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TJR Q&A #10: The Rock’s Role At WrestleMania? Rusev As Future WWE Champ? And More! (50 Questions!)

A new year is upon us, the holiday season is officially over and it’s time for people to get back to some normalcy in their lives. For me, that normalcy means another question and answer session with the readers of TJRWrestling.

I asked for reader questions on Saturday on my Facebook page and then I picked out 50 good ones that cover a lot of different topics about past WWE, current WWE and of course predictions for the future as well. Let’s get to it.

1. Brian Wallace
First wwe superstar to be “future endeavored” this year?

I think guys like Curtis Axel and Fandango may be on the chopping block. Adam Rose too even though they might feel bad about it since he’s got two kids with one of them having some issues. They can afford so many people, though, that they don’t go on firing sprees. How has Rosa Mendes survived 10 years in WWE without doing much? I don’t get it lol. She’s not going to get fired now that she’s pregnant and is on Total Divas. I just think her ability to last that long is…interesting to say the least.

2. Roderick Walker
What are some of your favorite worst wwe matches ever?

Probably the one where Jackie Gayda blew a lot of spots in a tag match with Chris Nowinski against Trish and Bradshaw. I felt bad for her, but I was amazed at how bad it was. I’m also amazed that people that run WWE would put Jackie in a match when she was so inexperienced. That’s poor management.

3. Nathan Pickering
Will the Nation Of Domination ever be in the Hall of Fame?

I don’t think the Nation of Domination was that impressive as a group or that impactful. They didn’t even last a year. It’s not like the HOF is a real place that is based on merit though!

4. Kevin C Staed
How long until they start making cuts with rarely used talents like Ryder etc? They’re really of no use to Raw or Smackdown.

They are in no rush to make cuts because if you think about it they have two house show tours every weekend, which means that about 50-60 people are working those shows. Then you have about 10-15 people injured at all times just because of how the business is. A guy like Ryder is in NXT a lot because they are touring too. The company is much bigger than a TV company. They tour regularly and need the roster at the size they have it. Most of the guys that don’t appear on TV are working most weekends.

As a side note, I’ve never been a guy to say “this guy should be fired” because they aren’t on television. Why does it matter to us? I like and respect wrestlers, so I want them to have good jobs in WWE.

5. Daniel Mount
Who eventually beats New Day for the belts?

I think it will be the Dudleys. Maybe WrestleMania. It could be The Usos or Lucha Dragons. I just like the story of the Dudleys doing it at WM.

6. Larry Yadao
I have a two part question John. This is the first time we’ve had a babyface as the champion in a long time. Now that Roman is champion, who do you think takes the title from him in the probably far future? And do you think if Roman doesn’t draw or help ratings, they move onto a Zayn or a Balor as the next guy or continue to keep Roman as the next face of the company?

It’s hard to say who takes the title from him. It may be a year long run for him. I think it’s going to be like Cena’s first reign in 2005. He held it for almost a year, Edge beat him, Cena got it back and had anther good run. I don’t think Reigns will necessarily beat the 434 mark set by CM Punk (it’s not a record anyway), but it’s going to be long. If I had to pick somebody to beat it I’d say heel Ambrose or Rollins. Could be Cena too.

I don’t see them bailing on Reigns any time soon. Balor’s a good performer, but he’s not really a great talker and he’s older than Reigns too. Zayn can get over huge. I don’t know if he will.

7. Matthew Toy
With The Rock already announced for WrestleMania, do you think this is the year he goes in the Hall of Fame?

I don’t think so. I think Sting will be the main HOF guy. Doubt he’s ever going to wrestle again, so put him in this time. Rock can go in at any time and could certainly be this year. It would be an awesome speech that’s for sure.

When I see Rock continually talk about making history and something special it makes me think that he may go into HOF as well as announce it’s his last match ever. I don’t know, though.

8. Darrius Gaddy
Outside of Razor Ramon and Mr Perfect during their runs who do you think they dropped the ball on in terms of putting the WWE tTtle on? A name that instantly pops in my head is MVP.

Yes for sure MVP. If you’re an old school reader of mine, I wrote a fantasy booking article in like 2009 where I came up with a storyline to push him to the top. I wish WWE pulled the trigger on him. Mr. Perfect should have been champion, but they loved Hogan so much. Razor is another guy for sure. Roddy Piper is another.

9. Reginald Pippin
Was Bret Hart’ s work as a heel underrated?

Absolutely although I think at the time people knew how good he was. I think 1997 Bret Hart was his best year ever – it’s just a shame that Montreal is remembered so much. It was so big for me as a Canadian too just because I loved those guys so much.

