Goldberg may not be done with WWE after WrestleMania 33.
If online buzz is true, the company is high on the current Universal champion due to the great reactions he's getting at live events. That's no surprise to fans of course, who have witnessed the resurrection of Goldberg's career and surely view it as one of the best comebacks in recent memory.
But along with the praise, comes the criticism.
It's a familiar story, and one that began when The Rock decided to leave for Hollywood. Then he came back. Then he left, came back, left, and so on. That trend continued with The Undertaker, and has been perfected by Brock Lesnar.
It definitely seems to be the age of the part-timer in WWE.
Goldberg is just the most recent addition to that list, and the backlash against him only just began in the past few weeks. When he defeated Kevin Owens at Fastlane to become the new Universal champion, Goldberg's star suddenly began to shine just a bit too brightly for his own good.
At least, that's what his critics thought. Evidently WWE disagrees, and now the part timer trend will continue at least for a while longer for the former face of WCW. It definitely seems to be the right move on paper; Goldberg is an attraction, and draws a great deal of interest.
He's in phenomenal shape, he's got the right attitude, and he's fit in like he never did before. The same company that couldn't showcase him properly back in 2004 is now doing a tremendous amount of justice to him and his character.
Why not maximize his popularity by booking him after Mania is over?
He has lost some of the crowd, depending on what city WWE runs, but that is to be expected. Owens is a popular heel and many likely feel Goldberg did nothing to earn the
Universal title to begin with.
The fact that his match with Lesnar at WrestleMania needed the belt more than Owens versus Chris Jericho doesn't seem to matter much. Some fans are convinced that Goldberg has no business wearing Raw's top championship.
The aura of the part time Superstar hangs heavy over WWE, and it has for quite some time. Despite how much fans respect the veterans for what they've given to the business, the overall sentiment is that WWE belongs to the New Era, and that's the way it should be.
The problem of course does not lie with the part time stars, or with the New Era. The problem is with WWE, as the company continues to book itself as an entity that's dedicated to evolution, yet cannot let go of the past. The question of how WWE should handle its booking has been asked many times before of course, and the answer from New Era proponents has always been very simple.
Just give it to the new guys, they can do it.
But when those new guys hit a ceiling at every turn, then how much can they truly do? One train of thought suggests that it's up to the talents themselves to get over. They have to grab the spotlight when they're on camera, and they have to make the absolute best of their time.
However, no one in the New Era seems all that capable of getting red hot right now. There is no Stone Cold Steve Austin. There is no Triple H, and there is no Rock. That's not to say no one on Raw or SmackDown Live can break out, but it doesn't seem to be that anyone's breaking out right now.
Everyone is working within the WWE machine. Everyone has a role, and everyone is playing their role. There are no big money breakout stars because either no one is ready to do that, or WWE is just not allowing it to happen.
Freedom is the key. Austin was not controlled. Rocky was not told what to say. Triple H carried himself like a killer, because he was one.How many Superstars in WWE today can honestly say they're allowed to do exactly what they want to do, without fear of repercussion after the fact?
If that is indeed the case, and if WWE insists on looking to yesterday for today, then there can be no real tomorrow. The booking will continue the way it has for years, and the company will keep doing things in the exact same way. No one will stand a prayer of skyrocketing to the top, yet everyone will be happy to just play along.
WWE seems more interested in just presenting the product as a community of stars that all work together and cooperate, rather open the door for anyone to explode.
Of course that could all be just speculation, and nothing more. For that matter, the debate of the part timers versus the New Era could be blown out of proportion, as fans struggle to understand why WWE does business the way it does.
Despite what the truth is, WWE continues to move ahead. Sort of.