Hello everyone. My name is Eddie, and I’ll be doing a weekly column here at thebalrogslair.com. As you’ve noticed, this site has been around for a while and is now undergoing a construction, but things will be even better soon. As far as I go, I love wrestling as much as you do and my columns will look at the latest happenings in the world of pro wrestling. Sometimes, like today, I’ll have a column on a wrestler, an event, or another specific subject. I hope you enjoy my column and feel free to write me with suggestions, comments, your own thoughts, etc. even if you didn’t like the column, let me know.
So, how many people out there like Rob Van Dam? Are you an R-V-D fan? Do you do the thumbs thing he does every time he comes out? You know, when Rob Van Dam made his second debut to WWE TV in 2001 during the InVasion angle, the fans loved him. In fact, they loved him so much that he became the only wrestler from the Alliance to be cheered on, their only face. Obviously, this young man is very talanted and is an incredible athelete as well. Rob has done a lot in his first year in the WWE, as he was a huge part of the InVasion storyline. He had some unforgettable matches with Jeff Hardy during that time. Also, most recently, he battled Eddie Guerrero and Jeff again in 2 great ladder matches on RAW. Need more good matches Rob had? He got to fight Chris Jericho at King of the Ring and even be in the final of the tournament! He then even defeated Brock Lesnar, even though it was via DQ at Vengeance.
Let’s “take it to the extreme” here. Since entering World Wrestling Federation at the time, now World Wrestling Entertainment, Rob Van Dam has been a huge deal. He has won the WWE Hardcore Championship, and has also held the Intercontinental Championship. He has become famous for his incredible kicks and his “educated feet” (aren’t you getting sick of hearing that phrase on TV?), as well as his famous 5-Star Frog Splash. Rob is a fans’ favorite and the fans truly love his work, his thumb-pointing, etc. You’ve probably noticed that there have been a lot of RVD posters, and foam thumbs at events as of lately. The man truly deserves it, because he’s been entertaining us for over an year now and has certainly introduced some new things to us the viewers.
Now, RVD was huge in ECW and has been quite big in WWE so far, but is he a top star? Well, for me this answer is no. Why? It’s really simple — today you need a lot to be on the top in this business. Take The Rock for an example. The man is a great wrestler, and just incredible on the mic. He’s perfect in his segments. You might say “yeah, but Rock has been around for a while.” Well, that’s true. I’ll give you another example though — Brock Lesnar. Now, you have to respect the guy just for his size and body. Where mic skills go, he has been doing very very very good as of lately and is improving greatly. Paul Heyman has obviously been of a great help in that area. Now take Rob Van Dam. I am not being a mark here, trust me, I love Rob, but the guy is just not “it” anyway you slice it. His mic skills are really not that good, and some even say they don’t exist. I wouldn’t be so negative in that area, as Rob is probably an average guy on the mic.
Try to picture RVD in your head. Now try to picture a match with RVD. You should get this picture — “One of a Kind” plays. Rob walks down the ring with his fists closed up to his chests pointing to himself and shaking his head. Rob gets in the ring and does his jump around with his fists up together in the air. He does the R-V-D thumbs. The bell rings. Now get this… headlock, right elbows, irish whip to the ropes, kick; right elbows, irish whip to the corner, monkey flip; show-boning (the usual); right elbows, a chop, gets beaten, blocks a kick, a van daminator; sometimes a van daminator from the top rope follows; next is the rolling thunder; sometimes spread-legged moonsault; a slam or another kick, or maybe another spin, 5-star frog splash… 1-2-3. Ok, no, don’t worry, I don’t watch that much wrestling, it’s just that for over a year now it’s the same thing.. over and over and over and over again… That’s where RVD breaks down, his act becomes old and out of date. Now, RVD is a very talanted wrestler and he could definitely add some more acts to his repertoir.
You see, RVD is what I like to call the “Chris Jerich of yester-year.” Remember Y2J’s first two years in the WWF (back then) ? The guy was a great face, much like RVD is today. He would go out, diss Stephanie and make fun of her, fight with Benoit and Angle and from time to time be given this extra push. Here’s something very close between the two. Chris Jericho won the WWF Championship from Triple H, but was forced to give back the belt and the pin never counted (that was in 2000). RVD won the belt from The Undertaker not that long ago on RAW but he had to return the belt and the pin never counted. Chris Jericho was always one step away from that top level before he got his break. Isn’t RVD in the same place right now? He’s fighting Benoit, Jeff Hardy, Eddie Guerrero, etc. but also gets a chance to fight someone “big” as The Undertaker from time to time. That man was Triple H for Jericho by the way. Anyway, the point is that Rob Van Dam’s current status is the exact same one of Y2J. However, Chris Jericho’s act never got lame and he got the push he deserved. Why?
In my opinion, besides being one of the most talanted wrestlers in the organizations, Chris Jericho is the second best there is on the mic (after The Rock). Jericho is just the master of the promos and one-liners and jokes, etc. The man is just incredibly hilarious and I am sure we will never forget all these words towards Stephanie McMahon. RVD on the other hand can’t rely on his mic skills because he doesn’t have as many. Jericho managed to use that to turn heel and that unabled him to be the first ever Undisputed Champion! Can RVD ever get there? I think he can, because he has what it takes, he just needs to freshen up his act.
What this column is all about is NOT to diss Rob Van Dam or to make some smarty marks comments towards him. Like I said above, I love RVD’s work and I enjoy watching his matches every time he steps in the ring. Rob, you just need to bring in those new, fresh things that made you so popular in ECW, and that brought you the success in WWE. The Van Terminator on Paul Heyman not that long ago on RAW was just an example, but trust me, RVD has so much more inside him. I don’t know whether the WWE has told him to keep it to himself or he’s decided to do so and keep the “big moves” for a later time, but Rob Van Dam is a great wrestler, who just needs a break soon and will be the future of the company. I don’t think he’ll make it to the top soon, but he’s young and has more years ahead of him. It took Jericho 2 and a half years since debuting in ’99 to get to the top, but he did. Hopefully Rob will get there too, because in the moment the WWE needs fresh acts, and new greats for the future. Well, look no further than Rob-Van-Dam!
My e-mail is Levski11@aol.com, you can find the link at the bottom of this page. Feel free to write me with any comments, thoughts, suggestions, or disagreements you have. I hope you enjoyed my first column and will check back next week for another! Thanks for reading, see ya!
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