After years of the WWE running the same shows with the same superstars, the WWE Universe has begun to turn on the company and reject the tired storylines and overused angles that have become a staple of the previous era in wrestling.
The WWE is reportedly ready to push a whole new crop of fresh stars to the main-event level, shaking up the title scenes and ushering in a new wrestling renaissance.
F4WOnline.com is reporting via Wrestling Inc. about who the WWE has pegged as the next wave of main-event stars:
We noted on Tuesday that WWE officials that Wade Barrett and Dolph Ziggler are now ready for the "big time" main event booking, Ziggler more than Barrett. Regarding current United States Champion Antonio Cesaro, the feeling is that it will take a long time to really get him over but when he is over all the way, it's going to be very strong. Their mindset is that Cesaro can win some and lose some along the way to the top and it won't hurt him in the long run.
Add the news of a huge push for Dolph Ziggler (currently in the midst of becoming a world champion), Wade Barrett (ready for a world title before his elbow injury) and Antonio Cesaro (has the support of many in the backstage area) to the meteoric rise of Ryback and the emergence of The Shield, and the WWE landscape has already drastically changed over the last three months.
And it’s only going to get better for the hardcore fans ready for a seismic shift in programming.
How This Helps WWE
While none of these hungry stars will help the creative team come up with better storylines or learn how to properly book superstars, the fact that new blood will be in the main-event scene is a pleasant and welcomed change.
It is obvious that Ziggler and Barrett are already on the cusp on being top stars in the company, and the huge push for Ryback in the WWE Title scene proves that even the officials in the back are ready for an infusion of new talent around the main event.
It’s about time; the WWE Universe has been screaming for change for too long.
With ratings falling to all new lows (h/t NoDQ.com), the company has no choice but try to make drastic changes to the main-event scene right now.
The one ace up the company’s sleeve in this whole situation is The Rock.
While some fans scoff at the idea of an older part-time superstar like The Rock winning the WWE Title, he will guarantee huge ratings for the programming he is on.
That opens the door for the WWE to be more creative in the world heavyweight championship scene because of the lack of fear about two fresher stars not being able to carry the company.
With The Rock wearing the WWE title, if the company wanted to feud Ziggler against Barrett for the WHC, it would be able to maintain its ratings because of the presence of a bona-fide legend and build two viable championship-caliber stars in the meantime.
It would be win-win situation.
Question on Everybody's Mind: Will the WWE Follow Through With These Plans?
If you have been watching WWE programming over the last month, it has become blatantly clear that company is already in the midst of a renaissance in terms of new talent being pushed to the main-event level.
While this started all the way back when CM Punk first dropped his initial pipe bomb and through Daniel Bryan’s heavyweight title run, this has been a slow process of transformation for the WWE.
We’re not in the PG Era anymore; this is the Reality Era.
From the emergence of The Shield—a group made up of three unproven wrestlers that WWE is banking on to become huge stars—to the continued push for Ziggler with John Cena, the company is already moving the fresher talent to the front of the line and continuing the transition to a different era.
As much as some fans want to complain about the way Ziggler is being booked, the fact that a star of his stature is in a feud with the face of the WWE is an enormous rub. While Ziggler hasn’t won the title yet, he’s already a main-event star.
The same goes for Barrett. While the WWE Universe feels he is getting wasted in a meaningless feud with Kofi Kingston, the English star’s ascension to the top is coming; the fans must show just a bit more patience when it comes to main-event pushes.
That patience will be especially needed for those expecting a meteoric rise to the top for Antonio Cesaro.
While it is clear from the way they protected Cesaro against Sheamus on SmackDown that they love what the young star can offer, they will give him ample time to develop in the mid-card before making the move to the main event.
Merit Meter: 5 out of 5 Changes Already in Progress
While some will always question the leadership of Vince McMahon and his decision making, allowing Triple H to take over as the vice president of the talent relations has given the company a new hope.
The WWE continues to take risks with younger or unproven stars—just like Ryback and The Shield—and it has paid off exponentially. With a newfound devotion to building new stars, the company now just needs the midcard storylines to maximize each character’s potential.
That’s where taking more advice comes in handy.
McMahon has never been known as a man that takes advice from outsiders, but Triple H is different. While there is little doubt that the ring veteran still has an old-school approach to the business, he still has his finger on the pulse of the modern-day wrestling fan.
As we have seen with the transformation of NXT into a glorified minor-league system, the WWE is trying to sign young talent with tons of potential. While they don’t all work, it’s great to see that the company is allowing the younger stars to experiment and explore their characters.
Just as we’ve seen with The Shield, the WWE has faith in its next generation of superstars.
As much as the emergence of new stars into the main-event scene will be exciting for the hardcore fans of wrestling, there are still major question marks around how the WWE books on a week-to-week basis.
If the WWE doesn’t give these wrestlers the proper main-event run during their reported push, they will be relegated back to the midcard with the assumption that they can’t draw as a top star.
No matter how much Ziggler sells or how great Barrett’s promos are, if the WWE doesn’t make them look like viable champions with a storyline fans can care about, all of their talent will go to waste.
While fans can like or dislike Ryback all they want, the WWE is handling his character ideally if they are trying to get him over as a WWE Title threat.
As of three months ago, Ryback was squashing two local jobbers and now the majority of the WWE Universe can buy him winning the title at some point.
That’s the power of a proper push.
Let’s hope Ziggler, Barrett, Cesaro, The Shield and the rest of our favorite overlooked stars get the Ryback treatment instead of the Jack Swagger push of doom.
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