WWE: Five Non-Wrestlers We'd Love to Return to the Company
My name is Pravin Singh and this is my debut article here on Bleacher Report.
It is a fact, that WWE is experiencing a crisis right now. Ratings on both shows (especially Smackdown) are low, many of their biggest stars, such as Shawn Michaels, Batista, Chris Jericho and Edge have left the company and pay-per view buy-rates have declined dramatically.
I do not fault the wrestlers/entertainers for this, I think the majority of the blame lies with the executives. Head of Talent Relations, John Laurinaitis, has been under fire lately, for failing to get stars to re-sign, while WWE creative has been criticized by the IWC (Internet Wrestling Community) for being dull and predictable.
Another issue in my eyes, is the state of the WWE announce team. Michael Cole is a cliche heel announcer, Jerry Lawler is a cliche face announcer and Booker T is just cliche, period.
The only good announcers they have, Matt Striker and Josh Matthews, are being terribly underused in favor of the three guys above.
Now, the criteria for the list are:
1. What the person has accomplished during his/her time in the industry and how good they were in the role I've specified that I'd like to see them in.
2. How much of a difference he/she can make in today's WWE.
Oh and by the way, the person must be physically healthy enough to do the job, so don't expect to see guys like Bobby Heenan on the list.
So, without further ado, here are five non-wrestlers I would love to return to WWE, either in a televised or backstage role, or both.
No. 5: John Bradshaw Layfield
We kick off this list with the longest reigning WWE champion in Smackdown history, JBL. Now, while JBL may have been a wrestler for most of his career, he was never that good in the ring. No, JBL's true talents were on the microphone.
Which is why, when he became a color commentator for Smackdown in 2006, I thought he had found his true calling. He was highly entertaining as a color commentator. He was funny, knowledgeable and we'll never forget the way he mocked and belated his partner Michael Cole.
JBL could also draw heat like few others, he even got himself almost unanimously booed when he temporarily returned to WWE in his home state of Texas. Who wouldn't want this guy to replace Lawler and get back to making Michael Cole his b**ch?
No. 4: Sunny
Tammy "Sunny" Sytch, the original diva, is No. 4 on this list. Of the many lost arts in WWE, one of the most missed ones is the practice of managing.
Right now, the only legit manager in WWE is Vickie Guerrero. I refuse to label The Great Waste of Space as a manager and while Tyson Kidd looked like he would be getting a good manager, none of the partnerships worked out.
My proposed solution is to have Tyson Kidd be managed by one of the best managers of all time, Sunny. Sunny has stated that she would like to assume a non-wrestling role in WWE, she is definitely experienced and as we saw at the 2011 HOF induction ceremony, she is still hot as hell.
A partnership between her and Kidd could elevate Kidd's career greatly and it could lead to Sunny managing even more superstars after him. Plus we'd get to see Sunny every week again, so it's pretty much a win/win.
No. 3 Joey Styles
The voice of ECW, and arguably one of the greatest play-by-play announcers of all time, Joey Styles gets the No. 3 place on this list.
As I mentioned in previous slides, the state of the announce team is nothing short of tragic. They have a heel play-by-play guy, a face color commentator who lives under the delusion that his jokes get funnier every time he repeats them and well, Booker T.
They badly need a new play-by-play guy, one who actually knows about WRESTLING, and Joey Styles fits the bill perfectly. The one problem with letting him work as an announcer would be that he'd be held back, which didn't sit well with Styles last time if you recall.
Regardless, I would still absolutely love to see him return. It is also still a distinct possibility, since he is still technically employed by WWE as the Vice President of WWE Media on WWE.com.
No. 2: Jim Ross
Surprised? I'll bet you are. Most of you were probably expecting to see JR at No. 1, and he probably would've been if the next guy wasn't as great as he is.
Anyway, Good Ole JR gets the No. 2 spot on this list. It's pretty obvious why, his play-by-play announcing skills are arguably the best in history, he's beloved by the fans and he knows the business like the back of his hand. However, there were two things that held him back:
1. Vince McMahon loves to mess with him. It's no secret that Vinny Mac takes great pleasure from humiliating poor old JR. Apparently old habits die hard for Vinny Mac as we saw earlier this year, when JR was forced to kiss the fungus-infested foot of Michael Cole (which I still have nightmares about by the way).
2. His Bell's Palsy condition. The ailment that forced him to leave WWE in the first place is one of the main reasons he wasn't No. 1 on the list. He hasn't had an attack in a while, but hey, you never know.
Despite these issues, I would still love to hear Jim Ross' voice at the announce table rather than Booker's or Cole's.
And the real No. 1 is........
No. 1: Paul E. Heyman
Yes, the mad genius behind ECW is awarded the No. 1 spot on this list. Paul Heyman, the man who introduced "attitude" to pro wrestling, brought CM Punk and Brock Lesnar among others into the WWE and the man who was arguably the greatest GM and head writer in Smackdown history is the man that I would I would love to see return to WWE more than any other non-wrestler.
My reasons are simple. You see the fact is, Smackdown sucks. Christian vs Orton is the only thing keeping the show alive. Talented wrestlers like Wade Barrett are being held down and forced to job to old guys like Kane and boring muscleheads like Ezekiel Jackson.
Cody Rhodes and Ted DiBiase have formed a partnership that is basically identical to Miz and Alex Riley's. Ratings are low, and to top it all off, Mark Henry is actually the most interesting thing about the show besides the three-way feud between Christian, Orton and Sheamus. If that isn't sad I don't know what is.
I blame these issues on a stale, uninteresting GM (Teddy Long) and a lazy creative team. Which is why I'd very much like Heyman to replace Theodore Long as the GM of Smackdown and I'd have him become the head writer of Smackdown once again.
You see one of the great things about Heyman, is that not only is he a genius when it comes to the business of pro-wrestling, he's also a heat magnet and exceptionally gifted on the mic. Heyman's mic skills and heat-drawing ability got Brock Lesnar to the top of the WWE in less than a year.
His announcing with JR, was one of the few things that I actually liked about the Invasion storyline back in 2001. In fact, the only man who can match both Heyman's knowledge of the business, his booking skills and his microphone skills, is Vincent K. McMahon himself.
Unfortunately though, it is almost certain that Heyman will never return to WWE TV, unless he is inducted into the HOF. Which we all hope happens someday, although I'm not particularly sure it'll happen anytime soon.
Well that's it for this article. Hope you enjoyed it and looking forward to making many more for you guys at Bleacher Report