Five years ago, 2010 was the future and ZAH looked into it. In his first ever column with World Wrestling Insanity, our soon-to-be resident head shaker looked at the stars of tomorrow, uh, today. Well tomorrow then. Today today. You get it. Anyway, journey back to October 7, 2005 as World Wrestling Insanity joins ZAH in asking...
Can The Future Please Stand Up?
So who's gonna be the next big thing? No, I'm serious. Not just the next big thing, no no no. Not just big, either. But really frickin' BIG!
Since Hulk Hogan became WWF champion back in 1984, professional wrestling has gone out of its way in its attempts to find the next "superstar" that could make a TON of money and draw in newer fans. There have been many failed experiments over the years…
1. Kerry Von Erich
2. Magnum T.A.
3. Lex Luger
5. Mark Henry
6. Big Show
7. Rob Van Dam
8. David Arquette
9. Tom Magee
See what I'm sayin'? We've had Shawn Michaels, Bret Hart, Goldberg, Steve Austin, the Rock…but wrestling is currently missing that one big superstar that can bring it out of its current "funk." The one person that can keep hard-core fans entertained and casual fans tuning in. So who is it? Is there anybody around today that has the potential to be the next big thing? Let's take a quick look around, shall we?
Vanilla Ice or Eminem? WWE higher-ups have got to make up their mind on whether or not to "let Cena be Cena." It's all on WWE's shoulders at this point. It's their question to answer…continue to reign-in his character traits to appease the masses or let him loose to become the "cool, cocky" tweener?
Although champion, he's currently not the greatest wrestler in the world.
What? What are you saying?? B-b-but…he's the champion!!
Does that shock you? Tell you what…I'll give him this: he's better than Cena in the ring, that's for sure. He's definitely coming along, too. He in-ring skills are improving. Also, at this point it would be hard to deny that he's also not the best on the mic.
How DARE you!!!
Yeeaahh…I know. I suck. Anyhoo, he's a perfect example of how to hide somebody's weaknesses and maximize their strengths. How do I know this? He's over. He's as over as anybody on the entire Smackdown roster. If he could improve in the ring a little bit then he's the one that could be considered the "next big thing."
Waaay too early to decide whether or not this walking muscle is going to turn into anything special. I will say this, though…he's got wrestling ability and oozes charisma. Crowds have taken to him and he hasn't even said a word yet. That goes a long way. I just hope that when he finally speaks he doesn't end up sounding like Michael Jackson.
This guy has the charisma that will take him very VERY far in WWE. However, both his look and wrestling ability aren't outstanding or even overly unique. Give him time and he'll be something…but it's hard to tell if he'll be much more than upper mid-card act.
This guy is money. He's got that intangible you can't put your finger on. He's a little small and could probably put on a couple of pounds, but that can come with time because he's so young. He's all about charisma. And he's got hair.
Oh yes…that big-ass glorious hair………
He's not on the main roster yet…but he's the man. Look up "star" in the dictionary and you'll see his picture. I'm looking forward to seeing his progression.
He just needs to learn how to block a punch now and then.
He's not called "phenomenal" for nothing. Here's the thing with Styles, though…
Shhh…c'mere. I don't want anybody else to hear…a little closer…okay, you ready? Here it comes…
He's got zero personality outside of the ring. But don't tell anybody as it might hold him back.
where was I? Oh yeah…if this guy could talk, he'd be THE MAN already. No doubt. He's certainly the future of this business as long as he doesn't kill himself in the ring first.
One look at this guy and you think:
"Wow. Did Rikishi ever lose a lot of weight!"
Upon further review, however, you watch one of his matches and think:
"Wow. This guy is f*ckin' awesome!!"
And you'd be right. Joe proves that you don't need to look like a bodybuilder in order to rock the Casbah in the ring. Can he be "Stone Cold-esque"? Hard to tell at this point but it should be fun watching him grow to see if it happens.
Fans of curry unite!! I must admit I'm a late bandwagon jumper when it comes to Daniels. I've only recently fallen under the Fallen Angel's spell. This guy has it all…mic skills, in-ring ability, and the makings of a super-over gimmick (no…I do not mean Curry Man).
So what's he lacking? What's the problem? I don't know. He's a little small by "superstar" standards? I believe that given the opportunity to run with a ball, Daniels can make the most out of any given opportunity.
Abyss? Lance Hoyt? AMW?
I've said it before…this guy is the next Mr. Perfect. The gimmick is already there waiting for him. He's practically flawless in the ring and his moves flow from one to the next. What's lacking? The same thing that's missing in
The ability to speak in coherent, flowing sentences.
That's harsh, I know. My bad. But you know what I'm saying, right? Aries is learning, I'll give him that. And it's not like mic skills are a requirement for success, just ask Chris Benoit. However, if we're looking for wrestling's next big thing…Aries isn't there yet.
Bryan Danielson? Homicide? Colt Cabana?
You could go through the entire ROH roster and find some of the best wrestlers in the world. I am thoroughly entertained every time I watch an ROH video or dvd. However, at this time I think the only potential break-outs are already being noticed (i.e. Samoa Joe, CM Punk, Daniels, Styles, etc.).
Alright. So where does that leave us? These guys are arguably the next superstars of professional wrestling. Do any of them have what it takes to put them "over the top"? Have I missed anybody?
Let me know. Jump on to the
Message Boards and tell me what you think. This will grow to be an extremely interactive column. Sometimes it might even write itself. Next week I'll have the first two of my weekly guests from the WorldWrestlingInsanity.com message board to assist me with my column. Until then, check out my TNA Impact review this Sunday and I'll see you all next week!