Every year, there are superstars that are destined for greatness. With newcomers, there are a few that leave a good taste in our mouths and make us cheer for them. From Randy Orton to CM Punk, some newcomers go on to become even bigger than they expected.
So who was the 2008 Newcomer of the Year? You decide.
#1) Kofi Kingston, ECW/RAW
The Jamaican Sensation had a chance at greatness. He was brought in via Teddy Long's New Superstar Initiative, and he has never looked back. The result: A trip to RAW, an Intercontinental Championship run and a great storyline alongside CM Punk as World Tag Team Champions.
After beating Shelton Benjamin in his final match on ECW, Kingston was sent to RAW for a fresh start. He has made it a good transition, and in the process, has managed to make himself a potential main event superstar. Alongside Punk, he is one half of the current World Tag Team Champions. But in all fairness, he can just as easily be #1 Contender for the World Heavyweight Championship next summer.
#2) Evan Bourne, ECW
The last time I saw this guy live, he amazed the hell out of me. And on ECW, he has managed to continue that amazement. He is an aerial phenom without question. And he may have enough in the tank to win the ECW Championship pretty soon.
Evan Bourne is beyond a doubt one of the biggest rising stars in the WWE today. The new arrangement Teddy Long has with RAW has allowed superstars and fans of RAW to get just as excited as the fans on ECW. But tragedy follows triumph just as quickly as Bourne is on the shelf due to his high flying style.
But even with that, he managed to earn a Slammy for Best Finisher of 2008 with the Airbourne (Shooting Star Press). And because of that winning laid-back attitude that we haven't seen much on ECW since the days of RVD, he's earned a nomination for this year's Newcomer of the Year Award.
#3) Ricky Ortiz, ECW
Huge afros are the last thing you would expect out of an up and coming superstar. But Ricky Ortiz has brought strength and aerial attacks to the Land of Extreme. Up until last week, he was actually undefeated, and holds two victories over former ECW Champion Chavo Guerrero.
But the reason that he has become a big name on ECW is because of the Ricky Towels that have started to fly out in arenas all over the world. You got to have charisma to go with talent, and Ricky Ortiz has that. He's done enough in 2008 to grab a nomination for this year's Newcomer of the Year.
#4) Primo Colon, RAW/SmackDown
He arrived on RAW after Summerslam and didn't get any respect due to the crew that was already there. So he went to SmackDown to join his brother, Carlito. The end result:
The return of Carlito's Cabana, a set of stunning upsets over former tag champs Curt Hawkins and Zack Ryder and they are also the reigning WWE Tag Team Champions. I love how the WWE is pushing the New Superstar Initiative at this moment. Kofi Kingston is one half of the Tag Champs on RAW, and Primo is one half of the Tag Champs on SmackDown. Sounds pretty good to me.
#5) Consequences Creed, TNA
Truth or Consequences. Which will you choose? I choose Consequences...as in Consequences Creed. He changed his demeanor and his outfit, and so far it's kept him in the mainstream of TNA's current rivalry.
Creed is one of the best up and comers to the industry, and it's only a matter of time before he is wearing gold around his waist. And thanks to the X Division Championship being vacated, it may happen sooner rather than later.
#6) Ezekial Jackson, SmackDown
While Paul London was getting the boot due to his lack of performance, his former partner was becoming a main event player. He added a The at the beginning of his name, raided Michael Jackson's closet and brought in some much needed muscle to keep up with the biggest and baddest on SmackDown.
That's why I'm nominating his muscle instead of him.
Ezekial Jackson can wrestle. He doesn't talk. He doesn't smile. In fact, he doesn't have another facial expression other than "break him in half." But it is because of Jackson that Kendrick was in the Championship Scramble at Unforgiven. And honestly, without Jackson, Kendrick would still be running around in masks. The only difference is that he wouldn't have someone throwing his jacket on him after he cons his way to victory.
#7) Sheik Abdul Bashir, TNA
Now I know that everyone will say that this guy doesn't deserve to be in this category since he was in the WWE before TNA. But before you get started, you cannot deny that he has done a lot since he's been there.
From team captain of Team International during the World X Cup to X Division Champion, the man formerly known as Daivari has made himself a true winner...as well as a true pain in the ass at the same time. Despite his mission to send America into a greater Depression than another pain in the ass has done. Either way, he gets a nomination...and I think I'm getting sick thinking about it.
#8) Vladimir Kozlov, SmackDown
He is the Moscow Mauler. He is undefeated. He can't really speak English. And he has yet to win a championship since arriving in WWE. But he has come close.
This past Monday, Kozlov won the 2008 Slammy Award for Newcomer of the Year. But I think there were better guys (and girls) who deserved to be Newcomer of the Year. With that said, he does not have my vote for this award. I can't honestly say that it doesn't matter how good he is in Samba Style wrestling.
Charisma is a big deal for Vladimir. He first came out to nothing but a spotlight. Now he has some tripped out Russian music to go with it. Regardless, he gets a nomination just from the past two months alone. And he could do himself a favor by beating ECW Champion Matt Hardy this Sunday at Armageddon.
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