|Were these guys wronged by the competition?|
The Young Bucks shouldn't have bothered turning up for their recent WWE tryout, their chances were shot as soon as Rob Van Dam gave them the rep of dodging veteran's handshakes. In a predictable development, RVD's good friends Booker T and Goldust made sure to concur with his assessment via Twitter that they were a couple of disrespectful young punks and thus the Bucks could kiss their WWE chances goodbye.First, a disclaimer, I don't assume that this is 100% truth here. Dave Meltzer (the source for the Cageside article) may have an element of truth to that slant on how things happened. He may be talking cynically. I don't know.
That being said, if there is any element of truth to this... what the fuck, WWE? Really? Really? I purported not even to want to judge how the WWE backstage culture was, and if the Bucks did "wrong" Booker T, then it's one thing. It's a personal beef, and they handled it the way that they handle those kinds of things backstage. However, if what Meltzer is insinuating is true here, then it's a clear case of a guy who works for another company influencing policy. Regardless of who the guy is, that seems pretty fucked up to me. The guy basically is using his influence to make sure that two guys who might have a future in the industry can't get ahead. Isn't that kind of blackballing considered unethical at the very least?
Furthermore, let's look into the guy who's starting this bullshit. Rob Van Dam. Apparently, if the insinuation is true, he cares about respect and petty bullshit, which is fine and dandy if you're into having your ego stroked, but let's look at some of the things he doesn't care about. He doesn't care about showing respect, since he mouths off about Impact in the media if he's unhappy (and regardless of whether you agree with him or not, you take care of that shit in house). He doesn't care about following drug policy obviously. He also doesn't care about co-worker safety, since his well-documented sloppiness hasn't abated over the years. In fact, I'd say it's gotten worse since his most egregious offense against protecting his fellow workers happened within the last six months, i.e. his amateur dentistry on Abyss with his foot. So now, WWE HR policy is going to be directly impacted by a burnout working for the struggling competition? That is hilarious.
That also isn't to say that RVD and his cronies Booker and Goldust would be totally at fault here. If WWE really is going to not sign the Bucks due to that backstage fracas without further investigation, then what does that say about them? It's one thing to have a guy in the doghouse in Mistico because of behavior that's widely observed, but wouldn't you think it funny that the Bucks, who apparently shook hands with everyone else, had a problem with only two guys, guys who were friends of a habitual drug user with a massive ego? If the reports are true, then doesn't this make WWE look fucking stupid for siding with a guy who ultimately is part of the organization that's most competing with them, whether they know it or not?
But that's the kicker. I keep going back to the disclaimer. There's no way to gauge whether any of these reports that are based on non-primary sources and conjecture are 100% factual. While I have my reasons to believe Meltzer over anyone, including his colleague Bryan Alvarez, wouldn't have an axe to grind, it's entirely possible that he has a journalistic bias against the WWE. It's not that big a negative. It's human nature. There's entirely a chance that this whole post is bluster, and within six months, the Young Bucks will be in WWE, and who knows, maybe Mistico will be Sin Cara once more. That being said, there's too much smoke in the form of wrestler chatter about this kind of thing for there not to be fire. If it was just something internal, then yeah, maybe I wouldn't have wasted any more words on it than I did back when I reacted to it first. But the fact that someone working for Impact may have something to do with the Bucks not signing WWE contracts seems stupid at least, unethical at the midpoint and illegal tampering/collusion at the very worst. It's so mind-bogglingly awful that even the very specter of it doesn't pass the smell test.
Photo Credit: Scott Finkelstein - Please visit his site to view the plentiful amounts of pictures he's taken for DGUSA, ROH and other indie feds: Get Lost Photography