Welcome one and all to another edition of The Main Event. I am your host, Don Franc, back with another column that you’ll all hopefully enjoy. Long introductions aren’t really my thing so let’s get right to…
– It’s such a shame that Mustafi Ali is reportedly injured and because of that will not be able to compete in the Elimination Chamber. Ali has come a long way since his 205 Live days and he deserved to be in the match for Daniel Bryan’s WWE Championship. He might not be as over on the main roster as he was in 205 Live but he puts the work in week after week to try and get to that point. He is an integral part of the blue brand and he will surely be missed while he is out injured. I hope that this injury does not set him back too much and I’ll be keeping my fingers crossed that he will return to the ring in short order.
– There is a rumour going around that Batista might be making an appearance at Wrestlemania. In all honesty I have no problem with that notion whatsoever as long as he stays away from the title. I would love to see the proposed match between himself and HHH. They have immense history together and this match would make sense when factoring in Batista’s shot he fired at HHH during Evolution’s reunion. I’m not too sure if Batista is match ready at the moment but I can see myself being invested in a match with his former stablemate. If this rumour turns out to be true then I hope WWE will remember what happened during Batista’s last run for the sake of all our sanity.
– Jim Ross recently said that he believes it is because of Ronda Rousey that the women have a chance to headline Wrestlemania. I must say that I disagree with his opinion. I believe that she did fast-track the women to have the opportunity to headline a Wrestlemania. However, with that being said I have no doubt that the women would have still ended up headlining Wrestlemania; just not so soon if it turns out to be the case. You cannot deny Ronda’s contribution to this cause but you also cannot undersell how over the women has gotten in recent times. Therefore, I don’t think it’s fair that Ronda Rousey gets all the credit for this.
THE MAIN EVENT
The more I think about it the more I feel like Dean Ambrose is making the right choice in leaving the WWE. At first I was saddened by his choice to resign because he is my current favourite wrestler. However, in life if something isn’t working out it’s better to just move on before things become toxic. Once that toxicity hits then lack of motivation kicks in. Lack of motivation then leads to unenthusiastic performances and overall apathy towards what you’re doing.
I think Ambrose was on the fast track to a feeling of utter despair. For some reason WWE favoured his Shield brethren above him to the point that he most likely began to feel like the third wheel. It’s actually quite ironic. When The Shield debuted I always saw Dean as the standout of the group. I viewed Rollins as the spot monkey and Reigns as the muscle. It can be even be argued that WWE also perceived Reigns and Rollins in the same light because Ambrose was booked as the de facto leader.
Normally in a stable the one who wins singles gold is represented as the best of the bunch. From the outside looking in, WWE gave the impression that Ambrose was the one in charge. He was the one that did most of the talking which was indicative of his leadership qualities. But how did the frontrunner for success become the third wheel in the group? It’s really hard to answer that question but perhaps on a psychological level that may have been factored into Dean’s decision to hand in his resignation letter.
Looking at it from Dean’s perspective you’d be thinking to yourself that because WWE shone most of the spotlight on you in your group it would go without saying that you would be the breakout star. As we all know by now that was clearly not the case. If Vince’s mindset was different at the time – to what he makes it appear to be now – then maybe he wouldn’t have swooned over Reigns. Ambrose had the most upside of the group but clearly he was not appreciated by management. And now because of WWE’s selfish desires they’ve allowed a superstar to become disillusioned.
WWE had at least two opportunities to pull the trigger on Dean but they refused to take the risk and instead opted for the golden boy to get all the attention. How many times do you have to be scorching hot before the WWE realizes what they have right under their noses? That’s the story of Dean Ambrose and I don’t blame him for turning his back on a company that turned their back on him every time he got super over. It would appear that WWE is assessing their stance on what being a superstar means to their brand. But in the case of Dean Ambrose it is certainly too late.
With all that has happened in Dean’s tenure with the company it would only make sense for him to reassess his position within the company. It’s time for Dean Ambrose to do what’s right for him and focus on his goals. He has made plenty of money with WWE so now he can just focus on himself and what about professional wrestling that truly makes him happy.
