With the rise of technology, the WWE has become a giant via social media. Back in the 90s, who could have predicted that Superstars would be called Superstars, and that their name plate during an entrance would include a Twitter handle? The company is a different beast today. With that in mind, ratings have become an afterthought, and something that’s second fiddle in terms of overall importance. Becoming a publicly traded company, the company has revenues coming from around the world due to its plethora of new sponsorship deals since changing the product to PG.
Making money is great and all, but it really doesn’t benefit the fanbase all that much. Yes, the roster seems to be deeper than ever, but the shows have glaring holes that continue to go unfixed. This has led to outrage online by lots of diehard fans. Persisting problems deal with scripted promos, the PG rating, and dropping the ball with concepts that had loads of potential, like the Cruiserweights for example.
In this article, we diagnose some of the problems and suggest new outcomes that might be kind of dramatic and quite shocking. Again, most of these concepts are unlikely to unfold, so take them in with an open mind. If you like the ideas on the list, be sure to share it with a buddy and let us know the changes you would make via our Facebook page. Here are 15 shocking changes we hope Vince is thinking about. Enjoy!
15. Create Championship Divisions
Nowadays, every WWE Title seems to have lost meaning. A big reason for that is the fact that no clear divisions have been established. Back in the 90s and early 2000s, it was quite clear which wrestlers were competing for the IC Title and which Superstars had set their sights on the WWE Championship. Nowadays, everything seems to be so scattered and it severely hurt the state of numerous titles.
Ideally, the WWE would give up the brand split and merge the rosters into one. The next step would be to clearly identify divisions, so one division for the WWE Title, one for the IC Title, one for the Cruiserweight Title and one for the Tag Titles. Of course the Women would also have a championship (but we’ll have more on that a little later) and a belt like the US Title would only be defended on one brand, with its very own division. Clearly establishing this would add immense value to the belts, instead of it constantly being a free for all.
14. NXT Goes TV-14
Despite having a thin roster compared to Raw and SmackDown Live, NXT continues to surpass the main roster in terms of content and storylines. Triple H continues to achieve great success with the developmental brand, showing absolutely no signs of slowing down. The underground, old school feel of the show is an absolute master class. At the moment, NXT is the closest thing to pro wrestling booking on WWE TV.
In a perfect world, the WWE would add to the intrigue of the brand by evolving it into a TV-14 show. Fans have been desperate for edgier content and doing it with NXT might be the perfect formula since it already has an old school feel. Just imagine NXT with blood and a little more edge, even more fans would gravitate towards the product. It’s obviously a long shot given the WWE’s new stance as a publicly traded company, but man, is it ever something to think about.
13. NXT Has A Roster Call Up Window
It’s inevitable, after a certain point, wrestlers down in NXT get called up to the main roster. However, the timing is quite inconsistent with some making the jump after ‘Mania, while others even join in the summer or on route to WrestleMania.
Creating clarity in the product is absolutely vital, especially for fan intrigue. When things are too all over the place, fans simply tune out. So our suggestion, create call up windows that clearly establish when an NXT star can be called up to the main roster. Our suggestion, create two call up windows per year; one on the night after WrestleMania, and the other, the night after SummerSlam (or Survivor Series). Call ups would be limited to four per window, which would only add to the intrigue of it all. This change can not only help the main roster, but it’ll also help the NXT talent immensely as they’ll finally have an actual goal/date to work towards.
12. Create A Second Women’s Championship
Of course, there already is a second Women’s Championship, but this scenario takes place under one main roster. We’d keep the Women’s Championship while also creating a “B” type title for an upcoming performer. A possible name for such a championship could be the Women’s TV Title. With a roster deeper than ever, it could add more meaning to second tier storylines with a new title added to the mix.
In terms of booking, the title can serve as a launching pad for a new talent like Asuka, stalling her path to the Women’s Championship. It can also help boost a young talent like Nia Jax, Dana Brooke or Carmella. Along with that, it can help to resurrect a career and give a woman new life. The likes of Alicia Fox, Tamina, Mickie James or even Summer Rae can get a huge boost holding a second tier championship. If anything else, the new belt would only add another element of depth to the deep Women’s Division.
