Watchable WWE Wrestling: Why This Doubting Thomas Is Beginning To Believe
Read my words just a few months ago, and the WWE was in the doldrums. Their stars were being badly used, the rivalries were poor, the shows were terrible and ratings were sliding. Then what happened was in many ways a blessing in disguise.
Several top stars either left or were injured. Forced to abandon certain storylines, the WWE moved in a new direction. And the results have been successful.
I have seen a great improvement in the standard of wrestling, and while both shows still sometimes have a tendency to waste time on promos and the odd squash match, the outlook is brighter.
Contrast that to TNA, and their results are even greater. In fact it looks like 1998/9 all over again, where WCW was exposed as a one-trick pony, and the new dynamic WWE drove into the lead and never looked back.
Though it was universally panned as a show, NXT has helped revolutionise wrestling because of the attention and instant recognition it has given the superstars. The Nexus will eventually crumble, but it will send out in the mad, bad crazy world of wrestling, a number of superstars that could eventually challenge for single's gold.
Justin Gabriel, with his now heelish beard, is one such superstar who has the makings to be a main event stalwart. With aerial abilities and ring presence, he looks like he can be a champion.
Rate the WWE compared to 12 months ago
Wade Barrett may still need to polish his ring moves, but he has the crowd in the palm of his hand as a heel on the mic. Maybe its the English accent that has with it a certain Hollywood bad guy sound, but Barrett gets a strong reaction wherever he goes.
Even Husky Harris, though as yet underused, has the presence of a WWE version of Somoa Joe. If nothing else he should challenge for 'the best Wrestling Boots Award. If Harris is given some airtime, his look and character could see a first class heel.
But the Nexus is not alone in producing this next generation. Even at TLC, there are signs that new stars are beginning to come into their own. Cody Rhodes looked incredibly comfortable on the mic, and while it's arguable that the promo should have come on Raw rather than before the main event, he did show a great deal of promise.
Factor in other superstars like Kaval, Daniel Bryan, Dolph Ziggler, Kofi Kingston and an improving Ted DiBiase, and you have an exciting future for the premier wrestling organisation.
But it's what the WWE has done in the main event that shows just how bright the organisation is. Cena, Orton, Miz, Morrison, Del Rio. Five of the big names, all with at least a decade or more to wrestle. In other words, the beginning of the next golden era.
Maybe Orton and Cena have been given success too much in recent times, but with new names emerging, the WWE has the ability to recreate a generation of wrestling that is distant from the successful names of the 1980s and 1990s.
For far too long, wrestling was reliant on these big names: the Hogans, Nash, Michaels, Undertaker, Hart and Flairs. And while this should not be seen as a slight against any of these legends, wrestling was in danger of becoming reliant on these marquee names to sell tickets.
As we approach the most important period in the WWE year, fans can expect the bar to be pushed even higher. TNA will no doubt be forced to react, and maybe they will begin to reverse some of their latest mistakes. Wrestling has a lot to look forward to in the next year.
This year was a very mixed bag. When it was bad, it was terrible. But when it was good, it was legendary. What will 2011 hold? Only time will tell, but prophecies of impending doom for the WWE are now a thing of the past.
The future is bright again for the WWE.
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