Thursday, June 13, 2024
EditorialWWE 2017 New Year's Resolutions for Superstars

WWE 2017 New Year’s Resolutions for Superstars

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It’s a New Year, yes it is! Today is the day everybody is going to be setting new goals for themselves in the hopes they can summon the energy to change the direction their lives have taken and end 2017 in a better way than they began it. Just the same, there’s always room for changes when it comes to the WWE wrestlers as well.

With a quick look at the roster, I decided to write down as many resolutions I could think of for how the WWE superstars can improve their game. Keep in mind that none of these will be something like “win a title” because everybody should be striving for things like that. These are more specific things they can work on over the next few months as far as character, skills, booking plans and more.

Big Cass and Enzo Amore

In a way, I’d almost like to see these two do the opposite things from each other. When it comes to Enzo, he needs to be given some opportunities to be more than a mouthpiece and a punching bag to set up Big Cass as the guy who can actually get things done. On the flip side, Big Cass needs to flex his mic skills more often. He’s struggling and it shows every time he follows a long Enzo rant. When Enzo was injured in NXT, Cass had to pull all of the weight on his own and he stepped up, but with Enzo doing the bulk of the talking on the main roster, Cass just stands there until he spells out S-A-W-F-T. Let’s see a little more credibility added to Enzo’s ring skills and a little more emphasis put on Cass’s mic skills to help even the two problem areas out.

Brock Lesnar

Maybe this is asking too much, but I’d love to see Brock Lesnar have more value than about an hour’s worth this year. When looking at 2016, he started off the year okay, but everything petered out. He continues to take months off and then when his programs he returns to do are lackluster, it makes it seem like it’s all for nothing. For instance, by the time SummerSlam came around, I was hoping Lesnar and Randy Orton would have a real brawl on par with his match against John Cena at Extreme Rules. Instead, we got a phoned-in beat down that lasted mere minutes. This was even less bombastic in regards to the Goldberg squash. If WWE has nothing more planned for Lesnar this year than to continue this trend, have him make a handful of appearances standing next to Paul Heyman on episodes of Raw leading up to the big four events where he wrestles a 5 minute match, I’d rather just have him sit 2017 out entirely so more time can be focused on other talent.

Charlotte Flair

She has been treated like the absolute zenith of the women’s division for quite some time, but good lord does she need to work on her promo skills if she’s going to be given the responsibility of being top dog who everyone strives to compete with. Charlotte has so many of the tools necessary to become the best women’s wrestler in the history of the company, but right now, every time she cuts a promo, it’s ear-grating and just not entertaining. You can tell she tries her hardest and that in some ways, she improves as time goes on, but it’s still not good enough right now to ignore and let her plateau. The past few months in particular, her improvements haven’t kept up the same pace and she’s even gone back to the well of having to denounce Ric Flair just to try to recapture some of the spark of her heel turn. Charlotte should take some acting classes to try to become more well-rounded, as she already has the in-ring work down pat.

Dolph Ziggler

I’ve been a huge fan of Dolph Ziggler going back to the days where he used to hold his hand out and say his name and then get wrecked, but even I have to admit the intensity of his promos as of late don’t match the content in them. It’s gotten to a point where every time a microphone is in front of him, he says the same information about how the odds are stacked against him but he has passion and the determination to overcome them, because when he’s backed against the corner, blah blah blah. The more times this happens, the less it matters—similarly to how Mick Foley’s rousing “yell at you to motivate you” speeches can fall on deaf ears. Ziggler should tweak his character this year so he doesn’t just continue repeating the same thing each and every time he speaks.

Emma / Emmalina

If and when she eventually makes her return, please make sure the Emmalina version of her character isn’t just the same heel we’ve seen before but with slightly changed gear. If that’s the case, she’s doomed to fall victim to the same problems plaguing her career advancement as before. Above all, they need to book Emmalina as a legitimate women’s wrestler to be taken seriously instead of just a side character to trot out when they need someone to fill in a blank like what they do with Alicia Fox. Giving Emmalina nowhere to go is the fastest way to ensure she goes nowhere.

