Worse Than It Ever Was, Worse Than It Ever Was

The WWE right now STINKS!!!!!  The wrestling business has seen better days.  TNA as it stands right now faces a questionable future.  But I’m not gonna talk about every promotion or the state of the wrestling business itself.  I’m just gonna talk about the WWE and how bad a shape it’s really in.  People are calling Survivor Series “PPV of The Year” all because of Sting’s debut.

Let’s get something straight here about Sting.  Sting’s debut on PPV and showing up in a WWE ring was monumental.  Sting facing off with Triple H and eventually laying him out was epic.  Needless to say, having Sting debut at Survivor Series was a brilliant move.  Of course, that now begs the question as to how the same people who acted so brilliantly in having Sting at the PPV could be the same people who were so stupid as to not have Sting on Raw the following night.

I hadn’t watched Raw in 4 months because of below par programming mixed with tired and/or recycled storylines.  The following night on Raw had one job to do and it failed miserably at performing that task. That task was to be the follow-up to not only the arrival of Sting, but Dolph Ziggler closing out the main event as the sole survivor and winner for his team.  Sting was nowhere to be found and the only thing we got out of Dolph Ziggler was he’s in the main event teaming with John Cena against Seth Rollins, Jamie Noble and Joey Mercury.  For both Seth Rollins and Dolph Ziggler (I’m leaving John Cena because he’s already established himself), I don’t see how either guy benefits from this and what in the bluest of blue HELLS is Jamie Noble and Joey Mercury doing in a main event other than making themselves and Seth Rollins look like the worst trio to be seen on Raw since The Three Stooges.

One good move since he’s still hurt, was having Daniel Bryan show up and be in charge.  It would’ve been a better move to have him just be in charge until he’s healed so his presence can remain in tact.   But we don’t get that either because apart from we only saw the guy for mostly an hour and a half of those three painful hours, we hear the infamous and ever annoying chime of the laptop of the Anonymous Raw General Manager complete with the podium and Michael Cole getting on the microphone and reading “an email” from the GM.  Funny how WWE seems to forget that they pulled off the reveal that the GM was Hornswoggle just to put that angle out its misery as well ours.   Now we’re back to this all over again with everybody asking the question “Why?”

This is the worst that the WWE has ever been.  For months and even longer, all we have seen from the WWE has been laziness, predictability, constant recycled storylines and inconsistency all around from their own product.  They spend so much time trying to plug their network that they forget that the network is an extension of their product and that their product stinks.  WWE spends all their time and energy treating the PPVs, Raw and Smackdown like an infomercial and they don’t even know what they’re selling anymore.

One constant quote I’ve heard is how there’s more people who used to watch pro wrestling than there are people who still do.  I don’t know about pro wrestling in general but I know there are probably more people who used to watch WWE than people who still watch it.  I can proudly admit to being one of them and after all the garbage they’ve produced to have them go back to one of their biggest failures that is the Anonymous Raw General Manager, I’m not watching and not looking back. I’m no longer rooting for things to get better for the WWE and no longer expecting them to get better.  Now I’m to the point where I can say that all I want for the WWE is to crash and burn.  I want the WWE to fail more miserably than a Linda McMahon election campaign.  WWE looks at themselves like they’re the kings of pro wrestling.  It’s about time for those so-called kings to be dethroned.

WWE vs The Investors

WWE Stock has been on a downward spiral.  WWE’s Stock went down by 40% this week.  It was also reported that Vince McMahon was no longer in billionaire status after losing $340 million in one day.   That’s about a third of his own fortune that is now up in smoke.  This is all following the announcement of WWE’s new deal with NBC Universal.  Bottom line is that the WWE’s investors are not happy.  In fact, it may be a safe bet to go as far as to say that the WWE’s investors are pissed.

Lemelson Capital is calling for the removal of WWE’s Executive Team or even the selling of the WWE itself and it all ties in with the Network.  Lemelson has asked the board of directors for the removal of their executive team following what they called a period of consistent losses as well as WWE’s inability of explaining or promoting of the WWE network and the feeling that the company can lose between $45 to $52 million this year. Lemelson has gone as far as to refer to what’s been going on with WWE as ““material misrepresentations by the company about both performance and operating profit model of its WWE Network, which the company has wrongly labeled a ‘home run.’”

