So back in the day ECW provided a great place for WCW and WWF midcarders to revitalize their careers before heading back into the bigtime. You had Austin and Foley as the most famous ones, but guys like Al Snow, Bam Bam Bigelow, Sid, Rick Rude were able to freshen up their characters and up their worth with runs in ECW.
So let's say ECW or a modern day equivalent— a hot promotion that fans cared about, and smart creative that could crate compelling characters/angles to get guys over—existed now. (And no, NXT won't work, because it's too small scale.) Who on the WWE roster could most benefit from a 6-month repackaging in ECW?
– Brodus Clay: Have him turn on Tensai and leave for ECW where he has a dominant run as a scary ass monster heel. Just suplexing motherfuckers through tables and looking pissed 24/7. (As an aside, I actually think they could make this work in WWE, with Brodus eventually turning heel and then getting Heyman as his mouthpiece.)
– Miz: I could see a heel Miz starting near riots in ECW arena doing a WWE shill invader act.
– Wade Barrett: Would get over as a bigtime heel or face in ECW if he just was able to act like a bad-ass and have some stiff epic brawls with the roster's tough guys.
– Cody Rhodes: Damn, now would be the PERFECT time for something like ECW to exist. A fired Cody goes to ECW, pisses on the WWE in promos, puts on some great matches, maybe wins their title. Would come back to WWE as 100x bigger star.
So what do you and the board think? Thanks!
Eh, to be brutally honest, most of the guys you've listed are severely damaged goods and not worth saving. Brodus Clay got completely exposed when he had to work longer than a minute and there's no point in rebuilding him when you've got a perfectly good monster in the wings like Alex Rusev of NXT. He's the guy who should be ripping shit up ala Taz, because you've got a blank slate to create whatever you want with him.
Anything that involves pushing Miz as this point is a waste of time. The window with him was open and then shut, barred, and the house demolished. He should stick with being WWE's media-friendly shill and stay away from the main shows.
Wade's fight club makeover was a perfect idea for him and I have no idea how they lost the thread on that one, but it would be great to go back to it and let him dominate in a smaller promotion, as noted. He could definitely develop into something with that main event brawling style, ala JBL.
I think Cody's capable of doing fine where he is, especially if the Rhodes v. McMahons thing works out as well as it looks like it might. Just as long as they don't bring in, like, the Nasty Boys and Shockmaster as backup or something.
What I really wish is that WWE would buy ROH, give it a decent budget, and then just leave it alone to develop talent for them. That way you could have a place for Ziggler to be a giant fish in a small pond, Cesaro to have great matches, etc. Kind of a stepping stone between NXT and RAW. You could use it to freshen up stale guys every few months and try out ideas that are too edgy for the PG shows. Plus then you'd have the tape library from ROH in exchange. It'd be win-win.