10. Michael Uong
I think we all assume Reigns will have the title for a while, how would you book him losing the title and to who? Rollins when he returns would be my guess.

Might be a year. Maybe more. Probably a cash-in. I think Kevin Owens around SummerSlam would be awesome. Maybe too obvious, though. I’m not really thinking about it long because it will be a 200+ day reign.

11. Brian Robinson
Who’s the worst WWE Champion ever?

I think Khali (only the World Title not WWE Title) and Sid. Diesel’s run was too long and very bad too.

12. Erin Somers
Do you still buy wwe dvd/blu ray sets even though most of the matches on them are on the network??

Just the Owen one because I loved that guy. Also the Heyman and Punk ones. I like to support the people I like a lot just as a prideful thing. Other than that, no.

13. Guy Handscombe
Why hasn’t Bray Wyatt won any gold despite being a top level performer for the past 2 years?

I don’t think it’s something his character is motivated about. It reminds me of Mankind in the first year or two. I think 2016 could be the year for some gold for him.

12. John Czech
How would you book a CM Punk/HBK feud?

It’s a shame it didn’t happen when Punk was a heel in 2009. Way to book it would have been CM Punk cutting promos about how Michaels has a false hero (since Michaels is religious) while Punk in his SES days could have said he’s a hero to millions. He can rip Shawn for being a druggie in the past. That sort of thing. I would have loved it.

13. Stuart Pretswell
Do you think Kevin Owens will get a run with the wwe Title sometime in 2016? I can see him already as a favourite to win MITB. I hope it happens but we all know that creative will do exactly the opposite of what the fans want half the time.

I hope Owens does. I’m encouraged by the way he has been booked since losing the IC Title. It makes me think that the WM match with Brock Lesnar is possible. They could set it up at the Rumble with Lesnar eliminating him and then Owens costing him the match by going back in after him. Owens winning MITB is fine with me. They need proper heels and he’s one of the best.

14. Danny Kowalski
Think Rusev will every be a legit factor for a WWE Title run?

A year ago I would have said yes. Then he was booked terribly for much of 2015 and I just don’t see it happening now. He still has a bright future, so I hope he can get there. It’s tougher with only one WWE Title too.

15. Kelsey Graham
Do you think a system like the UFC has with their belts could work in wrestling? Every one of their championships is held at the same level of respect and it means that people who may not be seen as ‘world champion material’ could have a much greater chance of getting the recognition they deserve. Neville isn’t 6″8 and doesn’t weigh 260? No problem, he can still get to the same level as a Batista or a John Cena.

I don’t think it would work in current WWE. It’s not how Vince McMahon has ever booked things and I’ve read that Vince never watches UFC, so doubt they are going to do something like that. They’re not going to create titles for different weight classes. Part of the appeal of pro wrestling is based on the smaller guy trying to beat the bigger guy. That’s a story just by looking at it. It’s not about having weight classes.

16. Is Kevin Owens your early favorite to win MITB?

If a heel is the winner then yes. Bray Wyatt is another top contender. I’d like to see a fresh face like Sami Zayn win it more than anybody.

17. Justin J Wingert
With the Rumble coming up, what big name surprises have the best chance of showing up: Bryan? RVD? Jericho? I think some NXT talent would be a great pop say Joe or Corbin.

Daniel Bryan would be the big one because he hasn’t been around since April and if they don’t tease it then the crowd would love it. I don’t think RVD is a big name anymore. He’s old lol. AJ Styles would be an awesome surprise. I think the Orlando crowd would pop huge for him.

18. Andrew ‘Mothfox’ Amos
What would the goal be for nxt for 2016?

Similar to what 2015 was, which is growing by doing more shows in bigger arenas like Brooklyn and London. If they can make that a regular thing then that’s a significant upgrade. Perhaps they could “grow” more by having NXT talent invade the main roster. That could be a bit of a mess, though.

19. David Dierking
How did someone not get killed with the Steiner Screwdriver?

Haha yeah man that was a crazy move. It took a lot of strength and if you fuck it up it would hurt so bad. Scotty was an amazing in-ring talent in the late 1980s/early 1990s. Kinda like Kurt Angle before Kurt was there. Just didn’t get to be a main eventer until he got bigger!

20. Ryan Cocke
For the Royal Rumble the way early signs point to Lesnar returning and winning. If it’s not him who would you give an early guess for the winner?

Him or Cena. I’d be surprised if it’s somebody else. There are always really two or three legit choices.

