Wednesday, May 27, 2015

Make Reigns the John Cena Champion

Hey Scott,

After watching Payback, I started thinking about Reigns. I know it's just a matter of time before he's champ because WWE are waiting for the crowds to accept him. But, if John Cena has taught us anything, it's that the Smark contingent will change it's mind about a wrestler. Once you're a heel/face, in their eyes, it doesn't matter how well you're work or how well you're booked, you'll always be their first impression of you. So by that logic, Reigns will never be "ready."

But, if all that is true, why the heck does Reigns even need the title? Why not just make whatever match he's in the main event, regardless of what's at stake. In other words, make him the John Cena Champion. You could even christen this new era by having him beat Cena in a main event, while Rollins fight whomever. As you said, the title is not the title. As an added benefit, if Smarks start seeing Reigns fighting, and winning, in the main event enough, they might even became resigned the fact that, ehhh, who cares. Might as well make him champion. At this point, that's the best you can hope for, I think, with Reigns.

I suppose they could always build up to him finally being the guy to win the John Cena Open Challenge, too.  But yes, in general if you start treating a guy like a main eventer, eventually fans will accept him as a main eventer.  Sometimes you just have to do it like HHH in 2000 and completely sacrifice a guy to get there, but it's generally do-able.  It's still a problem that Reigns is getting title shots and not winning, but at least fan support for him is becoming a tad more organic now without Bryan around. 

220 comments:

  1. "Sometimes you just have to do it like HHH in 2000 and completely sacrifice a guy to get there, but it's generally do-able. "

    Is there anyone on Foley's level right now who is willing to put Reigns over in a retirement match?

    Don't say Kane or Big Show...

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  2. Extant1979 - Extreme SuperstarMay 27, 2015 at 7:07 AM

    I think having Reigns be some back-up right now to Ambrose as he preps for Rollins at Elimination Chamber is helping, too. If they use this as a way to start an Ambrose-Reigns feud, too, all the better.

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  3. Extant1979 - Extreme SuperstarMay 27, 2015 at 7:08 AM

    Those two dudes would make sense in the situation, though. If Reigns actually COULD force one of them to retire (I imagine Kane is closer to it than Show is), it would be something they could crow about Reigns for a while to come.

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  4. I'd like WWE to just make a decision so I know when to stop watching. Dreamy Eyes Hulk Samogan is boring, so if they put him on at the end I can just flip the channel.

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  5. You know, if Reigns continues to lose title matches, the fans may think of him as a choke artist

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  6. Jericho will come do it, but he's not on Foley's 2000 level. I wish Vince would be less inclined to follow his boner.

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  7. New Day made this exact point a few weeks ago. Thank you, New Day.

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  8. Belee_Matt!_INDEED!!!May 27, 2015 at 7:16 AM

    Smark = Smart Mark.

    Smart = You know the business is a work.
    Mark = You still pay to see it.


    By that definition, the people using the term "smark" in a derogatory way are they themselves Smarks.


    That is all.

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  9. I like how somewhere along the way we started capitalizing "Smark" like its a proper noun too.

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  10. Extant1979 - Extreme SuperstarMay 27, 2015 at 7:18 AM

    Proper usage round these parts is SmarK

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  11. Belee_Matt!_INDEED!!!May 27, 2015 at 7:19 AM

    I take it like a type of people. Like I would capitalize the Smurfs too. Or the Cherokee.

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  12. "But, if John Cena has taught us anything, it's that the Smark contingent will change it's mind about a wrestler ... you'll always be their first impression of you."

    Wait what

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  13. They're gonna spend so long waiting to pull the trigger on Reigns that other people are going to overtake him before it ever happens. And I'm cool with that. He's not that great.

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  14. Belee_Matt!_INDEED!!!May 27, 2015 at 7:23 AM

    Yes, that was what we call "gibberish".

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  15. The New Day is so damn great

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  16. I must have missed the episode of Raw where Cena grew as a character and evolved into something I could possibly bear watching. If i still don't like him it's his fault not mine. Him having all these three star matches with great wrestlers is something that most wrestlers could do.

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  17. Belee_Matt!_INDEED!!!May 27, 2015 at 7:25 AM

    Wait....are you saying you don't....Belee d-d-d-ddat? :(

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  18. It's already too late, I think, to convert anyone on here, at least. His fates set in stone because it was hip to hate him. Large numbers of us tend to hate anyone that gets flagged as the next big thing, and once the narrative sets in (Orton isn't over, Cena never loses, HHH is the anti-Christ), it's almost impossible to shake. Regardless of evidence to the contrary.

    We just need to hope that it hasn't spread to the casuals.

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  19. Vince Jordanese to English: I like this wrestler because Vince said to like him and others are wrong for not liking him right now ONE VERSUS ALL

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  20. It's interesting that there's still this notion that Reigns is some sort of failure when- still with all of four PPV singles matches to his name- the dude's been pretty fucking good for about four months now. The crowd reactions are coming around but speaking of Cena, they may have successfully- if inadvertently- recreated the Cena crowd dynamic with him.

