CM Punk was the WWE Champion for how long until the Royal Rumble?
I see a common theme on the wrestling boards is the belief wrestlers are being pushed too fast too soon in WWE. I’ve even seen people write that guys got mega pushes. Another common theme is we like to throw the blame on wrestlers when their “push” doesn’t turn the business around. I hear the word failure a lot. Like some guy held a world title and it is somehow his fault that his poorly booked title reign wasn't the revival of the Attitude Era.
And I don’t know…I just don’t see it. Since John Cena, Batista, and Randy Orton rose to the main event scene in the mid-to-late 2000’s I haven’t seen WWE even attempt to make a new star. I really don’t think anyone has gotten a fair shot. But, maybe I am wrong. Heck if Steve Austin, one of the greatest wrestlers of all time has this idea that guys are being pushed too soon then maybe there is something to it, but I want to see for myself.
So here is the challenge for you, my fellow posters. Come up with names since 2008 that WWE legitimately tried to push. Give me some names that WWE made to look like a million bucks for a prolonged period of time. This has to be wrestlers by the way, not GM's or managers. Also, you cannot bring a name like Brock Lesnar who was already established in the past (although I could argue they messed up with Brock anyways)
CM Punk was the WWE Champion for how long until the Royal Rumble?
I expected Punk's name to pop up. I'll preface my response by saying that he is probably the closest anyone has come to a legit push BUT WWE still dropped the ball big time with him.
CM Punk is the guy that cut his big promo about rebelling against the system and being the voice of the voiceless in 2011...and then he fluked his way into beating Cena via interference by Vince McMahon and Johnny Ace at Money in the Bank. Then he came back a week after leaving the company, basically telling the fans that all his speeches meant nothing.
He fluked his way into beating Cena in the rematch due to HHH not noticing that John's leg was under the ropes. He lost the championship that he had just made such a big deal out of due to Alberto's cashing in the title. He got attached by grandpa Kevin Nash for weeks before Nash's leg gave out on him.
Then he lost to HHH who is a part timer that hasn't beaten anyone else, (i.e. the REAL stars Brock Lesnar and HHH) and never got his win back. Fast forward to his next WWE championship reign, the long one that just ended...the guys he legitimately beat to retain the title could be counted on one hand.
Basically Chris Jericho, Dolph Ziggler, and Daniel Bryan...guys that everybody else beats anyways. Like Punk, these are the guys that are so good, WWE just beats them all the time because they know they will get themselves over anyways.
At no point in this rivalry with John Cena had he beaten him 100% clean. Either by DQ or cheating. Same goes for his feud with Ryback. Even Mr. McMahon, the 67 year old Chairman of the Board gave CM Punk a good fight on an episode of RAW. That's saying something.
And things like wins and losses aside, Punk defending the title was almost always in the mid-card. When is the last time you saw a champion who rarely closed out a PPV? Only in the last few months did this change, simply due to the fact that the real star The Rock was coming back for the title.
Punk was presented better than most of the roster, but that's really not saying a whole lot. They didn't strap that rocket on him and let him go, even if there were many opportunities where they could have done that. Not only was he not main eventing shows as the champion; he never beat the guys he would need to beat to be perceived as a top level wrestler (Cena, HHH, Rock)
I'm thinking Mark Henry.... for a long long time he was a lower midcarder.... and was given some horrible storylines (such as impregnating Mae Young)... some diabolic storylines were rumoured to have been given to him to get him to quit the 10 year contract he was given in 1996.
Ever the pro, Henry went along with whatever storyline they gave him which probably earned him a degree of respect from the bookers... and a new contract.
Despite challenges for the world title in 2006.... it still seemed abrupt that Henry got a sudden monster push out of nowhere in 2011when he beat Randy Orton for the world heavyweight title. Henry had a Big Show like push where he squashed everything in sight. And he wasn't just beating people.... he was beating them convincingly and the bookers had his opponents sell injuries like few had ever before. Henry was pushed as a rock solid no-nonsense bad-ass leaving guy after guy unconscious.
