Yesterday (9/27/16), John Cena, the Miz and Connor McGregor all cut notable promos (all notable because they were praised heavily by observers). There is a bit of a disagreement on Twitter because Dave Meltzer said that Cena was not in the same league as McGregor as a promo which led to another instance of wrestling fans being upset with Meltzer for two things: one for dismissing Cena’s promo (which he probably had not seen when he made the comment) and secondly for comparing wrestling to MMA (UFC in particular)
I usually agree with Meltzer about wrestling business simply because he is the person who analyzes it how it should be analyzed which is metrics, I truly believe that he is probably the most objective analyst in wrestling (and is still likely the most well-sourced) which is why I pay for the observer every month. The problem here is that I think that we are well past the point where MMA and wrestling can be compared. WWE did it to themselves, but the framework has been damaged to the point…let me put it this way, while I love Talking Smack-Cena’s promo should have been on Smackdown where the largest audience can see it. What I am saying is that the best promos in WWE are not on WWE television, they are on the Network or the website. It’s not just the promos either, WWE does not take the idea of selling fights as seriously as it should (and that is an understatement). Meltzer asked when Cena drew 1.5 million PPV buys on multiple occasions, Cena’s promos are not always great (even though they have been for the last year)-but he does not have a chance with the way WWE is structured (and that was before the Network). No one does.
UFC (or MMA) and pro wrestling are not the same thing. WWE (and other promotions) can learn a lot from MMA…and maybe if they were more similar WWE would be better off. It’s just that the comparison makes less sense as time goes on.