B. Dangerous and Brian Damage
We return this week with the Top Five and look at wrestling factions that had a lot of promise in WWE and were ruined by poor booking decisions. It has been said in the past that Vince McMahon isn’t the biggest fan of factions in his company. What are your personal top five factions that could have been more successful than they ended up being in WWE?
The WWE has a history of creating or recreating factions that begin to get traction and then promptly fouling them up.
Here are my Top 5 examples of this nonsense:
5- The NWA
Cool idea on paper and for about 8 minutes thereafter. The problem was that apart from a brief affair with Barry Windham and The Rock N’ Roll Express, no pure NWA talent was ever used in this faction.
I firmly believe that this could have been something significant to this day, but “Bombastic” Bob and “Bodacious” Bart guaranteed that this group would never pick-up steam.
4- The Ministry
A cool spooky-guy faction, led by my favorite incarnation of The Undertaker had so much potential, but then the brain trust of the then-WWF decided to combine the scary tough guys with The Corporation and frankly, it just sucked.
3- The NWO
Vince is gonna kill the WWF and is going to do-so with the NWO of Hogan, Hall, and Nash, who had long since ran their course in WCW and Hogan wasn’t even associated with them by the end of WCW’s run.
This was poorly done and so by the time it’s done, Booker T and HBK are involved and the train is off of the tracks.
2- The Alliance
At best, on paper it was great. In reality it was the WCW and ECW jobber collective with Steve Austin thrown-in as a way of saying, “You cannot possibly succeed on your own.”
1- The Nation of Domination
Like it or not, it was very much a Black Panther-esque civil rights/black nationalist concept. Then… Owen Hart. From there it spawned what were thinly veiled white nationalist and Hispanic supremacy off-shoots, which made zero sense.
The Monday Night Messiah
I don’t believe this faction led by Seth Rollins was even given a name. Never the less, it showed a lot of great promise with a false God like idol in Rollins leading a band of disciples which consisted of Buddy Murphy, the Authors of Pain and later Austin Theory. Unfortunately, injuries to the AOP derailed the faction’s momentum and it never did find its way back to relevancy as the AOP were released, Theory was sent back to NXT and Murphy eventually dropped Rollins as his leader to fall in love with Rey Mysterio’s daughter.
Straight Edge Society
The mishandling of the Straight Edge Society was one of the many reasons CM Punk had a bitter falling out with WWE. This was Punk’s creation and WWE never really went all out with Punk’s vision of it. An interesting concept of a group of wrestlers who followed Punk and his rules of no drinking, smoking or doing drugs….yet were heels. Punk would have people shave their heads to prove their loyalty to him.
The Legacy had so much potential and promise as WWE had so many 2nd and 3rd generation stars on their roster and in developmental to make this a great faction. They started by adding Ted Dibiase Jr and Cody Rhodes. They then added Sim Snuka and Manu but were quickly dropped from the group. The same with Ted Jr’s brother Brett who joined and then was scrapped from Legacy. Instead of a full faction they became a trio with Randy Orton as a leader and Rhodes and Dibiase as his lackeys. The group was okay, but in m opinion really dropped the ball of how good it could’ve been.
The Wyatt Family
As good as the Wyatt Family was in WWE, they could have been so much better. WWE creative tinkered with the cult like group way too much and then inexplicably broke them up for no reason…only to reunited and have Randy Orton destroy the faction up from the inside. The late Luke Harper felt the entire Family was poorly booked at times and wished it would have grown bigger and stronger instead of generically splitting them up.
The total mishandling of what could have been WWE’s own answer to the success of the New World Order in the Nexus has to be number 1 overall. Here were a group of developmental wrestlers competing against one another for a WWE main roster contract on a competition show called NXT and the next minute they form a gang and destroy the WWE Monday Night Raw set and everybody close it. The angle was over because it was very unexpected and very believable. The Nexus became a very hot ticket until they got John Cena involved in the storyline and soon, Nexus imploded. CM Punk was made the leader to try and rejuvenate the angle, but it just wasn’t the right fit.