We all know of the gruelling WWE schedule and this certainly attributed to his decision to leave. Without any incentives like being booked properly as part of the trio of new generation stars it becomes hard to swallow how much of your life you have to give up for WWE. Leaving WWE for a lighter schedule is literally what the doctor ordered. You could see Dean’s passion dwindling and it’s scary to think that someone as talented as Dean Ambrose was deteriorating mentally right in front of our eyes. Being away from WWE will allow his body to rejuvenate and this will in turn revitalise his mind.
That’s not to say he wouldn’t go to another promotion though. I’m not sure if he has a no-compete clause once his contract expires but based on the assumption that he does, being unable to compete will provide him with the opportunity at a much needed respite before he tears it up in another promotion. But even without that respite his body will still get the necessary rest because whichever promotion he ends up in won’t be as demanding as from whence he came.
It’s easy to think that he would end up in AEW and if that is the case then he’ll surely be treated like a star there. His stock has risen tremendously during his time in WWE and he is a lock to have a prominent position in any promotion he ends up in. I wouldn’t expect him to be anything less than a heavily featured star in his next endeavour. Ambrose has come too far to take a backseat in any professional wrestling company. But with that being said I am of the opinion that it would serve his best interests to take some time off and recuperate.
I do not want Ambrose to end up like CM Punk who appears to loathe the professional wrestling industry due to burnout. Dean is only in his early thirties so he has plenty of time to still wrestle for years to come. Therefore I feel like this is the perfect time to vacate the political landscape of WWE and enhance his legacy even further. I have no doubt whatsoever that Ambrose is going to end up back in WWE. Once that day arrives WWE will realise what a mistake it was to allow him to become so disgruntled with their way of doing things that he needed to leave.
At that point I’m almost certain WWE will have gotten a better gauge of what he is truly good at when he has had the opportunity to let loose and be himself in another promotion. Hopefully Vince will do the sensible thing and push him to the point of contentment. But for now Dean Ambrose needs to forge a new path and rekindle his love of professional wrestling and in the process show the world what he is truly capable of.
According to reports, Batista and Randy Orton are rumoured to be open to talks with AEW. I take these rumours with a grain of salt but you cannot deny how intriguing this prospect is. If either one of those out and out WWE guys were to show up at an AEW show it would be HUGE. It would open Vince’s eyes to the actual threat that AEW poses. Besides that; it would say alot about WWE if a loyal member of their roster (Randy Orton) were to jump ship. All of WWE’s management skills and booking decisions would rightfully come under scrutiny.
That happening would be like AEW launching an attack on WWE because if that were to happen no WWE wrestler would be safe. I imagine WWE would then be forced make major changes to their booking philosophy to compete with the ever-changing landscape of the professional wrestling world. What would be most telling is how good AEW’s offers truly are because if two of the biggest names of all time are will to appear in this new promotion then Cody and co. could hypothetically acquire any star that they want.
You have to also think of this from the perspective of the two members of the OVW Class of 2002. They undoubtedly do not need the money, so if the price isn’t what they going after then what is? It’s hard to say, especially because Orton is almost treated like royalty in WWE and because Batista is in Hollywood you already know WWE will worship the guy. Because of that it would be really hard to pinpoint their motivations for listening to offers from AEW.
From an AEW perspective, on the other hand, I don’t think it would be good to hire well-known WWE loyalists. In terms of exposure it would most definitely be a fantastic idea but perhaps because of that exposure AEW might be inclined to push them above everyone else to gain further exposure. This would create a divide in the locker room which is never a good thing for any promotion, least of all a promotion still finding its feet.
Of course this is all hypothetical as these are nothing but rumours. Yet its hard not to imagine the repercussions of guys like Orton and Batista joining AEW’s ranks.
And that does it for another edition of The Main Event. Do you think it’s a good thing that Ambrose handed in his resignation? How likely is it that Orton or Batista will jump ship to AEW? Please leave a comment below. Alternatively, you can pop me an e-mail to [email protected] or follow me on twitter: @donfranclop. Any and all feedback is always much appreciated. But until next time…
This is Don Franc signing out.