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What are your thoughts on WWE ripping off TNA Wrestling’s “Final Deletion” gimmick with The New Day/Wyatt Family segment on this week’s Raw?
I thought it was lame. I knew this was the road was going down by having The Wyatt Family invite The New Day to their “compound” but this is a part of the wrestling business that I wish would just go away. I understand everyone copies everyone and that we can think of countless examples where TNA has copied WWE and vice versa but why is it so hard to come up with original ideas? And let’s also not forget it’s not like The Final Deletion was this revolutionary concept. It worked because it drew interest and it teetered the line between awesome and awful but it’s something that can’t be overdone. WWE decided they would just go ahead and do it less than a week after TNA did it. If anything else, I think it proves just how desperate WWE is to fill three hours of content for Raw. Literally, they’ll take anything to fill the show even if it’s a blatant ripoff of something another company hyped and promoted less than a week prior. Consider it a rib, consider it a shot at TNA but most people liked the segment if one goes by votes on YouTube. Matt Hardy even seemed to take it in stride. I just want to see the WWE creative team be creative and rather than waste time replicating something that has already been done, find ways to engage their audience and develop their characters. The brand extension will be fully reenacted next week and I believe the WWE product is going to come off watered down.
Have you heard about WWE possibly spoiling that Daniel Bryan is going to be the new Smackdown General Manager?
There was a buzz on social media last night that during WWE’s official Raw recap that they included the headline, “The ‘Yes!’ Movement takes over SmackDown Live!” before changing it. As with anything on social media, I will advise caution. It is certainly possible that WWE makes Daniel Bryan the General Manager of Smackdown because he’s under contract and they’ve been looking for things for him to do but I just can’t confirm that at press time. Bryan wanted out of his WWE contract but is now the host of the new Cruiserweight Classic. WWE will look for things for Bryan to do for as long as he is under contract. I personally feel he’s extremely entertaining so more Bryan is a good thing but I believe I speak for the majority when I say we all miss him in the ring.
Are the rumors true that AJ Lee is returning to WWE next year?
As far as I know those rumors hold no validity and AJ Lee is not returning to WWE. Because it is WWE we never say never but exercise caution with such rumors. AJ is releasing a new autobiography titled, Crazy Is My Superpower: How I Triumphed by Breaking Bones, Breaking Hearts, and Breaking the Rules on April 4, 2017.
Why bother promoting Brock Lesnar’s opponent for SummerSlam before Randy Orton’s return?
WWE announced Brock Lesnar vs. Randy Orton last week so that it would coincide with Brock’s fight against Mark Hunt at UFC 200. We noted on numerous occasions the announcement was made for obvious promotional purposes and UFC ran the match promo on their pay-per-view. If you missed it on Raw, Orton will appear at WWE Battleground, where they’ll begin the build for the program in The Highlight Reel segment hosted by Chris Jericho.
Will Bray Wyatt ever introduce us to Sister Abigail?
There have been discussions for at least a year about possibly bringing in a woman to play the role of Sister Abigail with Bray Wyatt. However, the compound segment on last night’s Raw doesn’t give me much hope for Bray Wyatt. Wyatt has so much talent but it just feels like WWE has no idea how to utilize him beyond the creepy cult leader. Don’t get me wrong, the gimmick works but there has been little to no progression in four years. They tried to separate The Wyatt Family and it flopped and last night it just felt like Vince instructed the writers to script them in the TNA ripoff segment. Character development and progression are crucial, especially at a time when WWE needs more guys reaching for the brass ring. McMahon likes to blame the talent but I blame him and his writers for refusing to advance characters.
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