In other words, the WWE lied to the investors.  Vince McMahon lied to the investors or at the very least, tip-toed around telling the investors the complete truth.  I’m not going to be one of those people that are saying this is the downfall of the WWE or the demise of the WWE because it isn’t.  It does go without saying that this is a very bad situation.  Vince McMahon may see himself as invincible after beating  the steroid allegations and even toppling WCW, but the fact is that this is not scripted wrestling and this is not some storyline he cooked up.  It’s the financial world, it’s Wall Street and that is a world that is “Kill or be killed” and “Survival of the Fittest” and it will eat you alive if you’re not careful.  In that world, no matter how rich or poor you are, all are accountable in it and that includes somebody like Vince McMahon.

WWE is trying to think of the long term for the WWE Network and they have a set plan in mind for the long term but only if the set number of subscribers are met.  The key word being “If” because right now, the WWE Network’s subscribers has not even surpassed a million.  It hasn’t even broken 700,000 and it needs that number and 700,000 more because WWE is without PPV revenue now and that’s a good amount of cash that WWE has relied on for some time and they no longer have the ability to rely on.

So, to sum it all up with the WWE’s situation right now.  They promised to have a million subscribers after the launch of the WWE Network, they don’t have it.   They promised to have a new and bigger TV deal, they don’t because their new deal is just the same old song and dance they had before.  What they do have is empty promises that they couldn’t fulfill and goals that they failed to meet.  It’s no wonder why the investors feel lied to and are pissed off.  It would be one thing if this was just Vince McMahon’s money alone, but now you have investors involved in this and it’s their money that is being gambled with here.

A lot of people said that the WWE was in over their heads with the WWE Network and I was one of those people and what’s going on right now is exactly one of those reasons why.  The Network is designed for the hardcore fans and die-hard fans, but with wrestling the way it is these days and facing an uncertain future, who knows how many of those are really left anymore.  The future of pro wrestling is hard to predict right now.  Extreme Rising pulled the plug and TNA with Dixie Carter’s bad decisions, stiffing her staff of their paycheck, and an continuously shrinking roster, are just delaying the inevitable.  Ring Of Honor is on stable ground due to the amount of baby steps that they take and their new deal with New Japan which seems to be working out for them.

WWE and even Vince McMahon himself have simply bitten off more than they can chew.  It’s hard to imagine that they took into consideration the costs of the network and what it would take for it to be successful.  I’m not calling the WWE Network a failure, but it’s definitely failing.   Vince may have been able to overcome a lot over the years, but at age 68 and investors that are pissed off because they feel he’s treating their money as if it were Monopoly money, there is a lot of damage control to be done come the meeting with the investors.  When the smoke clears, it’s gonna come down to how this is gonna effect the current product itself, much like we all pondered the when the network was announced.

Hulk Hogan: How Exactly Has He Helped TNA?

The more things change, the more they seem to stay exactly the same.  In this case, I’m talking about Hulk Hogan and his inability to not give himself a filter when it comes to running his mouth.  So according to an interview that Hogan did with a newspaper in the United Kingdom, he said about Dixie Carter the following:

“Is Dixie Carter really in the wrestling business, or is this just a hobby? You either run with the big dogs….Or stay on the porch.”

Now, here’s where the hypothetical comes in.  If this was WWE and not TNA and it was Vince in charge and not Dixie Carter, then anybody that said this would be fired faster than you can say Bruno Sammartino.  However, reality setting back in here, we have to remember that one difference between Vince and Dixie is that Vince is not afraid of being a bastard, or of being cold-blooded. It’s unfortunately the one thing that Dixie Carter has yet to learn or embrace in the wrestling business in that sometimes you have to be cold-blooded and vindictive because when you don’t, you’re just a doormat and you’re letting the inmates run the asylum.  In this case, it’s not so much the inmates that are running the asylum in TNA.  It’s only one inmate in particular and that unfortunately is Hogan.  Not just Hogan himself but his entourage as well.  Where Hogan goes, his groupies follow and by groupies I mean Eric Bischoff, Bubba the Love Sponge at one point, The Nasty Boys, Bischoff’s talentless schlub of a son, and more recently Brooke Hogan. Hell, at this point I wouldn’t be surprised if they add in Brutus Beefcake and Hogan’s spoiled snot of a son onto Impact.