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  21. Isn't everyone a smart mark these days? Even the dumbest fan knows its all a show. Shit even little kids know better than to think everything they see is real. Of course there are more hardcore fans like the ones here who care about all the behind the scenes stuff

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  22. I think Cena's shown tremendous, and realistic, character growth. It's just that it's been over a decade and hasn't involved any major gimmick change, which is entirely different from character growth anyway.

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  23. I don't believe in Reigns
    I never have
    I never will

    *guitar solo*

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  24. AverageJoeEverymanMay 27, 2015 at 7:29 AM

    My 6 year old has started the "why does the guy fighting Cena always go for the same moves when he is making a comeback?"

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  25. AverageJoeEverymanMay 27, 2015 at 7:30 AM

    so what you are saying is
    NEW
    DAY ROCKS!!
    NEW
    DAY ROCKS!!

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  26. I guess that's all fair enough, except the hoping it hasn't spread to the casuals. Vince McMahon's libido should not determine who the star of the company is.

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  27. Maybe he sees a guy with an asskicking persona (to attract men) and dreamy looks (to attract women)?

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  28. Yeah, but unless he becomes a superman worker and promo artist, he'll always be stuck (by internet nerds, anyway) with the label of "Vince's golden boy."

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  29. It is interesting how many of the most hardcore fans- whether it's wrestling or anything else, really- are the most loathe to change their minds even in the face of new evidence that should change their minds. It's almost like they're saying, "NOPE, I figured this out first and I know more than you, casual fan!" Seems like a miserable way to be a fan of something.

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  30. Pretty fucking good in what way though? I don't think he's done anything particularly impressive yet? Improving in the ring no doubt, but still weak as ever on the mic with zero conviction

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  31. You'd think that, but one perusal of Twitter and YouTube sure makes it look like there are some marks out there.

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  32. You know who was also pretty good in about four WWE main events? Chris Benoit.

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  33. Very much so

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  34. We all have some "snotty High Fidelity record clerk" in us. That's why we're here. We are hipster fans and we are obstinate on a lot of subjects.

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  35. I think he's absolutely improved on the mic and in the ring, and he's getting a lot of the little things right. His facial expressions when Rollins called for the triple powerbomb last Sunday- transitioning from "the fuck with this dude?" to basically, "FUCK IT, PICK HIM UP"- was really good stuff. Little things like that make a big difference to me.

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  36. I actually enjoy his act now that it's occurring in the mid-card and not the main event - looking forward to how his US title reign ends

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  37. I say don't push anybody. Just have guys brawl in random pairings throughout the building for three hours every Monday, and let the cream rise to the top.

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  38. Dragged kicking and screaming to good matches by very talented guys. He has redeeming qualities, but Hogan, Austin, Cena etc he is not. He just doesn't connect yet. It's not his personal fault beyond apparently being a jerk, but he's still in this position.

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  39. Oh, no doubt. And I love that movie.

    I just default to optimism because I want to enjoy things. I'd rather be excited for something and be let down than be a pessimistic grumpypants and end up not enjoying I should've enjoyed anyway because I convinced myself I wouldn't in the first place.

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  40. You know who else was pretty good in about four WWE main events? Eddie Guerrero.

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  41. At least now it looks like Reigns is trying to earn a spot on the top of the card, instead of having everything handed to him.

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  42. Jericho will do it, but only at a house show.

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  43. I don't think it's that it was hip to hate him, just that he never brought the goods. If they strapped the same rocket to a guy who could wrestle exciting matches and/or talk, the fans would be fine with it

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  44. Not only does Seth Rollins have your number... he has it on speed dial! Randy's reaction to that sick burn is priceless.

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  45. Sure, but neither are on the level of 2000 Foley. 2000 Foley was the 3rd most popular face on the card (2nd if you don't count Austin, since he was injured at the time).

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  46. HHH wouldn't like see that line about sacrificing a guy to get there!

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  47. In the case of Lesnar, LITERALLY dragged kicking and screaming to a good match.

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  48. The definition has kind of changed. Like I consider a "mark" someone who doesn't realize that what Triple H and Stephanie say about Daniel Bryan on TV isn't how they really feel about him. There are plenty of people who believe that B+ Player shit.

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  49. HHH sacrificed a guy to get to Vince's daughter, which got him where he is today.

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  50. Anyone else think that the seeds being planted for the Rollins/Triple H feud so Triple H can put him over was a feud that Reigns was supposed to have?

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  51. I think Theres a good chance that happens. I just don't know who plays heel/face.

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  52. One off thing but I, along with many, were pretty big fans of his buying the beer line to Dean.

