Professional wrestling has a knack for utilizing the creative and running with it. There are too many examples to list that would fit that description, so let’s focus on the primary ideas that helped the WWE get where they are today. First and foremost, WrestleMania may be the most popular. Vince McMahon had a vision for WWE’s equivalent to the Super Bowl, and capitalized with the Grandest Stage of Them All. WrestleMania is still the biggest night in wrestling after 33 years.
The Royal Rumble, which is only six nights away from January 23, could act as the most exciting match in WWE history. 30 men enter from staggered starts to hopefully become victorious and take on the WWE champion in the main event of WrestleMania. It has launched careers, helped others and solidified legacies. Lastly, Survivor Series is also near that realm of excellence. The traditional 5-on-5 match was a staple of programming for many years.
While the WWE was putting on great matches with new techniques each year, World Championship Wrestling was doing good things themselves. For a moment, WCW was able to defeat the WWE in the ratings and make them a national powerhouse. There were several neat ideas that Vince Russo and others put on television, but nothing could have brought more attention to one match than War Games. Its unique aesthetic look was just the beginning of this match type.
War Games was a match with two steel cages next to each other. It began in the National Wrestling Alliance, but WCW took it and added variations to it. Ted Turner’s promotion converted it into a 3-team, 9-man competition between two cages with pinfalls allowed. There were multiple great moments, which is why wrestling fans wondered why it just went away. Bruce Prichard, a former-WWE employee, talked about why War Games never made its way to the WWE.
“[McMahon] hates the double ring. He hates the double ring thing. I tried to sell the two-ring battle royal for years. He hated the double ring thing. He didn’t like the guys going in at intermittent times and the way it was always done with the heels having the favor of the babyfaces, but then you fast forward to Elimination Chamber. It was just one of those things. It was a WCW creation and he didn’t care for it.”
In a recent report by the Inquisitr, there was a rumor War Games was going to come to the WWE for the first time. That was right after WrestleMania 32, but clearly, plans changed and McMahon altered his opinion on the unique match type. Rumors back in April of 2016 said they were discussing of using it for SummerSlam or Survivor Series of last year. With enough big players, it would’ve worked quite nicely. Even the WWE Draft had the advantage of using War Games for really interesting programming.
WWE has its work cut out for them during the months of January through April. The Royal Rumble begins the Road to WrestleMania, which causes widespread nervousness among the WWE Universe. Whoever wins the Royal Rumble is nearly guaranteed to have a huge role at WrestleMania.
There won’t be any huge gimmick matches, like War Games, but McMahon usually knows what will and won’t work in the WWE. Forbes recently published an article with the five best choices to win the 2017 WWE Royal Rumble. Do you agree with those five, or have ideas of your own? Unlike most years, anything can happen on January 29. WWE fans will have an idea of who will come out on top, but 2017 is a weird year already in the WWE.
[Featured Image by WCW]