The original idea for tonight was to write another Buzzfeed-style top ten, profiling the ongoing (rumored) death of TNA. That will have to wait.
For one, I forgot to save the Word doc where I saved my next ten, and I’m too annoyed to start from scratch tonight.
The other reason, and the real reason, is that there’s some pretty interesting “breaking news” in the wrestling world today. Alberto Del Rio has been fired by World Wrestling Entertainment.
He wasn’t even wished well in his future endeavors.
The rumor is that Del Rio was involved in a recent “incident” with a WWE employee. The rumor mill says he slapped a member of the WWE social media team.
The story will come to light in the days and weeks to come, and the wrestling world will keep on turning, like nothing happened. Nick will be heartbroken, but most fans will move on without issue.
It is what it is.
But while I sat at the bar tonight (swig of beer for the functional alcoholic), I thought about how my friends would react. I thought about how typical wrestling fans would react. You know what phrase came to mind?
“…and nothing of value was lost.”
And that’s a damn shame.
Alberto Del Rio should have never been a STAR in WWE. Making him WWE Champion was probably a huge mistake, in hindsight. He never clicked with the crowd as an A+ player. If you took everything Triple H and Stephanie said to Daniel Bryan over the last 18 months, and pointed it in Del Rio’s direction, it’d fit. He’s good, but he’s not a STAR.
But that’s not to say that Del Rio didn’t have a place on the WWE roster, and an important one at that. Del Rio, along with Sheamus, should have been the anchor of the new and re-emerging midcard. He was having great matches, and should have been having those matches with the next crop of mid-to-upper card guys, before they got to the top.
Jake Roberts and Ted Dibiase made careers out of that spot on the roster. So did Mr. Perfect, Billy Gunn, Hardcore Holly, and many others. It’s a great role, and a damn important one.
Del Rio was, and still is, a mechanic. His stuff in the ring looks BRUTAL. Everything looks like it hurts, which is the point. It didn’t hurt guys to lose to Del Rio. It made guys look good to beat him. The matches were always good… even if they never had heat. And let it be known, they almost NEVER had heat.
And if there’s anything to take from the Del Rio situation, it’s a lesson that all aspiring professional wrestlers should learn. Listen up kids, it’s free advice: keep your heat –ALL of your heat—in the ring. If you’re a heat magnet in the locker room, and only in the locker room, your days in the spotlight are numbered.
If you want to watch Del Rio in pointless, heatless matches… I hope you get the El Ray Network. I hear AAA is ready to shoot their new series for the American audience.
But you already knew that.