Soft Rock: Why Johnson at Wrestlemania is just fine for now

12/30/15 by Rennie Detore



A quick glance at programming being put forth by World Wrestling Entertainment shows a huge void in two key elements that make professional wrestling so popular: entertainment and compelling writing.
In its place is a sense of urgency for all the wrong reasons, and characters and story telling that is devoid of any sort of drama or interest that once defined the WWE in the late 1990s and early 2000s.
Granted, WWE has dealt with a plethora of injuries, most notably star Daniel Bryan, who still is trying to get clearance to wrestle after neck surgery. The company also lost mega star CM Punk to the Ultimate Fighting Championship world when Punk inked a deal to fight, not wrestle.

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But WWE no longer is good at creating superstars or stars in general. They have a talented roster, but no one outside of John Cena that can generate any sort of star power that puts, as long time announcer Jim Ross would say, "butts in the seats."
You can argue that head honcho Vince McMahon and his daughter Stephanie and son in law Triple H aren't good at finding talent and pushing it as the next big thing. No one has unseated Cena, and those on the inside of WWE will tell you that no one has been able to reach out and grab that proverbial brass ring.
In actuality, WWE has been relying on the past and special guests and former stars to carry the load.
Look no further than the announcement that mega movie star and former WWE superstar Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson is going to be at Wrestlemania 32 this year in Dallas, as WWE attempts to sell a hundred thousand seats in Cowboys Stadium.
The Rock said he'll be there, but at what capacity is yet to be determined. But this move feels more like desperation rather than WWE asking back one of its original and most successful performers.
The Rock could conceivably wrestle Brock Lesnar, another part time star WWE calls on to fulfill only a handful of important dates per year. Leans versus Rock would sell tickets and be a suitable main event for that stadium show, their biggest of the year.
In the end, however, this is another example of WWE relying on what they did, not figuring out what to do to extend the product beyond their comfort zone. Of the new breed of talent, you have several choices worthy of being pushed to the top of the card.
Until McMahon and company start seeing the future a little clearer, the past will always trump anything as the safety net WWE simply can't, or want, to escape.

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