Throughout history, the WWE has had at least one superstar during an era that grows into a global phenomenon. During The Golden Age, it was Hulk Hogan. In the New Generation Era, it was Bret 'The Hitman' Hart and Shawn Michaels. The Attitude Era brought Stone Cold Steve Austin and The Rock. These days, John Cena is the biggest star in the company.
At the moment, however, when Cena decides to move on from wrestling or leave the top of the WWE ladder, there isn't a superstar on the roster that could claim that spot and run with it successfully without falling down.
People like Stone Cold or The Rock had the ability to carry a crowd during their prime and put the most people in seats in stadiums and arenas, helping with the rise of the company to the stage it is at today. Roman Reigns is currently being molded to become that next big star, although crowd reception towards him hasn't been the best.
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Triple H is widely expected to be the successor to Vince McMahon in running the WWE, so he could determine who will become the next big star in the company. He was recently interviewed by 98 FM Dublin to promote NXT's tour of the United Kingdom when he was asked how WWE will create the next Steve Austin or The Rock.
According to Wrestling Inc, The Game claimed only individual effort and passion will determine who rises to the top, and the WWE can only do their bit by putting talent in a good position to be successful.
He said: "Those talent make themselves in the biggest way. You train them, you teach them how to do this [and] you try to give them all the tools necessary. And that's really what we created a few years ago with the WWE Performance Center in Orlando, Florida.
"[It] is just the ultimate performance center, for lack of a better term, that gives them every tool that they could need to succeed in the WWE. And then, what they do with that is up to them. If they work as hard as possible and they're dedicated and passionate [about] it and work as hard as they can, then, the sky is the limit."
While that may be true, you have to stop and think if there is an actual equal opportunity for anyone on the WWE roster to become the next Rock or Stone Cold, or if there isn't because the company has already picked who they want their next top guy to be.
Look at the likes of CM Punk and Daniel Bryan, they only got the attention they deserved after it was arguably too late. Austin and The Rock had passion when they spoke and the WWE fans adored them, just like they did with Punk and Bryan, but they weren't supposed to reach that level.
Unfortunately these days, it feels like there is not much creative freedom for any superstar to make the jump to become the next top guy unless they're picked by the WWE to do so. Creative may actually be holding a lot of stars back because they have to abide by the booking angle, rather than being allowed to flourish unscripted.
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