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  53. I was just thinking about this earlier today. Similar to how The Shield dispatched the team of New Age Outlaws & Kane at Wrestlemania XXX, they should honestly have Reigns just beat Kane in a one-sided affair pretty handily at an upcoming event, and have that be the end of Kane. Then they should have Big Show come back for some revenge, and have the same thing happen to him. Fans would love Reigns because he's getting rid of 2 over the hill heels that really are not needed at this point. It's not the same as Foley going out to put Triple H over, but it's still impressive.

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  54. No, simply because I believe Reigns was supposed to be world champion right now.

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  55. Nothing we do on here is hip. Nothing. Nada. Zip. If we don't like Roman Reigns it's not because we're trying to be super cool, it's because Reigns didn't connect with people. People need to give up trying to psycho-analyse why people don't like people, especially when they state repeatedly and clearly why they don't like someone.

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  56. Everybody was fine with him until around September, when it sunk in he was getting the main event push.

    Regardless though, this is going to be the new "unwinnable Orton argument." Nobody's going to be dissuaded one way or another and it kinda sucks.

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  57. The thing is, he's barely "losing" these matches. Yes, he ate the pin at Mania, but that was after a vicious Lesnar beat down that he kept coming back from. I'd say Payback was him "not winning" a title match, I wouldn't necessarily call it "losing". I don't think he's quite at Lex Luger territory just yet. They're obviously filling that "loses title matches" role with Ambrose in the meantime, until SummerSlam I'm guessing, when we'll probably see a true triple threat between Rollins, Reigns and Lesnar, with Reigns getting the victory.

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  58. No. Rollins was pretty clear Triple H's project from the get-go. Maybe moreso than Reigns.

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  59. "Well, I like this Rollins and really think we can do big things with him. Maybe I can use this big Samoan kid to distract Vince. Good old pineapple fever Vince."

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  60. I know, but that doesn't mean Triple H wasn't going to do a program with him to "bring the title back to The Authority"

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  61. A lot of opinions are formed to build Smark-cred.

    It's why trolls always say the same things to try to piss us off.

    It's not hip in general, just hip here.

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  62. I don't know if it's because he's been working alongside his buddies Ambrose and Rollins more often, but Reigns' in-ring charisma has been off the charts recently. In that Payback match, he was killing it with every reaction he had. I think he really was rattled and pissed off by the reaction after the Rumble, but during the main event at Mania and since then, he's been pretty much on fire. I loved the match with Bryan at Fastlane, but he didn't exactly exude confidence or comfort in the ring there. I see that comfort and confidence much more in the past couple of months.

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  63. Can I point out again how rotten this idea is that people only dislike Cena or Reigns because they're stuck in some hipster mentality? You can't shut down dissent like that, and attribute the other persons opinion as some kind of mental block or defect. It's saying there's a correct and legitimate opinion, and that everyone who disagrees is irrational, or trying to be cool, or merely stuck in an outdated way of thinking. Well, TS. Some people are going to dislike John Cena forever because John Cena is *not enjoyable to watch* for them. Less feigned objectivity in peoples subjective opions, everybody!

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  64. I would not be surprised if this actually happened.

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  65. I get it with Cena because we have a ten year history of the guy being the same boring character. But Reigns was getting annoying for like three months. Like, if Reigns becomes awesome, which I think he is becoming, I don't get why one can't be open to him becoming great.

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  66. I want Vince sent to the Mayo Clinic and his pathologies studied by a world-class team. I need to know how this guy ticks.

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  67. Tell'em Steve-Dave!

    Wait... Wrong movie, wrong snotty clerk. Damnit!

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  68. I think it's hard for people to play the wait and see game as it's pretty clear the kind of character they see him being, and it's not great. What was called below smooth talking Dreamy Eyed Hulk Samoan or something. I get why peoples enthusiasm is still very low.

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  69. The cream is sometimes unpredictable. Cesaro and Ryder were almost there but the suits were like "the fuck?". They saw something with people like Bryan and Ambrose so they kept them near the top. But when people were chanting for Ryder during Cena segments they were like "we're ending this shit now." And the same thing but to a lesser extant with Cesaro.

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  70. Some people have this idea that not liking sports entertainment means snobbery. No, it just means people don't like the Vince McMahon approach to this art form. I still watch because there are still glimmers of the old rasslin' I liked among the cartoon bullshit. The weird part is most of the casual fans at the events weren't digging Reigns. This wasn't a snobby opinion.

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  71. You have a point. For instance, I've despised The Rock since 2000 or so -- whenever it was his catchphrase-laden interviews became painfully predictable. And his ring work is extremely overrated. People still love him, obviously, but it wouldn't bother me if he never wrestles again. He just doesn't interest me.


    In the words of the great philosopher Common, "If I don't like it, I don't like it. That don't mean I'm hatin'."

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  72. I agree that he has been good, but He still gets considerable boos. Even when he rescued Ambrose on Raw it was mostly boos. I wouldn't say they were "coming around".

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  73. The idea that people who don't like something are "haters" who are just jealous is one of the most poisonous ideas of modern culture. It allows people to dismiss all the shitty things about their own personalities in order to put the blame on the "hater."

