Posted in: Mr. Tito
MR. TITO STRIKES BACK - Sheamus vs. Roman Reigns for WWE Title, RAW is Hulu, and more
By Mr. Tito
Nov 25, 2015 - 11:50:25 PM

Follow Mr. Tito on @titowrestling

Welcome back to the EXCELLENCE IN COLUMN WRITING here by yours truly, Mr. Tito, that is exclusively here at / Here's some great advice... Yeah, I know, we're getting back into the "cutting the cord" discussion, but I'm not here to promote Hulu... But I will say this. Having a DAY OFF in between a Pay Per View and RAW is a blessing. Seriously, think about yourselves USA Networks viewers. If you watch the Pay Per View the night before, you are submitting 6 hours to the WWE for back-to-back days. That can wear on you.

Having Monday OFF because you'll either watch it on DVR or Hulu allows you to think about what just transpired on the Pay Per View and allow you to relax when watching RAW on Tuesday (or whenever). Giving up back-to-back PRIME TIME nights to the WWE is a quick way to burn yourself out as a WWE fan. If you don't believe me, just look in the uptick in the quality of columns I've produced lately. Having that day off let's me think about what kind of column that I want to write and I can daydream on a specific topic during the workday. Then, I can unleash a column easily on Tuesday or Wednesday when I write my weekly column. Keeps my columns fresh, keeps me happy as a wrestling fan... Lots of winning.

Anyway - I've had some time to think about the Sheamus WWE Title victory from Survivor Series 2015. First and foremost, I was one of the few who didn't bash the ending of Survivor Series 2015. Here's what I said in case you missed it...

From Mr. Tito's PHAT Survivor Series 2015 Review on 11/22/15: After the big confetti celebration, Triple H appears to join in on the celebration. Triple H wants to shake his hand but instead of foolishly shaking it, SPEAR ON HHH! Now that was a cool moment. However, Sheamus appears out of no where and hits the kick on Reigns. CASHES THE BRIEFCASE IN! Reigns kicks out... After missing 1 kick, Sheamus hits the second to become the NEW WWE Champion. Uh oh... And he then shakes Triple H's hand and hugs HHH afterward. GOOD... WWE should embrace the internet hype of HHH and Sheamus being real life buddies or former workout pals. Embrace it hard. Good ending to an otherwise BAD show.

That's right, internet... NO negativity from this column regarding Sheamus becoming WWE Champion at Survivor Series 2015. Why? Because for the SECOND time during 2015, I got my way as a wrestling fan and WWE plans were changed! Reportedly, the decision to crown Sheamus champion was made only hours before the Survivor Series show began! That is CRAZY. Earlier this year at Wrestlemania 31, creative plans had Roman Reigns winning the WWE Title from Brock Lesnar due to Lesnar's contract expiring. However, Brock Lesnar signed a 3 year extension on the Tuesday before Wrestlemania and plans were changed again. In both cases, it involved a Money in the Bank winner undercutting that big Roman Reigns WWE Title moment and also involves the Authority.

Sorry folks, but as I've said it repeatedly in this column, Roman Reigns is NOT ready to be the company's top star. At least with Sheamus, I get a good in-ring worker. Problem with Sheamus is that he never presents a consistent personality and WWE Creative, thanks to his real life friendship with Triple H, has overpushed him repeatedly. To an extent, they are overpushing him again... His goofy look and current run as a heel are NOT working. Nobody cared when he won the Money in the Bank briefcase. However... Given the choice between putting the WWE Title around the waist of an overpushed babyface in Roman Reigns and a heel protected by the Authority... I'll take Sheamus. Again, he's a BETTER WRESTLER than Roman.

At the end of the day, WWE is still a WRESTLING company and their Pay Per Views are still WRESTLING shows. Unless you can do hardcore stunts every match, such as what Roman Reigns did at Hell in a Cell 2015 against Bray Wyatt, then don't bother. Roman Reigns wrestles as if he has 2 left feet and sucks wind any speedy or aggressive wrestlers (Cesaro, Del Rio, Ambrose recently). Furthermore, he is clueless in the ring when it doesn't involve his Spear, Superman Punch, Powerbomb, or Dropkick on the Apron. Zero clue about psychology and transitional moves. For much of the match, he's waiting for the end so that he can hit that Superman Punch for a decent pop and then Spear his way to a win. If you cannot work in big matches, then you do NOT deserve the WWE Title. As much blame as one wants to assign Seth Rollins for RAW's viewership declines, I'm willing to bet that he's kept many WWE Network subscribers from his Pay Per View performances.

