It’s easy to be negative.
We are all guilty of it. You log onto Twitter, see what is trending, make a snarky Tweet and sign off. Boom! In an instant, intentional or not, you added to the toxic environment of the online world. No different than a sarcastic comment at work or wherever. Rather than going for a quick laugh and taking the quick ‘out,’ why not dig deeper? Look for something positive to say. Something nice. A compliment. Today, that is our objective with the current WWE landscape. I know, I know. It will be tough, but let’s try it…
10 Reasons To Love WWE Right Now
1. Drew McIntyre is WWE Champion – I think most of us can agree here. One year ago, the general consensus was that Drew McIntyre was being wasted on WWE television. He was losing way too much to the like of Roman Reigns and playing the lackey to Shane McMahon. Not quite the Chosen One, am I right? Fast forward to the end of the year, he is the prime favorite to win the 2020 Royal Rumble (which he did) and dethrone Brock Lesnar for the WWE Championship in the main event of WrestleMania (which he did). Ladies and gentlemen, that is the peak of any wrestler’s career. He main evented WrestleMania to win the top prize via the Rumble over the top star. Clean. One, two, three. He did it. Let’s not lose track of that all. It may have taken a loooooooong journey to get there, but we have arrived at the correct destination: Drew McIntyre is officially THE Stud.
2. Bayley’s heel turn worked – Can you believe that WWE turned lovable face Sami Zayn heel? Can you believe WWE turned lovable face Daniel Bryan heel? Can you believe NXT also turned lovable face Johnny Gargano heel? All of those moves could have been a massive mistake and resulted in years of ridicule. Instead, they turned out to be great. We can add one more. Bayley turning heel seemed like a crazy idea just a few years ago. No way, no how would fans boo her. No way would the company ever mess with her persona. That was ridiculous. Well, they did…and it worked. Bayley is the current WWE Smackdown Women’s Champion and has held that title for seemingly 38,494 days straight now. Plus, her and Sasha Banks just picked up the WWE Women’s Tag Team Titles in order to travel across all three brands and be the center of attention all week. Yay. Those two are one of the few acts clicking right now, and al lot of that praise goes to Bayley showing some of her new attitude.
3. The new United States Title looks slick – I am not much of a “belt mark.” Honestly, I don’t really worry about designs, gold, silver, plates, spinners, etc. I don’t care that much. I have my favorite like most of you (Winged Eagle). However, it is nothing I tend to stress about when watching professional wrestling. I must admit though that the brand new spanking United States Championship is MWAH! Love it. Takes you a couple of glances to fall in love but when you get there…you see it. Excellent. Made even better that a deserving young star named Apollo Crews is the one benefitting.
4. The show must go on – I caught some flak months ago for saying that WrestleMania SHOULD continue and not be cancelled. Many were crying and whining that it would be best to hold off until June or later in the summer when all health concerns are cleared up. I called BS on that. There was no way everything would be back to ‘normal’ a month or two later. There is no way to know for sure that Bill Goldberg, The Undertaker, John Cena, and other part-timers would be available come June. You 100% had to keep the trucks moving. With fans or not, WWE had to keep WrestleMania on schedule.. Edge, Triple H and others eventually echoed my sentiments, and shocking – WWE did what they always do – set up a wrestling ring and have matches. Since then, it has absolutely been a rough process. Only fair. We have never dealt with anything like this before. There were going to be growing pains and trail/error. As long as everything is safe and secure, WWE has to air Raw, Smackdown, NXT, and pay-per-view events, and they have. I applaud them. We need it.
5. WWE is experimenting – With my previous point, we can NOT just run normal wrestling shows without fans. Obviously. There was definite need for change during all of this. Luckily, somebody smartened up. WrestleMania was split into two nights that ended at a decent hour rather than the exhausting one day marathon. We were given two cinematic style matches that received mostly thumbs up. I personally loved the Boneyard Match but was indifferent to the John Cena/The Fiend “match.” Then we took it another step further when the Money in the Bank pay-per-view arrived. The man and women’s matches were combined to take place at the same exact time. Oh, and the bout was held at the WWE Headquarters with the two briefcases up on the roof of the building. Really. There have been other attempts, but up next is a match to held at…a swamp? I think? I don’t know. That is for the Smackdown brand, while the Raw brand is giving us a match where the winner is whoever rips out the eye socket of his opponent. Eye for an eye. Seriously. Now, that is a HORROR SHOW! Is all of this good? Of course not. Some of it has been cringe and nothing to brag about. I just appreciate the effort. WWE saw the writing on the wall and adjusted. I appreciate that.