Though his title reign was no CM Punk reign in terms of length... it was still a solid 4 months or so (Which isn't bad for the modern era) the push he receieved was still a strong one.
However no matter how hard WWE tried to push Henry down our throats as a sadistic monster on a path of destruction.... I never saw him as a main event calibre guy. Hes been humiliated far too many times in the past for comedy effect (much like I never treat a Big Show push because I've seen it a million times before) for me to take him seriously... and at the age of 40, the big push probably came a tad too late for him.
It'll be interesting to see what they do with Henry once he returns from his length injury (if he does).
Yeah, Mark Henry works. He beat people decisively on a regular basis. As you mentioned it was a bit too late, but that's someone they tried with for a while.
So we can start the list with Henry. Who else?
They do give Big Show similar monster pushes... but in spurts. The Big Show suddenley becomes a monster again.... destroys everything in sight as the unstoppable giant. Then a month later he is back in the midcard doing comedy sketches and losing to people a third of his size.
Show has had a dozen pushes like this... that last a few weeks at best
Henrys 2011 push was more lengthy, and the WWE seemed to put more effort in trying toi get him over... which is why he qualifies and Show doesn't.
Cody Rhodes: WWE has played fast and loose with him for a quite a time now. He's being thrown into the Tag -team scene too many times. He has proved himself in singles competition. His run with Intercontinental title and feud with big show, Orton and Booker T were the proof of it. His performance in both this year's and last year's Rumble was remarkable but still somehow they pair him with next mediocre guy for some goddarn reason. I'm afraid they are gonna drop the ball on him soon which I hope doesn't happen.
Last edited by AJ; 02-06-2013 at 08:59 AM.
If everything in life had a point there would be no place to sit down.
I think Punk counts as someone they legitimately tried to push. At least Vince thinks he pushed him, even if he messed up majorly.
Jack Swagger. He won the world title, I mean that's a push is it not?
Jeff Hardy, he had several world title reigns. Transitional reigns but still.
Sheamus. Was he booked strongly? No, but two world title reigns so soon is impressive, I mean it put him on the map at least.
Alberto Del Rio. So he won the rumble only to lose at Mainia and won the world title only to lose it to Cena and then Punk. However I'd argue that this gave him enough of a push for him to have a strong World Heavy Weight title reign, so it wasn't a total loss.
And Then there's Miz. Was he booked as a strong champion? No but he was heel and it turned him into a very strong uppermid carder, which is better than what he was before. I don't think he is even that good, so the fact that he's in a position when should they need a world champion they've got former world champion Miz waiting in the rings, I think it's pretty good for him.
Now I know what you're thinking, all of these are pretty weak title reigns. But you said, list some people WWE legitimately tried to push, I can't see them pushing someone for no reason so here you go. Sure, each of these attempts sucked big time, but I think to the WWE staff they were legitimate pushes, it's just that the WWE are freaking morons.
Violence Just Got Sexy
I think the strongest he was ever booked was as The Extreme Giant ECW champion. Maybe it was just that he was on a brand with guys who WWE didn't see as important anyways, but they really made him look like a beast to be reckoned with. It's like you said though, all of his strong pushes usually last a month and then he goes back to doing skits or losing to guys much smaller than him.
Then his next angle with The Big Show consisted of him losing to Kofi Kingston on Smackdown and intentionally DQ'ing himself against Show at Over the Limit (which of course Show left him laying after the match). Finally the reign came to an end when Mysterio beat Swagger at Fatal Fourway and Swagger unsuccessfully challenged Rey in a rematch.Following that reign he went on to being dropped into a chase for the IC title, and losing a rivalry against Evan Bourne.
A reign that involves losing all the time and being left knocked out by your opponents doesn't sound too promising. It did more to hurt the belt then it did to elevate Swagger.
Yeah I'll take Jeff. He beat guys decisively and WWE never really made a joke out of him, so that is a good example.Jeff Hardy, he had several world title reigns. Transitional reigns but still.
