As I continue to march down to my annual pilgrimage to Wrestlemania weekend, I like many others find myself intrigued and captivated by certain matches and angles. What is going to happen between John Cena and The Rock? Is this the moment for Alberto Del Rio to ascend to superstardom? However the big questions that occupy my thoughts these days involve the angle involving HHH and the Undertaker. I haven’t always been a fan of certain angles he has been involved in but I have always been a big fan of HHH and count him amongst my all time favorites. The popular belief this year is that this match with the Undertaker could be HHH’s swan song as he joins his pal Shawn Micheals in retirement and I just have to ask myself: Is right now the best time for HHH to retire? You’re reading “Wrestling Rumblings”.
I realize wrestlers cannot wrestle forever, that every good run must come to an end but I’m not sure this is the right time for HHH to go. After all PPV revenue has been lower than it has been in recent years, house show attendance is struggling and the company is struggling to create new stars and everyone knows the best way to create new stars is by giving them a rub from older more established stars. Sure maybe it’s nice and somewhat epic to have a classic last match with the Undertaker on the biggest stage in the industry in Wrestlemania but what about the day after Wrestlemania? Let’s face it Undertaker is probably going to disappear that day and well what is really accomplished at that point as you are exactly where you were a month previous in a company without two of its strongest draws in HHH and Undertaker. How does that help HHH in his new role as head WWE honcho going forward? It doesn’t if you ask me.
OK, I get that HHH is going to be 42 this year and that he has suffered a barrage of injuries ever since first tearing his quad in 2001 and that with 13 world championships, a King of the Ring crown, a Royal Rumble win and pretty much having held every other accolade under the sun there isn’t much for him to personally accomplish in the world of professional wrestling. However isn’t it a time honored tradition in wrestling that you put guys over on your way out? Before anyone stops to ask me who Shawn Micheals put over on his way out I’ll gladly remind you that Shawn at least spent the better part of the last 6 months of his career doing jobs for Cody Rhodes and Ted Dibiase and even the Miz. Sure it wasn’t this great put over (although it was the biggest win of Rhodes and Dibiase’s career and the Miz is now WWE Champion) but it was something. Would it kill WWE to maybe have HHH have a stronger program with Sheamus? One that doesn’t require him to look like a fool. I personally thought WWE missed the boat on Sheamus last year when he didn’t beat HHH at Wrestlemania because even though he won the rematch to me that was the match everyone is going to remember and HHH didn’t need that win. Anymore than he needed to go out of his way to humiliate the guy so bad this past week on Raw. Fact of the matter is as much as it annoyed everyone when he said it this past week on Raw HHH is right there really is no one else in the company on his level and you know what? It would be best if he did his best to change that before he is done.
Evolution helped launch two of the biggest names in wrestling in Batista and Randy Orton and as much as people don’t like to give him credit for it a lot of that was because of HHH. We have seen WWE launch two factions without much success in both the Corre and the Nexus over the past year. We have also seen a score of talent make their way onto the roster from NXT and soon we will have Tough Enough. These kids are going to need quality guys to work with. I get that he wants to take it easy and not get beat up for a living and being a person behind the scenes is probably tons more fun and challenging than anything he will ever do in a wrestling ring, however with that being said HHH is going to need all the weapons at his disposal to help get WWE out of the proverbial shitter that it’s in. With the Rock, Booker T., Trish Stratus, Kevin Nash and Steve Austin all coming back into play and the reactions that those stars have received it has served as a reminder that today’s guy is just missing something. HHH is a pretty big weapon in the war chest and should stick around at least for a little while in a wrestling capacity to help some guys take advantage of his star and I don’t want to hear about wanting to go out on top because this business is a work and at the end of the day you have to do what’s right for business. HHH sacrificing his career to the Undertaker may do big business for Wrestlemania but HHH working an angle that helps get John Morrison over, maybe giving CM Punk something extra or doing something with the Miz can help those guys perhaps carry WWE for years to come.
If this was anyone else I’d be like “screw it, the business is a work anyway and it’s every worker for himself” but again HHH is about to basically inherit this company. Do you want a strong company or a weak one? HHH sticking around for a year or two to create stars could be that difference maker. Let’s forget that for a minute. It’s no big secret that due to the devaluing of titles over the years that the selling point for Wrestlemania has been the Undertakers streak and while I don’t know how long that will last can you imagine how hard next year’s match might be to promote for him if you make a habit of having guys put up their careers to beat the streak? What happens when you go back to one on one matches with no gimmick? Will John Cena look like a coward if he doesn’t put up his career to beat the Undertakers streak? Will anyone else? I think when you fall into a booking pattern like that where you start booking guys to retire to sell a match you set fans up to expect something monumental every year in that regard and it’s just not possible. Even if he wants to retire I wouldn’t let the Undertaker be the guy to end his career just on this fact alone.
I could keep going but I’d be beating the horse with a stick so I’ll wrap up like this many fans don’t like him, find him insufferable and think that his ego has hurt WWE more than anything else in the last few years but what they can’t deny is that he is still one of the 5 most over personalities in that company. The guy moves the needle and well Miz working with John Morrisson isn’t going to bring either of those guys to a level that they weren’t already at. Stars create stars and HHH is just one of a small handful of stars with that starmaking quality even if we don’t always see it. He needs to use it before he decides to hang up the boots for good.
OK that does it for this week but of course I have to give all of you something to do for the weekend. Barring anything unexpected I expect to be live in attendance for WSU’s 4th Year Anniversary Show that will be streamed live on iPPV on gofightlive.tv this Saturday. Although I’m not exactly a big fan of women’s wrestling I like seeing all wrestling products succeed and having now seen a few WSU shows I am pulling for this company to hit a homerun this Saturday. In addition to the show there will be a Hall of Fame ceremony that will see the late Luna Vachon, April Hunter, and Ivory inducted that I am really looking forward to. For more information regarding any ticket information go to wsuwrestling.com. I also want to point out that this past week I did crank out not one but two “Eye Gouge” pieces and am planning to scratch out one more next week. This next review will be Bruce Hart’s “Straight from the Hart” Autobiography but I do want to sort of go ahead a bit and plug what the one after that will be as I just started reading it and that of course is “The Road Warriors: Danger, Death and the Rush of Wrestling” the long awaited Road Warriors book that has just come out this week. So if you are not reading “The Eye Gouge” you need to go ahead and check those out on the archives and well to anyone out there who wants me to review a DVD for a promotion or a book and can provide either/or just let me know via email at firstname.lastname@example.org. I’d like to try to review as many DVD’s and books as possible.
Of course I always am open to answering your emails as well so please hit me up at email@example.com. I’m on the road to Wrestlemania and of course will be bringing back FYB Radio this year and I’d love your thoughts on that and any ideas, comments or suggestions if you have any. So that’s it for this week, next time out I’ll try to do better and until then, I am out.