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WRESTLING COLUMNS

Rob Van Dam: Mr. Main Event"
May 1, 2006 by Matt Cooper


RVD is one of the superstars who is debated over most on this forum. There are many avid supporters of this very unique superstar. But at the same time, there are many who dislike him as well. So I've decided to do a thread trying to....'explain' his situation a bit better so that people will know what they're talking about when the debates resurface (it's inevitable)...

The first thing I'd like to touch on is that RVD is one of WWE's most popular superstars. No matter what they do with him or where ever they choose to stick him on the card, he is always over with the fans. This shows that in this aspect, he is ready for the main-event. But, this alone doesn't get you into the main event scene...

RVD has never shone in the mic skills department. Sure, he has improved and sure as hell feels comfortable when he's out there, talking on the mic, but he's not one of those inventive guys like JBL, Edge, HBK, etc who are really articulate with their promos. But then again, not many people are. But when he does speak on the mic, RVD's mic skills are definitely good enough. Especially for his type of character.

One aspect of RVD that is debateable is his character and personality. At times it seems like RVD is too silent or doesn't have enough speaking parts. But RVD shows his charisma in his own unique way...

While some of the time, WWE restricts his character in terms of talking on the mic and sometimes giving him limited roles in backstage segments, he finds his own way to get through to the crowd, and that is through his personality. For a good example, RVD may not have said a single word in weeks, but whenever he makes his way down to the ring and points his thumbs at himself, you can bet that the whole arena will be saying those three letters: R----V----D!

With that being said, RVD has another important way of showing his personality...and that is his wrestling skill. RVD is one of the few superstars who has a very gimmicky move-set and that is one of the things that conveys his extreme personality.

Which brings me to my next point... the in-ring work of RVD. This is surprisingly one of the most debated issues of RVD. To most people, when they see an RVD match, they are very impressed and find his in-ring work very entertaining, which it is....but there is more to the story...

RVD's in-ring psychology is the part of his in-ring skill that gets picked at the most. When in reality, his in-ring psychology problems are very miniscule, especially when compared to other wrestlers that don't take half the crap for it that he does.

For example, people often complain when RVD is getting worked over in a match, but then goes right back to his high-octane, sky-high style when he returns to offense. While this is a problem, it's not as bad as it's made out to be. Because RVD does sell well, and does sell the 'injuries' his opponent gave to him as the match continues, but doesn't do it perfectly. There might be a few times, for example, if RVD's leg was getting worked over, he might still do a martial arts kick later. Even though this is a bit of a problem, RVD sells the injuries well enough and it doesn't come out looking like RVD pulled a superman victory out of his sleeve.

Take the current WWE champion, John Cena, for example. Now before I begin, I'm not a Cena-hater, nor a fan, I'm just using him as an example because he has a big problem when it comes to in-ring psychology. In an RVD match, his opponent works him over and as the match continues, here and there there'll be a small move that....'breaks' slightly what the opponent just did to him. But with John Cena, he'll get worked over, then hit his comeback combo, not showing any weakness of what his opponent just did. And when he wins, it comes off looking like a complete superman victory, which is a very negative thing.

Now, although there is a lot of Cena hate, when do you hear people complain about his in-ring psychology problems, which is his biggest problem with his ring work" Almost never. When in reality his in-ring psychology problems are about 10 times as bad as RVD's.

And although RVD may have minor in-ring psychology problems, it's really nothing to complain about. Because in the long run, if RVD's style would probably be a lot less entertaining and exciting if he didn't break a small rule here and there. And it's not like that is going to ruin a match by any means.

In conclusion, I think that RVD is definitely ready for the main event scene. However, the only thing that I would say needs to happen before he would get the belt, would be to focus on his character a little more. Just give him a few more backstage promos and a few more mic work segments. Even if they waited until after he used the briefcase if they wanted the shock value, it could wait until after he won the title. Much the same way that it went with Edge a few months earlier. But other than that, he's ready to make a 5 star impact on the main event scene.

by Matt Cooper..


