WWE | Pro Wrestling

The Curious Case of Drew McIntyre

Drew McIntyre has been wrestling professionally since his teens. He wrestled for some of the more well known promotions in the UK and Ireland; British Championship Wrestling (BCW); Irish Whip Wrestling (IWW); and Insane Championship Wrestling (ICW) to name a few; and has held the top titles for all 3 of those promotions.

If you watch some of his matches from this time you can see what he is capable of when he’s at full swing. His promos show him in his character of Thee Drew Galloway as a brash young man; with a lot of confidence; a bit of arrogance; who was underneath it a coward – as all good heel personas are. You can also see how he improves both physically from somewhat scrawny teenager to a well built…ok…built like a brick shithouse young man; and a ring psychology that would belie his age.

After years working in the Indies in the UK; and Ireland…and wherever else he went he gets hired by WWE (along with Sheamus & Wade Barrett) this is 2006-2007; he makes a brief appearance on SmackDown & RAW as a babyface in a Kilt; and then is sent to development to learn the WWE way; first at Ohio Valley Wrestling (OVW) and then to Florida Championship Wrestling (FCW); again where he held the top title; and the tag team title. 2 Years or so on in 2009 he re-debuts as a heel…The Chosen One; A Future World Champion. This is where his troubles start.

I have no doubt that the first exposure to the crowds of the WWE Universe; the ring which is considerably larger than the ones he was use to; watching those Indy matches of his early career reveal smaller rings…and much smaller crowds. I would say the big stage of WWE came as a shock to the Scotsman. His being sent down to the ‘minors’ if you will to refine his style aka learn how to wrestle the WWE way might have been seen as a blow to him; he can be forgiven of that; he was still only in his very early twenties.

The Chosen One wasn’t a bad gimmick…wasn’t even the wrong gimmick…but it was the wrong time.

To his credit he played the role well; the walk that was almost a saunter when his entrance music hit; the sly grin that morphed into obvious distain. The confidence & arrogance that was carried over from his gimmick back home. The thing is; unless you followed the UK promotions; watched the tapings from OVW and FCW or caught him during his first run on the Main Roster (and remembered him) you would not have a bloody clue who Drew McIntyre actually was. How was the Wrestling Fan Base (WWE Universe) supposed to buy that this guy was THE CHOSEN ONE when he hadn’t proven himself in the WWE ring yet? Had they given him a different tag line…the actual persona he was embodying would have worked; there is always that egotistical; smarmy; so slick he could slide uphill Heel; Scott Hall did it with Razor Ramon; and Rick Rude parlayed the same.

He cut promos until his debut like most new wrestlers do. Was given a well seasoned and solid in ring performer (R-Truth) to start him off; then progressed to have matches against some of the top names in WWE including the Deadman himself; by all intents and purposes he should have done well.

Except…

The Chosen One…A Future WWE Champion…hand selected by Vince McMahon.

Drew McIntyre was only 24 years old when he got saddled with that. Sure at 24 he was a ring veteran of 5+ years if you go by dates online; but when you are given hype like that; by the man who basically made WWE what it is today; you are expected to be lightening in a bottle; and McIntyre tried, he really did. The ‘tools’ in his tool belt are impressive; based on the viciousness of the execution; his size a deception of an agility normally found in a smaller competitor.  Both a brawler and technical wrestler has put McIntyre in the unique position to face just about any competitor, his habit of using the ring to his advantage also made him interesting to watch; and something of a pain in the ass to his opponents.

It’s now 2014; both the tools and the ring-as-a-tag-team-partner seem to have been put back in their respective boxes. Since mid-2011 we have watched a downward spiral of McIntyre’s place on the WWE card from high mid-card title holder to being a part of a low-card comedy troop; and not even the center of it; but one of the supporting characters. The Chosen One gimmick was scrapped around the same time in mid-2011; he was called the Great American Nightmare at one point; a truly awful moniker to be sure; and mercifully for all it was short lived; after this he was dumped into 3MB and that seemed to go well; until they were routinely booked to lose.

It brings us back to that same nagging question…What Exactly Happened?

Was he over pushed before he really deserved it? Maybe; but a lot of the new comers from NXT are currently getting the same treatment or else getting buried completely because the brass have lost interest or because the fans aren’t falling over themselves for the gimmick itself. Again it comes back the THE CHOSEN ONE Tag line. Had it been any other moniker and well; no one would have batted an eye at his push.

Did that regrettable incident (and the aftermath) with his now ex-wife play a part in his decent?  Probably, as much as we’d like to think it shouldn’t have; it did.

Then we have the social media aspect; as we all know the WWE superstars and on-screen people are all on twitter; continuing a ‘Work’ or doing a ‘Work Shoot’; communicating with one another and the occasional fan here and there. It’s become so that it’s been incorporated into TV storylines. This would be a very large indicator that the brass of WWE is monitoring Twitter; both the fans…and their superstars. While McIntyre can be poetic at times in his posts; and he’s allowed fans access into some more private parts of his life then he had any reason to; he’s also been a bit questionable. When you work for something as big as WWE; the one thing you can never forget is this: You are repping 24/7 and this extends to what your family; friends and associates include you in; whether it be at an event; at a WWE hotel or online; whether it’s right or not; whether you like it or not. He’s not the only one that’s made this blunder; not by a long shot; but he is low enough on the card to pay for it.

This all makes for a very strong argument of the following.

Drew McIntyre was never really cut out for the WWE.  It isn’t his in-ring skills; McIntyre is no slouch in the ring; and can make a lot of his opponents look good. Wasn’t his mic work; all promos are scripted in the WWE; we all know they are; and a bad script is a bad script (even Cena’s had some really lame ass promos); and it isn’t his look; he’s still built like a brick shithouse. The WWE just wasn’t the right stage for him; he’s not a PG wrestler; probably never will be either.  The WWE is the brass ring for a lot of the pro-wrestlers out there; sure it’s the biggest promotion – and let’s all remember at its heart it’s still just a wrestling promotion and smaller promotions were on TV long before RAW was ever on the airways – but it’s not the only promotion. Leaving one company isn’t the end of a career; it’s just the end of a job with a company in your chosen field.

So now what? McIntyre is at a crossroads many have found themselves at during one point in their lives (three in mine). Will we watch a talented young man sink into a pit of bitter resentment fuelled by drink and what might have been? Will we see him change course and do something new for a while? Or will we see a return of that brash young man – who was so entertaining and hard working – that tore it up in the UK and Irish Independents not so long ago? Freed from the bindings that is the WWE; its 5 Moves of Doom; its policies and favourtism. In the long run; being released from WWE might be the best thing to ever happen to Drew McIntyre.

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