It has been over a week since the Pittsburgh fans commandeered the WWE Royal Rumble 2014 with boos and chants. Stone Cold Steve Austin is just one of many who has a take on the evening and offered his two cents in a recent podcast.
[adinserter block=”1″]The 2014 Royal Rumble may go down as one of the strangest pay-per-view events in recent memory. Not since the Chicago crowd took over at Money in the Bank 2011 do I remember a crowd becoming the story of a show. This crowd in Pittsburgh wanted one thing and that was Daniel Bryan. Anyone or anything else wasn’t going to cut it including the WWE world title match.
Steve Austin offered his unique perspective on the situation during a recent podcast. Austin talked about the reaction Randy Orton vs. John Cena received, a reaction Austin probably hasn’t heard since his infamous Bash 1991 Scaffold Match. Austin offered his thoughts on what it was probably like for Cena and Orton to hear those cat calls in the middle of a live wrestling match.
“I don’t know if they even had them. I think that was a match that people had seen so many times, that they weren’t too interested in seeing it again. And I say that with all due respect to Randy Orton and John Cena, who I have the utmost respect for as guys in the squared circle.
“I think specifically, it was the Daniel Bryan situation. They weren’t happy with what they’d seen thus far, and they weren’t too interested in that match.”
“When all of a sudden, they start cat-calling and talking about this guy, and making chants about another guy, it totally puts a roadblock as far as the flow of your match. And I think [Cena and Orton] did the best they could do by just sticking to the task at hand and working their match. But certainly, you feel it inside your guts when that crowd is not with you.
“I also think maybe a jumpstart to that match might have facilitated a little bit hotter reaction by the crowd.”
If you have ever listened to Austin talk about the mechanics of being a pro wrestler one thing you’ll know is that Austin is a “feel the crowd” kind of guy. Austin has said many times that he would work a match based on the reactions of the crowd. He’d pick it up if the crowd was falling and he’d slow it down when he had them in the palm of his hands. Austin has criticized the scripting of the current WWE product several times and I think that is where he is going here.
Austin makes a great point. Orton, Cena, and the agents knew the situation well before the bell rang. This crowd made no bones about who they were there to see and who they weren’t there to see. Orton and Cena obviously had a match laid out ahead of time which didn’t take the crowd into account. Maybe if they deviated and gave the fans a hotter open they could have won them over? I think this gives us all a little insight on why there hasn’t been a guy like Austin to come down the road in a long time.
Austin is echoing one of the biggest criticisms of the Cena-Orton feud. The biggest criticism I have heard is that fans are upset because they have seen the match a million times. I take issue with this criticism only because this is a feud that hasn’t taken place in over five years. That is a long time in my mind and plenty of time to reignite the spark. The biggest issue in my mind is the lazy creative. It appears to me that creative felt that the “star power” should be enough to carry the feud instead of giving these guys a real issue. I don’t think this feud would have been rejected nearly as bad if they gave them an issue fans can sink their teeth into.
[adinserter block=”2″]Unfortunately for Stone Cold and most fans this feud isn’t going away. They will be wrestling on RAW next week and part of the Elimination Chamber match. I think the lack of creativity both in the match and lack of issue is to blame here. Regardless, the fans and Stone Cold have spoken and it’s time for someone to start listening.
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