Friday, 24 September 2010
Postives & Negatives in WWE so far in 2010 By Shaun Nichols
I thought that it might be quite interesting to have a look back at the year so far and highlight what I consider to be the main positives and negatives in the WWE this year. First off let's look at the positives.
Sheamus - Although he started the year as the WWE champion after beating John Cena in a Tables match at the TLC PPV it would be a great stretch to say he was genuine main eventer. However throughout this year Sheamus has continued to grow into his role and is proved to be a formidable promo guy, a key skill that you have to have if your going to succeed in the WWE. Triple H's refusal to put him over at Wrestlemania proved to be a minor blip which he overcame by injuring Triple H at the next PPV and being booked strongly throughout the summer. As a wrestler he is still lacking somewhat but with the WWE needing to elevate talent quickly, Sheamus as been one of their bigger successes.
The Miz - Another wrestler that as taken a major step forward this year, his feud last year against John Cena has fortunately become a distant memory. A change of ring gear gave Miz a much needed boost and like Sheamus, he also as great ability on the microphone and as shown a steady improvement in the ring as well. His recent loss to Daniel Bryan will do nothing to slow down his ascent to the top and I have no doubt that he will hold a world title in the next 12 months even if he fails to cash in the MITB briefcase successfully.
Alberto Del Rio - With the WWE finally realising that Rey Mysterio won't be around for much longer, the need for a new Latin star was accepted by the promotion. Del Rio is that man, it's easy to label him as a Mexican version of JBL at this stage. But his promos have all been excellent and by pushing him against Rey and Christian is a clever move because it allows Alberto to have good matches and get the big wins that he will need. The fact that Smackdown does not have a lot of main event talent will also make it easier for him, just wait for the big face turn in the next 18 months.
Chris Jericho - The one main event talent that consistantly is given the job of elevating talent, Chris can be guaranteed to do his best to get his opponent over with the fans, notable wrestlers this year that benefitted at least short term were John Morrison and Evan Bourne. Whether the WWE continued to push these wrestlers or not varied greatly, but they all came away from the matches with Jericho as more over and more relevant with the fans.
Michael Cole - Not in his role as the lead announcer of Raw but as the voice (or should that be 'And I Quote...') for the GM which has turned him into one of the most hated figures in the WWE in the eyes of the fans. His heel commentary on NXT and his continued hatred for Daniel Bryan have made him what the majority thought he could never be - entertaining. Cole apparently is naturally sarcastic and quick witted and when he goes heel ripping on the talent it is fantastic. Cole single handedly made the second episode of NXT season 3 a must see, it's the episode where he goes nuts with the gong and quits because it is beneath him. Hopefully he goes full blown heel which suits him and he we get a new lead announcer of Raw, because Cole finally has found his calling and the lead announcer is not that role.
Now onto the negatives.
John Cena's Promos - As a wrestler he has improved greatly, if you are in any doubt go back to see him wrestle in 2006 he really was hopeless. My main complaint is Cena's promos. There are times when Cena will do a great interview and I have no problem believing that thousands of fans buy the PPV purely because of him. The majority of the time though he will cut a goofy promo which is full of stupid comedy. Surely he could refuse to deliver some of these lines which do nothing to get the feud over and especially with his feud against the Nexus his promos have made fans less likely to want to see them fight because he made Nexus come across as complete jokes rather than a threat to the company.
Drew McIntyre - Simply as a performer he is dull and tedious to watch, unfortunately this as not deterred the WWE from pushing him for the majority of the year with the gimmick of Vince's 'chosen one'. Fans refuse to react to his interviews or his matches. The only blessing was that against all expectations he was not booked to win MITB at Wrestlemania, his wife getting arrested after a night at the Playboy mansion temporarily placed him in the dog house although his new tag team with Cody Rhodes could be another attempt to push him to the top.
Nexus's loss at SummerSlam - The worst booking decision for a main event in a very long time. Nexus was booked as a threat to the company for several weeks in the run up to the show and with Team WWE struggling with in fighting it seemed ridiculous to think that the WWE would not book Nexus to win on their first PPV match. Still when it mattered most, Cena was booked to do his superman routine which competely killed the Nexus gimmick. Nexus as a faction at this point is pretty much dead in the water, the fans have been convinced not to care. The WWE's PPV buy rates are in the toilet, booking decisions like Nexus's loss at that PPV help to explain why.
Edge - I don't have any problem with Edge either as a wrestler or with his interviews, it is rather a case that I do not care about anything he has done over the last few months. Upto Backlash when he was still a babyface feuding with Jericho he had a purpose on TV. Since he went back heel it seems to me that he is just making up the numbers. The reaction he receives especially in his matches come across that the fans are indifferent to him. They would not care if he was on the show or not, now I understand why Vince wanted a lot of his talent on Raw but Edge looks lost and he desperately needs to go back to Smackdown to become relevant again.
Shawn Michaels Retires - Along with Jericho, Shawn was the other great talent on Raw. His promos regardless if they were corny comedy or very serious were always well received by the fans. He had consistantly good matches and smartly realised that there is a lot to be gained if you make your opponent look good as well. Sadly he chose to retire and one of the shining lights of Raw as been greatly missed and while I hope that he enjoys his retirement, as a fan I hope he does come back because Raw is a damn sight more entertaining with him on it.