Mentioning Vladimir Putin, Adam Rose's Entourage, Kurt Angle's Future, Disruptive Crowds

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Do you think WWE might get some heat for mentioning Vladimir Putin in Lana's promos due to the situation in Ukraine?

WWE drew a reaction for mentioning Vladimir Putin at Extreme Rules but that's why they did it. Putin is controversial not only due to the tense situation in Ukraine but also with his anti-gay laws in Russia. Given the fact he's one of the most powerful men in the world, most people know who he is so it was a good way to generate cheap heat for Alexander Rusev. Eric Bischoff wrote controversy creates cash and all WWE was trying to do was to get people talking about Rusev.

Who are all those people in Adam Rose's party entourage?

WWE called in local talent to appear as part of Adam Rose's entourage. The company routinely books "call-ins" for such roles, checking the local independent scene as well as with talent and modeling agencies. Speaking of the debut of Adam Rose, I hope the person that asked the question about his debut in Monday's Ask WNW was pleasantly surprised.

Do you think Kurt Angle will return to the WWE?

I've gone on record numerous times in writing that I believe Kurt Angle would welcome an opportunity to return to WWE, I just don't know if the opportunity will be there. It seems to be a given that Angle is departing TNA when his contract expires in the fall but Global Force Wrestling is expected to make a play for his services. Angle is one of the greatest in-ring workers of all-time, however, I have to think his next contract, if it is a performer's agreement, will include limited appearances/matches.

Have there been many times where the wrestlers have to ignore the reaction of the crowd during a match and play to the TV audience?

There are situations all the time where wrestlers, announcers and other on-air personalities have to ignore the crowd and play to the television audience. While crowd reactions ultimately dictate booking, there is no way to control a crowd. The Albany crowd on Monday night was particularly bad for this week's Raw. While they would sometimes seem engaged and hot, there would be random moments where they'd burst into a "CM PUNK" chant. Now before anyone comments by writing they pay for their ticket, they can chant what they want. I'm not disputing that. I just want a clear response as to why one would feel the need to do it? Punk quit WWE over 3 months ago. Vince McMahon did everything he could to get him back for Wrestlemania and still isn't giving up hope. The chants, however, have become like nails on a chalk board. It's time to get over it and if you're that upset about it, no chant is as bold as no longer watching and no longer attending. However, to buy a ticket with the sole purpose of chanting for a performer that quit three months ago seems rather ridiculous to me.

From the Ask WNW vault…

May 2012: What type of backstage influence to guys like Kane and Christian have? - Veterans always have more backstage influence than the younger guys. Not only is the respect level higher amongst their co-workers but their opinions also carry more weight with company officials. How big a star a worker is gauges how much influence that particular worker has. As you can imagine someone like John Cena or CM Punk has considerable stroke over someone like Tyler Reks or Curt Hawkins.

The next installment of Ask WNW is scheduled to run on Wednesday, May 7, 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].

  • Splash

    So sick of the CM Punk chants, I was at Extreme Rules and we heard them and a bunch of us chanted, he walked out. I mean enough already, Chant we want Ziggler if you are chanting “Cm Punk” because you want something different

    • Xavier

      Lol I like that. Now that’s a chant worth chanting

  • sam

    Chatting for punk is basically like sh*tting on the workers in the ring working. Even if you don’t care for those workers in the ring currently working the match, it’s not fair to those workers. I do hope punk comes back but come on people.

  • jason witten 82

    Cm punk! Cm punk! Cm punk! Cm punk! Let’s go cena! Cena sucks! Honestly I see your point about the chants but really, who cares? Maybe the fans are trying to lure him back by showing they still love him? Eh, again, who cares though?

  • Bryan

    I seriously doubt that is the “sole reason” they buy a ticket. They are fans, they want to have a good time. Sure its annoying but what are you gonna do? I was at a Smackdown taping months ago and a portion of the crowd started a “Jesus Christ” chant. Why??? The point is…sure the chants are annoying, but complaining about them is also annoying.

    • Sammy

      Thank You!

  • David F

    I cant wait for Chicago Payback PPV because if fans get bored you can bet your ass there will be tons of CM Punk chants

  • cranktheradio

    I could care less about the CM Punk chants either way. However, that audience last night was one of the worst I’ve seen/heard. That was a pretty good Raw, and there was almost no fan reaction.

