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The Katz Files – Arnie Katz
My Weekly RAW Notebook
The Kingfish Arnie Katz delves into points raised by the 11/23 RAW.

The Batista Heel Turn
While this didn’t happen on RAW, echoes of the titanic beatdown The Animal inflicted on Rey Mysterio at Survivor Series got a lot of notice on the three-hour Thanksgiving RAW.

Rey Mysterio absorbed the stretcher job on 11/22, because he will be out anyway while he gets surgery on his knee. Batista’s relentless attacks on his alleged former friend provide an in-show alibi for the Masked Marvel’s coming absence.

That part makes good sense, but the decision to turn Dave Batista heel is more questionable. It comes down to upside potential. Batista is a decent villain, but he is not strong enough on the mic to be a superstar heel.

On the other hand, Batista has an aura about him that is reminiscent of the legendary Bruno Sammartino. John Cena is a merchandise-selling machine, but Batista is something special, something different.

Make no mistake, WWE is going to need that kind of performer in the very near future. Shawn Michaels and Undertaker are pretty close to the end of their careers and Triple H may not linger long after they hang up the boots.

Batista is the man who can fill that void, but not if the fans cease to love him.

Little People, Big Ring
By remarkable coincidence, I was just saying to my wife Joyce before the start of RAW that it had been some time since WWE featured Little People in the ring. Hornswoggle has beaten the odds to carve out a surprisingly long run with WWE, but his act is extremely different than traditional, so-called “Midget Wrestling.”

Not that I especially looked forward to their return. It’s nothing against midgets and dwarves; in fact, it was just the opposite. The traditional booking had the feel of a carnival sideshow. That’s one tradition we can all do without.

That’s all for today! I’ll be back tomorrow with another installment of the Internet’s fastest-rising pro wrestling column. I hope you’ll join me then and, please, bring your friends.

— Arnie Katz
Executive Editor
[email protected]