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  74. Also, I don't think anyone here that likes Reigns is actively trying to tell those that don't like Reigns they're "wrong." We've just become proud fans!

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  75. I don't think Reigns is anywhere close to being Luger'd yet. I don't think he has even been beaten clean yet in a title match.

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  76. I think people care too much about what other people like in general.

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  77. Belee_Matt!_INDEED!!!May 27, 2015 at 8:05 AM

    I would probably be considered the snobby definition of a smark by walking abortions like Dougie, TripleS and John Edwards.....but they have no idea what they're talking about.


    For instance, I love what John Cena is doing right now. It's great. The whole open challenge stuff feels fresh, and he's great in the role. I think a lot of people's beef with Cena is that he was stale. That's their opinion if they still feel that way, but people need to stop lumping them all in this "hivemind" group that doesn't really exist. Everybody has modified versions of "good" or "bad" opinions on different subjects.

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  78. John Cena has made the US title way more meaningful than the WWE title since Lesnar lost it. This Rollins as champion and authority angle is boring and uninteresting imo. Also a guy with one ppv win since the Shield broke up gets a title shot??? Not buying it.

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  79. I think this was aimed at me. What I was trying to say was this is turning into a new "unwinnable argument" a la Orton.

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  80. It was more general rather than specific. I
    didn’t mean it as an attack on one person in particular. Really, it’s Matt I
    have the problem with. That snobby smark Matt.

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  81. Belee_Matt!_INDEED!!!May 27, 2015 at 8:10 AM

    I'm a real horse's ass.

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  82. Yeah fuck Matt!! Lol

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  83. I would say though that it's unwinnable on both sides under those terms. People will never accept that people might dislike these individuals because of how they act and how they perform, rather than some in-built bias against what's popular or mega-pushed or not.

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  84. It's the Orton argument version 2.0

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  85. Belee_Matt!_INDEED!!!May 27, 2015 at 8:12 AM

    I don't know what conversation you're talking about as I wasn't there at the time.

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  86. Should keep us busy for a while!

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  87. Yeah that comparison is still a long ways off. Still, I don't understand why they just don't book Reigns like Goldberg -- an unstoppable monster that plows through everything. That's what got him over in The Shield in the first place.

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  88. Had Luger? Flair always *slightly* cheated

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  89. Oh absolutely. Like what you like and let others like what they like.

    Unless it's Nickelback.

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  90. That's what seemed to spark the Attitude Era!

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  91. I like Roman Reigns. He's been bringing it in his big matches and I like that.

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  92. Well, one of the problems is RAW typically starts with a 20 minute Authority promo and ends with a 20 minute match and/or promo involving the authority. Coupled with other matches, backstage segments, roughly 45 minutes to an hour of every RAW is devoted to The Authority.

    It's been like that for almost two years straight. It's boring.

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  93. I dislike John Cena because of his shorts.

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  94. Belee_Matt!_INDEED!!!May 27, 2015 at 8:23 AM

    *Looks at watch*


    Bayless....


    *Looks around, looks at watch*


    BAYLESS!!!

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  95. Just don't say 'it doesn't matter what I think.' Ugh that guy needs new material.

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  96. Problem is, Stephanie is a bigger media whore than her father ever was. I honestly believe that over the last 2-3 years she has become obsessed with being on television.

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  97. Wait what's unwinnable about an Orton argument? He's boring and predictable, those are just factual observations...

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  98. I think they've stopped becoming an angle and started being literally just a plot device now. Like the cameras in Parks & Rec or the Office. We don't *really* think there's some kind of documentary being filmed anymore, it's just a way for storylines and jokes to take place. They'll be around forever. There's no end game. It's just how WWE storylines work.

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  99. Yeah, but Flair *slightly* cheated like 13 straight times.

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  100. If you combined Cesaro's size and in ring skills with Ryder's personality you'd be onto something big.

    As is they're both half of a star.

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  101. what a jerk

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  102. Yup. Just look at most wrestling promotions, national or indie -- at some point they all have an "evil authority figure" running the show. It's now become an essential part of pro wrestling storytelling.

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  103. Belee_Matt!_INDEED!!!May 27, 2015 at 8:31 AM

    The Big Dog, The Juggernaut, The Ol' So-and-So, Wet Melinda, Pretty Eyes, The Vest of Samoa.

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  104. Belee_Matt!_INDEED!!!May 27, 2015 at 8:32 AM

    This also seems reasonable.

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  105. It's funny whenever someone brings up Reigns not winning the title it's always in the context of wrestling being real but when I say Owens could never beat Lesnar smart fans are quick to bring up that wrestling is a work.

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  106. I asked a bunch of old Italians ladies what they thought of Reigns. They said Bruno was sexier. Still is.

    Then again, these broads were in their 80s and they claimed that they didn't like "that Mexican boy" too much.