It put him on the map the same way it put Swagger on the map or The Miz. It just put him in the spotlight long enough for WWE to show us that he's not at the level of the real stars like John Cena or HHH. I mean up until today he's been a mixed bag. For everything they do right with him (putting HHH out of action, winning the WWE title so soon into his career, winning King of the Ring) they do several things wrong like having HHH return from injury, destroy Sheamus like he's nothing and then move to Undertaker. Or having Sheamus win the WWE title in a tables match via John Cena putting HIMSELF through a table. Or Sheamus running like a sissy from The Nexus and going into a panic attack.."Where's Cena! Where's John Cena! Help me!" or going on a losing streak against John Morrison right after becoming King of the Ring.Sheamus. Was he booked strongly? No, but two world title reigns so soon is impressive, I mean it put him on the map at least.
I think it's really telling that Brock Lesnar and Sheamus had very similar first two years in the company. Sheamus accomplished everything that Brock did. He won the King of the Ring and won the WWE Championship. But look at the difference between the two...Sheamus won King of the Ring due to getting a bye in one of the rounds, so they weakened his victory right there, unlike Brock who just beat everyone. Sheamus won his first WWE Championship almost as a fluke given that his opponent, John Cena beat himself out of the match. Unlike Brock Lesnar who beat the John Cena of that time (The Rock) totally right in the middle of the ring with an F5.
I think WWE did a fantastic job with Del Rio in his first six months with the company. He beat people every week. They played up how big of a star he was in Mexico and the rest of the world. Then when he actually got into the main event mix they dropped the ball. As you mentioned, he won the Rumble only to lose at WrestleMania(in the opener no less). To add to that, when Edge retired right after WrestleMania, even then Del Rio failed to gain the World Title. Christian who was a mid-carder prior to this and would go on to lose the championship right away afterwords, beat Del Rio for the vacant championship at Extreme Rules. So right there they sent us a message that Del Rio can't even beat Edge's inferior partner. Then as you mentioned he lost the belt a couple months after winning it. The first time he had a fair one-on-one singles match for the title, he couldn't get the job done. He didn't even win the belt in a convincing fashion either. He needed Cena to wear Punk out in a hard fought match and then Kevin Nash to come in and boot Punk.Alberto Del Rio. So he won the rumble only to lose at Mainia and won the world title only to lose it to Cena and then Punk. However I'd argue that this gave him enough of a push for him to have a strong World Heavy Weight title reign, so it wasn't a total loss.
Well, I think to say he wasn't booked strong is an understatement. if I'm not mistaken he was on a losing streak before cashing in the title. He only won the belt after all of Nexus destroyed Randy Orton first. He needed help retaining his title against Jerry Lawler, a commentator. When he dropped the belt, any sort of credibility the reign might have given him was thrown out the window as his sidekick Alex Riley proceeded to one-up him in their feud. Miz mostly went back to losing on a regular basis and when he joined up with R-Truth as a team, John Cena and The Rock took turns beating them in handicap situations.And Then there's Miz. Was he booked as a strong champion? No but he was heel and it turned him into a very strong uppermid carder, which is better than what he was before. I don't think he is even that good, so the fact that he's in a position when should they need a world champion they've got former world champion Miz waiting in the rings, I think it's pretty good for him.
Well, you make some really good points here. I'd actually forgotten about Jeff Hardy. They did a pretty decent job with him. Nothing like a John Cena or Randy Ortn, but decent enough that I didn't complain. I think the biggest problem with WWE is that they use Money in the Bank as a crutch to give wrestlers the championship without actually pushing them. That's a common thread I notice for the majority of those names.Now I know what you're thinking, all of these are pretty weak title reigns. But you said, list some people WWE legitimately tried to push, I can't see them pushing someone for no reason so here you go. Sure, each of these attempts sucked big time, but I think to the WWE staff they were legitimate pushes, it's just that the WWE are freaking morons.
What year did Alberto Del Mehico get called up to the main roster? He's had a very steady push. Even in his absence, Ricardo Rodriguez was still put on TV as a reminder of ADR's presence. I think ADR's had one of the most sensible pushes in that he hasn't been pushed down our throats.
