The glory days of professional wrestling are what many traditional fans still long for. While one could call the current product an evolution of a sort, the stronger consensus with many old school fans is that the product has stripped away the essence of hero vs. villain, good vs. evil, and larger-than-life characters. In turn, this takes away the excitement for many spectators, leaving many empty by the conclusion of a feud, a title change, or even the build-up to a match. On the go-home episode of Raw, the ending of the show showed clearly what the product has been missing for quite some time.
Already scheduled to appear, Bill Goldberg did one final hype for his appearance in the Royal Rumble, reiterating his quest to become WWE Universal Champion. During his promo, Paul Heyman appeared to hype Brock Lesnar’s appearance in the match. Surprisingly, Lesnar was at the Quicken Loans arena in Cleveland, Ohio. Heyman has faked a Lesnar appearance before, but this time, it was real. The crowd erupted at the thought of an altercation between the arch enemies Goldberg and Lesnar.
When Lesnar walked around the ring and eventually went inside to face off with Goldberg, the lights turned off, followed by the Undertaker’s music. The Cleveland crowd erupted to an even greater degree when the three giants stood in the ring. Not only did this leave a cliffhanger that prompted excitement for the Royal Rumble, but it also gave possible implications for WrestleMania 33. Moreover, it gave the crowd the feeling of a fan and created one of the best moments in Raw history due to the larger-than-life feel.
One wrestler who is highly disappointed in WWE not being able to create moments like that on a consistent basis is former ECW Champion, WWE Intercontinental Champion, and WCW United States Champion Shane Douglas.
Speaking to the Pancakes and Powerslams Show about his upcoming wrestling promotion, which he said will be good compared to the WWE’s “garbage,” Douglas gave some key areas of why the current product is not the same as the glory days of the WWE.
One of the major areas is territories.
“[Not having territories] has been disastrous to the industry. Where do you learn your craft? What comes first, the chicken or the egg? How do you get a job with the main company if you can’t get experience, [and] how do your get experience if you can’t get a job with the main company? And there’s no small companies to train them. Vince is now reaping the reward of what he sowed. He’s got no place to teach the kids, no place for the kids to learn their craft, and so you end up where you have to have an agent tell the kids what moves to do, [and] how much time they have to do it, read a teleprompter. I never did any of those things. No agent told me what to do or what not to do.”
The other is how WWE writes their promos out for the wrestlers to memorize and recite, taking away the genuineness of a character.
“I knew my character. These kids don’t know their character. It’s a script to them, they read off a page. I never did any of that.”
As seen on Raw, Goldberg flubbed his lines when the Cleveland crowd chanted his name, and he was having a hard time saying the “WWE Universal Championship.” Not having to experience this during his days of WCW, the memorization of lines is something that could be a challenge for him, just like other part-time stars. Bret Hart further brought this to light during an interview with Forbes, stating that WWE would give him pages of script to memorize with only a few hours to do it, and then perhaps change the entire script just moments before the show.
[Featured Image By WWE]