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MR. TITO STRIKES BACK - Listing the Many POSITIVES that the WWE Provides Wrestling Fans
By Mr. Tito
Oct 14, 2017 - 11:26:22 PM

Follow Mr. Tito on Twitter.com: @titowrestling

Bookmark Mr. Tito's Column Archive to read the current and past columns.

Welcome back to the column that won't back down and always stands its ground... Mr. Tito STRIKES BACK exclusively here at LordsofPain.net / WrestlingHeadlines.com and has been since October 26th, 1998. That's right, 19 years of Mr. Tito is right around the corner. That column will feature chips, dip, chains, and whips! Or just my general "THANK YOU" column to my many great readers, many of which actually read my columns back during October 1998.

My mood is GREAT right now as I'm too busy celebrating the reunion of the Shield. It is nothing but WIN for everyone involved. Don't like Roman? Well, you've got Dean and Seth to root for... Don't like Dean or Seth? Well, you'll enjoy them with Roman. Etc. In my opinion, the Shield ranks up there with the BEST stables of all time. Certainly, the Horsemen, New World Order, Degeneration X, and the Corporation are at the top... But consider that Dean Ambrose, Roman Reigns, & Seth Rollins freakin' debuted as WWE rookies as the Shield and GOT OVER is remarkable. Those other stables were full of veteran wrestlers who worked for other major promotions. Ambrose, Rollins, and Reigns joined WWE's developmental system and debuted together as an unknown entity. They won fans over by simply having action packed 6 man matches combined with selling that they were an unknown entity by wearing all black and coming to the ring via the crowd.

It's easy to point out WWE's flaws these days with RAW now consistently being under 3 million for RAW, struggling to consistently get 2.5 million viewers for Smackdown, and thousands lost in live attendance... Then you the Jinder Mahal experiment actually causing the India WWE Network subscription numbers to decline. My job as a columnist is to provide my opinion and critique the WWE as much as I can without any bias. It's easy to point out issues with WWE Creative, Vince going senile, problems with developmental before Triple H took over, too much reliance on the OVW Class of 2002, Brock Lesnar being part-time, etc.

HOWEVER - Let's change it up... How about I list the POSITIVES of the WWE because there are many and often, critics take the WWE promotion for granted. I'll admit that I do...


POSITIVES of the WWE Right Now

- The Shield has reunited. My intro covered this. One of the best stables of all time has reunited and this time as babyfaces. The stable will make it more accepting of Roman Reigns in his mega push for 2018.

- WWE Network gives you at least 2 Pay Per View events per month to enjoy. Thanks to the brand extension, we're getting monthly Pay Per Views for each brand. When the WWE holds one of its "Big 4" events (Royal Rumble, Wrestlemania, SummerSlam, Survivor Series), we get NXT Takeover to continue the pattern of 2. For $9.99, you get at least TWO Pay Per Views a month of good wrestling. Don't like RAW or Smackdown television shows? Just watch the Pay Per Views and you'll be fine.

- WWE Network itself. LOADED. In addition to Pay Per Views, tons of content to enjoy past and present. Just $9.99.

- Brock Lesnar is having a great year. Goldberg, Samoa Joe, SummerSlam Fatal 4 Way, and Braun Strowman. I could easily argue that he's having his best year since rejoining the WWE during 2012. All of those matches were greatly anticipated and I'd argue Lesnar selling for each helped enhance those matches.

- Braun Strowman is legit. Despite the Lesnar loss, the WWE can at least hang their hat on a homegrown talent that no other promotion had maturing into a legitimate Main Event talent. He's a hoss, too, and has real untapped potential when the WWE flips him into a babyface. He has that "larger than life" quality to him and he keeps improving in the ring.

- Samoa Joe did well earlier this year. Sure, he's injured now... But he proved himself as being worthy of the WWE and drew great numbers in his feud with Brock Lesnar for the debuting "Great Balls of Fire" Pay Per View.

- Nia Jax is legit. She's AMAZING and feels like a bulldozer within the RAW Women's division. It's just a matter of time when she gets a valid Women's Title shot and then she'll keep that title for a long, long time. I'm legitimately excited to see any of her matches.

- Asuka is joining the main roster. Need someone to eventually challenge the unstoppable Nia Jax machine? Asuka has the strikes and submission holds to do it. Many are questioning why Emma is her first opponent... Well, watch their NXT Takeover battle and you'll understand.

