It's only natural to ask this question when a wrestler is released as Gregory Helms, Paul Burchill and Maria Kanellis were today.
What if the cruiserweight division still existed? Could Hurricane Helms still be a legit midcard draw? He was viewed as a potential breakout star and big get for Vince when he acquired WCW back in the day. “Sugar” Shane Helms carried himself with a Heartbreak Kid swagger. BRING BACK THE VERTEBREAKER!
What if WWE got behind “The Ripper” Paul Burchill as a curb-stomping badass Brit? He could have been the focal point of the William Regal’s Ruthless Roundtable stable on ECW and challenged for the title. It could be Burchill in Big Zeke’s place as the monster moving up to the big time.
What if Maria… wait. I’m not even going to try this one. I never thought Maria had a lick of talent or was even one of the more attractive women on the roster. She looks like a Bratz Doll and was only entertaining when she played a ditz and was paired with Santino.
In regard to Gregory Helms and Paul Burchill, they are talented performers. I was always a fan of Gregory Helms, both as The Hurricane and as himself. He gave us the great backstage bits with Rosey as the Super Hero In Training, a gimmick and potential jobber stable that would have gotten over big in the Attitude Era, similar to the J.O.B. Squad or the Blue World Order. Then there are is the unforgettable mini-feud the Hurricane had with The Rock when Dwayne Johnson returned for a short run after filming “The Scorpion King.”
As Hurricane Helms (a great ring name by the way) could really have gotten over as a strong mid-level title contender. He had all of the in-ring skills necessary, the rapport with the fans and solid enough skills on the mic. It’s a shame he didn’t get a chance, because I really was hoping for some classics between himself and Christian on ECW, however, he spent most of his time interviewing and hiding his identity from Burchill.
Oh, Paul Burchill. Pirate Paul. Bitten by the same bug as Kevin Thorne in being unable to get himself over without a banging valet. Let’s thank god, though, that they didn’t run the rumored incest angle between himself and Katie Lee (who by the way is not his real sister in case anybody was curious). I do believe Burchill had some skills. When he made his re-debut on WWE television before being shipped to Tuesday nights, his curb stomp finisher looked vicious. He was back was a nasty attitude and it looked promising. Once he went to ECW and didn’t get a push, though, it was clear that it was only a matter of time before we’d get this news.
Again, Maria is just one of any number of interchangeable Divas that ran their course of favor with the Creative Staff. She got on TV, was paired off with several performers, did her Playboy shoot which earned her a match at Wrestlemania. Since then, she hasn’t gotten much screen time and most recently was paired with the mismatched oddball team of Matt Hardy and Great Khali.
If you are one of the few diehard fans of one of these unemployed wrestlers, I give you this. Gregory Helms will surely get picked up by TNA at the end of his 90-day no-compete clause. He’s tight with Jeff Hardy and Shannon Moore who already have contracts in Orlando. He could be a nice addition to the X-Division. It wouldn’t surprise me, though, if they gave him some kind of superhero gimmick that came off as a cheap attempt to capture his minimal WWE glory. Burchill could end up with TNA. He’d be a nice addition to the British Invasion or maybe a tag team with Desmond Wolfe, but do you really need two teams of Brits? I expect Burchill to bounce around the indys making appearances and probably some work with 1PW. It wouldn’t be surprising at all if he ended up back in WWE at some point, even if it’s just for another year or so run.
If you are a fan of Maria, whoever your are, just put her name into Google images with Safe Search turned off.