WWE's Use of Cheap Distraction Finishes Has Passed the Point of Overkill

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WWE's Use of Cheap Distraction Finishes Has Passed the Point of Overkill
Credit: WWE.com

WWE has been hitting a single note ad nauseam by having too many Superstars win by way of cheap distraction finish.

There are a multitude of ways for a match to end, and WWE has too often turned to the same distraction routine. Not only is it an ending that the company has relied on too much, it's one of the least dramatic ways for a fight to end.

It's tiresome, repetitive and shows a lack of creativity one wouldn't think imaginable.

Were a single wrestler to take his eyes off his opponent and lose because of it, it'd be a surprise. When it happens on a regular basis, one begins to wonder if everyone on the roster has ADD.

Fans end up screaming at the TV, "Just pay attention to the guy in the ring!"

WWE has used this finish so much that one expects it now. The folks behind the WWE Universe Twitter account have to type the word "distraction" probably more than anything other than "WWE."

It's an overused trope that the company abused especially badly in July.

On the July 7 edition of Raw, Fandango distracted Dolph Ziggler during his match with Alberto Del Rio. The following week, Fandango fell victim to a distraction from Layla and Summer Rae, losing to Ziggler in the process.

The Wyatt Family's music did the distracting against Chris Jericho on the July 11 SmackDown.

A few days later, it was Emma's turn to profit from her opponent's lapse of focus when Naomi diverted Cameron's attention. WWE went this same route on July 25 when Cameron distracted Naomi, allowing Paige to win. 

The same SmackDown featured Bo Dallas winning against Ziggler thanks to The Miz's distraction. WWE didn't even wait until the next show to turn to this finish.

On the next Raw, Fandango lost by the same old tired method.

That's seven matches ending in essentially the same way in just four weeks. By most fans' standards, that's too much repetition.

When it happened again on this Monday's Raw, Jason Solomon of PWMania.com tweeted his displeasure:

Jim Ross noted on his blog that the distraction "seems to be the go to conclusion these days."

It's not a problem limited to July either. In June, Aaron Paul from Breaking Bad came to Raw. He stood in Ziggler's corner for his match against Alberto Del Rio.

Want to guess how it played out?

It's not as if the distraction finish is the pro wrestling equivalent to a buzzer-beater either. It's anti-climactic and underwhelming even when used in small doses.

Matches could end with wrestlers kicking their opponents in the head, soaring through the air onto their foe or even ending in a double count-out when the enemies take the fight into the crowd. All of those are more thrilling and interesting paths to take.

Ask a fan to make a list of their 25 favorite matches from Raw. Once they do the internal computing, ask how many of those ended with someone distracting someone else, which then allowed their opponent to roll them up from behind.

Shawn Michaels vs. Shelton Benjamin. That's how you end a match.

Chances are, the answer will be zero.

WWE can't make every TV match a classic, but it can certainly end those bouts in a more entertaining way than the tepid distraction finish. That's like a fight between Spider Man and Venom ending with the bad guy slipping on a banana peel.

The company has to be more creative. It hasn't varied up its endings enough lately, leaning on the victory by distraction far too often. It's a lazy way to tell a story. 

Run-ins, wins via finishers, disqualifications for not heeding the referee's five-count, crashes through announce tables and a cowardly heel running away are among the various options the booking team has. One can either look back at the past for inspiration or come up with something new, but hitting repeat on the same song is not a viable option.

There are a number of colors in the booking palette, and WWE is dipping its brush into the same one time and time again.

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