The year 2014 is rapidly closing and soon hover boards will be released by Mattel, and we will dress like space-aged 80s biker gangs. At least if the prophecy according to Back to the Future comes to fruition. Hollywood wouldn’t steer us wrong, would they?
So much happened this year concerning the world of professional wrestling, or sport entertainment, I wish I was able to write more on the subject. But life gets in the way, and it rightfully should. Although I love to get my thoughts out over the web so my words can be accessible to everyone, it isn’t really much of a life if this is all that you do. You just need to experience life, and try to fulfill as much as you can with the life that is given to you.
The most heart-breaking, and yet heart-warming moment that came out of 2014 was the culmination of The Ultimate Warrior going into the WWE Hall of Fame in New Orleans, and then passing away less than 24 hours after his appearance on Monday Night RAW. I just got finished watching Ultimate Warrior: The Ultimate Legend over on the WWE Network, which did you know is only $9.99 a month? And I couldn’t tell you how many times I almost broke down.
He was a Blade Runner alongside the future “Vigilante” known as Sting, with eye makeup akin to drag queens. He was then a “Dingo” Warrior in WCW, and later went on to be The Ultimate Warrior in WWE, beating The Honky Tonk Man to become the WWF Intercontinental World Heavyweight champion and later a dual champion after defeating Hulk Hogan for the WWF Heavyweight championship. There were so many highs and lows in Warrior’s career, but that weekend at WrestleMania XXX was possibly the most awe-inspiring story of triumph that could ever be told in professional wrestling.
I love The Ultimate Warrior, and I miss him. He meant a lot to the wrestling business, to the wrestling fans, and to his beloved family.
Back in the early 90s, Warrior was taking the torch from Hulk Hogan to be the next top guy, and nowadays the state of wrestling is in such a flux because it’s no longer about any one man. Hell, it’s not even about the WWE World Heavyweight championship anymore. WWE survived three months without a single World championship contention. For three months, Brock Lesnar was off WWE TV. And unfortunately, the product was not better or worse for it.
The last great hope was Daniel Bryan. Many may disagree, but the rise of Daniel Bryan coming into the WWE under developmental contract with Florida Championship Wrestling, to the first season of NXT–which is amazing how NXT has transformed from a failed concept on SyFy, to a corner-stone of the WWE Network–to being fired from the WWE, coming back, becoming Mr. MITB, becoming the World Heavyweight champion, to losing at WrestleMania XXVIII in 18 seconds, to gaining a whole nation of believers, to becoming the WWE Tag Team Champions, to defeating John Cena at SummerSlam clean in the ring to become the WWE Champion, to losing the title on the same night to Randy Orton, to gaining even more of a following until it all culminated at WrestleMania XXX when he defeated Triple H at the top of the card, to being inserted in the main event in a Three way to become the WWE World Heavyweight Champion! YES!
That alone was worth the special WWE aired on the WWE Network of Bryan’s journey to WrestleMania. However, Bryan was forced to relinquish the championship after one title defense due to a neck injury. He’s been back a few times, but not in the capacity that we want him to be. He hasn’t gotten the proper follow-up surgery that he needs to return to the WWE. He’s been too busy trying alternative methods, which Cena has looked down upon. I want to be mad, but WWE booking would have had Daniel drop the title to Brock Lesnar anyway. This, with all those German Suplexes given to Cena at SummerSlam, might have permanently paralyzed Bryan.
With Bryan out, they want to bring up Roman Reigns as the next guy. As Hulkster said when Vince wanted to put over Warrior, I’ll say about Reigns, he isn’t ready. He may have a good look, but he has not proven to carry a program on his own, let alone shown us that he is ready to lead the company as the top guy. And the idea of having Reigns go over Lesnar is not logical. If you want to prove that you are the top guy, then you have to beat the top guy, and that is John Cena.
Love him or hate him–mostly just jaded–Cena is the top guy. He has been the standard-bearer, thanks to Vince for the past 12 years. When CM Punk defeated Cena at MITB 2011, it meant something. When Daniel Bryan defeated Cena at SummerSlam 2013, it meant something. And for Reigns to defeat Cena at WrestleMania, it would then mean something.
About the blogger: I’m an avid fan of pro wrestling and all of its layers of athleticism and entertainment. I also love to read and write, which is why WrestlingTimesX will come across as different from anything else that you read on the web. My mantra on wrestling, in any state, is to love it then, now, and forever.