Here’s a recap for you Dixie.  Since Hogan has come in, the following has happened with TNA:  The ring that separated your product from the others was taken away, the cage match that went so perfectly well with that ring is gone, matches that were made for TNA such Ultimate X, Elevation X and King of the Mountain have pretty much become extinct. Guys have been in the company and proven they can be stars in AJ Styles, Christopher Daniels, James Storm, Samoa Joe and others are pushed to the way side for WWE Table-Scraps with the blind hope of making them something bigger, something that never happened (Bobby Lashley, Mr Anderson, The Pope) and the X-Division has become nothing more than a memory as well as the Tag Team division.  In other words Dixie, You let desecrate and pillage your own product. And for who? For what? Kevin Nash said when criticizing Aces & Eights that history repeats itself.  Looking at TNA, history has already been repeating itself because right now, you’re looking at Hogan & Bischoff bleeding another company dry.  And no, WCW wasn’t killed by the AOL/Time Warner deal, all that deal did was put WCW out of its misery.  So the million dollar question here is will Dixie Carter do as the Briscoes say and “Man Up” or is she simply waiting for something to put TNA out of its misery? All for the mistake she could’ve avoided by bringing in the guy responsible for making TNA and the very meaning of the word “Impact” disappear.

 

At the Royal Rumble, The Rock Needs To Win the WWE Championship

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Okay, the Royal Rumble is tonight.  There are a few thoughts that I have leading into the PPV tonight.  One is that The Rock vs CM Punk should be the match to close the show.  But of course,  the big question that everyone else is wondering about is whether or not The Rock is going to beat CM Punk and win the belt.  I don’t think it’s a matter of whether or not The Rock should win. It’s a matter of The Rock HAS to win tonight.

Yeah, I know.  I know CM Punk has been champion for over 400 days and climbing.  It’s an accomplishment to say the least, but the fact is that having a champion hold a belt for so long is one thing,  but keeping people entertained during his title reign is another.  No champion is any good at that without competition.  Looking back at Punk’s reign as champion, he hasn’t had a whole of that going around.  He beat Alberto Del Rio to win the belt. He defended it against Del Rio again and The Miz the next month.  Then he Dolph Ziggler at the Royal Rumble and a bunch of filler guys for the Elimination Chamber before taking on Chris Jericho in back to back months, then Daniel Bryan and then Daniel Bryan and Kane and then John Cena and Big Show before facing John Cena again and then Ryback before facing against Cena and Ryback and then Ryback again on Raw.   So if you look at it, in that 400+ days that CM Punk has been WWE Champion, he’s only defended the belt against 9 guys with a good chunk of them he faced off against in multiple months.

The other problem with Punk’s reign as champion and why The Rock must win tonight is the fact that his countdown that he keeps doing is getting old.  In fact, it’s getting rather stale and as pointed out in the last article,  you keep going with this for so long, you’re gonna get to the point that when the guy does lose the belt, what do you do with him? Besides, the way that the WWE is with the Part-Time guys, are they really gonna have The Rock lose?  Yeah I know that they had Brock Lesnar lose in his match with John Cena but that’s different.  The Rock didn’t leave the WWE high and dry like Lesnar did and unlike Brock Lesnar, The Rock actually does love the business which is the least I can say for Brock.

I know that CM Punk has talent and can find a way to manage without the title and he did give us one whole year without John Cena winning the gold like her normally does.  But every champion loses the belt at some point.  CM Punk is no different because as many times as either Hulk Hogan or John Cena held a world title, they eventually had to drop it to somebody else.  CM Punk losing the belt tonight is more salvageable than if The Rock were to lose tonight.  If The Rock actually loses tonight, then what do you do with him from there? If he’s supposed to be sticking around at least until after Wrestlemania, then what are you going to do with him for all the time leading up to the PPV?  Yeah, you could have The Rock win at some point between now and Mania, but it’s little thing called Simplicity.   Don’t complicate things WWE and just keep them simple.  Do the right thing and actually let The Rock win the match because this is a match that could very easily be a classic match and definitely be in the Top 5 of the best WWE matches of 2013.  Don’t risk tarnishing that by having a screw-job finish or some other means that would leave CM Punk still to bore the hell out of the rest of us with his “Counting Down to Who Gives a Rat’s Ass How Long You’ve Been Champion For.”