    Senile.

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  107. Yes, I am quite perturbed.

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  108. They are giving Rollins X Pac heat in a way. I only care to see the US open becasue right now thats what interests me. The only match I am pumped for is Cena Owens.

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  109. Belee_Matt!_INDEED!!!May 27, 2015 at 8:37 AM

    *yawn* Try again.

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  110. If the Authority has to be around forever, and since they admit Steph and Paul are corporate leaders, then it's so foolish for them to constantly be heels on TV. It's just terrible.

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  111. I'm glad Vince stopped writing Reigns' promos.

    I love the character that answered Brock and Heyman saying they don't know him with a simple "You Will," instead of the guy talking about chopping down beanstalks and shit.

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  112. what suffering succotash wasnt cutting it for ya??

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  113. Writers think the Vaudeville improv show for which they're writing is a TV serial. Vince McMahon is the most successful promoter in the history of wrestling and he never got that it's an improv show.

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  114. Belee_Matt!_INDEED!!!May 27, 2015 at 8:39 AM

    Sufferin' succotash, Rock!

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  115. Worst_in_the_WorldMay 27, 2015 at 8:39 AM

    Yup, you're right dude. People can't like or dislike things because that's actually what they like or dislike--- they're doing it because it's "hip" to do so. Totally nailed it!

    Ugh.

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  116. I just want to know when I can treat wrestling like it's real or a work. Do you have a detailed timeline I can follow?

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  117. Juan Cena?

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  118. They coulda at least had him chew on a carrot and say "What's up Brock?"

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  119. That was terrible.

    In-ring, his persona is so much better. He's nailing the little character mannerisms there.

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  120. Reigns should have been the one to push the chair over tho.

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  121. I've no idea about any of this

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  122. Worst_in_the_WorldMay 27, 2015 at 8:42 AM

    Hahaha what are you rambling about

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  123. Belee_Matt!_INDEED!!!May 27, 2015 at 8:43 AM

    As a matter of fact, I do. Unfortunately, it's taped to an old man's asshole. Get to diggin'.


    Don't ask why it's taped there. It just happened.

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  124. I have no idea what you mean by Reigns winning not being real.

    And I'm pretty sure we all rightfully mock people comparing Owens to Lesnar.

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  125. Worst_in_the_WorldMay 27, 2015 at 8:44 AM

    Reigns has been way, way better since he's gotten more involved with Rollins and especially Ambrose post- Extreme Rules. It's crazy what a difference you see in his character when he's involved with the Shield guys. Maybe it's a comfort level thing, maybe their cool rubs off on him, I dunno--- but to me if you wanna get Reigns over, you keep him and Ambrose joined at the hip for 6 months getting eachothers' backs and killing some heel stables together.

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  126. Belee_Matt!_INDEED!!!May 27, 2015 at 8:44 AM

    I think it's good that they paired him more often with Ambrose.

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  127. Belee_Matt!_INDEED!!!May 27, 2015 at 8:47 AM

    One emailer said something about Owens taking over for Lesnar as the monster of WWE, and suddenly "EVERYONE" thinks this is a correct role for him, and he's completely comparable to Brock.


    "EVERYONE"!!!!

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  128. I've been saying for awhile, I don't think that it's he's bad or untalented, it's just a green thing. And he's picking this up insanely fast.

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  129. I'm imagining this in the voice of Archer, which is then followed by you whispering "Danger Zone!"

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  130. "Hey yo Vinnie, they don't got enough hair on the chest! A real man's got some hair on the chest! Hey yo!"

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  131. I though we all joined hands to throw garbage and laugh at that e-mail.

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  132. Belee_Matt!_INDEED!!!May 27, 2015 at 8:48 AM

    We did. That's what I'm saying. Morons like this moron above think we're morons for thinking Owens is Lesnar, except none of us morons said that, so this moron should shut his moron mouth about it.


    Moron.

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  133. Belee_Matt!_INDEED!!!May 27, 2015 at 8:49 AM

    The majority of my day is spent bringing a smile to people's faces.

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  134. On the day of that email I argued with several smart marks about Owen beating Lesnar.

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  135. I liked the guy in the early face Shield run who randomly yelled out "AW SHIT SON!" before the triple powerbomb. The guy who was ready to beat ass. That guy was good.

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  136. I think Bayless is trapping us in this argumentative thread as punishment

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  137. I had a much better argument in my mind when I wrote this, but I still stand by the general thesis.

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  138. Belee_Matt!_INDEED!!!May 27, 2015 at 8:51 AM

    Playing god, I see.

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  139. Stranger In The AlpsMay 27, 2015 at 8:52 AM

    Much like Glacier, Bayless is coming soon.

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  140. Reigns loses "big" matches and he's a loser because winning matches matter and wrestling is real but Owens beating Lesnar, which would be impossible, should happen because wrestling is a work. I have a hard time juxtaposing the two rationales.

