Rob Van Dam – was he ever “the one” in WWE?

Here’s a little topic that I want to talk a little about. The Triple H promo from 2 weeks ago on RAW. During the contract signing between Daniel Bryan and Randy Orton, Hunter said this to Daniel Bryan….

“Here’s the thing, Daniel.  I’ve seen guys like you come and go a million times.  Guys like Jericho, Edge, Rob Van Dam.  All guys that are very talented, don’t get me wrong.  Top guys!  Very popular!  But not ‘the one.’  Never were they ‘the one.’  And maybe nobody wants to say this, but it needs to be said: It’s a fact.  If any of those guys had been the face of the WWE back in the day, we’d all be working for Ted Turner right now.

You think you’re playing in the big leagues, kid?  You have no idea.  You step inside that Hell in a Cell and I have a feeling you’re gonna prove to the world that you’re a B+ player.”

 

Apparently this promo along with Triple H not considering Daniel Bryan a star in WWE has caused some dismay backstage. Chris Jericho was one who took exception to this promo. Along with a bunch of tweets including this one….

“Thing is @tripleh despite ur major push,u never were either. Good luck in ur future endeavours.”

he said this in a recent WWE.com interivew…

“That’s his opinion, and as somebody that was a six-time World Champion and main evented pay-per-views for years, was I ever the guy? Well, no, but who was?”

“I think if you look over the last 15 years in WWE, you’ve got Rock, Austin, Hogan and Cena. I wasn’t the guy… I just know that I had great matches pretty much every night. I had great rapport with the fans. I could make them love me or hate me depending on what I wanted, so I don’t know what more you can say.”

He also said that him and Triple H “always the guys who worked with the guy.

 

Now, I can see why the likes of Jericho are taking exception to Triple H’s promo. I mean Jericho and Edge have each had more than 5 world title reigns. So to say that they were never “the guy” in WWE does in a way diminish their title reigns when Triple H says that neither of them were “the one”. But did he have a valid point? Were they ever really the top dogs in WWE at a point? I saw a Bleacher Report article just then and you can have a look at it here of someone analyzing the legitimacy of HHH’s comments and you know? I’m going to do the exact same thing….

 

Rob Van Dam

RVD-titles

The first guy under the microscope. Was Rob Van Dam ever going to be “the one” in WWE?

I mean Rob Van Dam walked into WWF in 2001 and garnered momentum and overness REAL QUICK. The fans of the WWF saw RVD rise up quick and even found himself in the WWF title fold as early as No Mercy 2001 where he main-evented against Stone Cold and Kurt Angle. I mean if RVD would have captured the gold in the Invasion angle at the time, how big of a player in that storyline could he have become. However, he failed to capture the gold and it took RVD a lot of time to get anywhere near that kind of momentum in the WWF/E. We can always say to ourselves “What if he won the title?”. However, he didn’t. I mean it’s not like RVD necessarily needed to win that match to validate himself. But having all that momentum and not getting anywhere with it can be damaging to someone’s credibility. I mean it took nearly a year for RVD to be main-eventing a WWE PPV again.

So the next time he came close to “grabbing the brass ring”, it was Unforgiven 2002. RAW had finally gotten their own title. A new World Heavyweight Champion by the name of… wait for it… Triple H. And the first contender was Rob Van Dam. Imagine if RVD would have won the World Title from the Game and forever immortalize himself in WWE. But again, RVD came up short. Many considered this to be a burial considering RVD never came much close to the title again for YEARS, but honestly, even if he did win the World Title, RVD didn’t seem at a big position to be the biggest star on RAW. I mean RVD had just been feuding for the mid-card titles prior to this match. I mean he needed a lot more hype before he could be in line to dethrone the game.

But over the next couple of years, RVD went nowhere in WWE. It wasn’t until 2006, Rob’s last year in WWE before he left, when Van Dam had another chance to be “the guy”. He started off the year by returning at the Royal Rumble. Got a lot of hype, made the final four and he was fresh off a injury that sidelined him for more than a year I think. And WWE capitalized on that by having him win the 2ND Money In The Bank ladder match at Wrestlemania 22. Finally, Rob was set to win a world title in WWE….

And his cash-in was planned perfectly. With ECW’s revival, Rob declared he would cash-in at ECW One Night Stand against WWE Champion John Cena. And it was built superbly. RVD said he was going to win the WWE title and take it to ECW with him. And in a stellar WWE Championship match, Rob walked away the champion. With the WWE Title and the recently resurrected ECW Title, RVD was the top dog in the WWE!

I mean with the WWE Championship, he was supposed to drop that to Edge shortly after winning it, but ECW Title was supposed to be his title. ECW was going to be built around Rob. This was his time to shine as the top dog in ECW, riding of the momentum of his victory over Cena! But there was one factor that messed up Rob’s push to the top and sent him crashing down to earth… Rob Van Dam.

I mean with No Mercy 2001 and the match against Triple H, it was the writers that cost him his push but it was Rob this time that killed his own momentum when he was arrested for marijuana possession. And WWE had no choice but to bring forward his loss of the WWE Title to Edge and had him lose the ECW Title to the Big Show on the same week. I mean Rob had absolutely no one else to blame but himself for that one.

But if he didn’t get arrested would he ever become the main of WWE with his run as ECW Champion? My personal opinion is… no. Even if ECW wasn’t effectively buried as bad as it did within a year from its creation, there’s a reason that RVD was never ECW Champion during ECW’s original run. All he was, was talent. He really lacked the mic-skills to take him places. I mean he can talk reasonably well, but he was never going to be the WWE’s top guy. Even if his new-ECW run had planned out. Mr Monday Night was never going to be Mr WWE…

 

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4 thoughts on “Rob Van Dam – was he ever “the one” in WWE?

  1. Yeah van dam was never the guy. But in saying that only cena, rock, austin and hogan were the faces of wwe anyone else has never gotten close to their popularity. So hhh shot himself in the foot as he was never the guy

  2. Pingback: The Armbar Express | WWE Announce The Signing Of KENTA

  3. Pingback: Chris Jericho – Was He Ever “The One” In WWE? | The Armbar Express

  4. Pingback: Edge – Was He Ever “The One” In WWE? | The Armbar Express

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