 

Man-Jaw quits, New Champion Crowned, Divas Division in Jeopardy

Okay.  So Eve “Man-Jaw” Torres has now quit the WWE. This is following when Kaitlyn, the future Mrs Shark, won the Divas Title from Eve.  Reportedly Eve has wanted to leave for a while now since she’s engaged to one of the Gracies of UFC/MMA fame and seems to be pretty committed to a self-defense program for women.  I’m not exactly missing Eve simply because all that time spent with graces and you still could only master two moves in the ring. You’re like the female equivalent of John Cena.

I can’t help but wonder about something here.  Stacy Keibler goes on Dancing with the Stars and is released.  Maria goes on The Apprentice and is released.  Ashley goes on Survivor, appears for a little bit and is released. Torrie Wilson goes on I’m A Celebrity, Get me… oh who gives a rat’s ass and is gone. Or maybe after her time in the WWE, who can tell?  Eve goes on some military reality show that I didn’t care enough about to even know it’s name and has now quit.  What is with reality TV shows being the preverbal bullet for WWE Divas?  At least Maria found her way back in wrestling by going to Ring of Honor and is now engaged to Mike Bennett.  Stacy Keibler is or at least was dating one of the biggest actors in Hollywood so you can’t say she’s having it rough.

The casualty here in all this unfortunately is the Divas Division.  The only veteran Diva you have right now is Layla and she’s barely seen these days and Natalya is too busy hanging around with Team WTF that is herself, Khali and Hornswoggle.  And before you say I forgot about Tamina Snuka or Rosa Mendes or Alicia Fox, no I didn’t.  You barely see either of them doing anything.   To those that are saying that this is gonna hurt the Divas division now that Eve is gone, it’s been hurting.  It’s been hurting since Mickie James left, Maryse left,  Melina, The Bellas, Kelly Kelly and especially Beth Phoenix.  Top that off with Kharma being a complete bust due to her getting pregnant, having the miscarriage, and being a pain in the ass reportedly in the developmental territories. Let’s hope to hell that we start seeing some new faces coming out of NXT and any other developmental territories because otherwise, everybody start getting shovels so we cant start planning a funeral.

How Low Can Vince & The WWE Really Go?

Look, I get it, okay? The heel coming out to interrupt something  that is meaningful to somebody else is a common move. I get that, but that doesn’t mean that it’s always needed. Last night was one of those times.  Two months. Two months that Jerry Lawler was gone for because of his heart attack and you do this to him? You make an angle out of his heart attack? You have Paul Heyman mock the heart attack? Are you freaking kidding me?

Jerry Lawler could’ve died that night in Montreal and for about 20 minutes give or take, he was.  Nobody made an angle out of Chris Benoit or Owen Hart when they died.  Now before any of you say what about Eddie Guerrero? There’s a difference.  Rey Mysterio was trying to pay homage to him, win the belt in honor of Eddie.  That was built more to honor Eddie Guerrero than to discredit him.  I get that Vince is capable of sinking that low as we’ve seen him stoop to lows before.  I just hoped that this was one that even a cold-hearted, soulless bastard like him wouldn’t sink to.  Okay, let’s be fair about that last statement.  He has no heart because even the cold-hearted have a filter.  Eric Bischoff was and is a scumbag, but at least he didn’t resort to necrophilia angles or mocking a guy that nearly died in front of a live crowd.

What made them think that all that transpired last night was a good idea? Was this their attempt at trying to be edgy and innovative at the risk of being controversial in light of Vinny Mac’s wife losing yet another election she had no chance in hell of winning or had any business taking part in to begin with? Or is this the WWE being what we already suspected with them trying to copy TNA’s storylines in them being quite simply Desperate?

