and WWE, he let himself down. Do you think Brock gives two shits about that? Probably not, especially since he reportedly signed a contract that states he can’t be suspended by WWE. Plus, WWE had to announce that their part-timer wrestlers are not tested. The whole situation has been embarrassing, and if Brock is proven to be a cheat, it’s a PR nightmare for WWE. Because of Brock’s actions, I’m sure WWE will think twice before trusting their talents with outside WWE projects in the future.
Braun Strowman: I might be completely off base here, but between Braun now being known as the jobber/enhancement wrestler killer, and the fact they reminded the viewers of the shocking win for the 1-2-3 Kid in 1993 last night, could WWE be planting the seeds for something similar to happen with Braun? Think about it for a moment, Braun continues to beat up enhancement guys for a few weeks, and starts getting cocky. One week he’s overconfident, gets caught, and a star is born. Granted, this will be harder to pull off than in 1993 when only a very small portion of the audience had seen Sean Waltman as the Lightning Kid before he debuted on Raw. If someone with any sense of name recognition turns up on Raw to face Braun, a good portion of the audience will know immediately that something is going to happen, but I think it will be a nice novelty angle if that’s in fact the way they are going with this.
Dolph Ziggler: I am not as down on WWE for pushing Dolph as the first challenger for the Smackdown version of the championship. I agree with everything that most people have said in terms of he’s a damaged character, etc, but they are making a genuine effort to repackage him (sort of) and make him a credible threat even if it’s just on a temporary basis. The argument can be made that he shouldn’t be put in this top position, but who else could Dean Ambrose face that would feel championship level worthy at this point? Baron Corbin? Too soon, Apollo Crews? Too soon. Bray Wyatt? Another Wyatt vs. Ambrose match? Really? Do you like bad hologram special effects? If the argument is that Smackdown got screwed in the draft or this would work better if Dolph was a heel then I would completely agree with you, but saying WWE shouldn’t at least try to breathe life into the Dolph character? No, I simply can’t agree.
I have also heard a lot of complaining about Dolph looking like a dope for putting his championship shot on the line on last week’s Smackdown. Isn’t this the same show where Dean Ambrose cut a promo on Dolph for being too concerned what the office and others thought of him and that’s why he is has never reached his full potential? Dean established that at the start of the show, so when Dolph put his title shot up for grabs to prove something to Bray it fit the narrative that Ambrose had set up earlier. You also had Shane and Daniel tell him that he’s being stupid for doing this, but Dolph wouldn’t listen, which again fit the character narrative that Dean had set up. Hey, I’m usually the guy that smacks my head against the wall because of the lack of logic usually in these situations, but this made perfect sense to me.
The Roster Split: Again, I’m not going to spend time rehashing what has already been said by my colleagues over the last couple of weeks, but I do want to give props to WWE for at least making everything seem logical, or at least making an attempt to explain any storyline flaws. We had the pre-mentioned moment when Dolph was told he was being a dope for putting his title shot on the line, but you also had what would be a natural reaction if a competitor showed up on your show causing issues in the cases of Randy Orton and Brock Lesner is another example. There would have been a time, and there could be again unfortunately, where someone from Smackdown turns up on Raw, and no one on the show from the announcers to the wrestlers bats an eye, but for now they are trying to draw the lines. It’s by no way perfect so far, but I’m digging the attempts to make everything logical.
As always, feel free to get in touch with me either through Twitter via @haydngleed or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org