WWE's 5 Worst Authority Figures of All Time
Whether they were on-screen or off, WWE’s authority figure was there.
Whether or not they were an effective powerful person, WWE’s authority figure was there.
From Jack Tunney to Vickie Guerrero, we have witnessed a plethora of different people as WWE’s authority figure on screen.
While some have been effective and entertaining, others have been down right horrible. From botching lines to mentally unstable, WWE has made some rotten decisions on who should be running the show.
There was no specific criteria for the worst authority figures of all time, just a little discussion on how awful they were.
Before we get to the five worst authority figures of all time, let’s take a look at the honorable mentions…
Armando Estrada: From August 2007 until June 2008, Umaga’s former manager was the general manager of the WWE’s ECW brand.
In less than a year, Estrada had a pretty forgettable tenure as GM. Estrada feuded with Colin Delaney over a contract, signed himself as a wrestler and defeated Delaney.
Estrada was removed as GM and became a jobber for most of the rest of his WWE career.
Tiffany: Speaking of WWE’s ECW brand, Tiffany was an assistant GM and then general manager from 2008-2010.
Like Estrada, Tiffany did not have many memorable moments as GM. It is often forgotten that she was even general manager. After injuring herself in an FCW match, Tiffany’s tenure as GM was cut short and she was out of WWE by the end of the year.
Donald Trump: For one night only on June 15, 2009, Mr. McMahon sold Raw to Trump. Donald decided that the following Raw would be commercial free and would give a refund to whoever purchased tickets.
Trump’s short tenure as GM caused him to make the honorable mention list, but perhaps if he hadn’t sold Raw back right away, he would have been one of the best authority figures in WWE history.
Tell me if you’ve heard this one before.
Four guys are in the ring arguing.
Music hits. Out comes someone.
He announces a tag team match.
Do you know who I’m talking about?
Obviously you do.
Teddy Long has been a referee, manager, assistant general manager and general manager throughout his WWE career.
However, he is heavily criticized for always making tag team matches. Even as Booker T’s senior advisor, Long came out this past Raw and restarted a Randy Orton-Dolph Ziggler match into a tag team match involving Kofi Kingston and Alberto Del Rio.
Teddy Long’s tenure as SmackDown GM became very boring and stale. However, we seem to be unable to escape the nightmare of his tag team matches.
Don’t get me wrong.
I love AJ.
She is one of the most talented divas in the WWE today.
But that’s the problem.
She is a very talented diva. So why was she made to be the GM of Raw?
Well, it has to do with WWE wanting to give her more TV time. With the lack of time the divas get, AJ definitely gets more TV time in other roles.
The problem with AJ as Raw GM was that she was in a storyline where we were to believe she was mentally unstable.
Vince McMahon comes up with some very interesting ideas at times, but hiring a mentally unstable, 5’3” woman as the authority figure of the flagship show?
No one took her seriously.
She was to the general manager position what Big Show is to the World Heavyweight Championship—temporary.
It was obvious she wasn’t going to last. The only thing worse than her tenure as GM was how abrupt her tenure ended.
I was glad to have her removed from the position in New Jersey though. Both because I was in attendance and she is from New Jersey. Regardless, AJ Lee was clearly one of the worst authority figures in WWE history.
Anonymous General Manager (Hornswoggle)
In the middle of 2010, WWE Raw was going through a carousel of people as general manager of Raw.
From various guests hosts to Vickie Guerrero to Bret Hart, WWE was unable to decide on a long-term authority figure.
They decided on a computer.
The anonymous GM communicated to the WWE Universe via Michael Cole’s laptop or iPad.
There were a lot of issues with a GM who was never seen.
As you can tell, the authority figure tends to feud with numerous superstars. With an anonymous GM, there is a limit to how much and how well the authority figure can feud with someone.
Many may argue this is a good thing since the authority figure’s feud has overshadowed main events in the past. However, if you are going to have an active authority figure—without face-to-face interaction—it’s going to fall short.
Fans were hearing the anonymous GM’s signal noise in their sleep between June 2010 and July 2011.
With the angle dropped abruptly, we thought we would never hear about it again.
Unfortunately or fortunately (you decide), we learned that it was Hornswoggle with the computer. Under the ring. With the wrench. Just kidding.
The revelation that Hornswoggle was the anonymous GM only adds to the idea that he was one of the worst authority figures of all time.
The former Executive Vice President of Talent Relations was named general manager of Raw in October 2011.
One of Vince McMahon’s glad-handing, nonsensical, douchebag yes-men—as CM Punk called him—was one of the worst on-screen characters of all time.
Laurinaitis had a tendency to speak poorly, botching his lines, making him look even more foolish than he already looks.
I almost feel this is why he was kept on as GM of Raw for so long.
He was such an easy target because of how terrible he was.
Not only was Laurinaitis terrible, but he was successful as well.
His team defeated Teddy Long’s team at WrestleMania to give him power over SmackDown too. Plus, he defeated John Cena in the main event of Over the Limit.
We had CM Punk vs. Daniel Bryan for the WWE Championship, but did that close out the show?
John Cena vs. John Laurinaitis, with the latter winning in the final match.
Between his atrocious speaking skills, almost equally terrible wrestling skills, John Laurinaitis was one of the top-two worst authority figures of all time.
If you own WWE and hire someone and he immediately botches his lines, how do you end up making him general manager of Raw?
That’s what happened when Mike Adamle became an interviewer and referred to a certain someone as “Jeff Harvey.”
Adamle would spend time as an ECW play-by-play announcer before being assigned GM of Raw by Shane McMahon.
Adamle continued to botch more lines than Sin Cara does moves and was eventually replaced.
The reason behind Adamle and WWE parting ways was never announced or released, but I think we can all figure out why.
The initial hiring of Adamle was questionable, making his tenure as Raw General Manager the worst time for any WWE authority figure in history.
As you can see, WWE always finds a way to hire the worst characters and personalities for the authority figure of Raw, SmackDown or both.
Since the brand extension of 2002, we have seen an increase in the number of authority figures in WWE.
This hasn’t always turned out to be such a great thing.
If you ask me, Mike Adamle was the worst WWE authority figure of all time. There was nothing he offered that anyone else could not have offered. I would have preferred Hornswoggle over Adamle. Just kidding. I think.
So who do you think was the worst WWE authority figure of all time? What would your top five look like? Please leave any comments, suggestions and criticisms in the section below.
It’s been Me. It’s been Me. It’s been the G-U-DOUBLE T!!
Seth Guttenplan is a teacher by day, writer by night. In addition to being a Bleacher Report writer, Seth is the owner of GuTTWrenchPowerBlog.com and a host for ProWrestlingPowerhouse.com Radio. To read more from Seth, follow him on Twitter (@sethgutt) and visit http://guttwrenchpowerblog.com