I’ve got some Bad News. He’s going to be pushed…

Of of a cliff.

So you've seen burials, de-pushes, and anti-pushes over the years; does anything compare with the sheer alternate reality nature of Barrett's current state? Vince has humiliated guys in the past, but usually they are:

A) Black
B) Not a home made product or from NWA
C) fat and ugly
D) have heat backstage
E) Are getting over in the wrong way (as in, over but not like we planned)

So you have a specimen looking guy who keeps getting over with the gimmicks the company gives him, is a homegrown talent with little to no heat backstage…..and then this happens.

Is there logic to this? Is it cause he's foreign? I don't…whuh?

You could say he's BAD LUCK Barrett, I guess.  
I really don't get it either.  They gave him the Bad News gimmick and then took it away from him because it was getting over.  Not "despite" it getting over, mind you, BECAUSE it was getting over and they didn't want people chanting along with his catchphrase.  They've repackaged him a million times already and every time something catches traction, they repackage him again as something else.  I really don't get it either.  
Hope that helped!

Owens Going Forward

Hi, Scott.  Hope you've recovered from Victoria Day.

1- Do you think this is Owens' full-time call-up to the main roster, or was it more to promote the NXT special?

2- What do you do with the NXT title, especially with Zayn (somewhat?) injured?  Not sure it would be good to have Owens lose heading into his match with Cena at Elimination Chamber, but I don't really like an anticlimactic title change either (even if walking away to bigger/better things makes sense for his character).

3- What do you do at Elimination Chamber?  The point of Cena's reign is to put someone over big, but going from Cena/Bryan as midlevel champs to Owens/Neville (there needs to be at least one babyface champ, right?) is quite a drop in terms of prestige/name recognition.  What would Cena be doing at Summerslam?

4- How will Owens' style affect/be affected by Brock returning at Summerslam?  Will he somewhat pale in comparison to Lesnar, or would Owens' physical style make Brock feel a little less special?

1.  Pretty sure this is just a one-off deal.  They're actually making money (or losing less money) touring with Owens on top of NXT right now and they'd be dumb to end it now.  
2.  If they can pull it off, I'd have Zayn win the NXT title with help from Cena to pay off a couple of threads there, then Owens wins the US title at Elimination Chamber and drops it back at MITB.  I think Owens would probably turn babyface off that because the Full Sail crowd has been dying to turn him for weeks anyway.  Then Cena can go back to doing whatever he was going to be doing at Summerslam.  
3.  See #2.  
4.  He'd be back on NXT by Summerslam anyway under my master plan.  So it's a moo point.  

So what is actually going wrong ?

Hey Scott,

Longtime fan boa bla. I’m listening to JR and Keller review Survivor Series. So much of what they are saying about booking in the company makes so much sense and I just get really confused as to how it doesn’t translate onto TV. Sure these crappy soap writers know nothing about booking and only coming up with subpar tropes we’d see on The CW but if Vince is the be all and end all and rewrites and has final say then why isn’t it the TV better ? Surely Vince knows basic booking 101 from his many many years in the business and the success he has had and I could possibly say the same for HHH coming from the background of being a worker himself. So if Vince and Hunter are the two making the final decisions then why is everything so crappy ?

Has Vince completely lost his mojo and HHH doesn’t have enough influence to get sensible booking by him or are they both just too blinded by the whole PG, corporate, public company landscape they are in that they aren’t willing to try any formulas that have worked so well in the past i.e continuity of storyline, making people actually give a shit about titles and mid card talent as opposed to just Cena, Orton and I’m assuming Reigns once he’s shoved down our throat.


Basically Vince should watch NXT Takeover and do everything like THAT instead of how he's been doing it.  Clearly if Vince oversees the main product and it's so shitty, whereas HHH oversees NXT and it's awesome, then we can tell where the fundamental problem lies.  Last night's show addressed all of your complaints and showed exactly how RAW should have been treated all year.

What’s going on with Cesaro?

I'm really having a hard time wrapping my head around Cesaro's direction – not that it's all bad, just confusing.

He has a babyface moveset and tends to win matches cleanly, but he's aligned with uber-heel Heyman and frequently exits the ring during his matches in a cowardly, heelish fashion. He wrestles faces, but does not cheat. Also, his new theme music has been universally disliked, yet he's now had it for four weeks, I believe.

I fear for him a little, since the fans are quieter during his matches now, because understandably, THEY DON'T KNOW HOW TO RESPOND. Maybe I'm just having a hard time plugging into this enlightened "no heels, no faces, only still heels and faces" era. Any idea what the story is, here?

I don't know either.   My main thought coming off of the initial turn was that it didn't matter if he was heel or face as much as it mattered that he was elevated, but he's been stuck with Swagger since Wrestlemania.  Maybe they're building to him getting tired of Heyman's Brock speeches and turning for that match, but honestly that would be a waste of both guys.  You're right though, I definitely get the feeling there is no endgame here.   

Bobby Fulton of the Fantastics is going blind and needs some help.