11. Book The Cruiserweights With Minimal Dialogue
This might sound harsh, but it’s exactly what’s needed for the Cruiserweights at this point. After an incredible CWC Tournament, the WWE Universe drooled at the possibility of such action continuing over on Raw. Instead, we’ve gotten the short end of the stick as the WWE put the entertainment spin on the weight class, something it didn’t need. Thus far the division has been a major disappointment.
With so much talent oozing in the division, the Cruiserweights could be saved with some tweaks. First and foremost, dialogue needs to be dropped to a minimum. Fans don’t care for tacky storylines when it comes to the CWC wrestlers; they just want to see them work their magic in the ring. In terms of building stories, the best way to go about it would be to create emotional vignettes giving us a deeper feel on the Cruiserweight Superstar. It worked wonders during the Cruiserweight Classic and that would certainly continue if it transferred over to the main roster. So to sum up; less talk, more action.
10. Decrease PPVs – Increase Special Events
It’s safe to say that with PPV names like Payback and Great Balls Of Fire, the WWE has one too many PPVs nowadays. Seriously though, for the average fan even with the network, it’s nearly impossible to catch every PPV event; there’s just too many.
What we suggest, is trimming the fat, and narrowing down the PPV schedule to six to eight events per year. This might sound impossible, but to compromise, the WWE can add more special events. With a network at their disposal, it would add an awesome element of surprise and intrigue. Special events like “Live From MSG” could take place on a Thursday, Friday or heck, even on a Saturday. It would add a new element of intrigue from the fans, instead of doing the same cycle of Sunday PPVs every month. Fans love change, and this would be without a doubt, a welcomed sight for WWE fans.
9. Change Event Sets
Sticking with the PPVs, nowadays it seems like every event is the same thing; aside from the Royal Rumble and WrestleMania of course, which are events the WWE goes all out for, spending millions in customized decorations. Now we aren’t asking for the same type of budget every show, but at the very least, something different to get the fans excited. Who can forget the days of getting excited to see what customized ramp the WWE had in store for the Universe. Remember that Armageddon entrance with the sand and tank? What happened to those days?!
Today, the WWE is complacent using the same HD ramp for most of the PPVs. It’s really hard to establish the difference in any of the events nowadays aside from the big four (Royal Rumble, WrestleMania, SummerSlam and Survivor Series). This would be another element that would only help the company, giving their die-hard fans an old school feel while watching events.
8. Let The “B” Shows Return With Meaning
One major fail for the WWE has been their treatment of the “B” level shows taped before Raw and SmackDown. Nothing of intrigue ever happens on the Main Event or to the Superstars. That’s a damn shame as some lower tier wrestlers can use a bit of dialogue to help their status.
Looking at the rosters that feature talents going to waste, the likes of Bo Dallas, Curt Hawkins, Darren Young, Curtis Axel, Titus O’Neil, Aiden English, The Ascension, R-Truth and heck even Goldust can benefit from having some type of story. The B level shows could improve with added value such as these lower tier faces competing in tournaments for a shot at a championship. Heck, you could even defend a championship exclusively on the “B” shows like maybe bringing back the Hardcore Title. It’ll give fans a reason to tune in, and actually give the live fans a reason to come early to events. Speaking of the Hardcore Title…
7. Bring Back The Hardcore Title
It was only fitting that in a wacky era of pro wrestling back in the 90s that such a championship would be brought into the mix. Back in November of 1998, Mankind debuted the championship on Raw. He was awarded the title by Vince and like they say, the rest is history.
It wasn’t necessarily a title that had great meaning, but it gave the lower tier performers something to do. The likes of the Big Boss Man, Road Dog, Bob Holly and Al Snow were all former champions, giving them something of meaning to work with at that point. Unbelievably, the belt would change hands 240 times, with the final champion being Rob Van Dam, claiming the title in late August of 2002. The title would end up getting unified with the IC Championship. For you factual buffs out there, the record setting champion was Raven, who won the belt 27 times.
6. Change Scripted Promos & Camera Settings
One of the most problematic areas for the WWE over the last couple of years has been storytelling. In order to properly tell an intriguing story, you need proper dialogue and that’s been a miss more than it’s been a hit in the past. Since Stephanie recruited Hollywood-type writers, fans have voiced their disapproval for the new type of storytelling.