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  141. I love that when they did the triple power bomb at Payback the crowd flipped the fuck out and all did the "OOOOAHAHAHAH" noise he makes when he throws his arms up in the air. No matter what people thought of him at the time, they all loved the Shield.

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  142. Worst_in_the_WorldMay 27, 2015 at 8:53 AM

    He's definitely not bad, but I really disagree that it's some automatic "smarks hate everything" bullshit excuse.


    His promos the second he became a singles were uniformly terrible, and his singles matches were pretty bad up until the Bryan Fast Lane match. And his performance at the Rumble was really fucking awful.


    That plus he still has a lot of work to do on finding a likeable persona, in the sense that his WWE promos come off as cornball and his outside WWE persona comes off as pampered "fuck all da haterz" crap.


    Which is to say there is a LOT for people to legitimately dislike about this guy. But within the context of The Shield he comes off way, way better. They need to zone in on what works there, and figure out how to translate it to his singles career when he doesn't have Ambrose and Rollins always propping him up.

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  143. A lot of people didn't like the Reigns push for well thought out reasons. Resenting Vince telling us what to like or Bryan loyalty were too big reasons.

    But we've got a lot of folks that are not only clinging to old arguments but refusing to even acknowledge the possibility of change. It's like when people chant "You can't wrestle" at Cena.

    They treat it like the original narrative is bible law that has no room for change over time.

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  144. Well, you've started off the day on a fine note.

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  145. He had a good singles match with Orton at Summerslam and then he got hurt. What singles matches in particular were bad?

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  146. He feels like he's resurfacing in everything but the scripted promos.

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  147. Probably the 1500 he has had with Kane, who can't drag a good match out Kane!?!?!?

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  148. He was good there. He made sense. Nobody was clamoring for Robert Gibson to get world title bouts with Flair. They'd have been great matches, but not box office.

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  149. It's not so much "Smarks hate everything" as it is "Smarks pick a narrative and stick to it."

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  150. Winners and losers definitely matter in terms of building someone's credibility. You can't have someone lose all the time and expect them to be a really big deal in main events. I don't think that contradicts that idea that Owens could beat Lesnar, because people CAN beat Brock Lesnar. Angle did it, Eddie did it.

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  151. Worst_in_the_WorldMay 27, 2015 at 8:57 AM

    But dude, you're just waving off tons of legit reasons why fans turned on Reigns. Tell me, what was likeable about him after the Shield split?
    His promos as a singles were completely terrible. It wasn't just one jack and the beanstalk promo, it was months of cringeworthy shit.
    His singles matches were pretty bad up until the Bryan match, and the Rumble performance in particular was awful. He laid around and did nothing for 99% of the biggest match of his career.

    And outside of his corny WWE persona, his public interviews almost seemed designed to make him disliked, with all his entitled "fuck all the haters" stuff.

    So tell me, why was it wrong for fans to start turning on him? What was good about Roman Reigns post-Shield that everyone was missing? It's not the fans job to go out of their way to root for someone, it's the wrestler and the company's job to give fans a reason to like them.

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  152. I'm not saying it's impossible to book it to happen, Eddie got booked to a satisfying win after all. But the idea that Brock and Owens are equals is laughable RoHbot jerking off.

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  153. I thought it was en vogue to like Reigns now after having good matches on ppv's and getting his ass kicked my brock. I thought he kinda win over a lot of people.

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  154. Worst_in_the_WorldMay 27, 2015 at 9:00 AM

    Aside from the finishing sequence, I thought that Summerslam match was boring as hell. Then from his return up until the Bryan match, Reigns pretty much just had plodding terrible TV matches with Big Show and Kane every week. Which yeah, those weren't the right opponents to make him look good, but nevertheless those were the matches we had to watch.

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  155. Another problem with Reigns (and, frankly, everyone in wrestling): he's already been around for two years. Week after week--except for the injury hiatus--Roman Reigns has been just another part of the show. Daniel Bryan's been there that long. So has Bray Wyatt & Cesaro. Dolph Ziggler's been around for longer than Hulk Hogan was WWF champion.

    Back in the day a guy entered a promotion, was around for a while, then moved on to another promotion to be seen by new crowds. Maybe you hung around a couple years. A truly top guy who actually drew money--they might have the most longevity. Even someone who stayed in one place for years was usually cycled in-and-out of the picture. Promoters took care not to let guys get stale. Wrestling today, a guy is introduced into the mix, and suddenly they're just there every week for the next two or three years.

    So imagine you're watching a regular TV show, and they introduce a new supporting character. For the next couple seasons that character gets his few minutes of story/character time every episode. Suddenly that supporting character gets elevated to being the focus of the show, despite there being no storyline justification for it. Maybe it works because the fans like the character, maybe not because they don't, or perhaps they're just apathetic because he's already been there every week for two years and they just don't care.

