Backstage WWE and AEW Rumors: Latest on Street Profits, Braun Strowman and More
SmackDown Tag Team Champions The Street Profits are one of the most explosive, entertaining and charismatic acts in all of pro wrestling and their promos are at the center of this week's wrestling rumor and innuendo.
Ever wonder why they sound different; less rehearsed or scripted than other Superstars on the roster?
The reason for that is spelled out in a new report that joins the latest on Braun Strowman, Mercedes Martinez and AEW's Jake Hager.
Scripting The Street Profits
Dave Meltzer of The Wrestling Observer Newsletter reported The Street Profits are not currently scripted the way other WWE Superstars are.
It may seem on the surface like a surprise but if you listen to the way Montez Ford and Angelo Dawkins talk, how they address the WWE Universe and their opponents, there is a freeness there that other performers are not granted.
They are naturally charismatic and engaging on the mic. They have enormous personalities that cannot be confined by scripted words. They are likely given bullet points, told what they need to emphasize and are left alone to put together their promos from there.
And it works.
How many times have you watched a Street Profits promo and thought it was the best, most organic of all the interviews on that given night's show?
They bring an energy that others simply do not so it would be foolish for WWE to neuter them and make them spout off the bland, one-dimensional promos it makes even its top stars recite on a weekly basis.
Is Braun Strowman a Heel or Babyface?
Mike Johnson of PWInsider.com reported Braun Strowman is once again a babyface after WWE quietly turned him.
Because...why the hell not?
Strowman has been the subject of such creative inconsistency this year. He has been a babyface, then a heel. He has been likeable, then not. He has suffered from his past during his run with Bray Wyatt, benefited from Roman Reigns' absence in the form of an unscheduled Universal Championship run, popped up on Raw Underground, then feuded with Keith Lee in a program that was quietly dropped.
He was Intercontinental Champion, fought Sami Zayn and Co. and beat the almighty Goldberg at WrestleMania 36.
Yet here he is, the subject of another creative inconsistency as WWE's crack writing team struggles to figure out what and who it has on its hands.
Is he a main event guy? Is he a midcard talent? A hero or a villain? A shoot fighter or a brawler?
What is Strowman and what does WWE want him to be?
Until they figure that out, all they have on their hands is a less-accomplished Big Show, who faced the same tribulations.
Jake Hager Talks John Cena Refusing to Job the Title to Him
Jake Hager suggested on the latest edition of Talk Is Jericho that John Cena refused to lose the world title to him back in 2010 when he possessed the Money in the Bank briefcase. He recalled Phoenix, the night after WrestleMania 26, as the site of the refusal.
In hindsight, can anyone really blame Cena?
Hager was not ready at that point in his career to be world champion, something we found out when he did actually cash in on Chris Jericho the following night at the SmackDown tapings and went on a run that showed hints of promise but never really met expectations fort he former amateur wrestling star.
Even three years later, when all signs seemed to point at him regaining the title from Alberto Del Rio only to go and get himself arrested for marijuana possession so close to the biggest match of his career, it was clear he was not yet mature enough to handle the pressure and expectation that comes with being world champion.
Is he now? Probably, but to fault Cena or suggest he was being held back just two years into his main roster career is foolish.
Mercedes Martinez-Retribution Report
Sean Ross Sapp of Fightful reported Mercedes Martinez "extended her desire to no longer be part" of the Retribution angle and was removed.
Given the manner in which the angle has been booked to this point, who can blame Martinez?
Yes, she missed out on a main roster run but if the creative results are so incredibly diminishing, is she really missing anything?
A veteran performer whose most recent work before her brief run with the faction came in a critically acclaimed Steel Cage Match against Rhea Ripley on the September 8 episode of NXT, Martinez now finds herself in limbo.
She has yet to reappear on NXT TV since departing the Retribution storyline. And who knows when she will.
That is disappointing, for sure, given how talented an in-ring performer she is and how long she worked to get to the company. Hopefully, Triple H, The Vin Man or someone else with real power in the company can conjure up something for her to do because she is a valuable asset to a company with the best women's wrestlers in the world on their roster.