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Thread: Time to Play The Game

  1. #1
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    Time to Play The Game

    We weren't going to see a lot of changes for the creative aspect of WWE during the first week of the changeover due to Vince McMahon's sudden departure. That makes sense, as we were already at the finishing stretches of a creative cycle with the go-home week laid out for Summerslam. Saturday for Summerslam was the first moment where you might have realistically been able to see some of Triple H's fingerprints definitively on the creative aspect of the product. We saw the return of Dakota Kai into the company, Iyo Sky (fka Io Shirai), the presumable turn of Becky as a face, the return of Edge as a face and things of that nature.

    While my main concern is Triple H's health. I don't worry about his ability to handle the product and lead it creatively. What can kind of get lost in the sauce is that while it's a lot on his plate, he just has to be competent and logical. If he does that, things will fall into place. Even if he isn't things somehow fall into place though it can be wonky. We know that because that's what we've essentially seen. But again, he just needs to be competent and logical. He doesn't have the pressure of trying build something from the ground up like he did with NXT. He had the benefit of WWE money and production but NXT was still an unknown quantity. This isn't NXT. This is the Raw and Smackdown, bankable (and more importantly) profitable products. They're brand names and the standard. No matter how bad the product can be (or has been) people will come. WWE has established itself as the brand to go to for people who want to dip their toe into wrestling and has the history established to create their core audience.

    On top of that, the era that McMahon had to work heavily in is now gone. WWE had to build to make themselves marketable to get people to shell out money for PPVs. The PLE era now shows that the money is already in the account and it's going to take a lot to sour the market on them when it comes to streaming rights. They'll always find a home for that. As for the TV rights, see: PLEs. Even better, H doesn't have that on his plate. Nick Khan is going to be the guy who handles that and that's why he was brought into the company. Whether you like him or not, Khan is good at his job and he knows the right people. He's going to make sure WWE will get the best money they can get for the TV deals. WWE is going to be fine in that department and they're going to be extremely marketable to most or all heavy hitters with money to spend. Think about this: on a good week, WWE can produce 10-15 hours of live content. On top of that, they flip the bill for a good chunk of the production as opposed to the network airing the product. That's going to be radically appealing when some scripted content goes 10-15 hours for a SEASON of material. WWE can do at least roughly 60 percent of that 52 weeks a year.

    Back to creative, H knows what it takes to build to a destination and can pretty much do that with talent no matter their gender or their ability to work singles or as a tag. He logically has worked a product that doesn't overtly overexpose talent weekly and allows things to breathe. He may change things on a whim but it's going to take a lot to veer way off course. That's definitely the opposite of the McMahon regime as things could change rapidly and without much motivation, apparently. Not everything H is going to create is going to be a hit but no one is expecting perfection. If at the very least he can clean the slate of the inefficient process of booking, things will naturally improve the product.

    With being head to talent relations, he's handled that to an extent with NXT. Again, the process doesn't sound like it was optimal with McMahon leading things. If booking is any kind of template, the idea of talent trying to relay things to him or him relaying things to talent had to be a process that could mess with morale of the company. Not to beat a dead horse, if at the very least he cleans the slate of the inefficient process with this, that will help improve things. Sure, H can bring in talent to the main roster (he already is) but if he just helps with the people who may be disenchanted will help.

    Probably one of the biggest roadblocks he's going to run into is the literal direction of the presentation we see. The wild camera cuts the camera operators shaking the camera for high impact moves, or literally swaying up and down or side to side with the camera as repeated attacks are happening. The ire of that falls on the lap of Kevin Dunn. There's clearly other issues at play with Dunn but those directorial issues are the bigger hangups viewers will have. If you believe what's reported, Dunn was directly tied to McMahon, and Triple H and Dunn don't exactly see eye to eye on principles, this presumably being one of them. Many believe Dunn will be relieved of his roles or he'll just outright retire at some point. It's just a matter of when. If that's the case, this is the bitter pill Triple H will have to take until things are able to change there. Once it does, it should also help improve things.

