WWE: Into The New Generation
Although I'm sure not as many of you got to witness Backlash as you did Wrestlemania, the show really spoke volumes to show which direction the company of WWE is headed. Stars like Shawn Michaels and The Undertaker did not work the event, but a certain someone finally laid down and accepted his future role within the company.
That man is Triple H. Although it took one of the best looking RKO's and a vicious punt to the head to do it, Triple H finally lost the WWE title with a clean pin to the man he had been dominating quite convincingly for the past few years, Randy Orton.
You have to love how Hunter kicked out of the RKO, though. Classic Triple H. What transpired after the match, however, should resonate in Vince's ears for awhile to get him to realize that his time is up. It really is time for the new generation to carry the ball.
Stars like the Undertaker and Shawn Michaels, two of the oldest wrestlers in the locker room, have understood that they no longer need to win to look good and have put over the younger talent without hogging the spotlight.
If any of you have read Shawn Michael's Heartbreak and Triumph book (I recommend it), there's a part in the last few pages where he describes the build up to his eventual classic encounter with Kurt Angle at Wrestlemania 21.
When they were deciding upon the finish, Shawn made it clear that he no longer needs to win to look good and happily did the job to Kurt Angle. Although I'd prefer otherwise, Shawn Michaels hasn't touched the WWE or World Heavyweight titles since losing to Triple H in that 2 out of 3 falls match years ago.
A performer of his caliber honestly would make sense to carry the belt, but I would assume he declines for the sake of the younger talent. Undertaker, while having more recent championship reigns and a little better win-loss record, still finds a way to put over his opponents.
His character does call for him to be a little more unstoppable than say Shawn Michaels, but Taker clearly gives back to the business. Along with the best of all time, Ric Flair, these two performers have understood that if they continue to hog the spotlight there won't be much of a business to leave behind.
On the other hand, Triple H has been following more of a Hulk Hogan approach. His recent face run has seen him champion a few times and yet again he had something to do with a title match at Wrestlemania.
Even worse, he won this match in what was the biggest disappointment of that entire card. Every week during this program with Randy Orton, Hunter came off more and more like the man desperate to hang onto his top spot. The way they booked the feud made it impossible for him to lose cleanly at Wrestlemania, but instead of interference at all, he won cleanly (albeit with a sledgehammer) against Randy Orton, a man who had been absolutely on fire since his punt to Vince McMahon's skull.
After his loss at Backlash, the crowd showed that they agreed with my assessment of him and not only booed him, but chanted "Please retire" several times as he was being carted away.
Although that was incredibly disrespectful as Hunter always puts his body on the line to entertain us, it must have been a wake-up call for him to realize that he may have just run his course as the top guy in this business. A bitter pill to swallow for someone who has been so great over the years.
If you're a fan of WWE, now is the time to show your support. With Randy Orton and the Legacy having their reign on Raw and Edge and Christian running their respective shows, the younger generation is in full effect.
Seeing MVP challenge Orton last night was a nice change of pace and I think had they gotten enough time they could have put on quite a match.
Even John Cena, as much as I dislike him, has made such great strides. His match with Edge at Backlash was very, very good. It's amazing to me that people still claim he can't work even though time after time he puts on good matches when it counts the most.
Guys like CM Punk and John Morrison are more than likely going to get their shots on Smackdown as the heavy star power is all stacked up on Raw. That's a good sign because both those guys can work a great match with just about anyone.
With Triple H and Shawn Michaels reportedly out until Summerslam and Taker working a lighter schedule, it's time for the younger guys to show what they can do. If it's going to be anything like the emergence of Randy Orton and Edge, I'm excited for the possibilities.
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