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Posted in: My Two Centsss
My Two Centsss - It's Time to End the Boring and Now Business-Killing Title Reign of Jinder Mahal
By Super Chrisss
Sep 18, 2017 - 11:38:46 AM

Tom Jenner rocks!

R.I.P. Bobby ‘The Brain’ Heenan. This humanoid became a wrestling fan long after your peak days in the industry had come and gone, but I heard nothing but good things about you over the years. May you and your legendary partner – Gorilla Monsoon – continue to entertain other fallen wrestling fans for the rest of eternity.

Folks, the joke is over. WWE simply cannot keep the SmackDown world title on Jinder Mahal, nor can he remain in the main-event scene at all. Now, before you pro-Jinders (which is sad you even exist) start hating on me for writing yet another column where I attack Jinder for being an awful wrestler, monotone on the mic, and a jobber hiding behind a belt and cute little entrance, be prepared to be bombarded with FACTS for why Jinder’s title reign must come to an end as soon as heavenly possible.

First off, let’s remind ourselves WHY Jinder Mahal got randomly pushed into this position last April. It wasn’t because he was having five-star matches with the likes of Mojo Rawley; it wasn’t because he was the only living, breathing heel left on SmackDown following the Superstar Shake-Up; nor was it because he saved Shane McMahon’s life one day and Vince owed him one. For whatever reason, Vince McMahon woke up one day and decided he wanted to expand business into India. However, there was a problem: the only Indian wrestlers currently signed to a contract were jobber-for-life Mahal and the scarcely-used Bollywood Boyz from NXT. As a result, Vince McMahon had a major choice to make: does he put his money-making plan on hold until a later date, allowing him to slowly build up Mahal and co., or does he push forward with his plan, with the SmackDown Live brand and roster being the sacrificial lambs for the ‘Jinder Mahal experiment’?

Well, we all know which path Vinnie Mac chose, but did he bet his money on the right horse? I mean, other than Jinder Mahal playing a crucial part in SmackDown drawing terrible attendance for live events, TV tapings and Pay-Per-Views, as well as weekly ratings being the worst they’ve ever been since the Brand Split 2.0 went into effect in Summer 2016, Mahal has been booming the Indian business, right? Right?!

Unfortunately, Vince, to quote a superstar who would have THRIVED had you given him the opportunity you gave Jinder instead, I’m afraid I’ve got some bad news for you. According to a recent report from Forbes, as of the last two months, the number of paid subscribers to the WWE Network in India has actually gone down. Yes, down. Did you get that, Vince? The jobber who you’ve been booking as unstoppable the past five months – at the expense of legitimate talent like AJ Styles, Sami Zayn, Shinsuke Nakamura, and others – has not only NOT improved business in India, he’s actually hurt it. So not only did Mahal hurt attendance, viewership and storyline quality, but he even regressed business in the market you so badly want to tap into. That’s remarkable.

How could this be possible? I’m not Indian, nor am I a business expert, so I have no definite answer for you. If I had to guess – based merely on speculation and people I interact with on social media, both Indian and non-Indian – it’s mainly because WWE fans aren’t as dumb as Vince & co. might think. While WWE management might assume that Indian fans will consider it an ‘honour’ that one of ‘their’ people (despite Mahal being Canadian, but facts only) is the focal point of SmackDown Live and is even a world champion, for all we know, they might view it as an insult. These fans didn’t start watching WWE yesterday; I’m sure many of them have them following WWE as long as you and me, maybe even longer. They know Mahal is a jobber; they’re not stupid. All of a sudden, these fans are expected to cheer for Mahal and hand over their money to WWE just because Mahal cuts a promo in Punjabi? Let’s get serious. In some ways, Mahal is like the Indian Roman Reigns. Vince is pushing him so hard in hopes that he’ll get over and bring in plenty of revenue. Instead, he’s losing viewers and subscribers left and right. Sounds like The Big Dog to me…Reigns is a prime example that you can’t force fans to get behind anyone they don’t want to.

If the one argument for keeping the title on Jinder Mahal for this long was to help improve WWE’s standing in India, then it’s time to cut the cord. He has not improved business, he hasn’t even kept it stable: he has worsened things. As a result, if Jinder escapes Hell in a Cell last month with the title intact, then there is no hope for WWE and whoever is booking that brand. Shinsuke Nakamura is one of the hottest stars in the company, and WWE has given him clean wins over both John Cena and Randy Orton in the span of a month – to have Nakamura job to Mahal AGAIN will piss away all that momentum, and I don’t think Shinsuke could recover from that.

Jinder Mahal has legit hurt SmackDown a hell of a lot more than anyone thought possible, and all SmackDown needs to be ‘great again’ Is to remove Mahal from the main-event picture. In fact, with the exception of their women division and their inability to give plenty of their talented roster members TV time (Bobby Roode, Luke Harper, Mike Kanellis, etc.), SmackDown has improved drastically the past month or so. The Kevin Owens-Shane McMahon feud has been fantastic so far, New Day and The Usos are having one great match after another, and I’m really digging what’s going on between AJ Styles, Baron Corbin and Tye Dillinger. Imagine if WWE took away Mahal’s television time and gave it to someone like Roode or even Harper? SmackDown would be back to being must-see every week. Unfortunately, as long as Mahal is around cutting boring, dumbass promos, or having lackluster matches with talented opponents, SmackDown won’t be able recapture the magic it once had.

Come on, Vince. End the Mahal experiment. It’s killing not only your domestic business, but your international profits as well. We know you hate being wrong and admitting defeat, but this is one of those times were you have to man up, correct your mistake and move on. You hold the key to making SmackDown great again and it all starts at the top, with getting rid of your Modern Day Maharaja ratings-killer.


YOUR Two Centsss: Do you think Mahal's title reign will finally end at Hell in a Cell? Or can you see Vince keeping the title on him for even longer?

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