^ The reason they they pushed him is also because he is their only Mexican cash cow now that Mysterio is less available.
If everything in life had a point there would be no place to sit down.
Interestingly enough, I was just catching up on an older Wrestling Observer from last month. According to the January 14th edition, Alberto Del Rio was 47-94-3 in 2012.
His win/loss percentage was worse than the majority of the roster, notably people who are way below his popularity such as Santino, Tensai, Hunico, Ted Dibiase, and Brodus Clay.
And I should note that even now that he's become World Champion in 2013, it's coming off a pretty weak face turn and he's only winning the title via gimmicks. He's used weapons or his manager to put Big Show down long enough to run away with the belt.
To people outside of America it doesn't look like a weak run. It's no weaker than Eddie Guerrero's first run. Del rios has been pushed very strongly and his win loss record doesn't mean anything in terms of push
Del Rio's consistent presence on TV can be considered a consistent push. His losses have never mattered because he's comer back acting as if those losses never happened. That's a mark of a great heel and a philosophy that Ric Flair and the Four Horsemen went by.
If Del Rio does a good job of making people forget about the losses, it doesn't mean that the WWE booking committee is giving him a good push. It just means he's a good actor.His losses have never mattered because he's comer back acting as if those losses never happened. That's a mark of a great heel and a philosophy that Ric Flair and the Four Horsemen went by
Last edited by Turley; 02-06-2013 at 11:22 PM.
Heath Slater was made to look like a joke where as Del Rio had a money man gimmick, his own personal ring announcer, plus a status that has kept him in some high profile matches. Heath is a joke.
Hmm. I'm not following. Why would it look any different to people outside the states?
a lot of the characteristics are still there from his anti- American gimmick, if you claim that his push is weak then there simply cannot be any other reason for you thinking this way.
Last edited by Turley; 02-06-2013 at 11:26 PM.
anyway this doesnt wash because we have all been told repeatedly on these forums from a variety of people that CM Punk was the victim of the booking committee. How can they be responsible for one guy yet when a different guy does well, they arent responsible?
Del Rio does borderline on a joke though very often. For instance this week on RAW he tried to sucker punch Big Show in his hotel room and nearly failed. Big Show actually saw it coming and beat him down for a minute before Del Rio had to use a fire extinguisher to put him down
Anyways, of course Del Rio is positioned in a better light than Heath Slater. I'm just trying to make the point that simply being on the show on a weekly basis doesn't mean you're being pushed strong.
His turn could have been hinted at for longer than one segment. He could have done it in a high profile angle instead of with 3MB. They could have stuck with the turn, instead of bouncing him back to a heel the next week and then changing their minds again and having him be a babyface.
If I understood correctly, Shockage mentioned that Del Rios losses haven't mattered because Del Rio is a great heel like Ric Flair.so when he is doing well it has nothing to do with the booking committee? They are the ones that put him in the situations where he can showcase his abilities. I would have thought that booking your guys to utilise their strengths is great booking....
I actually don't agree that he's done a good enough job acting as if they didn't matter (I don't think anyone could really), but even so, IF that is the case, that means that he's a good performer, and people want to watch him despite how lame he looks. Just like Daniel Bryan can lose in 18 seconds after having the worlds worst title reign and the WWE universe is giving him the reception of the year.
They are both great performers and they have both been underutilized. Thanks to that they are popular figures, but will probably never excel to the level of a Steve Austin or Rock.anyway this doesnt wash because we have all been told repeatedly on these forums from a variety of people that CM Punk was the victim of the booking committee. How can they be responsible for one guy yet when a different guy does well, they arent responsible?
Do you think punk being 'under-utilised' is
The reason he won't get to the Rocks level?
Yes. Unless of course change they change their booking philosophy. which is always possible.
Well I'll throw in my own answer after last night at Elimination Chamber.
From day one WWE has booked these guys very well. As a unit they've been able to take people by ambushing them AND beat them in fair 3-on-3 situations.