    • Avalanchian

      Battle Royale and Shield vs Wyatt were the highlights. The rest was garbage. Adam Rose pranced around like a sissy and didn’t even show the crowd anything. Barrett didn’t do squat in his match while Big E was doing all the amazing work. The Bryan/Kane stuff was god awful…Thanks Brie.

      • cranktheradio

        I agree that the Bryan/Kane was bad. I also did not enjoy the Rose spot. However, I felt that Cody vs Ryback (I hate the guy) was solid, and felt the Big E/Barrett match was decent. Having Big E do most of the offense keeps him a viable threat after the loss, and Barrett sold well (this was never one of his strong points in the past.).

        Maybe the word good was too strong, but the show was decent…the crowd was horrendous.

    • Guest

      I know. Tell me about it. They sucked!

  • Avalanchian

    WWE wouldn’t constantly have the CM Punk chants if they gave the man what he wanted and quit bringing in the part time talent. It’s pathetic how they have to muddle the sound of the chants out over TV because they are ashamed. As for the workers in the ring being disrespected… well I guess WWE should either find better more exciting wrestlers or make the damn wrestlers actually put on a fast paced performance. I hate slow matches for the most part that don’t involve some crazy moves.

    • Whammaster

      So your a spot monkey. Kinda explains your pattern of thought.

      • Avalanchian

        If a wrestler can’t perform in the ring then he isn’t going to make it very far at all. To be a superstar you now have to act and wrestle putting on a great show. There are reasons why some superstars get buried fast. They lack 1 of the 2 things or they simply rub the wrong person the wrong way.

  • Adam Rose’s debut left a lot to be desired. It was a train wreck. A couple of us were under the impression that his debut fell victim to time constraints. The question then becomes if you have to shoehorn it in, why do it at all? Just put it off till next week. Based on something Richard reported earlier, it would have been in their best interests to wait till they had sufficient time to pull it off properly. I would rather have it done right than done the way it was last night. He didn’t even work! Just awful.

    • Ken

      Train wreck? The whole Adam Rose gimmick is a bloody disaster waiting to happen. Oh wait, IT JUST DID! I’ve already said once already so bare with me as toot my horn again; the BEST gimmicks are extentions of a performer’s real life. It worked with Stone Cold, The Rock, John Cena, Randy Orton, CM Punk, Daniel Bryan… I could go on. Like I said, Adam Rose is a disaster waiting to happen. Don’t believe me? Look at Ryback, Curtis Axel and, wait for it…. BOOtista.

      • Mysterion

        I don’t get how it’s tooting your own horn when you’re repeating something literally everyone in this site has said more than once.

      • Guest

        Well Ryback isnt bad…its the booking that messed him up. Axel never had that IT Factor, so he wasnt ever going to go too far. As far as Batista or BooTista(like yall like to say), hes good but it just didnt work out with him as a face. Maybe the timing of his return, maybe other factors, idk. Now that hes a heel, things seem to be looking up for him now.

  • decarlos atkins

    I actually think Rusev is an interesting Gimmick alot better The Vladimir Kozlov gimmick, so i dont understand why he isnt really getting any reaction his moveset is nice and different i hope this Vladimir Putin does get him over cuz i hate to see good wrestlers fail at a gimmick

    • cranktheradio

      I thought his match last night was good. I’m not a Kofi fan, his timing always seems off, but I thought Rusev made him look good.

    • Xavier

      He needs to be involved in a feud if he has any chance of getting fans invested into his character. While I think the gimmick is very cliche’ in willing to give him a chance. A feud with Sheamus over the US title would be a good 1st starting feud for him

      • Bob’s Diner

        I want Xavier Woods against Rusev in a ‘rematch’ from Rocky IV

    • decarlos atkins

      Yeah i do think the quick squash matches isnt really doing him any favors but the longer match last night against Kofi gave us a taste of what he can do in longer matches. He does need a big Feud i sense its either gone Be Sheamus or Barrett.

      WWE associating him with the Putin stuff does indicate they gone try to push him hard. I dunno im just the type fan that believes in giving new wrestlers or gimmicks a chance before i completely rip em, Just like i plan on doing with Adam Rose.

    • I have to respectfully disagree. If I never see the “I Russian, I Crush You” thing again, I’ll be very happy. It’s been done to death. Kozlov was merely the last to do it. It’s history is far longer. Rusev is green and I have absolutely no reason to care about him. Lana’s existence and their constant reference to Vladimir Putin tells me that WWE knows that.

