Daniel Bryan A Top Star, Providers Helping WWE By Not Carrying PPVs, My Top 6, Early MITB Predictions

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Being that Daniel Bryan is the WWE World Heavyweight Champion, where does he rank now with the decision making in the locker room? Does he have the same amount of influence as John Cena and Randy Orton now?

Daniel Bryan is very high up on the pecking order backstage in WWE, however, he's not known for being vocal. Bryan is known for his humility and going out and letting his work speak for itself. I did hear that he put in a good word for KENTA (who is rumored to be WWE bound). Let me be clear that Vince McMahon knows Bryan is valuable to the company and holds him in high regard. Has he replaced Randy Orton as the "1b" behind John Cena? I think that's a bit premature, however, Bryan is a "main event player" until further notice.

With cable and satellite providers dropping WWE PPVs, I see news reports that WWE may be somewhat concerned, but couldn't this actually work in the favor of the company and push people into signing up for the WWE Network?

This was a point brought up in Thursday's WWE investor conference call as it was mentioned that Dish Network is pointing customers that inquire about WWE pay-per-views to the WWE Network. So here's the scenario. A customer calls Dish and asks why they can't order a WWE pay-per-view for $54.95, they're told to go to WWE.com where they can subscribe to the WWE Network for $9.99/month where the pay-per-views are included. It seems like a no-brainer, however, we have to note that more people ordered Wrestlemania 30 on a traditional basis than expected, pointing to the fact WWE's audience hasn't been as willing to adapt as they thought. I will stress to all of you that it's a much better deal to subscribe to WWE Network than it is to order the pay-per-views on a traditional basis.

I know you usually don't like doing these sort of questions because they can be debated all day long, however, if you were to set up your own promotion and had unlimited funds, what six wrestlers would you start your roster off with and why?

Unlimited funds and six wrestlers. This sounds like a situation where I would be able to go directly at WWE. If I had to pick solely from the current pool of non-committals I would start with The Rock, CM Punk (assuming he doesn't re-sign with WWE in July), Chris Jericho, AJ Styles (assuming he could get out of his NJPW deal), Sting (assuming he could back out of his WWE deal) and Steve Austin (accepting the fact he couldn't wrestle, thus I'd limit his exposure). If I had to pick from the current guys in WWE, I would pick the top names starting with John Cena. I would then follow with Daniel Bryan, Triple H, Randy Orton, Brock Lesnar and probably Hulk Hogan (accepting the fact he couldn't wrestle, thus limiting his exposure. I would also keep him as far away from the creative process as humanly possible. Honestly, I don't even think I would let him in the building until the creative meetings were over). I'm sure I could come up with other combinations but I'd want the biggest draws. Who wouldn't?

With Money in the Bank only a couple of months away, who do you think should win it, how would you have them cash it in?

WWE Money in the Bank is one of my favorite shows of the summer and the match itself is one of my favorite gimmick matches. I would probably go with Bray Wyatt or Cesaro at this point. Both have a huge upside where they could use the opportunity as the "next step." WWE wouldn't be just starting with either as they've already done that so a situation where they would "cash in" wouldn't be underwhelming. I would have either hold the briefcase until SummerSlam, where they would successfully "cash in," carrying WWE into the fall with a fresh new top name.

From the Ask WNW vault…

October 2012: When a WWE worker makes a non-wrestling appearance (e.g. autograph signing, media appearances, etc.) does the company instruct them to appear in or out of character? - WWE workers have a lot of freedom in media interviews but there are directives that come down from the office. Obviously the company doesn’t want stars leaking storylines and generally speaking, they want the focal point of the interview to promote the product. We’ve seen it all – from Randy Orton completely shooting on Kelly Kelly to Sheamus constantly remaining in-character during media appearances. John Cena is known for focusing on the product in-character and is seen as the best promotional mouthpiece they have. Speaking from experience, when I’ve done interviews with workers alongside radio anchors, the radio station has met with company officials to let them know to keep it clean. My biggest pet peeve with interviews (and why I don’t do many of them) is workers using them to put themselves over rather than actually answering the questions. Kind of like what we saw with the Presidential debate on Tuesday night, where the candidates would be asked a question, but skirt around it to get to their approved campaign rhetoric.

The next installment of Ask WNW is scheduled to run on Monday, May 5, 2014.

Remember questions that are legible stand the best chance of getting answered. Check out the Ask WNW archive at this link.

You can submit a question for the next installment of Ask WNW at this link. If you have problems with the form, you can send your question to [email protected].

  • BIG M

    My pick MITB match winner this year for now is Bad News Barrett.
    But that could change quick hell he might not even be in the match.

    • I love Bad News Barrett, so I wouldn’t argue that.

      • Venom

        I have a feeling Bad News Barrett will turn face by the summer.

      • Geordie_Dolph

        I like Barrett but I’m English and rather biased towards him

  • DWC

    You made me laugh so hard with the Hulk Hogan comment. Lock the doors and keep Hogan out, and then once the show starts let him in. Very funny stuff. Great job today.

    • Hah thanks. Friday is a more light-hearted day for Ask WNW

  • Tony Rankin

    In my opinion Daniel Bryan is the 1b behind John Cena. I’m not sure how much merch Orton is pushing or who exactly says “I can’t wait to see Randy Orton tonight!” But there’s no way it’s way more than Daniel Bryan. Now when it comes to Orton’s salary on the other hand…

    • Randy has ton of haters but I still see a lot of value in him.

