The Game of Pro Wrestling: Why the WWE Divas Need to 'Restart'
I'm one of the maybe five percent of fans who believes that there is hope for the Divas Division in the WWE to get better. The odds are clearly stacked against me—the women have no characters, no screen time and definitely no support from their higher-ups.
But just because the odds are stacked against me doesn't mean I can't break the barrier for those who think I'm delusional.
Hear me out:
I'm not going to give you all the ol' one-two about how the divas need investment, character growth and yada, yada. I actually believe the secret in reinvigorating the division is hidden in plain sight. This "thing" is the divas themselves.
I truly feel like the women have been given dozens of opportunities to break out and do something bigger, and all those times they've dropped the ball. I'm one of those people who believes certain things are meant to happen, if you want them to.
The world isn't just going to hand things over to you. You have to take action, which I don't think the women have done. I'll give you a perfect example:
Layla came back off her injury with a superb technicality in the ring, but so what? If you're wrestling technically for less than three minutes that's all hum ho, but I'm looking for big. The world of pro wrestling has burst past the times of "headlock, headlock takeover, headscizzors, kip up, lock up, headlock, headlock take over," and so on.
If I were in a two-and-a-half-minute match I'd skip all the pretty and get straight to the gritty!
Do you think the 'wrestler' is in charge of his/her career or their superior?
Well... I thought my job was to entertain?
I get it, the technicality of wrestling is an art, but who's to say the entertainment isn't as well? What aggravates me is the fact that everyone wants to point the finger at management when many times the women themselves could've made something fun out of what they were given.
Layla got two pay-per-view matches with Beth. Both were solid, but why are you going for solid when you can go for epic?
I'm not a pro wrestler, but Lord knows if I was I'd be smart about it! If I were Layla in that position I would've aimed to accomplish two things: get the crowd to pay attention and create a memorable moment.
If I would've done the former, management would realize I'm an asset. Had I done the latter as well, the feelings of me being an "asset" from management's point of view would clearly be amplified.
Let me give you another example:
AJ Lee has undoubtedly been the breakout character in the unique love square between Kane, CM Punk, Daniel Bryan and herself. She's managed to become captivating without becoming overwhelming—a very tricky thing to do. I think she was able to accomplish this because she took what the WWE gave her and completely ran to the stars with it.
She could've been stale, unappealing and just plain boring. She could've ran through the motions aimlessly. But she didn't. She worked on herself to assure interest from fans and management alike. I appreciate that.
Many will jump to say that had any other diva been given this opportunity they would've done the same. But I'm not so sure.
If the intent isn't there, then neither is the drive, and without drive there's no effect to be had.
I find every match divas are given a chance to break out.
While I understand WWE has told them to tone down their wrestling skills when on TV, I don't think that means every match has to be a snoozefest. Why use the same moves? Why run through the motions? Why not intend to make something big happen?
Wrestling is like a chess game, and the pro wrestlers are the pieces. They are products, like it or not, who need to pick and choose their spots wisely. They need to know how to generate interest and longevity, especially the women.
Management will always be the queen, and unless the women do something about it they'll always be the pawns.
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