It has been more than two months since I’ve participated in a Creature vs. Creature competition. Organized by fellow writers Ryan Frye and Hamster Fan, my initial response was to sit out this one.
For those who aren’t aware, I surprisingly won the last CVC. By all means, the win was special, but the feeling of my everlasting competitive spirit outweighs any victory bestowed upon me by fellow Bleachers.
With Ric Flair’s motto “to be the man, you have to beat the man” etched into my train of thought, I decided it was only right that I’d join my friends in the spirit of competition.
As I sat staring at my computer screen, my mind boggling from confusion, the one question repeated like the sound of a clock striking twelve.
Who deserves a second chance?
Despite valiant efforts, I was left undecided. The next day, strolling through the music on my mobile device, I selected the theme of Evolution. Halfway through the tune, it was as if someone flipped my light switch.
Better yet, someone kicked my light switch on.
This certain individual is the lightning quick, blink you’ll miss, show stopping, heart stopping, the Whole F’n Show, Rob Van Dam!
I know you’re questioning my choice.
You’re staring at your monitor asking yourself, why?
With the numerous wrestlers chosen for the competition, why choose the guy who left the WWE?
Let me take you back to WWF 2001. The Rock was on hiatus filming a movie, Triple H tore his quadriceps, and Stone Cold Steve Austin was the lone titan in the WWF. Vince McMahon was riding a huge wave of momentum. His biggest adversary, World Championship Wrestling (WCW), was going out of business.
Vince was destined to make it apart of history by officially purchasing the company at WrestleMania X-7.
That is, until Shane McMahon came along.
Like father, like son, Shane purchased the company under his father’s nose.
Shane actions were seemingly a part of revenge for Vince’s adultery and mistreatment of his mother.
As Vince and Shane battled at WrestleMania 17, one particular company faded out of existence. This company had long been overshadowed by WCW and the WWF during the Monday Night Wars. In reality, ECW had disappeared as a result of bankruptcy.
Vince McMahon purchased the companies assets months before Mania. However, there was still no sign of Paul Heyman or the former ECW Talent. In the middle of the Shane’s WCW and Vince’s WWF, Paul Heyman and his ECW Soldiers inserted themselves into the action. It was later revealed that Stephanie was the new owner of ECW as they aligned themselves with WCW.
The companies formed the Alliance.
As the angle continued for months, I was astounded when WWF fans cheered one of the bad guys.
This Superstar's popularity grew to a point where he was as popular as Stone Cold Steve Austin and The Rock. The WWF took advantage this by placing RVD in numerous segments with Stone Cold. Teasing Van Dam’s ascension to the WWF, Austin and Van Dam clashed almost each week in segments that only skyrocketed Van Dam’s popularity.
Van Dam was immensely over with WWF fans that he picked up wins over Austin, Undertaker, Kurt Angle and Chris Jericho.
Each Superstar was one of the WWF’s top talents at the time.
Without a doubt in my mind, Rob Van Dam was a big deal.
In case you’ve missed my first point on why RVD deserves a second chance, it’s because of his popularity. When analyzing the current WWE roster, there aren’t too many Superstars that can draw a crowd’s reaction like Rob Van Dam.
After the invasion, Van Dam officially turned face. Mr. Monday Night spent the next six years on both RAW and SmackDown. Van Dam received numerous World Title matches but failed early on. RVD remained a member of the mid card for years, winning multiple tag and second tier titles along the way. In the process, Van Dam retained his popularity.
Despite this, Van Dam didn’t win a World Championship until 2006.
This ripped the emotion right of me as a huge RVD fan.
Here you have this Superstar who’s spontaneously successful at the intended goal in the WWE.
Getting over with the crowd
But he is never considered for a World Championship reign. The one reign he did receive ended due to his own actions, but the contributions of almost a decade outweigh any misdemeanor. Van Dam was never allowed to regain the ECW Championship. Despite being the former WWE Champion, Van Dam never received a rematch for the Championship.
The second reason is because he deserves it.
Over the course of two years, the WWE has lost a large portion of its allure. Multiple Superstars have left/retired from the WWE since 2009. From Jeff Hardy, Shawn Michaels, Batista, Chris Jericho, Edge and soon to be CM Punk have exited the company over this period of time. When observing the names listed, one factor remains common between each.
All were main event talent.
With Undertaker and Triple H seemingly on their last leg, the WWE is seriously lacking top tier talent.
This is perhaps more important for WWE SmackDown.
When observing each wrestler chosen for this CVC, Rob Van Dam and Kurt Angle are seemingly perfect to fill the role of a main eventer. Angle and RVD are past their primes but possess the tools and star power to become instant main eventers.
Disagree? Watch their match on Impact Wrestling from last week.
The third reason is the lack of main event talent in the WWE, and at this point in time, the WWE needs someone like Rob Van Dam.
One reason that may be unbeknownst to the IWC is the reason Rob Van Dam left the WWE. RVD’s wife began suffering from colon cancer in the months before he left the Company. However, it didn’t become public knowledge until a year later.
As a longtime RVD fan, I respect the fact that Van Dam put the health of his wife first. The strenuous WWE schedule wouldn’t have allowed RVD to see his wife too often. Not to take away anything from the other wrestlers in this competition, but Van Dam’s decision is admirable and provides a perfect reason to abandon the one thing that has defined your life.
For this, I couldn’t feel anything but respect for the Mr. Thursday Night.
As I close out, I’d like to share a fond memory with my readers. It’s ECW One Night Stand 2006. John Cena and Rob Van Dam set to do battle for the WWE Title in Extreme Rules. At the time of the match, I was a fan of both Superstars. Despite this, it was something about Rob Van Dam climbing the mountain that added the extra anticipation that most matches lack.
The wrestling style of Rob Van Dam (and Jeff Hardy, for that matter) echoed the moment when Van Dam pinned Cena for the Championship. The question of when Cena would win it back or is Heyman allowed to count him down wasn’t a factor.
This was one of those living in the moment occasions.
As those fans sprung out of their seats at the count of three, I felt as if I were there to say finally.
This moment was truly one of a kind.