Hi Scott,
I came across this on Bobby Fulton earlier today accidentally. It doesn't seems to be getting much press. I thought I would pass it along to you.
Here is the link:
Thank you and keep up the great work on the Blog. It's a daily visit for me.

Yeah, I had read about it before, and it's a real sad thing.  Hope this helps him out.  

QOTD 23: I’m going to kick your ass…At Nintendo!

Howdy Otters (BTW the Blog Otters “crew” for GTA: Online is in the works), but for now lets talk about things we’re good at.


What is something you are certain you’re better at than ‘most’ people? 

I’m not a super confident fellah, but I do think I have some skills to pay the bills regarding silly things like Madden Football and general trivia games like You Don’t Know Jack. I’m also hyper competitive about these as well – if someone thinks they’re better then me, I make a point to prove they’re not.

Gamertag: NotMeekin by the by.

How far do you see these talents going?

I thought this would be neat for you to do. I'll provide a list of current WWE wrestlers and you tell us how far you see them going. Your choices are either 1. Hall of Famer, 2. WWE Champion, 3. World Heavyweight Champion, 4. Midcarder for life, or 5. BUST!
Daniel Bryan –

WWE champion by Summerslam, probably Hall of Famer.  
Antonio Cesaro – 

World champion, eventually.  
Dean Ambrose – 

Hall of Famer.  
Roman Reigns –

WWE champion.  He's gonna be big, but not much past a quick reign.
Seth Rollins –

Probably midcarder, maybe with a quick reign as World champ.  
Bray Wyatt – 

Hard to call.  Probably won't be a singles champion, so midcarder.
Kassius Ohno – 

BUST.  He's gonna get frustrated and leave.
Big E. Langston – 

Bo Dallas –

Curtis Axel –

Midcarder.  They've already given up on the main event push.  
Adrian Neville (PAC) – 

Never seen him yet.
Fandango –

Thanks and keep up the stellar work!

Going for the hatrick with Randy Orton

Hey, speaking of Jesse…. > Since you have two people writing in about Randy Orton, might as well give you a lucky number three on the subject in terms of a third email on him.
> Any reason why the WWE refuses to turn Randy Orton heel? With the ascension of Punk, the WWE has been struggling with the need to find heels and let alone those who are big enough to be credible threats. And as it has been said, Orton seems to know that his days as the top face is over what with him wanting to go heel.
> This is most notable when you consider that Sheamus has effectively upstaged Orton as a top face on Smackdown and the fact that Orton would have been tailor made for a rival for Punk during his time as a good guy world champion, far better than Jericho in terms of a filler feud during the first half of 2012.
> Does Vince fear that turning Orton heel might hurt his merch sales? Or is it more or less him being contrary simply for the sake of being contrary, especially since Orton himself has requested a return to the dark side for his character?
> Jesse He just turned on Smackdown, didn't he? Unless he was possessed by Dr. Octopus.

Since they’re going to beat gimmick PPVs into the ground anyway…

Why not a tag-team tournament every year?  It puts the spotlight back on the tag titles and existing tag teams, and it also gives the writers lots of opportunities for wacky combinations where it actually has some consequence beyond a Raw or Smackdown match.  Plenty of possibilities there.  Maybe one guy in an established team decides to screw his partner and find a new one.  Maybe there's a superstar nobody wants to team up with because he's a jerk.  Maybe you do randomly selected teams to fill a couple of spots.  It just seems more interesting than another PPV full of rehashed stuff from the last three weeks of TV.

I would lose my shit if they ever brought back the Jim Crockett Sr. Memorial Cup Tag Team Tournament, but I honestly don't think they'd have enough teams to fill out the field unless they used thrown-together singles guys.  But holy shit, could you imagine a tournament with this field with say the winner declared tag champions, thus forcing Hell No to defend three times potentially:

1.  Daniel Bryan & Kane v. Kassius Ohno & Antonio Cesaro (or Wade Barrett & Cesaro as the European Invasion)
2.  Rey Mysterio & Sin Cara v. The Primetime Players
3.  Cody Rhodes & Damien Sandow v. The Usos
4.  John Cena & The Rock v. Dolph Ziggler & Big E Langston
5.  CM Punk & Brock Lesnar v. Alberto Del Rio & Ricardo Rodriguez
6.  Seth Rollins & Dean Ambrose v. Sheamus & Ryback
7.  Randy Orton & HHH v. Primo & Epico
8.  Big Show & Mark Henry v. Kofi Kingston & R-Truth
Just for fun, let's see how we could do this:
Ohno & Cesaro v. Mysterio & Sin Cara (Kane and Bryan break up to give the Kings the match)
Rhodes Scholars v. Cena & The Rock (seems like the likeliest pairing)
Heyman Guys v. The Shield (Brock hitting an F5 on poor Ricardo to advance?  EPIC.  Ryback would walk out on Sheamus to put the Shield through)  
Evolution v. Show/Henry 
Ohno & Cesaro v. Cena & The Rock (again, seems like the likely pairing based on heel-face alignment and star power)
The Shield v. Evolution (I was torn here but I think they'd do an angle where Brock apparently opts out of the tournament after one match because his contract doesn't stipulate working more than once, leaving Punk to get beat 3-on-1.)
Finals:  Cena & The Rock v. The Shield  (Team Crock continues their steamroll into the finals, while Brock returns for a brawl with HHH, sending the Shield onwards)
Winners and tag champions:  The Shield  (This way they get a big rub from beating the biggest stars and don't have to get beaten yet.)  
But hey, as I always say, tournaments are awesome.