- 205 Live is coming to life, thank you Enzo Amore. Slowly but surely, the WWE is figuring out that 205 Live shouldn't be a show strictly about workrate. It needs character and personality. Enzo Amore has legitimately saved the promotion and has given the show so much needed "heat". While Neville was a good in-ring talent, he didn't bring the personality, charisma, and mic skills that WWE requires with the culture presented to its fans. If WWE lets the Cruiserweights loose on their personalities to help draw heat, things could improve. WWE should move Tyler Breeze and Fandango there, for example. 205 Live airing "live" after Smackdown remains a problem, however.

- Tag Team wrestling is pretty good right now, has nice talent. Enjoy Smackdown's Tag Team Title battles between Usos and New Day? I did... How about Sheamus and Cesaro doing well as a tag team? Hell, Ambrose and Rollins did great as a tag team unit. We had the Hardys returning earlier this year (poor Jeff is hurt) and I'm liking the early stuff from Shelton Benjamin and Chad Gable. Trick is to put actual TALENT into the division instead of smaller or wrestlers who won't see any potential to elevate themselves. NXT has a few good tag teams in development and the Revival will return soon.

- Serious push in place for Kevin Owens. How many people get to legitimately attack Vince McMahon? Then, he puts on a great match with Vince's son, Shane. He is consistent on his in-ring stuff and on the mic. The fact that he was allowed to viciously attack Vince McMahon should tell you something.

- Sami Zayn... Something new to do? Babyface that repeatedly jobs was getting old. Now, he joins the red hot Kevin Owens as a heel. AT THE VERY LEAST, Sami Zayn as a heel now has a whole new group of wrestlers to provide great matches. But if this teaming with Owens works...

- Chris Jericho is always welcome back. You know that he'll return and he's coming of one of his best years as a a character. He'll be motivated to return based on the creative freedom granted to him by Vince McMahon.

- AJ Styles is still on the WWE roster. Best in-ring worker on the entire planet is on the WWE roster. Period, end of story.

- Jim Ross returned to the WWE officially. Sure, he's doing mini-projects and making appearances, but the fact that he appears in the WWE locker rooms on occasion is a GOOD thing. He is a wealth of knowledge to have around and if someone in the WWE listens to him on occasion, it will benefit the WWE. I'd personally put him on the WWE's Board of Directors, but just having him around WWE officials here and there is good enough.

- NXT is still good despite RAW/Smackdown talent raids. That last NXT Takeover was great despite the brand split thinning out its roster. It is Triple H's pet project and he's doing a great job with providing wrestling fans with a "bonus" to owning the WWE Network. Had the RAW/Smackdown brand extension never occurred, it would be a much better promotion by now.

- Triple H will be a great replacement for Vince McMahon. Just look at NXT... All I have to say. HHH shows that he legitimately cares about the WWE and has legitimately tried to give fans what they want. The fact that he has made something out of Women's wrestling in the WWE is remarkable.

- No Stephanie McMahon on television for a while now. We haven't seen the screeching heel Stephanie on RAW for a long, long time. She does well with public speaking engagements on behalf of the WWE Corporation which is where her Communications degree comes in actual handy. Instead, we get...

- Kurt Angle is back in the WWE. The fact that he's back is remarkable and even better, you just know he'll wrestle someone in the future. Just a matter of time...

- The Miz has been repaired. In my opinion, the Miz should have NEVER left the Smackdown brand. That being said, he's still a good talent and has figured out his personality since that infamous "shoot" on Daniel Bryan. He's been on a role ever since insomuch that we, as fans, are extremely happy that he's going to be a father soon. Fans appreciate his talent now and genuinely care for the guy now. Didn't so much before when WWE kept trying to force his pushes.

- War Games and Starrcade are coming back! Yay WCW properties! It's been over 16 years since Vince McMahon won the Monday Night Wars. However, his WCW competitor had many great ideas and great brand names. Why not use them? All of us know that Vince McMahon WON the war. Thus, make money off of their old properties and it could help bring back some older fans who don't know that their old friend called "pro wrestling". Member berries taste good!

- Great video game series. I believe that many wrestling fans take for granted on how good WWE's video games have been since late 1999. Before that, it was a struggle... The 2 Acclaim games for the Nintendo 64/Playstation during the late 1990s were awful and it wasn't until the WWE stole THQ from WCW during 1999 that things began to turn around. Since Wrestlemania 2000, the WWE has delivered fans with great wrestling games on a consistent basis. For their next 2K18 game, we get to enjoy it on THREE platforms between Playstation 4, XBox One, and the Nintendo Switch.