Jon Rosaler wrote:
Not a Bad Column. I do like Cena and I admire he is trying his best to prove himself to the fans (which to at least half will never happen). The priority for WWE right now is for Rob Van Dam to face John Cena as a Heel at the Hammerstein ballroom. The fans will more than likely boo John Cena even more than Wrestlemania's boos. Since Rob Van Dam IS like Superman to me, I am choosing him over Cena at ONS2. If you ask me, it looks like they only want Cena to be heel until he loses the title. Rob Van Dam just won the IC title,right" So, can he really win the WWE Championship,too" Is he really that good" When I saw some of Cena's moves at Backlash, I was impressed. Cena did moves nobody thought would occur. ONS1, we heard "F*** John Cena" chants during Chris Jericho vs. Lance Storm. I would have to say Rob Van Dam vs. John Cena looks like a top priority and Cena may have a chance of regaining the gold one day, who knows"
Jose Aguirre wrote:
RVD is the greatest wrestler to grace the ring, in my opinion. His matches flow very smoothly, and those problems are very small, and I haven't ever really noticed until you pointed them out.
Vin wrote:
I really enjoyed your article on RVD going Main Event, and being a Hardcore Van Damer. I would have to agree with the improvements he needs and deserves from WWE. Keep it up.
Cowboys28790 wrote:
You don't need to cut promos in order to get over. The old days they just went out there and fought, now days, half the show is talking. Also, I've heard a lot of critisism on Cenas selling out injuries. GO RVD!!
brandon albright wrote:
Loved your article on RVD, he is one of my favorites of today. True RVD is quiet when it comes to cutting promos but Chris Benoit is proof that you can be quiet and still be a champion. I think RVD as World Champion would be an excellent direction for the WWE to go with because RVD is like his DVD says "One of a Kind".
CMA wrote:
I like RVD alot and think he deserves AT-LEAST a 3 month title reign. I honestly think RVD has slown down alot since returning and the match against Shelton Benjamin at Backlash is a prime example, however he is still in my opinion one of the top 3 most worthy candidates on RAW along with Edge and HHH and I think most fans whether they're RVD fans or not will be rooting for him to win the gold come ECW ONS2.
AJ "The Chief" Nye wrote:
While I admire everything RVD does...seeing as he is one of the main reasons WWE has me as a viewer time and time again. now RVD is my favorite wreslter of all time, and I mean he's up there with Bret "Hitman" Hart on my list. you do make a good example on hwo he does make a few "IN-RING MISTAKES" as do all wrestlers...Expecially cena, which is exactly why I am commenting. RVD plays well on injuries(and even gives himself some!) like you said if the opponent is working him over, say his legs, he still will give a yakuza or super kick or some other kind of kick from time to time, but if you pay attention he makes sure he holds that leg or legs as if its still hurts. Which is also why I brought up John Cena as you did. John Cena is a good wreslter, hes good for ratings and what not but he almost ALWAYS, comes out with a "Superman" victory as you put it. He'll hit a few punches, land the boot to the mid-section and, BAM, an F-U Its sooooo annoying.

I liked this article I hope to see more and more RVD articles on OWW, you'll here from me more and more...maybe ill even write my own RVD article....RVD is totally ready for a PPV Main Event....
Robert Andrew Forbes wrote:
I think I agree almost whole-heartedly. Rob Van Dam has the ability that very few other posess. I'm what some may call an "old school" wrestling fan, because I tend to like the technical wrestlers more than the charismatic "performers" or what Joey Styles may call Superstars. From his ECW days, I've always admired RVD. His ability in the air as well as on the mat are almost second to none. He's on the very narrow top teir of great technicians in the WWE these days in my book. I agree before he reahces the top, he'll need to expand his character more. The promos he cuts will get a large applause from the crowd. I feel he's on his way. After years and years in the business, rising up from a jobber to ECW, WCW, and WWE, It is RVD's time. Rob Van Dam will take the title and at least the WWE champ will be a man that will make the crowd happy, and that has earned it. Cena's time is up, RVDs time is now!
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