So in discussion with some friends we came to the realisation that's been five(!) years since a face won their first world title in the main event at WrestleMania. Time was this was the seal of approval for a new top guy - Batista, Austin, Benoit, Michaels - and I feel like it's part of the reason that the company's attempts at creating new bayface main eventers keep floundering. They need to pick someone in the fall of this year and make a commitment to pushing them to a world title win over an established name next March.
But who on the roster right now is the right candidate for such a push? Any thoughts?
I would back Morrison, Kofi, MVP and Yoshi. The problem with the last three is their handicap in Vince's eyes and sometimes the less then stellar WWE fans. Morrison should probably be in this situation this year, but the WWE realizes the dream match of Cena/Batista has an expiration date since both have had injury issues in the past. Jericho has earned the right to hold a title going into this thing and so has Edge for coming back early. The real problem too is the amount of time given to the non-championship matches of HBK/Taker and Vince/Bret would take away the boyhood dream of anyone this year.
Morrison is someone, I am sure they will put the belt on if not next year, then maybe sooner at SummerSlam. Kofi's push disappeared which I thought was going to happen after losing to Orton in his one on one matches. Kofi has been used as badly as others, but he needs to get back into the mix at least by the summer for a good push to Mania next year. MVP has been pushed, de-pushed so many times that I don't think they will ever fully get behind him unless a string of injuries happen. If Yoshi was allowed to do the things he did while he was in Japan then he would be over huge. Keeping him in the comedy level is doing him no favors. In ECW, he was booked as a real threat to Christian. If creative actually got behind him and maybe be part of some Rock N Sock Connection with a veteran like Christian, Rey or HBK then I could see him going in. The way people get behind a face is a villain. CM Punk is a great foil for any of these guys and my pick to be the main heel going into Mania next year. All of this is barring injury and no out of the ring incidents.
Jeff Hardy's should've been at last year's Wrestlemania.
I don't know if anyone is necessarily going to be ready to (partially) headline Wrestlemania next year, but Kofi Kingston is first in line. I think Morrison is great but he would be better as a main event heel. Of all the right-underneath guys, it seems like Miz is the closest to a big breakthrough.
The trouble is that WWE hasn't given any face a really solid, long-term push since Cena. When Cena turned face in the fall of 2003 and then went on to win the US belt from Big Show at Wrestlemania XX, you could read the handwriting on the wall and pencil him in to win the big belt at WM 21. Remember, Cena turned face in the first place since the fans really responded to his character and almost forced a turn. Today, there aren't any really hot characters that the fans have really gotten behind in a big way --- Morrison turned just for the sake of turning, not because the fans demanded it. Kofi was hot for a while in the early days of the Orton feud, but the definitive way in which he lost that feud has seemingly killed his heat stone-dead. Christian gets a respectable midcard pop but I don't think he's exactly a guy who many would really get behind on a push to a major title.
Originally posted by JustinShapiroJeff Hardy's should've been at last year's Wrestlemania.
I can understand WWE's hesitance to put him in a Wrestlemania main event, though, given his past troubles. It's one to have a guy win the belt on a December throwaway PPV....it's another to build the main event of your biggest show around his chase to the belt. (Especially given that he missed the previous year's WM due to wellness test issues.)
"In Italy for 30 years under the Borgias they had warfare, terror, murder, and bloodshed, but they produced Michelangelo, Leonardo da Vinci, and the Renaissance. In Switzerland they had brotherly love. They had 500 years of democracy and peace, and what did that produce? The cuckoo clock." -- Orson Welles, The Third Man