Aside from the likes of John Cena and Chris Jericho that use bullet points and pretty much wing the rest of it, the likes of Roman Reigns are given a script and basically recite exactly what they’re given. Along with that, some performers seem like robots constantly starring into the hard camera. The likes of Stone Cold gave us such an emotional feel to his promos due to the fact that he’d walk around in the ring and not cater to one camera throughout his promo. This is a lost art that the WWE needs to bring back and something that would aid the storytelling aspect immensely.
5. Give The Women A PPV Event
Looking at changes the WWE has made, we must give them credit for their treatment of the women. For so many years, the division was an afterthought and one most of us would use bathroom breaks for. However, that’s all changed nowadays since the unveiling of the Performance Center. Today, the women of the division are highly skilled and it’s safe to say they’ve captured our attention. The NXT TakeOver Brooklyn encounter between Sasha and Bayley cemented the fact that the women officially arrived!
On both Raw and SmackDown, the females are doing quite well with multiple storylines running. If the roster would be merged into one, you could only imagine how many feuds and rivalries would be going on at the same time. With the emergence of a groundbreaking Women’s Tournament on the horizon, the next likely step would be to set up an all female PPV. Whether it would be a one night tournament special event, or booked rivalry matches, we can all safely say that it’s time the females get their very own PPV or special event.
4. Book Raw For 2 Hours
Just imagine an episode of Raw under one roster and a two hour time-slot? Wouldn’t you feel the urge to tune in every week to see what they could fit into the two hour show with such a plethora of talent at their disposal? The answer, quite simply, is yes. If the WWE is truly interested in boosting ratings, such a move would encourage the fanbase to tune in to such an action packed show. Also, a viewer’s attention for two hours is much easier to sustain than a three hour episode; that’s just too demanding.
Nowadays, a three hour Raw with half the roster has created marginal results. Meaningless storylines are what make up the show, along with pointless backstage segments and an abundance of reviews throughout the show, whether it be taking a look at a past PPV, or, recapping what took place during the night. Excluding all of that stuff, the show would instantly be cut to two hours, and just imagine doing that under one roster.
3. Let Go Of Part-Timers
This one likely won’t happen anytime soon but seriously, who else is sick of seeing part-time wrestlers be given such a spotlight? Brock’s character is awesome, don’t get us wrong, but the part-time thing is just a slap in the face, especially due to the fact that he’s champion at the moment. It was okay the first time, but it seems like today, the WWE Universe is quite sick of it and would rather Brock not be there at all if he’s going to sit at home and not show up with the title.
Not only does the champion need to represent the show, but those pulling the bus day in and day out are the ones that need the exposure. Brock has done great things for the company, but it’s time to build around those that dictate the future of the company. This is one of the most far-fetched changes on this list, but one that Vince should seriously start to consider.
2. End The Brand Split
With such a deep roster, the brand split seemed like the obvious choice. However, it seems like one brand is thriving (SmackDown Live), while the flagship program seems to be on the same steady stream. The results haven’t been the greatest for Raw, and that could all change by merging the rosters once again.
With such a deep talent pool, you salivate thinking about all the storylines that could be going at once. As we stated, even the titles could improve with the addition of actual divisions in pursuit of the championships. Even a belt like the US Title could be exclusively defended on SmackDown Live. Merging the rosters would be a great idea, especially looking at the amount of talent; some would argue the roster is deeper than ever nowadays. Putting all the Superstars into one roster could pave the way for the next era in sports entertainment. We hope this is something Vince is eventually thinking about bringing back.
1. Create The Next Big Faction & Let Them Run The Company
Shocking changes are needed in order to keep the fan interest high. Just imagine the likes of Roman Reigns and John Cena setting up a heel faction taking over the company. Knowing where they stand, that of course is a pipe dream.
However, others could play a huge role in the next faction. Just imagine the likes of Finn Balor, A.J. Styles and The Club, merging into one group that takes over the WWE similar to the way the nWo did back in the day. Having Angle and Bryan as GMs is nice, but it might be time for a faction to take over the entire company, adding a shocking twist to the programming. Just imagine the amount of merchandise a Balor/Styles faction would sell? And just imagine the feud the two would have once the dust settles and the WWE takes back the company? It remains to be seen if the WWE will pull the trigger on the next big faction.
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