A question is posed. Two Pulse Wrestling writers go head-to-head. But only one will move on to next week to the face off with another member of our staff. This is VS., and this weekâ€™s question isâ€¦ WWE just released Brian Kendrick, and currently does not seem to have a logical place on their roster for junior/cruiserweight wrestlers. What SHOULD WWE do with wrestlers that don’t fit the traditional mold of world heavyweight title contenders?
Dale Clarke: World Wrestling Entertainment has always been a promotion with a very good idea on what they want in a world heavyweight championship contender â€“ tall, large and muscular. Sadly, wrestling ability doesnâ€™t always come into these choices, which does mean that the wrestlers who deserve to be main eventing shows are often left rotting in the mid card.
Brian Kendrick is one of the best examples of this. Kendrick was a man with everything â€“ the talent, dedication and an entertaining gimmick. The one thing he didnâ€™t have was size, and that is the only reason that he was never the massive star that he deserved to be. Which brings us down to the big question â€“ what should WWE do with wrestlers that donâ€™t fit the traditional mold of world championship contenders?
The biggest thing that needs to be done is for WWE to realize that a wrestler doesnâ€™t have to be big to be deserving of the championship. I mean there are a number of small midcard guys that go out week after week and get solid pops from the live crowd, while there are others who go out and get little to no reaction and are still placed in a far better position on the card.
The only solution I see, being that WWE is never going to change its views while Vince McMahon is still running things, is to bring back the WWE Cruiserweight Championship, making it inter-brand in a manner similar to the Unified Tag Team titles. Looking back at 2005 Iâ€™d often look forward to the Cruiserweight matches more than I would the main event. What other division were you likely to see Funaki and Nunzio as the main star?
Have Vince McMahon (because we all know how much he loves to be on screen) officially announce the reintroduction of the Cruiserweight title as an inter-brand title, and hold some form of tournament or an inter-brand open invitational to crown a new champion, and just run with it, allowing them to go out week after week and put on thrill filled matches.
Not only would this give wrestlers like Chavo Guerrero, Jamie Noble, Funaki and Jimmy Yang a purpose again, but with an extra hour of WWE every week in the form of WWE Superstars, there is no better time than right now to reintroduce a division that could provide sleeper hits each and every week.
Good thing the question wasnâ€™t what WILL WWE do. Not sure the answer is Funaki in main events, but I do like the idea of promoting a weight class other than heavyweight, even if on a b-show like Superstars.
Mark Allen: What SHOULD WWE do with wrestlers that don’t fit the traditional mold of world heavyweight title contenders? They should just get over their hang ups on little guys and reinstate the Cruiserweight division. Either a) put it exclusively on the ECW brand, b) exclusively the SmackDown brand or c) make it a company-wide floater title and then let them loose on Superstars. They could go the way of MMA and promote their Cruiserweight Title on the same level as their Heavyweight Title, breaking down the old mantra of “bigger is better.” They could also play it as a World Championship, thus putting it on another level.
But we know they won’t do any of that; it would be too easy. The other very easy option would be just pair them up as tag teams and let them go under the pretenses that they are fighting for a shot at the Unified Titles. But we all know how much WWE cares for tag teams as well and so they would be just in the same spot as before.
It’s sad because WWE has a nice little cruiserweight roster under contract that could compete with the X-Division if they wanted to. They have off the top of my head Evan Bourne, Chavo Guerrero, Tyson Kidd, Jaime Noble, Jimmy Yang, Funaki, Kofi Kingston, Zack Ryder, Curt Hawkins, Yoshi Tatsu and of course top card guys like Rey Mysterio, Christian, Chris Jericho & Jeff Hardy that could rejuvenate the division.
So really what should WWE do with their junior weights? Honestly just try to promote them as world-class athletes with a distinctive character and a believable shot at hanging with the big boys. They’ve made Mysterio, Jericho, Christian and Hardy (all former light weight title holders) into legit main event talents. Shows like ECW and Superstars are going a long way in making these light guys into believable stars. Kofi Kingston is already entrenched in the midcard with the charisma and fanbase to rise up the card with the right push. Evan Bourne is only another upset or two away from being a viable mid-card act that could be pushed up the card as long as they follow the Rey Mysterio formula. And guys like Kidd, Ryder and Tatsu are able to show their talents thanks to long matches on the C and D shows. And Chavo Guerrero is always only about a month away from a rebuilt credibility. Then when the time is right they can promote up to the “big shows” and make them viable characters.
It’s not what I would do with them, but it’s honestly believe what WWE should and will do with them.
I like the idea of different weight classes, a model that UFC is having much success with, but Markâ€™s answer is appealing because it addresses reality with what WWE should do, and provides alternatives to â€œbring back the cruiserweight division.â€ In fact, I think if WWE ever was to bring in an alternate weight class, they should do so, but using the defunct Light Heavyweight Championship (who knows maybe they can even bring X-Pac back to drop the title â€“ ha!). Reason being, with the growth of UFC due to the explosion of its light heavyweight division a few years ago, fans of fights â€“ real or scripted â€“ are used to looking at 205 pounders as legit badasses. The problem of course is that thereâ€™s barely a light heavyweight in WWE who hasnâ€™t been portrayed as a joke for way too long. Letâ€™s talk when WWE has more Evan Bournes and Rey Mysterios and less Chavos and Funakis.
Winner of VS. #25: Mark Allen
Do you agree with Dale or Mark or do you have an entirely different opinion? Let us know in the comments section, below!
Until next timeâ€¦
Tags: brian kendrick, cruiserweights, VS., WWE