Reality From Ringside #62
April 26, 2010
By: Doug Lackey of Wrestleview.comWWE Extreme Rules 2010: The Hangover
Even though you may hear me gripe and complain occasionally, I really do enjoy putting together these 'PPV Hangover' columns. It's not for the fact that it is probably the easiest of my columns to put together and requires the least amount of research, but it's from that small amount of research over a short period of time that the 'real' questions take form.
While I understand that most internet wrestling fans look to columns like these to review a pay-per-view and try to convince them whether a show was good or not, I just cannot do that. I have no idea what is good or bad. What I may enjoy in my professional wrestling programs could be a complete 180 compared to what you like.
In a very philosophical sense, this is a result of the new 'sports-like' generation of fans and enthusiasts. Wrestling fans have become more enthused about results than the content that would lead to the result. Wrestling fans have become more concerned with instantaneous reviews of 3-hour events through grading systems than detailed compositions and analyses of each match weighing the pros and cons of each.
Instead, what I prefer to do is ask the questions we are all left with following a professional wrestling pay-per-view. I always prefer asking questions rather than answering them, at times. I believe it conveys the points I make a lot easier while at the same time allowing everyone involved (that means YOU, the loyal 'Realist') to provide their answers.
I guess it's my little way of remaining a populist and hardly offending anyone with my opinions and insights.
My shorthand reactions to 'Extreme Rules'? If you can find the differences between the 'Street Fight' and the 'Extreme Rules Match', I would love to know them.
Time for the questions that need to be answered...Are the consensus draft picks for Monday night still considered so?
Randy Orton to Smackdown, Undertaker to Raw... these two draft predictions seem to be the consensus picks from many wrestling pundits. After 'Extreme Rules', these picks look to be given a solid green light.
Randy Orton's first pay-per-view match against Jack Swagger for the World Heavyweight Title in an 'Extreme Rules Match' (...er... I think...) seemed to be just the first step in a major multi-month program. While Swagger gets the pin fall, Orton exacts his revenge following such. It keeps the heat to a simmer and we could see this boil over sometime before Summerslam potentially.
While Undertaker did not appear on the pay-per-view, this can be seen as simply a formality. Leaving a main event name off the card only to have him reappear as the send-off segment for Monday night's draft special seems to be the logical choice. What will be more interesting is Undertaker's workload when the switch-off is complete. How often will Undertaker appear on television or even perform in the ring? How many programs could we see in his final year with the company? Would they be used on well-established talent or the teetering-on-the-brink mid-card talents?
There were many other draft predictions that some might consider consensus (Christian to Smackdown, CM Punk to Raw). The major reason I do not mention them? Let's just say they aren't as painstakingly obvious as Orton or Undertaker's.What happened to..."Legacy"?
I'm really going to start making this a recurring theme in every one of my pay-per-view hangovers: Asking whatever happened to a storyline, angle, or character from fairly recent. Good lord... imagine the number of these kinds of questions I would be conjuring up with every TNA pay-per-view!
Since June of 2009, everyone and their handicapped uncle had been predicting the break-ups and heel/face turns of "Legacy", the stable of Randy Orton, Ted DiBiase Jr., and Cody Rhodes. We had read and listened to countless reviews and opinions about how all three of these young talents will be the workhorses of WWE.
We don't need to go over Orton's resume, but I only have ten fingers to count all of the 237-star critiques I've read of Ted DiBiase's babyface qualities and Cody Rhodes' over-the-top stooge antics. The break-up, Randy Orton's heel/face turn, Ted DiBiase's heel/face turn, Cody Rhodes'... um... yeah that guy... all of this we had been hearing about for nearly 9 months!
Look what's happened now. Randy Orton is a legitimate face thanks to crowd approval regardless of his own actions or words. Ted DiBiase was in the middle of a slowly-progressing program with Christian revolving around his father's gift, The Million Dollar Belt. Cody Rhodes has yet to appear on television since suffering a concussion at Wrestlemania 26.
I guess the bigger question I should be asking is this: What will happen to Legacy?
Orton will remain Randy Orton.
Ted DiBiase will fall into the chasm of obscurity if the consensus pick of Christian leaving for Smackdown comes true. Wait... you mean DiBiase is going to be drafted to Smackdown WITH Christian? Okay... and what are your angle/storyline plans with DiBiase after him and Christian have wrestled each other in singles and tag matches for over 2 months?
The over/under for Cody Rhodes' remaining time of employment with WWE is 6 months. How many times will you see him on a major television program until then?What will Batista's final program be?
The reports were swirling around in the skies above Baltimore like a tornado. Batista's profile page moved to the 'Raw' sub-section of WWE's website. There has been little to no activity regarding a contract extension. All suggestions are indicating that we are seeing the final days of Batista's employment in WWE.
Before you start spouting off how great he would be in TNA (and heaven help us if Batista ever actually considers such a suicidal jump), step back and try to predict how WWE Creative will put the finishing touches on Batista's career.
When Jeff Hardy's contract was ignored, he was given a brief World Title run, a good month and a half long program with CM Punk, and the victim of a 'Loser Leaves Town' match. While the biggest difference is in the face/heel side of things, I see the same happening with Batista.
The bigger question is this: Who will send Batista packing?
Can a Cena/Batista program still be exciting for another 4 months?
Can an Undertaker/Batista program be built in a short enough amount of time so that Undertaker can have his rest while enacting Batista's demise? That is if Undertaker is drafted to Raw of course.
Is there any other Raw performer that could possibly benefit from sending Batista packing? Batista in the middle of the ring, saying no one can beat him and if anyone can, he'll leave WWE for good. Out comes (fill in the blank), challenges him, and either beats him cleanly or gets help from the back.
There are many different options to choose from, but choose wisely on how you would like to see it go down. Sure, YOU may like to see William Regal or Daniel Bryan come out and retire Batista... but take a deep breath and remember that you're a "Realist", not an idealist.
Until next time, mouth-breathers!
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