    Everyone in wrestling gets overexposed. The way you compensate for this is by either having great writing, or you present wrestling itself as more like a legitimate sport. When wins & losses and championships matter then everyone has a shot at being more relevant longer by winning. But when wrestling becomes this thing that is the same every week, blandly written with the literal goal of filling 5+ hours of TV time each week, it becomes a herculean effort to make viewers care for more than a small handful of characters, and after a year or two most just hit a wall--a peak level of interest where it doesn't really matter what you do anymore, the fans are just tired of seeing them.

    This is what's wrong with Roman Reigns. Give him the belt, don't give him the belt--it doesn't matter anymore. Until you turn him heel, change his look, do something that literally makes him a new character fans aren't going to be any more interested in him than they are right now.

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  156. Disagree, the right story or opponent can invigorate a character.

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  157. You can, and you will.

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  158. I think it's definitely split now. Almost unanimous (almost) around Rumble time, but I think he's won many oover, and many others are just like "Nah, I don't feel it, he doesn't click with me".

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  159. Pre UFC Lesnar lost matches like the ones you mentioned. And I understand you're point about winning matches to build a storyline or character, like Post UFC Lesnar, but when I hear things like Lugar not winning the big one or Reigns not winning the big one, I mean, this isn't real sports. Reigns losing doesn't have any bearing on his future character.

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  160. Shelton BenjaminMay 27, 2015 at 9:05 AM

    DAILY THREAD

    DAILY THREAD

    DAILY THREAD

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  161. Worst_in_the_WorldMay 27, 2015 at 9:05 AM

    But again dude, you're saying that and just waving off all the legitimate reasons that fans had to dislike Roman.
    His matches were poor, and "one mediocre to ok match at Summerslam" isn't reason enough for fans to get behind someone to world champ and main event level. Nevermind that on TV every week he was having really bad matches with Big Show and Kane.
    PLUS the fact that his Rumble performance-- the match that needed to be the defining performance of his singles push--- was terrible at worst and lazy/unmemorable at best.

    PLUS his promos were some of the worst ever for months on end. And his persona outside of WWE in real interviews seemed almost designed to turn him heel.



    So again, why are fans supposed to root for THAT guy? You know, the one who's not having good matches, who is giving bad promos, whose character seems to have no conviction or definition, and who hasn't been involved in any hot feuds/programs. Why are fans smarky or blindly "picking a narrative and sticking to it" in that situation?

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  162. And I'm juxtaposing people saying Owens could win because work compared to Reigns or Lugar can't win the big one because real. Which is something I've heard frequently throughout time, and like I said it sounded a lot better before I wrote that OP.

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  163. That's what I said: you compensate for the apathy/overexposure by having great writing.

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  164. He’s definitely having better matches, but that’s not enough
    to make me *care*. I accept that John Cena rarely has a match below
    three stars on PPV, but that’s not enough to make me care. Every match Dock
    Muraco posts is five stars, it’s not enough to make me *care*. It’s
    about characters and personalities and he hasn’t got enough of one. He can pop
    the crowd when he calls Big Show a bitch, but I’m not 11 years old and that’s
    not enough either.

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  165. Maybe I'm not being the best at explaining what I mean.

    Fans had every right to turn on him around the Rumble. What bothers me is the inability to notice that he's been improving. A lot of the time when he's discussed it's still only the pre-WM points that get brought up, like no new evidence is ever admissible in this case.

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  166. I agree. I think WWE thinks they're doing right by keeping Reigns with the Shield music and entrance, and now reverting him more to his old role to hide his weaknesses. But, it just makes him boring to me. And judging by how crowds reacts, I think most are similar.

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  167. Your last paragraph doesn't really say that.

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  168. Im just going by what I read or who is posting. One guy a couple weeks ago said he said Reigns sucked and he was gang raped by some BOD A Listers. And no one got his back. I thought the that tied turned for the good 'ol juggernaut.

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  169. I'd chalk it up to motivation by association. He has a past with these guys, so even though it's not being tremendously well written, the fans see those guys together in the ring and it triggers something in their minds. These guys were partners--practically brothers. What now? It gives the fans something to hang their interest on.

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  170. Joey Jo-Jo Junior ShabbadooMay 27, 2015 at 9:11 AM

    Am I allowed to think Reigns has indeed improved and will likely continue to do so, and yet still not like him?

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  171. I think there is a correlation though. People didn't make the Luger thing up. He was put in title matches and once he didn't win them, eventually his heat dropped and his drawing power fizzled away. It was a demonstrable thing. Sometimes there is a right time and a place, and sometimes there's a shelf life for when something needs to peak. Punk was always a star, but he wasn't a mega star because he didn't get the right push at the end of 2011. Timing can matter.

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  172. You can't take all the positions at once! That's cheating!

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  173. Joey Jo-Jo Junior ShabbadooMay 27, 2015 at 9:13 AM

    He's like the guy in his twenties still walking around in his high school letterman's jacket.

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  174. I think we just like gang raping

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  175. That's where I am, so no.