You see Vince, THIS is what everyone is talking about when they’re saying that you’re out of touch. That you don’t have your finger on the pulse of what the fans like or want. Hell, you haven’t had your finger on that pulse for the last couple of years.  Face it, Vince, your creative skill that you’ve claimed to have had all this time is out of gas and you think that what you did to a guy that nearly died 2 months ago proved something, it did.  It proved that you really did inject the WWE with a dose of poison. It just wasn’t the NWO like in that angle years ago. No, that poison’s name is Vincent Kennedy McMahon.  I guarantee you that if you were the one that had the heart attack and died, nobody would be wanting an angle involving your death.  Well, I’m sure that there are probably a select few that would not only welcome it, they’d be ready to dance on your grave.  Of course, I’m pretty sure there are a lot of guys that would say that they would love to drive a stake through Vince’s heart but are convinced that nothing can kill him.  Than again, I’m sure if the day comes where Vince croaks, his death will be much like his life: No Shame.

Now I’m not really mad at CM Punk and Paul Heyman or at least as much as I am towards Vince. Heyman and Punk are just the dogs and Vince was the one that gave the okay and let them off the leash.  And I don’t give a damn if Jerry Lawler gave the okay for it.  It doesn’t mean that it’s not in bad taste.  The segment as well as Heyman’s mock heart attack was in bad taste and so is Punk’s twitter rants about it.  All his talk about being the best in the world and always putting down Vince. Congratulations to CM Punk and to Paul Heyman though because not only are you both no better than Vince, you’re to a degree worse. And as far as Best in the World goes Punk, you might as well scrap that now because as far as I’m concerned after Monday night, you’re just another tatted up asshole and Heyman pulled a low that’s even beneath Eric Bischoff.  It’s cheap heat and something that is above both of them or at least I thought they were.  Turns out that they’re much like the crap they pulled: cheap. That’s as much as I’ll say about Heyman and Punk.

As for Vince, you wanna know what cost your wife the election?  You wanna know who was responsible for her loss? All you need to do is look into a mirror.  Even Jerry Jarrett thinks this was low class and cheap.    As bad of shape as the WWE is in, I’ve been rooting for them to recover and to rise back up.  I’m not so sure if I’m really rooting for that anymore after last night.  You can take everything and I mean EVERYTHING that Michael Cole has ever said or done as his heel character along with everything involving Vickie “Pig-Vomit” Guerrero and John Laryngitis, combine all of those things and that wouldn’t measure to what they did to Jerry Lawler on Monday Night.  I don’t get offended by stuff on TV easily, but this was the one exception.  Vince McMahon is killing his own product. He once said during the Corporate Ministry bit when he was revealed as the higher power that there is no low he won’t sink to.  I’m starting to think that line wasn’t just script.  If this is the crap you’re gonna pull, Vince,  then not only am I saying that the WWE is going to fall and it’ll be Vince’s fault when it does, but I’m calling my shot out right now when I say that to you Vince McMahon, you deserve to have your company fail you repulsive, soulless, deplorable, absolute horror of a human being.

Where are the “Feel Good” Moments in Wrestling?

Eddie Guerrero defeating Brock Lesnar to win the WWE Title for the first time.  Shawn Michaels achieving the boyhood dream and winning the championship for the first time.  Bret Hart winning the IC Title from Mr Perfect and hugging his parents who were sitting at ringside afterwards.  Chris Benoit winning the World Title at Wrestlemania and standing in the ring with Eddie Guerrero as they held their belts up high.  Why am I bringing these up? They were feel good moments in wrestling.  When was the last time that we’ve had one of those? I’m hoping somebody can answer that because I can’t.   Those feel good moments are something that has always proven useful in the style of telling a story in that ring. Seeing Austin Aries win the TNA World Title and seeing El Generico defeat Kevin Steen were good moments but don’t seem to carry the same magnitude.

A lot of things can be factored into why no stories have feel good moments. One of the biggest is the build-up or at least in the case of lack of build up because these days, the WWE lacks the patience to have something build into something bigger.  Regardless however, storylines in wrestling need to have those kind of moments because when it comes down to it, the build up to that one end of the story is what keeps people tuning in to see how each chapter unfolds.  Unfortunately, these days with the storylines in the WWE, the storylines have gone from being a story unfolding chapter by chapter to being about as complex and frustrating as a Rubix Cube or trying to figure out what the hell the movie The Thin Red Line was about.  Same difference.

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