You know, I was trying to resist the urge to write another column about the return of The Rock, because you guys are probably sick to death of these columns. From Jacob’s piece here, or Christian Michaels’ piece here (or if you’re Andrew Johnson, the hate just flows through you like the river Quai), both sides of The Rock spectrum have been covered. However, since I lack originality or creativity (thanks comments section!), I am here to bring you one last POV, mine. (Maniacal laugh and mustache twirl.)
I have been a fan of The Rock for a long time, and I think I always will be, but there’s something about this return that hasn’t sat right with me. I think that by bringing him back and immediately inserting him into the WWE title picture it kind of buries those guys who have worked really hard to get to where they are today. Guys like Ziggler, Sandow, Rhodes, and even Kofi Kingston are being forced to wait on the sidelines for Rock to leave to promote or film another movie before they can have another fair shake. This is the time of the year when you can make new stars. The writing is crisper, the effort is stronger and the attention of the fan is at its highest because of that. Why not give Ziggler the belt and see what he can do? Or how about giving Kofi the Royal Rumble win? It is almost like WWE has forgotten how to build new stars.
There have been a lot of new guys debuting in the past year, and a few are going to be big one day, but why should they have to wait while The Rock is getting a title shot? He does not need one, and he definitely doesn’t need the win, either. Putting The Rock against Punk is not a good move if you want to build the roster stronger, especially if The Rock is going to end Punk’s streak, and that may be why I am the most annoyed.
As I mentioned in my Tuesday Headlines column, I have always viewed the guy with the title as the top guy, no matter what. They have the title, that’s it. I know in reality that’s not always the case, but to me it is. That being said, Punk has held the title for over 400 days, and has defeated a lot of people along the way – most of them cleanly. (Ryback is an exception because they had to protect him.) That means that he has beaten the other top guys in the company. What does it mean then if Rock comes in and beats Punk? It makes the roster look like a bunch of chumps if a 40 year old actor can walk in and do what no one has done in over a year.
Now don’t get me wrong – this isn’t like David Arquette winning the WCW title. The Rock is a name in wrestling, and him having the title doesn’t affect it like Mr. Ready to Rumble did. I’ve said it before; Punk's reign should end by creating a new star. It’s simple booking. And please believe me when I say that I respect Rock for everything he has done, but he should be putting people over, not winning world titles. Besides, beating The Rock would do more for Punk than it would if it was the other way around. Then Punk can say that he has beaten everybody he can possibly beat, and if the match with Stone Cold ever materializes, then he can use this too.
Let me state here that I understand that The Rock winning the title will be good for business. I am not arguing that point. I know the type of draw he is, and I know what he brings to the table when his name is on the marquee. That is not my argument, so if that’s all you have to say, you’re wasting your time. My point is that if Punk was only champion for two or three months, then this column would be about TNA PPV’s or something. I wouldn’t care this much if Punk had a short reign because that kind of shit happens all the time. WWE loves to give guys their “one last run” as a way of saying thank you for all their hard work over the years, and The Rock is no exception.
My main issue is that I am a bigger fan of Punk than I ever was of the Rock, and I don’t want to see this epic reign end without establishing someone. There will be other chances for The Rock to become champion, and most likely I’ll cheer for him when he does. Hell, I might be excited if he wins the belt at the Royal Rumble, because I am a fan of his. I know that in this business wins and losses don’t matter; it’s the story that pulls us in, and quite frankly The Rock as a conquering hero is the easiest story to tell. I’m just a bigger fan of the villain.
That’s all I got.
Personal note: I know that Hurricane Sandy was a couple of months ago, but there is still a lot of help needed. Can you please take the time and visit http://www.gofundme.com/Sandyreliefhbqueens? It was started by a friend of mine, and she really needs the support. Thank you all.