I recently got into a discussion with Brian Fritz on his Between the Ropes podcast about the state of the WWE. We both agreed that the company is not connecting with its fans right now. I went further to pontificate about the grand opportunity that has fallen into the laps and how the “smartest guys in the room” are letting it pass them by. Let me explain.
Guys like Brock Lesnar don’t come around every day. Take a look back at the glory years of the WWE and those years always featured a franchise guy on top. Bruno Sammartino, Hulk Hogan, Steve Austin, and The Rock were difference makers, all posing the intangibles that were lost on other guys with championship pushes. For the first time in over a decade, the WWE has that guy and aren’t capitalizing on the beast incarnate, Brock Lesnar.
Brock can’t do it himself. Hogan couldn’t, Austin couldn’t, Bruno couldn’t, and the Rock couldn’t take the company to new levels on their own. They all needed a supporting cast, a supporting cast featuring guys on the ascend, guys on the descend, and a solid card in the middle. Right now the WWE has none of the above.
The WWE is in some kind of a weird holding pattern right now. Nobody has been elevated to the next level. You can argue Roman Reigns but I could argue that they have done more tinkering to retard his progress than they have done to help. Seth Rollins and Dean Ambrose are bright stars but neither has been portrayed as guys ready to take it to the next level. After John Cena the company has nobody ready for Brock and that is just the cherry on this crap cake known as the current state of the WWE.
Brock is the perfect face of the company. He is recognizable, he is perceived like a superstar, he connects with hardcore and casual fans, and would probably be the number one draft pick in a fantasy pool to build around. Yet after Brock there is nothing left for those fans to stick around for. Brie vs. Nikki Bella? Monday’s RAW was a prime example of this, especially after seeing the ratings dip post-Cena vs. Brock segment.
Is it too late? It could be. Nobody is quite sure what the outcome of Lesnar’s match at Night of Champions will be. The door may close shut with double locks and no keys Sunday. Even if Lesnar retains, nothing I have seen lately gives me confidence that this company will take advantage of the opportunities that lay before them and that is greatly disappointing.
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