WWE: Why Wrestling Needs to Move Forward and Rely Less on Former Superstars

Joe McDonaldCorrespondent IIOctober 13, 2011

The WWE continues to push stars from yesterday instead of creating the stars of tomorrow. I respect former greats such as the Rock, Stone Cold Steve Austin and Kevin Nash. Their time has come and gone, though.

By tugging at our nostalgia, the WWE is admitting they are incapable of creating new superstars and moving forward.

I began watching wrestling in the late 1980s and have followed it ever since. Wrestling, like any sport, produces a new generation of superstars every few years to keep the business going. I have witnessed the Hogan era all the way through the current Cena era. Stars are created and when their time is over, they are supposed to make way for the next generation.

We will always respect what Hogan, Bret Hart, Shawn Michaels and so many others did for the sport.  However, when the WWE begins relying too much on past stars instead of making new ones, the product gets watered down and legacies begin to tarnish.

The WWE currently has a talent pool full of potential stars. The problem is instead of pushing their young talent ahead, they continue to bring back former great wrestlers and put them back in the spotlight.

Imagine if Hulk Hogan and Randy Savage stayed in the WWE for another five years instead of when they left. Bret Hart, Shawn Michaels, Kevin Nash and the Undertaker would have suffered. We may have never seen those legends turn out to be as great as they were. 

Some fans cry for the Rock and Mick Foley to come back and wrestle. Why?

The Rock will never come back full time to wrestling.  He is far too successful to come back the WWE permanently.  So if he can’t be back full time, then why come back at all?  What possible good can come out of the match between him and John Cena at WrestleMania?  If the Rock wins, it will be expected and bury John Cena.  If Cena wins, he will be the most hated wrestler of all time. 

Mick Foley? The man is 46 years old and has not put on a decent match in years. I see some fans actually want him to take on the Undertaker at WrestleMania. If you enjoy slow paced action with a lot of heavy breathing, then I suppose it would be good.

I do not want to be accused of being some sort of fanboy who believes today’s wrestling is better than it was fifteen years ago.  It’s not. My point is that we need to move on.  Attempting to relive the glory days of the attitude era will only taint our memories. Mick Foley will never be able to perform at the same level he once could.

The main event of WrestleMania should be great matches for the WWE or World title. For me WrestleMania 12 will always be the greatest wrestling pay-per-view I have ever witnessed. Imagine if the main event had been Bret Hart against a 47 year old Bob Backlund and not against Shawn Michaels.

I love Austin, Michaels and the superstars of the past. If the WWE brought back a former superstar every once in a long while then it would be effective. When you have the Rock, Foley and Austin come back to headline PPVs on a regular basis, it sends a message that you have no faith in your current talent.

I got chills when Kevin Nash came out to his Diesel theme at the Royal Rumble this year. I squealed like an immature fanboy and soaked in every second. When I saw Kevin Nash inserted into a pointless storyline and watched him fail miserably on the mic, I cursed at my television. We love to see our favorite wrestlers from the past, but we do not want to see them destroy their legacies.

I have a big problem with the WWE when they are hyping up a match a year in advance between Cena and the Rock, while the WWE title’s prestige is lost every two weeks when a new wrestlers wins it.

I want to remember Mick Foley as the hardcore legend that he was. I want to remember that unconventional, resourceful wrestler who would beat all odds and win titles against opponents much more talented than him. I do not want to see a 46 year old man that probably has the body of a 70-year-old because of all the abuse he has taken over the years. That is not how Mick Foley deserves to be remembered as.

The ones who truly suffer by relying on stars from the past are the young, talented wrestlers in the WWE today. I’m talking about Wade Barrett, Dolph Ziggler, CM Punk and so many more; these as the men who could be the Hall of Famers of tomorrow. 

I’m not against utilizing former superstars; I just want it to be effective, not over used. We have seen Bret Hart, Jerry Lawler and others, used far too many times this year. 

A good example of a former wrestler being used properly was when Marty Jannetty came back during Kurt Angle’s feud with Shawn Michaels. There was a point to him being there, and as a bonus we got to see a Rockers reunion for one night only. They did not have the Rockers go on to face the Tag Team champions in an era vs. era match. 

Sometimes it’s hard to move on as wrestling fans. We constantly want to see our favorite wrestlers from the past come back and win like they used to. I would rather appreciate their legacy and see how the next wave of superstars follow in their footsteps.

This is also why I am against the revival of the New World Order. It can never be as good as the original, so what would be the point? Why not create a new faction that is original and can be remembered for being great on its own merit?

I’m sure some of you may disagree with me, and we are all certainly entitled to our opinions. I just would rather pop in “Mind Games” to see Mick Foley instead of watching him do battle with wrestlers half his age. I’d also rather see Cody Rhodes headline WrestleMania against John Cena instead of the Rock.

Remember to follow me on Twitter @ClassicJoeyMac.  I made it to twenty tweeters.  Or followers.  Whatev.