Epico and Primo

Just bring Carlito back and change the gimmick up. This Shining Stars thing is never going to work. It’s not funny and entertaining enough to be a passable jobber gimmick like The Vaudevillains could be, nor is it anything to take seriously. It has zero momentum, but if Carlito were to come back and kick them in the ass to get back on track, they could be a better trio.

Erick Rowan

If The Wyatt Family implodes, Erick Rowan needs to carve out a separate niche for himself instead of having nothing to do. He can’t wear the same gear, come out with a sheep mask and hope that The Wyatt Family will reform for a third time. Whether he has an entirely new repackaging or he just changes a few things here and there, Erick Rowan has spent the majority of his tenure on the main roster as “the loser of The Wyatt Family” and if all that happens when he heals up is that he can’t depend on Bray Wyatt and Luke Harper anymore, he’ll simply be “the loser.”

Hideo Itami

Heal up, man! Come on! The bulk of Hideo Itami’s career so far has consisted of him sitting on the sidelines with an injury and promising to come back 100%, but he’s yet to really yield any positive returns for WWE. If he needs to spend a little more time away to heal up than normal in order to assure when he does come back, it’s for a more extended period, then that’s what needs to happen. His credibility can’t sustain another short-lived return with yet another injury.

Kalisto

Give up on being a midcarder and join the cruiserweight division! His strengths are in his ring style as opposed to anything based on character. To become a legitimate contender for the Intercontinental and United States Championships, you really need to be able to have a feud that can withstand a few months of programming. To do that, you need a character that can cut promos instead of saying stuff like “I’m gonna do a good lucha thing” and after a while, relying entirely on playing up the small guy being beaten down by a bigger guy gets boring, so you can’t go back to that well too many times. Kalisto is a great talent to be supplemental as half of a tag team, but he could succeed even more if he were thrust into the cruiserweight division where he can go out there, wrestle, and not have to be an over-the-top character. Playing to your strengths isn’t the same as giving up or failing, so Kalisto should rejoice in what he has to offer rather than struggling in a field he might not succeed in.

Paige

Just grow up. Seriously. That’s it. Stop acting like a child who begs for attention in any way possible, even if it’s negative. Hold yourself to the phrase “if you run into an asshole in the morning, you ran into an asshole, but if you run into assholes all day, then you’re the asshole.”

Roman Reigns

“The Guy” needs to turn heel this year, without a doubt. I’ll commend WWE on trying so hard to ignore the fans and to push their agenda, hoping to wear people down and convince them to get back to cheering him, but you can only do that for so long before it becomes unapologetically stubborn—and this is coming from a guy who actually likes Roman Reigns and wishes the fans WOULD get behind him again. We’re at a crossroads now where if WWE continues to book him in 2017 the way he’s been booked for the past 3 years, people will simply stop caring entirely. They need to reinvigorate him and to do so, a heel turn is the easiest way to change things up. If it works and he becomes one of the top heels in the company, then that’s amazing for them. If it bombs and people still don’t care, then they know for sure they need to go back to the drawing board for him. Worst case scenario, people start cheering him again because they think that will make them cool, and then you can turn him babyface and go back to what you originally wanted, right?

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I’d love to see Nick Miller and Shane Thorne develop some actual personalities this year, as they’re currently coming off to me as “those two indie guys who can’t decide whether or not their team name has a hyphen” and not much else. They’re fun to watch in the ring, but they’re as generic as can be, particularly when compared to the other teams who have much more of an identity established. If The Wyatt Family, The Ascension, The Revival, American Alpha and other teams could form their characters in NXT, there’s no reason Miller and Thorne can’t figure out something to make them stand out from the no-name enhancement talent.

Those are my suggestions, but what ideas do you have in mind, particularly for the wrestlers who didn’t make my list? Do you have any resolutions for yourself this year? Drop your thoughts in the comments below!

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