The Stomping Ground: Year-End Retrospective

Ladies and gentlemen, I know you’ve been clamoring for my return for many months…..and I’m more than happy to oblige. Welcome back to The Stomping Ground!

I know that when last we spoke, I had promised the return of a special guest. Rest assured that we chatted about a reunion about a month ago, but conflicting schedules have made it difficult to coordinate. I fully intend to keep my promise, but it will unfortunately not come to fruition in this particular column. This week, I figured I’d touch upon the goings-on in the business of professional wrestling since my extended absence. Without further ado, I present my thoughts on all things rasslin’ for the last three months.

Daniel Bryan: A lot of people were up in arms about Bryan’s perceived removal from the main event scene. I still maintain that he is just being pushed to the side until the Road to Wrestlemania season, when more eyes will be glued to the TV and therefore a greater chance for exposure. Besides, the crowd is still ridiculously in love with this guy and I don’t see that waning any time soon. His feud with the Wyatts only makes them more prominent by association, which is most certainly a positive any way you slice it.

The Authority: I’m still not sure how I feel about this. Clearly they are heels, but at times they seem to play to the audience. With Randy Orton playing the whiny bitch, it only muddles the situation further. I think this is a product of poor planning simply because this storyline is developing during a period of low interest (it’s football season, after all) and therefore Triple H and Stephanie are in “Character Development Hell” until after the holidays.

The Year of the Six-Man Tag: Thanks to the incredible talents of The Shield, we received a full year of amazing six-man tag team matches that could easily be in contention for Match of the Year. I don’t recall ever seeing a trio that worked so well together from the moment they entered the public’s consciousness. By extension, we now actually have a decent tag team division. Remember when everyone thought the ascension of Team Hell No would lead to a rebirth of the tag team division and I was hesitant to agree? Well, now I’m a believer….and it has nothing to do with Bryan and Kane.

TNA: You know, despite the fact that my musings are almost entirely focused on WWE, I do dwell on TNA from time to time. I don’t watch Impact at all but I do read up on reviews of the show and all the TNA news I can find, so I’m not completely biased. It’s a shame that the company has fallen on such hard times, but that’s what you get when you have shoddy management. From rumors of a buyout, to a return to tapings in Florida, to the recent reveal that Jeff Jarrett has essentially severed his ties with the company he was responsible for founding, the trend of bad news continues to trickle in. It’s almost as bad as watching a pop star meltdown. Unfortunately, I predict the end of TNA in 2014.

Cody Rhodes and Goldust: While I’m all for nostalgia, I’m not as excited as some of you for the team known as the Brotherhood (which makes them seem rather heelish). I think it’s rather interesting how often they lose their matches despite being Tag Team Champions. I know it’s to make the other teams look like contenders, but when was the last time a pair of champions was made to look so weak? I like Cody’s potential but I just don’t see any real excitement in their rumored match at Wrestlemania.

The New Blood: Of course, I am referring to the influx of talent that has seemingly taken over here at the Pulse. Jeff Heatherly has certainly courted controversy with his Guys and Divas, and while I don’t agree with his opinion on the state of the Divas’ division, I enjoy his enthusiasm and passion for what he loves about the business. CH Punk and his column, Forever Heel, has a lot of potential. I like how he occasionally gets into character as a heel when discussing current events and his retrospectives on heels of the past. Wrestling Facts has had some amusing “factoids” in his timeline series; keep up the good work! John Kincaid‘s Creative Control provides a fresh perspective on armchair booking and “What If?” scenarios. Finally, I’d be remiss if I didn’t mention David Spain‘s fantastic Smackdown recaps. As I’ve stated before, he has my total blessing to take over where I left off; he’s witty and a chip off the old block.

Well, that about wraps up my thoughts here. I’ll be popping up from time to time with new columns, but they probably won’t be every week or even during my regular Thursday time slot. I guess you could call this semi-retirement, similar to how Harrak, Sawyer, Blair, and CB show their ugly mugs from time to time. Lazy bastards.

Happy New Year, and, as usual….

So long, and thanks for all the fish.

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , ,