By Jason Powell
As a pro wrestling fan, it's easy to get caught up analyzing each segment of every television show to the point that we lose sight of the big picture. So just for the moment, let's put aside the debate over whether C.M. Punk should still have the WWE Championship or if Dolph Ziggler should be slotted higher on the card or whether John Cena's promos are too cornball to be effective. Sometime between now and WrestleMania 29, I encourage you to stop and truly marvel at the lineup of talent that WWE has assembled.
Do you think you will ever see another time in pro wrestling where a legitimate A-List movie star is headlining WrestleMania and appearing on WWE television on a regular basis? Even the biggest Punk fan has to admit that it's an amazing coup for WWE to get Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson not just to return for television appearances but to actually wrestle and have a run with the WWE Championship.
When Brock Lesnar became UFC Heavyweight Champion, did you think you would see him back in a WWE ring? How about his manager Paul Heyman, who is back as a weekly performer and delivering the absolute best mic work of his career?
WWE brought back Chris Jericho as a big Royal Rumble surprise. Mark Henry just returned from the injured list. Triple H is expected to work a WrestleMania match. Triple H told us we haven't seen the last of Undertaker. The list of big names from the past and the elite veteran talent just goes on and on (and I remain hopeful that Steve Austin will be included).
The company made peace with Bruno Sammartino and Bret Hart. They have mended fences with Ric Flair and Mick Foley and brought them back into the fold following their runs with TNA. They have a Hall of Fame class that currently consists of four former World Champions.
WWE has a strong crop of current stars anchored by John Cena, C.M. Punk, Sheamus, Kane, Randy Orton, Big Show, Rey Mysterio, and Alberto Del Rio.
The thing that excites me most about WWE currently is that they finally have a strong collection of future stars who are already on WWE television or are considered strong prospects in NXT. I was beyond frustrated that WWE brought in The Rock as the host of WrestleMania 27, yet they didn't have the younger stars showcased in a way that would give the viewers who ordered the show to see Rock a reason to stick around once he left. Things were better last year, yet not as good as this year could be.
Suddenly, WWE has a mix of mix of emerging stars such as Ryback, Dolph Ziggler, The Shield, Daniel Bryan, Wade Barrett, Antonio Cesaro, and Damien Sandow climbing the ladder, and a slew of strong prospects in developmental who are just waiting to crack WWE's suddenly loaded active roster.
There's no telling how well WWE will showcase their young talent at WrestleMania 29. The fact is, however, many of these performers are either being spotlighted or given plenty of camera time at a point when the company is delivering some of it's strong television numbers in years.
We don't know definitely whether Undertaker will be back for WrestleMania 29. We don't know how many more years the veteran part-time wrestlers or even the veteran full-time wrestlers will continue to work WrestleMania events. So stop for a second and enjoy it. There's a chance you will never see this level of true star power combined with huge names from past eras mixed with current stars and rising stars again.
Powell's Blog: These are the glory days of WWE
Feb 7, 2013 - 04:05 PM
Feb 7, 2013 - 04:05 PM
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