If you can't work a match, that is almost unfixable in the WWE. Being unable to talk or issues with your personality can be masked. Why else does Paul Heyman exist for Brock Lesnar? Cutting wrestling promos isn't Lesnar's best ability and he's a farmboy with an obvious accent. Yet, with Heyman, you barely hear him speak and Heyman hypes him like a killer. Heyman is masking any weakness that Lesnar has and the success speaks for itself.

That's why the Shield was fun... Being a group masked any issues Roman Reigns had as an inexperienced wrestler. He could just hit that Powerbomb and it got a big pop everytime. Then, tagging up with Ambrose and/or Rollins, he wasn't asked to carry a match. He was tagged in, hit his big spots, and they went home. WWE could market the Shield and fans didn't have to be divided in picking between the 3 wrestlers. They could enjoy bits and pieces of each wrestler. When they beat Evolution twice in a row during 2014, I thought the WWE had something with the Shield as babyfaces. That didn't last long... After the 2nd Evolution defeat, Seth Rollins turned on Ambrose/Reigns and we've witnessed multiple WWE Title opportunities for Reigns ever since. WWE could have kept the trio as a babyface group until all 3 were officially ready to split up. Then, you do that heel turn...

Sheamus has been in the WWE longer and has a collection of nice matches on his resume. I mean good lord, he can pull good matches out of the robotic Randy Orton. WWE Creative just has to write a good storyline that strengthens Sheamus as a heel and they'll be fine... Triple H still has ability to draw heat. Did you hear that pop when Roman Reigns attacked Triple H after the confetti dropped? There's a reason why Triple H is one of the best WWE superstars of all time (he's in my Top 10) and one of the best heels WWE has ever seen. Better yet with Sheamus, there are many internet rumors of Sheamus's extensive friendship with Triple H. They were reportedly workout buddies and in return, Triple H has consistently pushed for Sheamus to be a main event. HHH vouched for him to become champion several times and no doubt argued Sheamus to win at Survivor Series. In doing so, Triple H puts himself in direct conflict with Vince McMahon who really loves the Roman Reigns character and his look (as does producer Kevin Dunn).

All HHH and Sheamus have to do is stoke the flames of those internet rumors... Feed the trolls!

I'm fine with Sheamus as WWE Champion... Who else can WWE go to right now? John Cena is taking time off, Brock Lesnar is out of 2015 contracted dates, Randy Orton is injured, Cesaro is now injured, and Seth Rollins has a torn ACL. Ambrose has barely won any Pay Per View matches since the aforementioned Shield break-up and Alberto Del Rio just came back. WWE bench is very, very thin and nobody is over enough to carry the torch.

It's up to WWE Creative to make Sheamus interesting and/or surround him with a HEEL stable that can make him look great. That's why Seth Rollins failed... Instead of giving him a stable of wrestlers 100% loyal to keeping him WWE Champion, he was squabbling with Kane all Summer. He looked like a CHUMP! Give Sheamus an army and any babyface wrestler that gets near him receives a major beatdown. Babyfaces will have to go through each and every wrestler, which might include Triple H as well, to get a shot at Sheamus. PROTECT YOUR CHAMPION...

But don't take my word for it... Just watch the thousands of hours on WWE Network that proves me right about heel champions. Hogan looked great with the NWO, Rock looked like a champion with the Corporation, Shawn Michaels/Triple H with DX, Ric Flair with the 4 Horsemen, etc.



Missed the Cut:
LOL, I can't remember... I split my RAW is Hulu viewership over 2 nights and I'm totally blanking out on what was cut. If you work in the financial industry, you'll know my pain of working a shortened week. Sure, it's 1 less workday but to your customers, it's 1 less day that we're open... Thus, the work gets compacted into that shorter work week. I believe that I'm suffering from memory loss from that so hence, I'll just go over the high points from RAW.

Just an awful way to start off RAW with Stephanie/HHH with Sheamus and later Roman Reigns. HHH and Stephanie looked bored out there. I need to invent time travel and kick my 18-20 year old self for constantly complaining about long Vince/Rock/Austin 20 minute promos that started those 1998-2001 RAW shows. Damn it, I had it sooooo good back then that I didn't appreciate it.

- So much for the Dudley Boyz... New Day were getting more over than them and thus they've been resorted to elevation talent.

- If you watch Sasha Banks vs. Becky Lynch from NXT Takeover, you'll be amazed at the impressive women's wrestling. But then you watch them on WWE, it's completely the opposite. BAD wrestling... I believe that Vince McMahon and Kevin Dunn are sabotaging the women's wrestling in favor of repushing the Bella Twins or possibly Lana/Eva Marie in the future.

- New Day was great... Little bit of racial tension this week with the mocking of Country Music, but heels have to mock their environment to generate heat. That's how wrestling works...

