Hardcore wrestling fans know that there is an unpublished list of banned words in WWE — but one no longer appears on it. Paul Heyman is a well-respected voice in the company, and it is evident that his influence is growing. The word “wrestling” has not been allowed for a long time, but it is making its way back into the vocabulary of both announcers and superstars.
For decades, WWE has not used the word “wrestling” to refer to its product, instead using the phrase “sports entertainment.” The performers have long been referred to as “superstars” instead of “wrestlers,” despite what they actually do in the ring.
However, over the last month, “wrestling” has been thrown around a lot in the feud between Randy Orton and Edge. The two superstars battled in a brawl of a match at WrestleMania 36, but the feud is continuing, and they’ll face off again at Backlash.
According to The Wrestling Observer Newsletter, by way of Sportskeeda, the term “wrestling” has finally found its way off of Vince McMahon’s banned list. It is being used much more across all brands, and the credit goes to Heyman, who is the executive director of Monday Night Raw.
Heyman used the word on the air recently, but he had to push to make it happen. After finally granting him the approval to say “wrestling,” WWE has moved ahead with allowing others to use it quite often.
Dave Meltzer of Wrestling Observer stated that McMahon used to hate the word, which is why it was banned. Now, that is no longer the case, and his stance on the word has eased. Heyman’s position and his love of the word “wrestling” went a long way in helping the word come off of WWE’s banned list.
WWE has been promoting the upcoming Backlash match as “The Greatest Wrestling Match Ever.” There have not been any specific rules or regulations placed on it as of this time.
Last year, WWE lifted its ban on the word “belts” when referring to championships and titles. Becky Lynch’s victory at WrestleMania 35 had her holding both the Raw and SmackDown Women’s Championship at the same time, and it led to her nickname of “Becky Two-Belts.”
Since their Last Man Standing Match last month, Edge and Orton’s next bout is going in a completely different direction. After the whole coronavirus pandemic, it appears as if some of the old-school rules of WWE may be doing the same thing.