Vince McMahon's Stance On Part-Time Talent Changing, What Could Have Been With Jeff Hardy, Another Pro Wrestling Boom, David Otunga's Status

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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You've mentioned before that Vince McMahon was against part-time workers, if you worked for him you were full time. With Brock Lesnar breaking that mold, does this open the door for a Bill Goldberg, Sting, Kurt Angle (retirement run), part time program leading up to Wrestlemania?

Vince McMahon has always wanted workers to be full-time with the company and is hesitant to give pushes to part-timers. There have been exceptions with Shawn Michaels, The Undertaker and of course Triple H but by large the rule has been all or nothing. The Rock recently broke the mold by agreeing to work Wrestlemania XXVIII one year in advance and working sporadic appearances on TV as well as a main event match at Survivor Series. Vince broke all his rules for Brock Lesnar and offered him big money for a limited schedule because he was determined that Lesnar's first post-UFC appearance would be in a WWE ring. I don't know this for sure but it seems like Vince took a lot of credit for Brock drawing big for UFC and wanted to make sure he got to capitalize on Lesnar's fame for himself. As for this opening the door for other part-timers, the mold of "all or nothing" seems to be changing, especially given the success of Wrestlemania XXVIII. Kurt Angle and Sting are currently under TNA contract and I haven't heard of recent interest in Goldberg, however, WWE is interested in Batista.

At the time of his departure from WWE, Jeff Hardy was at the peak of his career; he was as "over" as a top face should be and his all-around performance (mic, ring work) was as good as what would be expected of a top worker. That being said, had he remained in WWE do you think he could have surpassed John Cena as the face of the company?

Jeff Hardy's biggest problem has been his personal demons and they have cost him a good bit. Remember it was at TNA Victory Road last year where Hardy showed up "unfit to perform" yet TNA let him go out and embarrass himself and the business anyways. There isn't much they could have done and Dixie Carter stood by him when he needed help but this would have cost him his job in WWE. Remember when Carlito showed up "unfit to perform"? He was released the same week. Jeff Hardy is a very talented individual but it's hard to say where he would have gone because of personal issues.

Do you think there will ever be another pro wrestling boom? We saw it in the 80's and the late 90's but what would it take in today's market for a similar popularity increase?

I think we will see another pro wrestling boom, I just don't know when. The way the entertainment industry works, it's always changing. The "in" thing is always different and during the pro wrestling boom of the late 90's, the pro wrestling business found itself as one of the "in" things where it was very attractive to the mainstream. WWE was able to remain relevant and has been very consistent in growing the company ever since. Pro wrestling isn't as popular today but it is by no means in decline. WWE executives will claim that WWE content is more in demand now than ever. Just take a look at Wrestlemania XXVIII that broke all the pay-per-view buyrate numbers for the company with 1.3 million buys. Some say the business needs more competition which is always a good thing but I don't know what it will take to elevate the business to where it was in the Attitude Era.

David Otunga has been involved in the main event of Raw for the past two weeks, first facing John Cena and then interfering in Cena's match against Lord Tensai. Is he in line for a push? Also, since Otunga and Lesnar are both aligned with Laurinaitis, do you see them having some sort of alliance?

David Otunga is already receiving a push as the legal council for John Laurinaitis. WWE officials like his look, his work ethic and not to mention his link to pop singer Jennifer Hudson. I don't know if that means we'll see Otunga challenging for the WWE Championship or World Heavyweight Championship anytime soon but he has a desirable spot as an upper mid card worker in the company. As for an alliance with Lesnar, I don't see much more than what is already there with John Laurinaitis. WWE wants to push Lesnar as a singles worker and are hoping he draws big for Extreme Rules.

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