Now that WrestleMania has come and gone and we know that Brock Lesnar has re-signed with the WWE, it is only natural to start thinking about what is going to happen in the year ahead.
A huge part of the build up to the WrestleMania main event between Roman Reigns and Brock Lesnar was Roman calling out Brock for being a part timer. Not only did this happen on WWE TV, it was something he was very vocal about in interviews outside of the WWE as well and to be honest he does have a point.
Having A Part Timer As Champion
Wrestling is a form of entertainment like no other, not many other forms of entertainment have as many characters as wrestling does and when we find one that really connects with us it creates a bond that is pretty much unbreakable. Even when they are gone, we want them to come back.
If we are looking at the current product as an example, look no further than The Rock. Whenever he has come back to the WWE in the last five years or so, it has always been in a very prominent spot and to be fair to him, he has appeared more than most of us thought he would, but no matter if it is John Cena or CM Punk, The Rock is a part time super star and even when he was the WWE Champion, you knew there was no way in hell that he was going to be defending that title in the 3,000 seat arena somewhere in the Midwest or on an international tour. The same can be said for Brock Lesnar and that was Roman Reigns’ point and while Reigns is not the most popular guy in the wrestling world, the effort he puts in and the miles he travels to entertain the fans cannot be understated.
Before WrestleMania, Roman Reigns did an interview with The New York Post and he said this,
“Whenever you have a champion who is on every single live event, every single house show, every single appearance that’s scheduled, it changes numbers,”
“It’s true. I’ve seen it before. The tour we had after I beat Triple H in Dallas, the numbers didn’t lie and it’s not going to be any different [this time].”
No doubt having the actual WWE Champion on a house show is going to make that show seem more appealing to fans and families. If you look at Goldberg when he first came into the WWE in 2003, Bruce Prichard on his podcast, Something To Wrestle said that they did not put the title on him right away as he would not be working the international tour and they wanted the champion on the tour. These days though, it is perfectly acceptable to have your WWE Champion only appear on every other RAW and hardly any house shows.
The Positive Effect of Part Timers
There is no denying that when you are watching RAW and you hear “If You Smelllllll” you jump out of your seat and get excited. It is the same whenever one of the old guard show up, it is exciting! A part timer can give the WWE a real boost, maybe just for one episode of RAW to try and spike a rating or maybe over a few weeks leading up to a PPV match. There is no denying that having a wrestler with the star power like The Rock is going to be a big deal. Without a doubt when The Rock was on the posters for WrestleMania 28 and 29, there would have been far more mainstream interest than if it was, say John Cena vs Triple H or John Cena vs Roman Reigns.
You could even look at a wrestler like Chris Jericho, you could argue that over the last few years he has been a part timer. However, Chris Jericho will come in for a few months at a time, work his butt off and make sure he puts someone over on the way out when he leaves for a few months. Chris Jericho is a great example of how to use someone who is not going to be there for a consistent 12 months at a time.