I recently started getting into some WCW 1989 content on the Network, and since I was born that year this is mostly new stuff to me outside of what I'd read in your rants years ago. I was struck by the singles push of Michael Hayes, where he went up against US Champion Lex Luger and actually won the belt thanks to help from Terry Gordy (after vowing to do it all by himself). He dropped the title back very quickly and then went back to doing the Freebird stuff with new Freebird Jimmy Garvin. The Freebirds act never did much for me (though I know they drew a ton of money) but I feel like the Hayes as a singles contender with Gordy as his 'heavy' might have had legs. He certainly wasn't Flair or anything in the ring but he had good personality, a solid look, and he sure could talk. Think they missed out on something there or do you think Hayes' was pretty much purely a tag guy?
I think as a US title guy with Gordy as his backup, he was fine. He even did good against Flair in a World title program. But long term, he was too inconsistent to be anything but a tag guy, especially with all his extracurricular activities. Flair might have been able to party all night and still carry guys to **** matches the next morning, but Hayes wasn't that guy.