6. Randy Orton is back – Have you ever wondered why nearly every single current and past legend openly gushed over the brilliance of Randy Orton? His work for the past few months has reminded us all why he has stuck around for 18 years and recently got PAID yet another big contract. The dude is so talented it isn’t even funny. Sure, there are times when he is saddled with lame story lines (losing to Jinder Mahal at multiple PPVs), but there are other times when he is the top star and it isn’t even close. Him giving Edge an RKO back in January still gives me goosebumps. His long brawl at WM with him may have taken us all a step back, but they redeemed it all at Backlash with a main event that was hyped up as the Greatest Wrestling Match Ever.” Again, ask every WWE Hall of Famer who they would have their dream roster. I bet they would all go to Randy Orton as one of their choices. It sucks that we take his talent for granted at times. Reminds me of John Cena. I know I have him on my Mount Rushmore of Wrestling, but a lot of fans had no idea how good he was…until he was gone. We still have Randy Orton folks. Let’s give him his proper respect. He is officially back and on his way to the WWE Title main event scene again.
7. No authority figures – My guess is Triple H, Stephanie McMahon, Shane McMahon, and Vince McMahon have ulterior motives for NOT appearing on these fan-less shows. Still, the point remains. Hasn’t it been nice to not have constant lengthy promos from the boss to start each show? Hasn’t it been nice to not have a silly power struggle play out on television? Hasn’t it been nice to let the wrestlers do the talking? Admittedly, William Regal pops up on NXT TV from time to time, but that is on rare occasions and only via the big screen to make quick big announcements. The way it should be done. Speaking of NXT…
8. NXT is the best – I have said it for years, so if you have read my columns (on another website), this will sound like a broken record. NXT is awesome. A lot of people feared their move to USA Network last Fall. A lot of people feared Vince McMahon getting involved in the day to day operations. A lot of people were skeptical of going to two hours. A lot of people were scared of the new exposure given to their beloved product. These guys and gals were wrong. If there is one constant in WWE for the past five years, it is this – trust NXT. I had no doubts that NXT would be amazing with the USA (and live mind you) switch. About a year later, I can say I was right. They are on fire right now and just know what to do and more importantly, what NOT to do. Every division has faces and heels. Every division can main event at the drop of a hat. Every division has their own stories. The roster is absolutely loaded and without hesitation, they get my viewing on Wednesday night.
9. Karrion Kross and Scarlett – You want to know when the tide really turned for NXT? When Karrion Kross showed up. Make no mistake, NXT (especially the Takeover specials) was great long before the summer of 2020. We all know that. However, business picked up ten fold when Kross and Scarlett began with the teasers. Remember that car with those two in after the grueling Johnny Gargano/Tommaso Ciampa Final Beat? So good. So cryptic. So cool. That is WWE NXT to me – cool. The entrance, the music, the catchphrase, the presentation, the look, the finisher, the hour glass, the entire ‘Tick Tock’ idea. TV Ratings back me up on this opinion. Kross is a star. That NXT Championship is in his crosshairs, and soon enough, everybody in the whole darn company will fall and pray…
10. They’re trying – As noted at the top, everything about this current situation sucks. You think we all want to wear masks to work everyday? You think we like our favorite restaurants being closed? You think we like seeing 007 and Mulan be delayed for months on end? You think we like watching WrestleMania with a silent backdrop? You think any of us are enjoying the 2020 landscape? Now take that and multiple by 100 with the WWE roster. These guys and gals have to travel (if they even can) and leave their families to head to the danger zone called Florida. Why you ask? To entertain all of us. Some of us that don’t even respect that or thank them. It is kinda sad in a lot of ways. I do not follow any WWE stars on Twitter. However, I have seen/read a lot of what Kevin Owens has posted the past couple of months. He gets it. Each and every wrestler gave it their all at WrestleMania. They did their best. Edge clearly had other images in his head when he decided to return to the ring after a nine year absence. Drew McIntyre finally achieving his dream was supposed to be in a huge Tampa Bay stadium, not an empty warehouse. Many staff lost their jobs, and WWE has to just put their heads down and keep moving forward. Nobody wanted this, but they’re doing their best out there. Let’s try to remember that.
Thanks for reading. If you want to reach me on Twitter, follow me at @JustinWatry – I am usually active and will happily reply to tweets. Feel free to send me column ideas, feedback, or whatever. I am writing this for all of you. Have a good week everybody.