King Corbin's Head-Scratching Move to the Hurt Business and More WWE Raw Fallout

Kevin Berge@TheBerge_Featured ColumnistMarch 30, 2021

King Corbin's Head-Scratching Move to the Hurt Business and More WWE Raw Fallout

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    As the Road to WrestleMania heats up, WWE Raw grows more intense. Everyone is stepping to the plate with a massive chip on their shoulder, and the March 29 edition of the red brand was fully focused on that need to succeed.

    Bobby Lashley put a hit out on Drew McIntyre, and many answered. Ricochet and Mustafa Ali stepped up but could not defeat the former WWE champion. This left The All Mighty scrambling for a secret weapon.

    That weapon came in the form of his returning friend, King Corbin. He jumped brands to help Lashley attack The Scottish Warrior. With Cedric Alexander and Shelton Benjamin booted from The Hurt Business, MVP had a new pair of dominant heels to promote into WrestleMania 37.

    Riddle was all over this week's episode, riding around backstage on his scooter. And after Sheamus beat him one-on-one, The Original Bro traveled backstage and forgot his lines in a key segment.

    Shane McMahon has mocked and belittled Braun Strowman at every stage, but WWE has not done a great job establishing how The Monster Among Men will gain his revenge. He has become a caricature thanks to a ridiculous train noise played during his matches.

    This was a night of lows and highs, although the Road to WrestleMania was made far clearer. Only the best of the best will thrive when the lights are brightest.

King Corbin Is the Wrong Man to Join The Hurt Business

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    A short reign of dominance has ended. MVP and Bobby Lashley kicked Shelton Benjamin and Cedric Alexander out of The Hurt Business for failing to defeat Drew McIntyre last week.

    The All Mighty then awaited challengers to the Scot. While two failed, King Corbin stepped up to help him take out the former WWE titleholder.

    MVP made clear that the new Hurt Business is Lashley and Corbin. This pairing makes as little sense as the original trio of Lashley, Corbin and McIntyre. While they have an odd history, these dominant heels work better apart rather than together.

    The Hurt Business was about elevating underutilized talent. Benjamin was floundering in his final run in WWE before MVP stepped in. Alexander could not catch a break since leaving 205 Live, and he became a new man when he turned heel.

    These Superstars had been misused and miscast for a while unlike Corbin, who gets a story everywhere he goes. He could have been involved with so many different angles. Instead, he's the lackey of The Hurt Business. It's a poor use of a platform.

    This is not to say Corbin is bad for the spotlight; he just doesn't need it. He ended the career of Kurt Angle two years ago; he is still The King, which does not mean he fits well with others; and he's always been a leader not a follower.

    Benjamin has been at this game for so long and at least deserved a spot at WrestleMania as backup to Lashley. And Alexander has a bright future if he is used properly. He is still the youngest man to be involved with The Hurt Business, and the group's longevity is threatened by his departure.

Ricochet and Mustafa Ali Deserve Better Than to Be Squashed Even by McIntyre

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    When Bobby Lashley put a bounty on Drew McIntyre's head, anyone could have stepped up. Two men did. Ricochet fought the Scot first and fell to a Claymore, and Mustafa Ali tried to take advantage by attacking him from behind but fell quickly to the same signature move.

    The One and Only cannot catch a break. It is insane how much talent is wasted with him. His athleticism alone should be getting him opportunities to at least work 10 minutes matches with wrestlers to make them look better.

    Ali was only recently in an angle that got regular TV time. He may not have been treated the best that he could have, but he obviously deserved better than getting squashed by a weakened McIntyre.

    At this point, I wouldn't be surprised if Ali, Ricochet and Cedric Alexander regrouped as a heel alliance to try to keep some kind of solid founding in WWE. However, so much ground was lost here.

    Hopefully, stars such as Ricochet and Ali are considering their options as their contracts expire. At the very least, they need to start talking to WWE about how they are treated and barter for contracts that force the company to use them better in the long term.

    McIntyre is one of the best in the world and Raw's top face, but he did not come off that way here. He was in the role that got John Cena and Roman Reigns mixed reactions before him.

Riddle Is an Awkward Obsession of Raw Officials

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    Riddle gladly accepted the challenge of Sheamus for a non-title match, but he was not quite ready for the vicious edge of The Celtic Warrior.

    The Irishman outmaneuvered The Original Bro at every turn and eventually hit him with a Brogue Kick to win.

    Afterward, Riddle happily rode around backstage on his scooter, running into stars. He came upon Asuka but forgot his lines and rode off mid-segment.

    The use of the United States champion has not worked. He got over with WWE officials thanks to the work of Sheamus. He has stayed relevant due an awkward humor that is not landing with many audience members.

    While some may enjoy his antics, it is so difficult to take him seriously. He is not a champion right now. He is a side act that WWE lets perform more than most comedic wrestlers. The overexposure has led to repeated mistakes by Riddle.

    Riddle vs. Sheamus at WrestleMania should be a really good wrestling match, but it does not have the spark McIntyre vs. The Celtic Warrior had, and it doesn't have the potential of just about every other bout on the card.

Braun Strowman Has Become a Caricature of Who He Was

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    Shane McMahon, alongside Elias and Jaxson Ryker, continued to belittle Braun Strowman.

    In response, The Monster Among Men squashed Ryker in a match where the train sound was again unleashed as he shoulder-blocked everyone around the ring.

    There was a time when Strowman felt like one of the biggest stars WWE could have possibly found. He was a homegrown talent with natural gifts. The sport came naturally to him. He could work like a giant but move with a speed of other top athletic heavyweights.

    However, WWE cannot keep a good thing going. After a few years of missing WrestleMania, The Monster Among Men is getting his singles matches but at the expense of genuine stories. He only got Goldberg last year because Roman Reigns withdrew at the last minute.

    He is now set for his first singles match at 'Mania planned weeks before the event, and it is against McMahon. While Strowman is likely to win, a steel cage match is far from a guarantee. He could knock the WWE producer through the cage door, causing him to touch the floor.

    It would not be surprising based on Strowman's treatment. He has been a laughing stock at every point. In many ways, he is caricature of what he once was. This dominant big man who could not be stopped is now The Strowman Express, a train with actual sound effects to boot.

    WWE likely thinks the train sound will get over with live crowds, but the opposite feels true. The mystique behind one of the company's most surprising homegrown talents is gone. What is left is a big man who can be belittled and mocked even by the production team.