The Next Step For The Wyatt Family's "First Son"

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WWE began airing a "cryptic message" from The Wyatt Family on this week's episode of Monday Night Raw. You can watch the vignette at this link or embedded in the video below:

http://youtu.be/DCRZ6PzMu2s

The message seems to be one of Luke Harper sent out on his own, promoting reports that a singles push is in the works. In fact, from the mouth of Bray Wyatt, Harper is being "set free."

Here were my words from Wednesday's installment of Ask WNW:

Based on the vignettes for Luke Harper that began on this week’s episode of Monday Night Raw, it appears he is in line for a singles push. I don’t think anyone is going to forget about Bray Wyatt and I know there have been informal discussions about turning him babyface. What I am wondering is how Erick Rowan doesn’t end up the odd man out. Rumors are circulating about the future of the Wyatt Family following the vignettes but the only thing I can say for sure is that Luke Harper is going to get a push.

Harper, the former Brodie Lee, is ready for the prime of his career. A standout on the American independent scene, he signed with WWE in March 2012 and was quickly aligned with Bray Wyatt. In November 2012, Wyatt declared Luke Harper the "first son" of the Wyatt Family.

Harper will be 35 years old in December and has fared well since being called up to the main WWE roster as a member of the Wyatt Family in the summer of 2013. Originally serving in a background role to Bray, Harper has gone on to form a successful tag team with Erick Rowan. They worked the summer of 2014 in a lengthy program with the then WWE Tag Team Champions The Usos (a match still be done on the latest WWE live event loop).

The next step is here and that step very much looks like one forward for Luke Harper. However, the future doesn't appear as bright for Harper's tag team partner and "second son" of The Wyatt Family. In addition to my response in Ask WNW on Wednesday, the following is from this week's Backstage News from Raw:

The future of the Wyatt Family was a hot topic after the mysterious vignettes that began on Luke Harper. As I mentioned in Ask WNW, it’s hard to see how Erick Rowan isn’t the odd man out. Bray Wyatt, while cooled on recently, is still considered a priority and there have been discussions about turning him babyface, while the company has clear plans to push Harper. It will be interesting to see how it plays out.

Rowan is unlike either Bray Wyatt or Luke Harper. Bray is seen as the perfect NXT prodigy, proof the company's developmental system works. A fact Triple H recently alluded to while doing media for the latest NXT Takeover show. Harper is the independent standout that was seen as "main roster ready" as soon as he signed. Rowan, however, seems to be in a position designed for mediocrity. It's not like this seemingly plan of separation is being done with the faction at its peak either. Bray Wyatt, the clear cut #1 of the Wyatt Family, has been cold for over a month.

Since beating Chris Jericho at SummerSlam 2014, Wyatt has only gone over on two separate occasions - in a steel cage match against Jericho on the September 8, 2014 episode of Monday Night Raw and in a 6-man tag team match on the September 19, 2014 episode of Smackdown. Lacking direction, Wyatt has "done the honors" to Big Show on recent live events.

Despite Bray Wyatt's current rut, the future still appears bright. He has Triple H's backing as a big deal and could very well be turned babyface. As mentioned above, no one is going to forget about Bray Wyatt.

As we reach the turning point of the Wyatt Family, it will be interesting to see how far each goes. Luke Harper is being prepped for a push, Bray Wyatt is still here and Erick Rowan… will it be back to developmental or regression to an enhancement role?

That will be a point of interest as Harper is "set free."

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