WWE Network Going To Happen?


I'm not sure if the story is behind the paid firewall or not, so here's the quick version:  DirectTV is interested in actually carrying the WWE Network, on the condition that they air 11 of the 12 PPVs per year.  Price point would be somewhere beween $13 and $25 a month.  Otherwise content will be repeat showings of the TV shows, plus the same stuff that's currently on Classics On Demand except not, you know, on demand.  
Obviously it would be a big deal to actually get this monstrosity on the air, but destroying their own PPV business to do so?  I dunno, man.  Even though TV rights fees have seemingly become the basis of their revenue now, UFC is still doing 700,000 buys for a good show even with their ridiculously oversaturated market so throwing away what is still a gigantic money stream like that just seems like a bad idea.  
Still, even if it's a giant flop that destroys their business after launching more than a year after their heavily advertised launch date, at least they would have gotten it on the air, and that's the important thing!

Brock going over

Gotta disagree with ya Scott, Brock will go over at Summerslam no doubt in my mind. Unless Vince brought him back just to job to his top guys, it makes no sense for HHH to go over. The scenerio I see is Big Johnny coming back at SS and helping Brock win and after the match they beat the holy hell out of Vince and HHH. The story could be that after Johnny got fired, he got in Brock's ear and talked him into coming back to get his revenge on Vince and HHH. Your thoughts? EM

You say "Unless Vince brought him back just to job to his top guys" like it's some kind of ridiculous notion.  Vince brought him back just to job to his top guys, I think it's pretty obvious now.  

Going public

———- Forwarded message ———-
From: "Samuel Hough" Scott,
         How much of the WWE's problems stem from being a publicly traded company? I know that there are some posters (flair4dagold jumps to mind) with more knowledge of business than I but it seems like some of the stagnation stems from that. The WWE is still turning a profit (?) and in a distressed economy I assume that's enough to keep them from taking chances. My thinking is that before it was only the McMahon family that the WWE had to answer to, now there are shareholders. Any truth to this? ————————— I never thought anyone thought otherwise, in fact.  Obviously it's 100% the reason for the state of affairs today. 

Going Out With A Whimper

Hi Scott
There’s been lots of talk on the blog recently about how thin the WWE roster is  with the exodus of top talent in the past few years.
Occurred to me that the problem isn’t so much the high turnover of stars at the top, that’s happened before at the end of the Rock n Wrestling, New Generation and Attitude eras.
The issue is more how many of the WWE’s headliners of the past 5 years have left without putting over any new stars on the way out.
HBK – Retired by the UndertakerFlair – Retired by HBKBatista – Quit following loss to CenaRVD – Lost to Orton in a Stretcher MatchJBL – Quit after losing to MysterioVince McMahon – Fired by HHH, lost last match to Bret HartJericho – Left 1st time following loss to Cena, left second time following loss to Orton
In all these guys leaving the WWE the wrestlers who got the rub on the way out were Cena, Orton, Mysterio, HHH, HBK and The Undertaker.  All of them multi-time world champs by that point anyway.
On top of that you’ve got the ones that left due to unforeseen circumstances 
Angle – Left due to Wellness issues (last televised match a no contest against Sabu)Edge – Retired as Champion defeating Del Rio in last matchBobby Lashley – Quit while injured to pursue MMAUmaga – Fired due to Wellness issues
Plus you’ve got the Benoit and Guerrero tragedies.
Then you’ve got HHH and Undertaker who are semi-retired. I don’t think HHH has put over a new main eventer since Jeff Hardy and honestly cannot remember the last time Undertaker lost to someone who wasn’t already a bona fide main eventer.
In fact in all this Jeff Hardy is probably the closest they’ve come to someone going out on their back, but then I really don’t think they planned for him to go out to Punk like he did and it’s not like they made anything of it.
Isn’t this the root cause of the lack of elevation?  Punk, Bryan, Barrett, Rhodes Sheamus, Ziggler etc are all trying to make each other. Nobody from the previous generation (except maybe Booker?) is giving them a leg up.
What do you think?

I absolutely agree.  Not to mention that WWF treats the previous generation like a bunch of clowns who we’re supposed to mock as entertainment, so if they do bring in a “Legend” to give someone a rub it never works anyway.  So you’ve got Dolph Ziggler out there paying tribute to Curt Hennig every night, but Hennig isn’t on the current politically approved list of people who we’re allowed to remember respectfully, so they never bring it up.  And now the guys they’ve got get beat all the time, so beating them means nothing.