      • opie

        Girlfriend’s kid wanted to go to Raw to see Cena. She took him so she could see Orton. That’s why Orton still has value. Smarks may go for Bryan, but kids are going for Cena and women are going for Orton.

        • Mysterion

          And he gets zero reaction

          • PHATBOYLBC

            just like you

          • Mysterion

            Really? Back again? How marvellous. Look, just do the guys on here a favour and stop trying to antagonise me. You can like your own posts all you want to make out other people agree and no doubt go on a rant about a made up job and a diploma a trained giraffe could earn in a ten minute session. So just go sit down somewhere and assess why you feel it’s worth your time, you being such a hugely successful person and all, trolling a wrestling website and trying to antagonise people.

        • Guest


      • Tony Rankin

        I actually don’t hate Randy Orton, I really liked him when he first adopted the viper gimmick that made him unstable and kinda scary. Punting peoples heads in and foaming at the mouth, but I’m not sure if it was his humbling or the shift in the product that killed his momentum but his luster was long gone after that for me.

  • Venom

    I dunno though. Do we really want wrestlers we like to see on TV holding the MITB briefcase? Last few world championship ones have been cursed. One of them wore a magneto costume on RAW!

    • I don’t think the value has diminished despite what we saw from Sandow on Raw. They just changed their mind on him.

      • Venom

        I just feel likeMITB is the new King of the Ring. After ziggler and sandow I feel that has changed. The match itself is great. I love annual multiman matches like this and the rumble. I just wish a new star wins it and takes it to the next level like Miz only with better result.

  • Anthony

    I LOVE the idea of Bray winning the MITB contract. There would be an ominous cloud hanging over all of WWE. The Authority, the announcers, even the superstars themselves could all be concerned with the possibility of having someone like Bray Wyatt holding the company’s most prestigious title and potentially being “the face of the company.” Having him win would be a BRILLIANT move. Damn, I really wish you were part of the creative team at WWE, Richard.

  • Guest

    Girlfriend’s kid wanted to go to Raw to see Cena. She took him so she could see Orton. That’s why Orton still has value.

    • J Vomkrieg

      I have a friend who is a huge Randy Orton for the same reason.

      He is quite fond of him as are many of his friends.

  • Brandon van Reenen

    Sucks that there will only be 1 MITB match… 🙁

    • David F

      you could still do 2 MITB matches to split back the titles. I am in favor of splitting the titles back because the WHC can give upper mid card guys chance to prove themselves. MITB would be perfect time to split the titles back

      • Brandon van Reenen

        I agree. I’ve always felt the reason the WHC belt is still around is in case there may be a split. But yes, to be honest I enjoyed looking forward to two world title matches on PPV, even with a poorly booked WHC feud. Now guys like Sheamus, Barrett, Ziggler and Christian have SQUAT to go after. And that WHC would have looked great on Barrett right about now.

        • David F

          Exactly a WHC title run would be great for Barrett and he could elavate the WHC title. Even though 2 mitb matches is overkill I would like to see 2 this year to split back the titles and you can have Bryan drop both belts around SummerSlam.

          • Brandon van Reenen

            Sounds like a plan. The only other possible match I can see splitting the titles is a TLC/Ladder match where the superstars need to grab both titles meaning each wrestler could potentially grab one.

  • TheDeadOwl

    The MITB would be a perfect time to really get the ball rolling on a full fledged Cesaro face turn. I could see a scenario where around that time Brock is champ, cesaro wins MITB, then over the next few weeks/months you can build tension between Brock, Cesaro and Heyman. Have Cesaro eventually cash in on Brock and turn on Heyman.

  • Mysterion

    Could the reason more people chose to order the PPV in the traditional method be a lack of trust? NXT Arrival had one mess up but it still messed up. If WrestleMania had messed up… Wow? What if the feed cut on that third F5 and you missed the fall? Or on D Bry making Dave tap? Or on Camerons shirt flying off? The WWE audience would be livid!

  • Scottyo614

    Richard, being a West Va. guy you have to know people who still don’t have phone service in some areas or Internet is too expensive to get out to their house. I know of several people who don’t have Internet still so in that case it makes you have to buy a ppv to watch.

  • kavon

    I do believe he replace orton as 1b guy. Orton is not interesting as he was 5 years ago. Bryan is already 2nd in terms of sales behind cena.

    • Padres4life

      he should be 1A….i mean what was the point of beating Evolution at WM by himself? Cena never did that.

      • kavon


  • BigMike

    My 6 Wrestlers? Cena, Bryan, AMbrose, STyles, Rollins, Cesaro, Zayn. sorry that is 7 lol

  • Padres4life

    they still consider Orton “1B” since when? he hasn’t been relevant in years, even when he was just champion.Since when do 1B’s lose viewership on a weekly basis? Bryan has surpassed his stock by a mile.

  • Gor

    So no1 is interested in any1 from TNA ?
    Not even JOE or Angle or evn Hardy ?

  • monty

    Wyatt doesn’t need a MITB, but having that brief case be carried by his goons and him not even caring could be a sight to be seen

  • Robert Olley

    I’m hoping barrett wins the mitb mostly so we can get a i’ve got some bad news shirt

  • J Vomkrieg

    Heh, I asked the “unlimited funds and 6 wrestlers” question back 3-4 years ago.

    At the time, Richard was a lot more charitable towards TNA.

    He picked John Cena, Big Show, Randy Orton, Kurt Angle, AJ Styles and CM Punk I believe. (I know the first 5 are correct, not 100% sure on Punk)