    Triple H's go-to talent is slowly being brought back and I'm sure more are on the way. The overall look and feel of the talent we see on TV will likely look different versus what we've reportedly heard that McMahon desired to see on TV. That may hurt in some aspects, but diversity in terms of physical looks and working style is always a better route to take as long is they're good. Creatively, we're already starting to see signs that burning through rematches isn't necessary (with Riddle and Rollins being held off Summerslam and saved for Clash at the Castle). Hell, talent in the company used promo time to mock that (see New Day). Recognizing that and presumably changing that helps preserve your talent and makes things matter more. Again, not a radical epiphany...just sensible.

    Perception versus reality is wild and the perception of WWE is that it was fine because it had a long-tenured genius at the head of the table. The reality was it clearly was barely getting by sometimes only doing the bare minimum. Sometimes they weren't even doing that and produced nonsensical material and just said "here you go". It didn't matter because the company was profitable and still adapting to how people watch content now. Now there's concern because changes at the top are happening when in reality, we're just seeking a change from whacky to logical. Triple H essentially just needs to stop the bleeding. Perception is that they made need tourniquet and are potentially losing a limb. Reality is they need some Neosporin and a bandaid. In addition, the dissonance between Triple H's NXT to the main roster was a major problem. If anything, that's even gotten better because you can't imagine H and HBK are going to be on entirely different wavelengths.

    Food for thought: there's a difference of 23 years in age between McMahon and H. Take that time now to the late 90s and we can see what someone who is 53 can do. Not a truly a terrible time for the product back in 1999, right? Let's see what happens. It doesn't need to be that seismic to be fruitful but if it is, watch out.

  2. #2
    FBI Warning VHS's Avatar
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    HHH has big shoes to fill, but it won't need to be him alone that fills them. He's shown he can hire and manage the right, designated folks for each department. It'll take time, but I'm really hoping WWE starts to fade into something worth watching again because the overall image if it has been an overproduced, convoluted, mass of color and noise.

    Summerslam was very enjoyable, and people are actually talking about it. For the passed 2+ years WWE has only been in the news because folks have left or been fired. Last night was a good indication that WWE still runs things.

    Quote Originally Posted by BGMaverick View Post
    Probably one of the biggest roadblocks he's going to run into is the literal direction of the presentation we see. The wild camera cuts the camera operators shaking the camera for high impact moves, or literally swaying up and down or side to side with the camera as repeated attacks are happening. The ire of that falls on the lap of Kevin Dunn. There's clearly other issues at play with Dunn but those directorial issues are the bigger hangups viewers will have. If you believe what's reported, Dunn was directly tied to McMahon, and Triple H and Dunn don't exactly see eye to eye on principles, this presumably being one of them. Many believe Dunn will be relieved of his roles or he'll just outright retire at some point. It's just a matter of when. If that's the case, this is the bitter pill Triple H will have to take until things are able to change there. Once it does, it should also help improve things.
    Been a problem for years, hopefully this is the death nail for it.

  3. #3
    Top Hulkamaniac Bluegunn's Avatar
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    Let's begin by bringing the last names back of those that lost them.

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    OBJECTION Psycho666Soldier's Avatar
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    From everything I've read, SummerSlam was at least a good show with a lot of pretty happy returns/surprises and booking decisions. The few Triple H interviews I've seen feel like the most sober interviews I've seen him in. His promise that things are changing and such don't feel as much like hollow lip service.

    Of coursez we'll have to see how things actually go and where we're at in like a year. But I think I'm interested enough that I'll at least start watching all the big shows regularly.

  5. #5
    Don't worry about me Carl
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    I have a lot more faith in HHH's creative ability than Vinces. Just looking at NXT best years (2014-17) shows that.

    With the rating change, hopefully we will see more long term logical booking, with a bit more gore and violence and pushing the few young talents they have.

  6. #6
    What the fucks up Dennys! Nash Diesel's Avatar
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    Triple H has been under the learning tree and part of the influence of what we see on WWE for over 20 years.

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