There’s no denying the lasting impact Vince McMahon will have on professional wrestling. He was an innovator. Someone willing to take huge risks to get the WWE where it is today. While his competitors in the 1980s laughed at him and thought that the risk he was taking with the WWE would cause him to go out of business, Vince was willing to take the risk. Not only did Vince succeed, but he put a lot of his competitors out of business. That is why the WWE is still in business today, and the AWA, WCCW, and WCW are not.
But when you take a look at Vince McMahon nowadays, you have to wonder where all of his risk taking has gone. Where did the Vince McMahon who wasn’t afraid to take risk go? Where is the guy who used to think outside the box and wasn’t afraid to turn his biggest star in the company heel? Or the Vince McMahon who wasn’t afraid to “screw” Bret Hart on his way out of the company? I’m not saying we need Vince McMahon to take big risks like that, but it seems like Vince has been afraid to take even the tiniest risk in the last few years. But Wrestlemania 29 seemed to be the final straw for me. Vince McMahon, as we know him, has lost his grapefruits.
There were two ways that Vince McMahon could have gone with Wrestlemania 29. He could have taken a risk with one of his three Wrestlemania main events. He could have had CM Punk end the Undertaker’s Wrestlemania Streak. He could have had Brock Lesnar end the career of HHH. Or he could have done what wrestling fans have wanted for years now: Turn his golden goose John Cena heel and possibly rejuvenate his boring and stale character. Or Vince could have went the safe route. He could have Undertaker, HHH, and John Cena go over with nothing different happening at Wrestlemania. And unfortunately for us, this is the route that Vince McMahon decided to take.
Believe me when I tell you that there were a lot of fans upset after Wrestlemania. I heard the complaints leaving MetLife Staidum. I read the reviews and comments on various websites after the show. People were irate that Wrestlemania, the grandest stage of them all in pro wrestling, turned out to be a boring and predictable show again. Nothing new or relevant happened. Brock Lesnar once again lost, the Undertaker remained undefeated, and we once again have to sit through a boring and repetitive John Cena WWE Title reign. We didn’t even get Dolph Ziggler cashing in his MITB contract. I still thought Wrestlemania was a decent show. While predictable, it did have some good wrestling. But with the opportunity to take a chance and shake up the WWE, Vince McMahon balked and decided to play it safe.
Now I am not saying that Vince McMahon needed to do all of those things to make fans happy. He could have done just one of them and I think fans would have had a better outlook on Wrestlemania. I laid out the scenario in my writing for the last couple months about how CM Punk could end The Streak and have it carry over to Wrestlemania next year. Leading up to Wrestlemania, I said HHH didn’t have that many big matches left, and I honestly thought he was going to lose at Wrestlemania. Who is he going to face in his next big match? And there’s already enough talk about John Cena’s heel turn. Instead of doing that, the WWE turned Ryback heel the next night. Will that make fans happy? No. Fans don’t care enough about Ryback for it to work. At this point, he may be more over as a face after attacking John Cena. I know Cena is big with charities and Make-A-Wish, but there are other WWE superstars who can do those too. Vince now cares too much about his sponsors to make big changes to his company.
Even when Vince McMahon does decide to take a risk and do something different, he usually pulls the rug out from underneath it before it even gets going. He blew the Nexus angle by having them lose at SummerSlam. While CM Punk was having a great WWE Title reign, John Cena was still the focus of WWE TV and main evented the majority of PPVs in 2012. He’s pulled the rug out of the pushes of Kofi Kingston, John Morrison, Daniel Bryan and others. And this is the biggest problem that the WWE has faced in recent years. To get anybody caring about their product, they have to bring back former stars like The Rock, Brock Lesnar and HHH. If Vince actually took a risk and pushed some younger guys during the summer and fall months, maybe there could be more options to face Brock Lesnar and the Rock rather than having rematches with guys they already faced.
Wrestlemania 29 was the final straw with me. It showed that it is going to take a lot for me to have faith in Vince McMahon and the WWE creative team again. When given the chance to take a big risk, the WWE bailed. Maybe that will change now with Dolph Ziggler as World Champ, or the possible push of Fandango. But the WWE needs to do a serious overhaul to its product in the coming months to make fans care about their product year round, and not just during Wrestlemania season. Let Dolph Ziggler work himself up to main event status. Give Daniel Bryan a big singles push. Most importantly, get RAW back down to 2 hours. These 3 hour RAWs can be a pain to watch sometimes, and they are over-exposing the product by having them.
So Vince McMahon, I’m begging you. Do something different with your product in the coming months. Don’t let John Cena dominate RAW for the foreseeable future. I wouldn’t mind John Cena as WWE Champ if I knew more guys would get some pushes. But I don’t have any more faith in you Vince. You’ve lost your grapefruits.
Until Next Time,
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