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Dropped Faction, Daniel Bryan's Health, Hogan vs. Cena, WWE Network Problems

The following is today's edition of Ask WNW. Ask WNW is the most popular feature on the website where Richard Gray answers four questions daily, Monday through Friday. To submit your question for the next installment of Ask WNW, click here.
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Why did WWE tease the Kofi Kingston, Big E, and Xavier Woods faction only to drop a few weeks later?

There was a clear plan for Kofi Kingston, Big E and Xavier Woods to work as a faction on WWE television, however, that plan appears to be off. I haven't heard the reason why and the only explanation that can be given can only be speculative in nature at this time. Rather than speculate, I'd like to give it some time and see if we can find out anything concrete. I'm told the idea of the faction was from Vince McMahon.

Considering it's been three months since the initial surgery for Daniel Bryan and a while since it was announced a second surgery is required, yet there's been absolutely NO surgical procedure talked about, do you think that the second surgery is a fabrication to allow Bryan to make a surprise return?

Daniel Bryan addressed his health in a press conference after he helped police apprehend a robber last month. In that press conference, he offered some good news about the situation. Bryan said a proposed second surgery would be needed to repair a nerve injury in his elbow, which obviously is different from the procedure done in his neck in May. We covered this news at this link and the press conference at this link. To the best of my knowledge, that procedure has not been completed as he continues to undergo physical therapy as part of his rehabilitation. I hope Bryan is closer than expected but I do not have a timeline as of this writing. However, to answer your question, I don't believe the proposed second surgery is a fabrication. Bryan is dealing with nerve injuries, which are unpredictable and impossible to accurately assess how long they will take to heel.

I agree that Hulk Hogan should not be in a major competitive role. However, I would like to see one last match with John Cena. I see Cena as the Hogan of this era. I would even be satisfied with an exhibition match where Cena would defend the title at a PPV against some other superstar. The match could be a no disqualification match. That could set up a match for Cena vs. Hulk earlier in the night where its a "open shoot" and Cena clearly allows Hulk to win the title just to retire immediately after the match and Cena and whoever can win it in the main event. If anyone in my opinion deserves to retire as champion it's Hulk. Your thoughts?

No offense but that sounds horrible. It would demean the WWE World Heavyweight Championship, John Cena and do nothing for anyone. Hulk Hogan is still the most recognizable name in pro wrestling and another "title reign," isn't going to do anything to help or hurt that. Hogan is retired and should be used like other retired wrestlers are used. Sporadic appearances to help promote the WWE Network are a great way to use Hogan. As we saw with the viewership data from this week's Raw, tactful use of Hogan is a good thing. Hogan was overexposed in TNA and it did nothing for Hogan or for TNA. I am completely against Hogan wrestling again because I do not believe he is healthy enough at 61 to carry a match that anyone wants to see.

I am Canadian and disappointed with the deal WWE has made with Rogers. I would like to order the WWE Network just like everyone else. After Raw two weeks ago, I take it you were not impressed with WWE's shameless sales pitch of $9.99. I agreed at the time. Now If find myself enjoying it. It reminds me of DX selling there merchandise. Has your opinion changed as well?

I want to first note the WWE Network is different in Canada. Not only is it a Pay-TV channel on Rogers but initial reports indicate the on demand library is not available and it's $11.99/month. As for the $9.99/month mentions, I still have multiple issues with them. A little bit of humor is never a bad thing and it's important to not be too harsh on something meant to be funny. However, WWE struggles with moderation. A couple of mentions to be used as comedy is fine but I feel the company continues to overdo them. Additionally, the WWE Network isn't technically $9.99. It is but with a 6 month commitment. If you're in the US and you just want to buy for one month, it's $12.99/month. In Canada, it's different. Let's not also forget that a lot of people still don't understand the WWE Network is an over the top service available on Apps and online. Unless of course you're in Canada, where it is available on cable but only Rogers cable systems. It's all very confusing and I believe this is part of the reason why WWE has struggled to gain subscribers.

From the Ask WNW vault…

November 2013: Looking back at superstars such as Hulk Hogan and Steve Austin, each of them had to start from the bottom and work their way up to become the “top guy” in the company. When the time was right, they were given their chance and made the most of it to become the stars that they were (and are) known for. With that being said, there is no question that John Cena is “the guy” in WWE at the moment, and probably will be for some time. However, are there any superstars on either the active or developmental roster that you believe has the “it” factor to take over the reigns when Cena’s time is over? - There is just no way to predict the next Steve Austin or John Cena. I heard a WWE investor ask Vince McMahon this very question a couple years ago and Vince laughed it off. By comparison, take a look at pro sports. Even though next year’s NBA Draft class is expected to be one of the most talented classes in many years, it’s still impossible to predict there will be another LeBron James or Kobe Bryant. Everyone with a WWE developmental contract has potential because it takes a lot just to get to that point. However, it all comes down to the right situation, which includes a level of reliance on the creative team. Austin was “Stunning” Steve Austin before he was ever Stone Cold. He had the talent but he also relied on the right creative opportunity. There’s a lot that goes into making a mega star and because there are so many factors, it’s literally impossible to predict.

Questions that are legible stand the best chance of getting answered. The next installment of Ask WNW is scheduled to run on Monday, August 18, 2014.

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