Hustle Is Posting Right Now - Daniel Bryan's Excellent Adventure (Part Two - A Letter To You)
Jul 29, 2013 - 7:20:19 AM
"Gonna write you a letter.."
Dear Internet Wrestling Community,
This is our chance.
This is our fucking chance.
We have been given an opportunity.. by Vince McMahon himself, of all people.. to put our money where our mouths and our fingers are, so to speak.
With John Cena defending the WWE Title against Daniel Bryan in the main event of SummerSlam, it's like we've been presented with the perfect storm of things to get behind. We have the champion, who is the corporate-chosen entity that many, many hardcore fans have turned their backs on through the years. We have the challenger, who is the "internet darling" and portrays one of the best "underdog" stories that professional wrestling has ever seen, and who has gone from being a favorite of internet fans to being a favorite of everyone. We have a time where the summer is coming to an end, which means the National Football League is on the verge of returning, and when it does, that takes a chunk out of Raw's ratings every Monday night, as well as a piece of pay-per-view buyrates on Sunday nights. We have an era in wrestling where the "little man" is becoming a more important player, and that it isn't always a "big man's sport" anymore.
On August 18th, we, the internet fans, have the aforementioned opportunity to do something special. We're known for illegally "acquiring" pay-per-views and watching them for free, but now, we can open the eyes of people like Vince McMahon, Triple H, and anyone else in a position of power within the WWE infrastructure. If there's a buyrate spike for SummerSlam, WWE management will take notice. They will see it.
Obviously, the buyrate number won't affect the outcome of the match, since that will go down long before the company finds out how many people ordered the show, but it can, and most likely will, affect the way the company moves forward after SummerSlam. Let's look at some examples..
- Let's say that SummerSlam ends with Daniel Bryan as the new WWE Champion, and let's say that the SummerSlam buyrate ends up being low. You can pretty much bet your life, at that point, that Bryan's title reign won't last very long. Expect him to drop the title back to Cena, or to have Orton cash-in his Money In The Bank title shot right away, depending on what Orton does at SummerSlam. Vince will see the buyrate as the casual fan not seeing Daniel Bryan as a serious main event name, and he'll probably go right back to being a midcard guy, or even back into the tag team world.
- Let's say that SummerSlam ends with Daniel Bryan as the new WWE Champion, and let's say that the SummerSlam buyrate ends up being high. Bryan won't get all of the credit, because that isn't how things work, especially with Brock Lesnar being on the card, but people like Vince will be more than willing to continue giving Bryan a chance. The company will try to build around their new champion, and while it certainly isn't going to be expected that Bryan will receive an epic CM Punk-like reign, you have to assume that the company will, at the very least, wait to see if Bryan can continue building momentum before taking the title off of him.
- Let's say that either John Cena or Randy Orton leaves SummerSlam as the WWE Champion. At that point, it really doesn't matter what the buyrate is, does it? Cena is consistent in the main event scene, and so is Orton. As the "no0b" of the bunch, Bryan has the pressure on him to "move the meter", if you will. If new fans are going to spend their money on the pay-per-view, it's to see something (or someone, in this case) different. If old fans stop spending their money, it's because they don't necessarily want to see something (or someone, in this case) different. If Bryan doesn't win the title at SummerSlam, or if he wins it and loses it to Orton right away, and the pay-per-view buyrate is low, don't look for Bryan to get another chance at being the guy anytime soon.
If you're a fan of Daniel Bryan, or if you're an anti-John Cena guy, your time is coming. Put your money down and order SummerSlam. Don't stream it and watch it that way. Don't wait until the event is over and torrent it to watch it that way. Order the pay-per-view. Watch it live. Watch it legally. Make a statement that you support change. Make a statement that you support Daniel Bryan (or, alternatively, you support John Cena losing the WWE Title).
Now.. in the interest of fairness.. I have to look at the other side of things.
If you're someone who doesn't normally spend your money on WWE pay-per-views, but decide to do so for SummerSlam, a level of pressure falls upon you, too. You can't just buy SummerSlam and then nothing else, can you? You'd almost have to continue supporting the company if Bryan is to remain a top-tier guy. Maybe it's buying more pay-per-views. Maybe it's buying Daniel Bryan merchandise. Maybe it's deciding to attend WWE events that are in your general vicinity, whereas before you would pass on the chance unless something really excited you. I understand that not every wrestling fan can make that kind of financial commitment, spending what could end up being over $1000 in the next several months, but there are ways around it. Have pay-per-view parties with friends and family, where multiple people chip in to order an event. Don't go overboard with it, though. Don't pack 30 people into each event. Sure, that will make the amount of money each person spends to order the pay-per-view really low, but at the same time, that's several potential buys that are wasted. You'd be better off taking that "30 people buy one pay-per-view" idea and split that up into ten groups of three so that ten pay-per-views are ordered. Just an idea.
We're just under three weeks until SummerSlam, ladies and gentlemen. We can make our mark, and we should be doing whatever it takes to make that mark. The man needs our support. We may not get another chance to do this. Let's do this. Who's with me?
Admiral Of The Fleet Sir Randolph Mortimer Ashby Crawford Hustlington IV, Esq. D.D.S.
Writer's Note: This is the second column in the "Daniel Bryan's Excellent Adventure" series. I can't give exact dates for the rest of the series, but look for them between now and SummerSlam.
Writer's Note, Part Deux: Don't forget to check out The Director's Cut on LoP Radio today at 4pm EST. If you're reading this after 4pm EST today, the show can still be listened to in the archives.
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