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  176. Worst_in_the_WorldMay 27, 2015 at 9:13 AM

    I dunno, I think even just looking at the BoD as a sample size, people here are acknowledging taht he's improved since Mania season.

    The thing is though, do you honestly feel like WWE and Reigns have given fans enough reason to really love the guy at #1 star in the company level? See to me that's the issue.

    Yeah I think Reigns is improved and all, but I'm not particularly blown away by any aspect of his game, and I'm not pulled into him as a character.

    John Cena and Batista in 2005 had a uniqueness and greatness about them, and/or were involved in super hot stories that I cared about. So they pulled me in, and a lot of the fanbase, to root for them as the top guy. Punk in 2011 had that, with amazing promos/matches/persona. Same with Daniel Bryan in 2013/14. His ring work was off teh charts exciting, his character was well defined, his promos were engaging.

    What about Roman Reigns is GREAT right now? Yes he's improved, but what about his matches/promos/character/story is so great that the fanbase should get behind him as THE guy worthy of THE push?
    If you can't answer that, then you really shouldn't be ragging on fans who don't want to see him as the #1 guy.

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  177. But yeah I agree.

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  178. Work has already sucked cock. Where Terry Taylor?

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  179. That's exactly what I'm talking about though. You were talking earlier about how he's gotten better the last few months but you're using the examples from his atrocious Dec-Mar. It's like refusing to admit new evidence to be examined. So for a lot of people the narrative stays exactly as it did in February with no hope of changing.

    And to be fair he was ATROCIOUS during Dec-Feb.

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  180. Joey Jo-Jo Junior ShabbadooMay 27, 2015 at 9:18 AM

    I just wish we could all go back to liking and disliking whatever we wanted without being psychoanalyzed and told why we're not allowed to hold that opinion.

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  181. That involves turning off the wi-fi, I think.

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  182. Specifically, no, not the last paragraph. There I note that you have to freshen Reigns so that he seems new again. Good writing might accomplish that. Without it there is no "right opponent" that would be enough.

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  183. I see an impeccable sense of comeback timing and crisp finishing sequences that glue my eyes to the TV. His in ring mannerisms and little things are expertly done now.

    I'm not saying he needs to be tippy top guy but for a lot of debates here it feels like it's mid February and everybody waves their hands at the progression.

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  184. Hanging out with Hector Guerrero.

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  185. Worst_in_the_WorldMay 27, 2015 at 9:22 AM

    That's along lines of something i say below. Yes, I acknowledge that he's improving in the ring and that his promos are a million times less cringeworthy than they were in the Fall/Winter/Spring. (Though he also isn't really cutting long solo promos right now, so...) So yes, Reigns has improved.

    But nevertheless... tell me why I'm supposed to love this guy? Like, we're not handing out a "Most Improved" little league trophy here, WWE is hoping to get this guy over at the level of #1 star in wrestling. So what about Roman Reigns has been great to THAT level?

    His ring work isn't meant to be the same as a Bryan/Punk, obviously. But if he's a power guy, where are the amazing feats of strength to wow me the way cena and Cesaro are able to do? It's telling that the biggest pop he gets for a wrestling spot is when another guy helps him powerbomb someone.

    And yes he's not doing Jack in the beanstalk promos, but is he doing really funny or engaging promos every week that are more entertaining than anyone else on the roster? I mean for example, Rusev just this Monday did a promo that absolutely blew away anything Roman has ever done. Rusev showed greatness there. Reigns, despite improving, never has.

    And what the hell is Reigns' character and mission? Why should fans be behind him?

    Again, I get that Reigns is improving. Good for him. But what is great about him right now?

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  186. Well Lugar not once was booked like Reigns was at Mania. Reigns loses, but looks like a trillion dollars. Lugar, with the exception MAYBE of the GAB 88, always looked bad after losing title matches.

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  187. Don't see why not. As long as he's given a fair chance instead of a knee jerk hatred, that's all anybody can ask.

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  188. dssdvsdvsdv

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  189. Yeah, it's definitely too soon to say he's Luger'd. But the risk is there. There's a certain point where you wouldn't be able to sell a fight with Reigns challenging if he consistently comes up short. But since he's never had a 1 on 1 fight yet (not one that ended 1 on 1 at least), he's definitely not there yet.

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  190. Joey Jo-Jo Junior ShabbadooMay 27, 2015 at 9:25 AM

    Reigns, like Orton, is a fine midcard act. But, much like Orton, it's clear that WWE expects more from him and will continue to pursue a main event role for him no matter what. He's not Mason Ryan-level bad or anything, and he's clearly growing into the singles role, but he does nothing for me as a fan. He's just...there.

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  191. ...speaking of sucking cock.

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  192. I think John Cena being bigger than the title itself is a huge problem with this era and is something to be fixed not cultivated. That said they tried to achieve that by putting it on Lesnar but totally botched the other half of the equation by booking Reigns like shit for months leading up to it.

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