      • J Vomkrieg

        “I Russian, I crush you”

        No one has done that gimmick better than Nikolai Volkov! Singing the Soviet Anthem during the cold war, what an amazing heat magnet that character was.

        • Agreed! It got no better than Nikolai. The looks he’d get on his face were just scary. He always looked like he was going to kill whoever was working with.

  • decarlos atkins

    And yes the Kane/Bryan stuff was god awfuk def thanks to Brie non-acting skills. I cringed during the whole time of that last segment with them

    • Moose

      You could take Brie out of the segment and it would still have been terrible. The whole angle is stale and screams of being a recycled storyline of years past. I know Kane and Daniel are simply doing what is asked of them and I feel bad for them, but this has already gotten mundane in a few weeks. Hopefully next week will be different, but I won’t be holding my breath.

  • Alex

    I really don’t understand the CM Punk chants at this point either. I miss Punk too but it’s not WWE’s fault he’s still gone. I could fully understand the chants if they fired Punk but Vince did everything he could to bring Punk back. Punk is gone because for whatever his reason is he doesn’t want to be in WWE and I really doubt any amount of CM Punk chants will bring him back.

  • Mike McCarthy

    Ever since the Raw after WrestleMania 29, fans have been trying to be “that crowd” they try and chant things that stand out and/or are controversial. So nowadays lazy crowds jump straight to CM Punk chants to try and show their disapproval of a segment. If you want an example of a bad crowd, go back to the first round of the Intercontinental Championship tournament in Birmingham, Alabama. During Bad News Barrett vs. Dolph Ziggler the fans literally went from burying the match to chanting “This Is Awesome” in less than two minutes.
    Fans just want to look cool by burying something.

  • J Vomkieg

    I think Kurt Angle has a shot back in WWE, and here is my logic. Angle is a former WWE champion, WWE is still pretty careful on who they put the WWE belt on (the old world belt could go on anyone). They seem to treat ex-champions pretty well for the most part. Look at RVD, in TNA he was lost in the shuffle. In WWE, they are allowing him to work part time, and while he is not in the main event, he certainly gets plenty of TV time and good length matches.

    In short, Angle could come back in a similiar capacity as RVD. Mid to upper mid card.

  • ironman1

    I don’t understand the Putin hate he is an honest man who wants peace and now many Libertarian’s and Conservative’s are starting to see that. Mr Putin wants the safety of ethnic Russians in Ukraine from militants and nothing else unlike unfortunately our own socialist government who seem to have a ww3 agenda.

  • john anderson

    “CM PUNK” chants r so stupid .. if u want the guy just smash his twitter account to get answers from him .. geez

  • monty

    richard you of all people should know this will turn into a wrestling story line as soon as punk comes back. I don’t have sources like you but i do know few people and the feeling inside the locker room is that he is on leave of absence granted by Vince himself. When the last time Vince met with punk it was vince,punk and HHH, so only 3 people know what was said/done.

    His merchandise still being sol Yes
    He is still getting a pay check Yes
    has he said a single word against WWE/Vince etc, NO
    the guy with th biggest mouth quite for 3 months? not possible unless something is up

    the people i know said(and i did email richard to confirm and he said no)Punk was back stage at WM30. That picture of him at black hawks game was from last year

    point being as a fan of wrestling for more than 2 decades just don’t believe what they want us to, now when Punk comes just imagine the reaction.

  • Bob’s Diner

    Chanting ‘CM Punk’ at a WWE show makes as much sense as going to a UFC show and chanting ‘Brock Lesnar’

    If you want him to hear it, chant it at a Blackhawks game.
    How about people chant for someone that actually wants a job in WWE??? Like, start a chant for AJ Styles or Kurt Angle and see if WWE take notice

  • BatMan

    So much strawman in that Punk answer. Who says its the SOLE REASON they buy a ticket? No one. And they should turn off if they are unhappy with one aspect? Ridiculous.

  • Lebron James

    I don’t know if it’s just me, but it seems like crowds have died down since this years Wrestlemania. It looks like crowds are back to being dead/normal.

  • John

    Kurt Angle would not be able to pass a WWE physical these days, so he’s definitely not coming back.

  • Robert Olley

    Totally agree about the crowd chants. I doubt punk even watches wwe anymore so chanting his name wont be effecting anybody except the changers wallets.