The Lack of a WWE Cruiserweight Division Reflects a Big Underlying Problem

JSenior Analyst IMay 21, 2009

Manny Pacquiao is currently billed as the best pound-for-pound boxer in the world. Regardless of the legitimacy of this claim, he is certainly extremely good.

Pacquiao has fought, and been successful, in several weight classes. But regardless of this ability, there is a point at which he would simply be outmatched by naturally heavier boxers.


It would be unthinkable to imagine a bout between Manny and someone of a much higher weight category than himself, like Mike Tyson.


So why does this not seem an issue for the WWE?


The WWE has been without a championship that specifically caters for lighter wrestlers since the Cruiserweight Championship was defunct over a year ago following its possession by Hornswoggle.


Since then, there has been growing discourse as to the whereabouts of such a division, and what would be done to remedy the situation.


In the absence of such a division, the boundaries of weight have been all but disregarded.


It is no secret that the combative approach of a wrestler will depend greatly on their size, and as such, some categories naturally have an advantage over others.


The “powerhouse” offence of a heavyweight wrestler is usually glaringly dominant over the “high-flying” or “technical” methods of a smaller opponent.


Fantastic lighter wrestlers have thus been sidelined in favor of their heavier counterparts, because they seem falsely inept in ability when met with such an obvious bias of weight. The inability to honor this fact also spells trouble, as when a smaller wrestler triumphs in spite of a clear weight disadvantage, the authenticity of the win is marred with disbelief.


Other sports do not have this problem, but that is wholly due to the nature of “kayfabe” in professional wrestling.


This situation is proving ever more irritating, as we are continually presented with less than believable matchups.


I was lucky enough to be in attendance at a live RAW taping a few weeks ago. Most of the wrestling on offer was highly entertaining and of a good standard; however, I was hugely disappointed by the match of Rey Mysterio vs. The Big Show.


Both athletes in their own right are fantastic wrestlers, but to say that any competition between them could be fair would be grossly fictitious.


The Big Show weighs around two and a half times that of Rey Mysterio, and in any other circumstance would wipe the floor with him.


I have no problem with kayfabe, and actively discuss issues surrounding wrestling both in and out of it's context. But the margins of believability in which the average viewer can tread are cut far too thinly by these clear mismatches.


I won’t even begin to discuss the match between Hornswoggle and The Big Show on Superstars last week!


The WWE must accept that their lighter stars just shouldn’t be in the same league as some of these men, and I don’t mean that in a derogatory way.


Most small wrestlers work best with other smaller wrestlers, it’s just common sense, and given that chance they can put on some excellent exhibitions.


I challenge anyone to watch this match and not be impressed. This match was of outstanding quality, and all from men who have since been released from the company, or have slipped into the role of jobbing (with the exception of Mysterio) because they are literally and figuratively punching above their weight.


The lightweight wrestler is being backed into a corner that he can’t escape from given current circumstances. A lightweight title needs to be introduced, fast!