- I would join the rest of the internet and say "WAY TO GO Neville" on defeating Mark Henry, but I was shocked that Mark Henry was still in the WWE. Plus, you can't just have a random match on RAW and expect people to care. Build the feud up and then pay it off with a big win by Neville.

- I'm pretty sure that Prime Time Players/Goldust vs. Stardust/Ascension was cut from RAW is Hulu, but I honestly can't remember...

- The Alberto Del Rio/Zeb Colter/Jack Swagger was definitely cut for Hulu. Oh well... Are we reliving that Wrestlemania feud over the "We the People" stuff?

- Paige vs. Charlotte still lacks life. Better match than Survivor Series but that's not saying much. I'm not sure if it's Paige, Charlotte, or a mixture of both characters just not having much appeal in the WWE. But good lord, they should be having great matches together. Why not?

- Pretty sure that Ryback vs. Heath Slater was cut...

- That's 2 pins on Tyler Breeze by Dean Ambrose... Tag match wasn't bad between Owens/Breeze vs. Ziggler/Ambrose. Seems like Luke Harper and Tyler Breeze are the only wrestlers that Dean Ambrose is allowed to defeat.

- Rusev vs. Roman Reigns was yet another bad wrestling effort by Reigns. Again, zero psychology, zero emotion, and zero ability to transition to and from moves. Didn't help much that after having time off to heal an injury, Rusev is quickly forced into a Main Event match... Just a bit rusty. This match headlining RAW helped put the cherry on the top of the first under 3 million RAW in a long, long time. Reigns has headlined many RAW bombs in the past few months, such as his match against Wyatt which drew poorly and now this match. Hopefully, that's why Reigns is not WWE Champion... Probably not.

I was going to say, I see some real potential in Sheamus/Wade Barrett/Rusev as a stable but not when Roman Reigns can easily defeat all 3 guys. RAW should have ended with Reigns knocked out in the middle of the ring and the 3 heels celebrating the beatdown.



Right now on Amazon Prime, I'm watching an excellent series called The Man in the High Castle which poses the ultimate WHAT IF scenario. Based on the book by Philip K. Dick, it's an alternative storyline showing what if Germany and Japan won World War 2. Following World War 2, Germany and Japan split up the United States into territories and much of the show, so far, is how Americans are dealing with that scenario and how superpowers Japan and Germany like sharing America.

I wrote several "WHAT IF" columns myself such as what if Stephanie McMahon didn't exist, if Steve Austin was forced to retire in 1997, if Owen Hart lived, if John Cena didn't exist, and if Brock Lesnar didn't leave the WWE in 2004. I created the column series based on Marvel Comics's series of the same name... I'm always fascinated by hypothetical scenarios that are linked to a single event or happening.

Which brings me to today's WWE... Right now, as discussed above, the WWE bench is very thin in terms of drawing wrestlers who could become legitimate Main Eventers. When Roman Reigns vs. Sheamus is a Main Event feud for the WWE Title, it may be time to pack it in. But the WWE has nobody to blame but themselves. The ironic thing is that WWE doesn't have a talent problem. With WWE's dominance in the wrestling marketplace, they have "pick of the litter" on the wrestling world to hire whomever. But the issue is HOW many wrestlers are being used. Sheamus is a product of favoritism by Triple H and the guy has received multiple chances now to succeed but I simply ask this: what was so good about his previous 3 World Title reigns to make him earn a 4th?

Here's a WHAT IF scenario for you... WHAT IF Daniel Bryan got revenge over BOTH Randy Orton and Triple H during late 2013 after SummerSlam 2013? Better yet, what if the win against John Cena stood alone and we didn't have the ridiculous Authority storyline immediately after that match? Daniel Bryan was on fire as a babyface and could have become a true draw. Speaking of SummerSlam, how about CM Punk getting screwed hard at SummerSlam 2011? Better yet, what if the WWE handled the situation better after Money in the Bank 2011 instead of that phony WWE Title tournament?

Or how about this? During the 2000's, the WWE had an amazing talent named Shelton Benjamin. He was part of the famous developmental "Class of 2002" which also contained John Cena, Batista, Randy Orton, and Brock Lesnar. Pound for pound as an in-ring worker, Shelton Benjamin was the best of those guys. Absolutely sick in that ring. He was first part of the Team Angle / World's Greatest Tag Team duo with Charlie Haas but later wrestled as a singles wrestler. Go watch his match against Shawn Michaels from a random episode of RAW. INSANE! Go watch how the guy lit up the first ever Money in the Bank match at Wrestlemania. The guy was an amazing worker and should be every bit as big as Randy Orton, to say the least, if not much bigger. But for whatever reason, WWE Creative had it out for him. They gave him a stereotypical black woman to serve as his Momma. So here you have a serious wrestler who can compete with anybody in the world and he's become a comedy act/

WWE has had many people pass through their developmental territories whether it was Ohio Valley Wrestling (OVW), Florida Championship Wrestling (FCW), or now NXT... But what do they have to show for it beyond my famous 2002 that produced Cena, Orton, Lesnar, and Batista? Not much... Several good superstars here and there but on the drawing and mainstream appeal level of those other 4 wrestlers?

