Kevin Nash, John Cena, Hulk Hogan and Triple H. There's a lot you can say about these men. Yeah, we can make the overused "quad" jokes, groan about the "Moves of Doom/Success," and in general we can trivialize every accomplishment ever made by these men. We generally do that because of one simple word. "Politics."
Kevin Nash and Hulk Hogan are two guys smarks have harped on for not putting guys over and holding men perceived to be more talented or "ready" back/down. It is said that they do this to benefit themselves and keep themselves in the spotlight.
Triple H is another guy who many say only reached the level he's at because of his marriage to Stephanie McMahon. Along with that, he's also been cited as responsible for the pushes of many of his friends such as former World Heavyweight Champion Sheamus.
John Cena is a bit different. The only real reports of similar situations stem from former employees of WWE. These range from him telling off other members of the roster, to dating their girlfriends to wanting Randy Orton fired (though that was more a dirt-sheet rumor/jumping to conclusion by smarks).
Are these facts the real deal, or perhaps ex-employees trying to attack a suitable target? That's not for me to say.
These are just a few men, who've been accused of backstage bullying and politicking. Still, with all the stuff that's been "reported" as of late, I can't help but start to really think about what goes on backstage and ask, "who are we to judge these men for doing their jobs?"
If you were a top guy, would you be willing to give your spot up to a newcomer?
I mean, far be it for someone talented to get held back because of someone's ego or opinion. Still, I can't help but think that if I were in the position of Kevin Nash, making obscene amounts of money and all of a sudden people are talking about bumping me down the card to make way for some guy on the rise...I wouldn't be too happy about that.
I don't pretend (on a regular basis) to be an expert on the wrestling business, but I do have common sense. I know that professional wrestling is a tough sport to make it in. I get that. Especially to make it to WWE. So imagine, you make it to WWE, and you find yourself at the top of the mountain. You're a WWE Champion, you're headlining WrestleMania, you're getting endorsement deals, you're getting more money than you've ever thought possible, you're dating supermodel-level women and then...slowly...but surely...it comes to an end.
You lose the title, you lose your rematch, you're in the midcard all of a sudden, you're opening the show, and then you're jobbing to someone you don't think is nearly as talented as you. You're an afterthought now. The crowds aren't screaming your name anymore. You find yourself, sitting at home on the night of a big PPV. Oh yeah, you can always make strides to get back to the top, but what if that doesn't work?
Sounds like a pretty sorry way to go out if you ask me. If you ask me, I'll tell you right now I'd be willing to do just about anything to get back to the top. I have to believe that if you're at that level, you'd want to also get back to the top—or else why would you bother showing up to work?
Who politicked the best?
Now, let's just say you're 28. You're in the prime of your career, and essentially "The Man." You've got years left, and all of a sudden they're talking about you jobbing to so-and-so? Would you really be willing to let all the fame and fortune go, just like that? Is this guy really THAT much better than you? If it were me, I'd have to say no.
Let's go back, though, to the likes of Nash and Hogan. These are guys who were notorious for holding on to the spotlight by holding other men back/down. Can we really blame these guys? Nothing in wrestling is given. You have to take what you want and make a name for yourself, but you also have to know how to play the game. Nobody is just going to give you their spot. You've got to make good impressions, and you've got to be a company man, but you've also got to be a businessman.
That's what guys like Nash were. They were businessmen. They understood what people wanted. They wanted to see spectacles. They wanted to see larger-than-life, well-muscled beasts who get in there and put on a show.
Hogan and Andre didn't put on a catch-as-catch-can masterpiece. It was all about power and showmanship. That's what sold at the time. Kevin Nash knew that, and so he used that knowledge to make himself a huge name.
Wrestling is a dog-eat-dog world. If one man is standing between you and feeding your family, I bet money each and every one of you would do everything you could to try and beat him out for that spot on the roster. Not to mention, the fact is, it's not like they're doing anything out of the ordinary. Is it their fault they work in a broken system? No, they just learned how to play other people and not get played.
Are guys like Cena and Triple H so much different than everyone else? Is it that bad if they look out for number one?
I doubt too many other people looked out for them when they were making names for themselves. These guys are human, and they have families to feed, bills to pay and lives to live.
When we can turn down the money, power, and success these men have earned through a combination of elements (luck, skill, connections, etc.), then it's fair to judge what they do backstage. Until then, I don't really think anyone has a right to judge them or call them out, unless you're backstage and witness it first-hand.