21. Guy Handscombe
Who do you blame for the WWE’s creative malaise and what should be done to fix it?

I think Vince McMahon deserves the credit for the best of times (Attitude Era) and deserves criticism for years like 2015 where the product wasn’t that great. The roster is good. Creative wasn’t good enough. They probably need less scripted promos and Hollywood writers and more old school wrestling principles, so might want to pick the brains of guys like Jake Roberts, Scott Hall or Steve Austin to get booking ideas from them.

22. Will J Edwards
If it wasn’t for he’s media work promoting WWE, do you think The Miz would still be employed by WWE?

Yes. I don’t know what he makes, but he’s probably in the top 20 paid most guys for active wrestlers just based on being there for a decade and a former main eventer. He’s not getting pushed, but everybody has a reason to be around.

23. John C Hoddy
What moments caused you to mark out?

I’ll give you a couple from things I experienced live. Daniel Bryan’s WWE Title win at WM30. Being there live was amazing even though it was obvious and he had already been champion before. It was just a magical feeling. Being at that Banks/Bayley match in October was pretty good. I remember looking around and thinking “we’re standing up for 25 minutes of this match” which is something I’ve never done before.

24. Aneil Komal
What do you think of Cody Rhodes’ career? To be honest, I thought he would a world champion by now.

I’m with you. I thought he would be World Champ by now also. I think he’s wasting some prime years of his career as this Stardust character that’s going nowhere. The gimmick meant a lot to his dad, so that’s why he’s doing it still, but he’ll never really move up as Stardust. He can be and should be so much more. I hope he’s a breakout star this year. He just has to get rid of that gimmick.

25. Van Wilhoite
Who are your top 5 wrestlers (career value) during your time as a fan and is who is the one active wrestler most likely to crack that top 5 eventually?

I think for top five best wrestlers I’d go Shawn Michaels, Steve Austin, Kurt Angle, Bret Hart and probably Ric Flair. I don’t know the guys pre 1980s, so hard to be to put in Bruno or somebody else. If Daniel Bryan could put in another five years then he could be in there. Seth Rollins has the skills to do it if he can put in 5-7 more years. Maybe Sami Zayn if he puts in ten years on the main roster with some legendary performances.

26. Aj Giacobbe
How would you book Undertaker’s last match at WrestleMania?

He loses to whoever (John Cena this year for example), shakes that guy’s hand and then that guy leaves the ring. Undertaker then gets his famous black hat and coat as well as his gloves, leaves them in the ring, points up to the heavens (a salute to Paul Bearer) and slowly walks away. Then I’d have the entire roster on the stage clapping for him. Don’t tell him that they are doing it, but have them do it. That’s how WrestleMania ends. Or do it on Raw.

27. Matt Wayne Breeding
Who would you like to see the wwe put out a dvd about next?

The women that they built the divas division around say 2003 to 2008 or so like Trish, Lita, Mickie, Victoria, Molly and so on. I dunno who they haven’t done a DVD about that would be relevant.

28. Dale Cleary
Other than new PPVs, what’s the single best reason to pay for the WWE Network?

The best answer is NXT. I love the archives too. Knowing I can watch stuff from Raw 2000 or Smackdown 2002 for example is pretty awesome. Same with all the PPVs. I like more than most though. Also I don’t think the price is that much anyway. It’s 33 cents a day. No big deal.

29. Eric Hay
How do you feel about crowds trying to hijack the show? I know a great crowd can make a great show. I loved the raw after mania 29. Just feel some would rather get themselves over. Thoughts on this?

I think chanting stuff in support of talent is fine. Ripping on stuff for being boring or chanting other stuff isn’t something I particularly like. At the same time, it’s better than a dead crowd.

30. James Tascar Mayhew
For the following WWE play-by-play guys, who was their best color commentator?
Gorilla Monsoon
Vince McMahon
Jim Ross
Michael Cole
Joey Styles
Jonathan Coachman
Josh Mathews

I would go like this:
Gorilla – Loved him with Bobby Heenan. What a great team.
Vince McMahon – Jesse Ventura worked so well with him. Was solid with Heenan and Lawler too.
Jim Ross – At his best with heel Jerry Lawler in the late 1990s and early 2000s. Probably the best team ever.
Michael Cole – I think Tazz was his best partner on the Smackdown brand around 2002-2004 or however long it was. Plus, they called matches better back then too.
Joey Styles – Better on his own! I liked Don Callis with him towards ECW’s final run.
Jonathon Coachman – He wasn’t that memorable at all. Lawler I guess.
Josh Mathews – Similar to Coach. I don’t remember him much. Maybe Tazz would be the best answer.