- Royal Rumble to Wrestlemania season is almost here. Sure, the 4th Quarter is usually when the WWE is asleep at the wheel and gives many wrestlers time off. But in just 3 months, Royal Rumble is here. That 30 Man Rumble Match is ALWAYS exciting even if the internal booking of the match is off. The countdown, the dramatic entrances, and the physical battle to become the #1 contender is so much fun. That, and the Rumble Match only occurs once a year. WWE doesn't over-expose it. Rumble then feeds into Wrestlemania which still a huge event, possibly getting bigger by the year.

- Survivor Series has been good lately. WWE almost closed this event... Then, they started taking the elimination matches seriously and giving the show legitimate headline matches as well. Thus, it's back... Survivor Series is PERFECT for the Brand Extension as RAW vs. Smackdown matches can always occur and that event can monopolize on it being the only show in which the 2 brands will ever compete. The 4th Quarter needed something like this for a while to excite that time of year.

- USA Network needs them. During 2019, the WWE's television contract with Comcast/NBC/Universal will come up. I believe that they'll extend with the same terms or slightly higher to continue that $175 million to $200 million easy revenue train on an annual basis. Thanks to Netflix, the rerun market is not the draw that it used to be for USA Networks and they are struggling bigtime to create original content. Anything original is saved for NBC which is to the benefit of the WWE. Why else would USA Network give them prime time slots for both Monday and Tuesday nights? USA Network needs them.

- Plenty of ways to watch RAW & Smackdown. Obviously, you can watch RAW and Smackdown on USA Network. If you've cut the cord, you can watch them on Hulu and they are condensed versions to help you save time from the 3 hour RAW and 2 hour Smackdown. If that's not your cup of tea, the WWE generously hooks you up with YouTube.com clips. If you watch YouTube.com clips + WWE Network Pay Per Views, you're caught up. Saves you a ton of time and gives you major flexibility as a WWE fan.


- The Bullet Club has lit a fire under Vince McMahon's arse. A few weeks ago, members of the Bullet Club "invaded" by having a rally in the parking lot. It resembled the time that the WWE sent Degeneration X to WCW Nitro to rally in their parking lot. Unlike WW and Eric Bischoff, Vince McMahon will hit back. He sent a Cease & Desist letter to the Club members and promotions and even terminated a WWE Creative Team member for taking a picture with members of the Bullet Club. Don't think for a second that the Shield reunion isn't related, too... Vince is probably tired of seeing "Bullet Club" t-shirts in his crowd. Now, it's very likely that the Shield stable will be pushed hard to drown the Bullet Club hype out. Don't be surprised if Vince books the Shield to destroy Anderson, Gallows, and Finn Balor in a 6 man match to make a point.

Furthermore... It's very likely that Kenny Omega will see a serious offer made by the WWE during 2018. New Japan reportedly signs talent to one-year deals and like last year following the Wrestle Kingdom event, Omega could be a free agent for hire. Just to make a point or to "stick it" to the Bullet Club, money could be thrown at Omega. That's not a bad thing for all parties involved besides New Japan and the Bullet Club.

What Vince McMahon lacks is competition thanks to TNA/GFW/Impact Wrestling struggling and Sinclair refusing to invest more funds into Ring of Honor's expansion. However, the Bullet Club phenomena and the wrestlers themselves could be irritating Vince McMahon right now by infiltrating WWE events. Vince won't have that and it could motivate him to improve his WWE product to push the Bullet Club influence out of his fans.


I hope you enjoyed that. It's easier to criticize than praise. I think we take the great WWE wrestling empire for granted for the many great things that it does on a consistent basis. The biggest problem, in my opinion, is over-exposure. Having to fill 3 hours of RAW and 2 hours of Smackdown is difficult. I also don't like the creative direction of Smackdown and feel that it needs greatly improved. The Main Event scene and Women's Division on Smackdown need significant improvement and better utilization of talent. I've been more satisfied with RAW since the "superstar shake-up" that followed Wrestlemania 33.

It's easy to take the many great things that WWE gives us for granted. The 2 Pay Per Views per month has been quite a luxury, especially for $9.99. And no, the WWE did not pay me to write this column. Straight from the heart, yo.

Have a great weekend!


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Bookmark Mr. Tito's Column Archive to read the current and past columns.

© Mr. Tito and LordsofPain.net/WrestlingHeadlines.com - 1998-2017

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