It's like what I always argue on Musical Talent shows like American Idol, the Voice, and the X-Factor. Think about it... They have reviewed MILLIONS of people over the last 15 years yet they've been able to create 2 true long-term superstars in Kelly Clarkson and Carrie Underwood. Other than that, some successes here and there (Chris Daughtry, Jennifer Hudson), but for it's intended goal of searching America for the next major stars, it's a major failure. The REAL talent in this world don't need these talent shows to tell America or the world that they are talented. Katy Perry, Maroon 5, Taylor Swift, Bruno Mars, and Adele didn't need these shows to expedite their success. Reviewed millions of people and only have 2 real long-term superstars to show from it.

Ditto with the WWE developmental system... It's not creating Main Event draws and when it comes close, such as Daniel Bryan or CM Punk, the McMahon tastes/preferences kick in and marginalize wrestler fan favorites. WWE has cycled through hundreds, if not thousands, of wrestlers through their developmental system over the last 10 years and again, they can sign virtually anybody in the wrestling world due to their dominance in the marketplace. Yet, like American Idol, what do they have to show for it? And like American Idol, WWE tries to mold its talent into what they want and not what fans want. American Idol just wants to find artists who can be placed on Pop Radio while Vince McMahon just wants wrestlers which fits his dogmatic and stubborn view of pro wrestling. Might not be the process, but the filter...

American Idol takes full control of what the artists will perform on the reality show and then traps their winning contestants into a contract to perform what they want, when they want. The result? Lack of mega superstars besides Underwood and Clarkson... What's the result of OVW, FCW, and NXT when passing through the Vince McMahon filter? Especially without Jim Ross as developmental VP since 2004? LACK of superstars with real Main Event drawing power. WWE has to keep John Cena strong, repeatedly try to push Randy Orton, and pay Brock Lesnar $3 to $5 million per year. Without them on RAW shows, we're pushing below 3 million viewers on RAW. Because WWE has a weak Creative Team full of yes-men and nobody with balls to stand up to Vince McMahon, Vince and his right hand producer can wrongly assess all developmental talent that arrives.

Just look at the dumpster fire known as the WWE Divas division and then see NXT. Sasha Banks, Becky Lynch, and Charlotte were AMAZING in NXT but are quite emotionless in the WWE. Seriously, does anybody care that the daughter of Ric Flair is Divas Champion?

Under 3 million viewers for RAW. That is embarrassing. During 2000, that kind of viewership was considered BAD for WCW Nitro...

It's not a matter of Vince McMahon being "out of control" or "senile"... Last time I checked, Vince has been in charge of the WWE since 1982 and has presided over the most successful growth periods in pro wrestling history. Vince didn't become stupid... The rest of the backstage management did. You go from listening the the advice of Pat Patterson and Jim Ross, two voices who weren't afraid to stand up to Vince or come up with better ideas, to yes-men and family members who appreciates what Vince's WWE empire has provided them financially. Why would Triple H ever think about standing up to Vince? Vince made HHH into a major wrestling superstar, made him wealthy, and gave him Stephanie... Now, Vince has been grooming HHH to take his job if/when Vince retires or God forbid, passes. HHH cannot disagree with Vince creatively... He'll have to find a way to use those Bella Twins! Besides, Vince is being gracious when he gives HHH the NXT promotion for whatever creative freedom that HHH wants.

Until someone presents a better influence over Vince McMahon, nothing will change. No matter what happens in NXT, Vince has the ability to course correct in the WWE on any talent. Because of that, WWE talent is misused and nobody is getting over. Thus, when you have a bunch of injuries or other circumstances keeping wrestlers out, you really scramble as a promotion to fill a vacant WWE Title. I would have personally dragged it out until January to have the WWE Title, like in 1992, up for grabs at Royal Rumble when Cena and Lesnar are available... But hey, that's just my opinion.

And in my opinion, WWE's talent problems are self-inflicted and they deserve the business downturns with the way they've assessed and used talent for the last 10 years.

Under 3 million viewers... AOL/Time Warner canceled WCW programming when it hit those levels.



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