31. Ed Luis Valentin
What do you think of a scenario where all four members of the Wyatt Family are in the Royal Rumble, and they spend the match protecting Bray and eliminating the rest. Then when they’re the final four, Luke, Erick, and Braun eliminate themselves one by one? Keep in mind that it doesn’t have to be this year’s Rumble, it could be next year or the following. That could lead to a feud with Lesnar. It’d be cool to see Brock throwing around Harper, Rowan, and Strowman. Do you think his matches with Bray could be good?

I don’t think it would be that interesting. I can see it happen for few minutes in a Rumble match, but I don’t see it lasting. Lesnar against Wyatt could be great. They just need to build Wyatt up more to be believable as a guy that can beat Lesnar.

32. James Ferriman
For some reason the Jack Swagger vs Alberto Del Rio feud from a few years back is one of my favourite feuds I’ve seen. I just thought it was really topical at the time and as Swagger is one of my favourite superstars it was nice to see him in the limelight. What was your take on the feud? Am I overrating it?

I think you’re overrating it, but if you liked it then more power to ya. I know my opinions influence people. That doesn’t mean they have to think like I do. The feud was pretty average in my opinion although I really do like both guys a lot as well.

33. David Kleber
Do you see a day coming where wrestling is no longer a viable mainstream entity of entertainment? With all sorts of other avenues doing what WWE does, but better (ie MMA, Game of Thrones, etc), is there a time where wrestling will have been passed over, and not carried on into the next generation?

I don’t think so. It’s a form of entertainment that goes back what, 100 years probably? I’m sure we have family members that can tell stories of guys doing headlocks for 20 minutes as part of an entertaining match to them lol. It’s live theater and I think any television channel is going to want live programming because people want to “Netflix and chill” to watch their TV shows without commercials. It’s not as big as the NFL, NBA, MLB or NASCAR in terms of live programming, but it’s a successful form of entertainment that is never going away. Not in our lifetime.

34. Chris Young
Just stumbled upon Dalton Castle and love the character. Do you think he could make it with the same gimmick to NXT and become kind of a new age Goldust at some point?

He’s a lot of fun. WWE doesn’t like to copy characters from other promotions for the most part, so I doubt it would happen. I can see him getting signed by WWE one day, though.

35. Cory Andrew Bacon
Do you think EC3 is as good as he looks on TNA? Meaning, does he have an amazing amount of talent or is it just because, as The Rock would put it, he’s a whale in a tear drop?

I like him and have always liked him. I watched those NXT shows about five years ago when he was one of the main guys. He was set for a pretty decent Smackdown push when he hurt his knee and then he couldn’t break through. He’s as good as most of the midcarders in WWE for sure. I probably haven’t seen enough of his best stuff since I quit on TNA around mid 2015, but from what I’ve seen of him there he’s one of the best guys they have for sure.

36. Oscar Deejay O Valencia
Do you think some of the current wrestlers feel like reaching for Vince’s “Brass Ring” is useless and won’t help out the careers if they tried too?

I’m sure that some guys get really frustrated by things, especially ones that have been there a long time like Sandow, Fandango, Ryder, Axel and so on. I also think they are content with riding it out and hoping for something better on the horizon because there aren’t that many other options for wrestlers in terms of pay.

37. Shay Smithers
In anticipation of Lucha Underground’s new season starting at the end of this month, what and who have been your favorite matches and performers from there so far?

Catrina’s my favorite because I think she’s legitimately the hottest woman in wrestling. Love her. Huge fan of the Muertes/Fenix matches and Prince Puma (Ricochet) is probably my favorite guy there. Mostly I like the way the show is filmed and their willingness to try something different than what we are used to seeing with WWE. They have created an alternative. I wish they were on a bigger channel and got more exposure, though.

38. Jimmy-Lee Ifrene
Most overused wrestling move: Superkick, Suicide Dive, or Spear?

I think Superkick probably is. HBK was the biggest influence on the current guys. Also DDT too.

39. Andy Papaleo
WM8 – I always heard the plans were supposed to be Savage-Snake in a retirement match; Taker-Sid, Hogan-Flair. All three; were they planned? Or was it just Hogan-Flair?

I’m sure this has been covered in DVDs about Flair. Basically with his match with Hogan it was a case of WWE not liking the matches they did at live events, so they went in another direction. Taker/Sid was bad in 1997. It would have been worse in 1992. That WM is pretty good.

40. Johnny Davis
Who do you think is the most likely former WWE wrestler to return in 2016?

Jeff Hardy although he may not be able to wrestle until late in the year. I hope Kurt Angle although he wants to take a year off, so maybe not. I get the feeling that they could entice him if they want him. Imagine if they build it up as a surprise in his hometown of Pittsburgh? The people would be massive. Chris Jericho also because he always comes back.

