The WWE found itself smack dab in the middle of a different world last week. Thanks to an NBA personality from ESPN, Amin Elhassan, poking fun at Kevin Owens’ son celebrating his father winning the Universal Championship, WWE Twitter met NBA Twitter and nearly all of Twitter melted down in such a scorching way that it nearly resulted in some opening up their MySpace pages.
More on that fun stuff in a minute.
As for the rest of last week, it was all sunshine, rainbows and gravy. A new Universal Champion, Heath Slater is still being pushed (we think), and there are few reasons to be dissatisfied with the WWE’s product.
As for this week, come with me on a journey. A safe voyage, I promise, in which we ask the WWE to answer specific questions that happen to be on our minds.
You’re Going To Let Kevin Owens Go In On Amin Elhassan, Right?
To get something out of the way first, as honesty is the best policy: I am familiar with Elhassan’s work, enjoy it and think he is terrific at his job covering the NBA.
With that being said, I am in the minority camp who think he did no actual wrong on Twitter by poking fun at Owens’ son. Was it the best look in the history of the world? Of course not, but media people — of varying successes — poke fun at non-famous fans all the time and it is almost always met with zero backlash.
Hell, no one held any scorn for the people who poked fun at the Villanova band player who was crying a few years back. Instead it became an accepted meme.
Most of me believes that this is a thing other sports fans go through. I love this thing, you don’t, so I hate you. Or, the I love what I love and will protect it at all costs.
Anyway, I do think the WWE should let their new Universal Champion use what Elhassan said to his advantage.
While we aren’t entirely sure who turned face, or heel, or if anyone turned at all on Monday, this provides Owens a chance to have his Stone Cold Steve Austin at the King of the Ring 3:16 promo moment. He’s a man incredibly gifted with his vocabulary, and he obviously loves his son, so it would be natural to let Elhassan’s tweets fuel a good promo.
Also, even though Elhassan apologized, let’s be honest about it — he really didn’t need to.
Are We Getting The Triple H Explanation This Week?
This has the potential to be the WWE’s biggest storyline in a very, very long time. In fact, I’d argue — if done properly — this can help shift the WWE back into the hearts and minds of those fans they lost when the company transitioned from the Attitude Era to the PG counter.
There are several theories as to why HHH came to wreak havoc on Raw.
Some are sane, such as him feeling bitter over Stephanie McMahon not hurling him into the title match(es) or choosing him over Mick Foley. Though, I have to mention that my personal favorite — one which I completely made up — is that Seth Rollins was having a storyline affair with Stephanie.
The only basis I have for that is due to Rollins saying “we had many great nights before, but tonight will be the best” to Stephanie on the previous edition of Raw. So, yeah… that’s me recklessly speculating that we are about to get a Days of Our Lives angle.
Another play on this can be a kinship between Owens and Hunter, or a random deep-seeded hatred for Rollins using his finisher, or a billion other things.
No matter what it is, let’s hope we get answers Monday.
Where, If Anywhere, Will Luke Harper and Bo Dallas Fit In?
Reports are out that say Harper is close to returning and that Dallas is done with his punishment for being tipsy at an airport — which, well, I always thought was a mandate while being at an airport.
Where do either of these guys fit when they return? Dallas can return to T.V. as early as this week. Harper’s return is just being reported as happening “soon.”
A HUGE part of my soul wants to see the WWE acknowledge Bo is Bray Wyatt’s brother (they are in real life), and have both he and Luke re-form a more solid version of the Wyatt Family on SmackDown Live. Wyatt is immensely talented and could succeed on his own, but Harper is a talent with a slew of potential that many fear will go untapped if he’s not aligned with Wyatt.
Not to mention that Dallas is also stupid talented, and wasting him in jobber angle is just plain dumb.
Will You (WWE) Please Let The Miz Continue With This?
The Miz has been all the fire emojis the last two weeks. All… of… them.
It also makes sense that last week he pulled back a bit after Dolph Ziggler called him a coward. We can’t have the immediate Miz-is-not-a-coward payoff a week into the angle.
There is a fear with this angle, though. That the WWE will either try to repackage The Miz into being something he’s not, or they will randomly stop allowing him to cut shoot-ish promos in the ring.
The last part seems to be the most important. The Miz currently appears to be fully engaged in the product — since he’s not being muddled with off-screen commitments — and his promos have been as good as any other performer’s over the last year.
At the same time, we don’ want The Miz to look too weak heading into his feud with Ziggler. Play up the coward part for sure, but the endgame here should be to prove that he is not one. We can’t have the WWE overselling his cowardice now, because we won’t buy it at the end.
Will NXT’s Weekly Shows Build New Stars Or Continue To Be Holdovers?
Let me let you in on a dirty little secret: NXT’s weekly shows are mostly trash. The TakeOver events might as well be renamed WrestleMania or whatever, but for all the praise the developmental federation gets for being a great alternative to main roster programming, each weekly episode is exactly the same.
No. I am being serious. We get one-two squash matches, one or two ho-hum promos, a TON of non-NXT related propaganda/commercials, and MAYBE one good match per week.
Save for already established international stars, how is the WWE going to build fan bases for the superstars of tomorrow if all they ever do is beat Local Jobber X?
With the roster currently going through a huge transition phase, which should set in a sense of urgency (something the WWE operates well under), it will be interesting to see if NXT is booked in a more must-see way moving forward.