41. John Czech
Who would be some past or present wrestlers that you’d say are underrated on the mic?

I think Ted Dibiase Sr. was a great promo man. Loved his confidence and style. Jake Roberts gets a lot of respect now. He’s among the best ever for sure. Paul Bearer was great at it especially as a heel. I loved his promos in 1997 when he was teasing Undertaker with the Kane debut. Raven was arguably the best talker anywhere during his prime in ECW – he knew his character so well.

42. Emory Cantstopmyswagg White III
If Rock were to wrestle at wrestle mania 32 who wud you rather him wrestle? Brock, Roman, or HHH or somebody we least expect.

I think it would be against Triple H or maybe Lesnar. Problem with Lesnar is that he’s a face and I think it would be better if Lesnar was a heel. I guess the Undertaker match is a maybe since they had never done it before at a WM.

43. Rick Bulow
Do you think Seth Rollins will enter into a feud with Triple H in time to set up a match at WWE Survivor Series? I hear the prognosis for Rollins’ return is after WrestleMania 32 so it could be about right for the feud (if it is a good one) to last through the Summer and Fall.

He’ll probably be ready in June or July, so SummerSlam is most likely. I think a feud with Triple H is very possible for his return although it depends on if HHH is still in power at that point. I’m ready for The Authority angle to end.

44. Ryan Mullins
Do you think Dean Ambrose or Kevin Owens will ever be World Champion?? I think those 2 could pull off a multi month “feud of the year” style feud with the title in the picture.

I agree with you about them having a feud of the year. Both guys will probably be WWE Champion. They are young enough (Ambrose just turned 30, Owens is 31) that they can have another 10 great years in WWE. Both guys are too good not to get to that level.

45. Ralph Racine
When they gonna wake up and properly push Sasha Banks?

She’s only 23. They have a lot of time I think she’ll turn face post Royal Rumble and win the Divas Title at WrestleMania. People need to be patient.

46. Eric Higgins
How would you debut Asuka on the main roster?

With videos of her kicks and submission moves in NXT. Have her almost never talk. Just book her like a wrecking machine. Make her undefeated or like 4-6 months before getting a title shot and she either wins it or the champion that beats her is made to look like a huge star for stopping her. She shouldn’t be in NXT for much longer. I like her.

47. Damian McGrath
Why wasn’t Bischoff brought over during the Invasion? Why wait a whole year after?

I know a lot of the talent had contracts that would have cost a lot of money to buy out. Maybe he had that sort of deal because he had a contract with Turner or years, so maybe there was a year on it. I’m not totally sure on that. It could also be a case of McMahon not wanting to work with the guy since Bischoff publicly said stuff about how he wanted to beat WWE so bad all the time. It probably took some convincing for Vince to bring him in.

48. Jaime Waluigi Berco
Do you think guys like Kane and Big Show should be used in tag teams with up and comers? I only say this because Team Hell No was really entertaining for its time and was imo the last time Kane was really widely entertaining to many fans from the looks of it.

Yes. If they are going to continue to push the 40+ year olds then put them in a team or do something to make them fresher than they are now.

49. Greg Maher
What would you say is the biggest singles match (feud) that didn’t happen, that could of happened? In my opinion I would say rock v hbk, the promos would have been awesome.

I think Rock vs. HBK as a true main event feud would have been amazing. That came to mind first. HBK vs. Eddie would have been awesome as well. Lots of money in Austin vs. Hogan and Austin vs. Goldberg too. I think 2001 Austin would have been able to carry Hogan to a good to great match because Austin was the best that year, but he went so hard and fast that he was broken down the next year.

50. Aneil Komal
I’m gonna list a few superstars and just answer yes or no as to if they will be World Champion before they retire. Barrett, Rhodes, Cesaro, Ziggler, Ambrose, Owens, Neville, Balor, Crews, Corbin.

Barrett – No. In 2011 I would have said yes.
Rhodes – Yes I hope so. Only 30 so lots of time.
Cesaro – No. Hope I’m wrong.
Ziggler – Nope. Not again.
Ambrose – Yes
Owens – Yes
Neville – No
Balor – First inclination is to say yes, but maybe no.
Crews – Leaning towards yes.
Corbin – No. I like him, but not as a main eventer. Due to his size he might get a shot, though.

That was a good one to end it on.

That’s all for now. I usually post the Q&As on Saturday or Sunday, but got busy this weekend. Look for the next one next weekend. Live Raw Deal on Monday here on TJRWrestling and I might start reviewing Smackdown on the site a well.

If you have questions for the next Q&A, put them in the comments below and I might use them for the next edition.

Thanks for reading.