The goal of any good wrestling heel should be to get booed. Nowadays, even heels are oftentimes too worried about being hip and cool, and shoot themselves in the foot in regards to getting a good heel reaction.
Heat is missing too much in wrestling.
Kevin Owens and Elias had tons of heat on Monday’s episode of Raw, but the way they generated the reaction is questionable at best, and wrong at worst.
Owens and Elias, during an in-ring promo segment, ragged on Raw’s host city Monday (Seattle) for losing its NBA franchise to Oklahoma City … 10 years ago.
The Seattle Supersonics left the town for Oklahoma City (becoming the Thunder) in 2008. Elias and Owens used that as ammunition for boos on Monday. The reaction was noteworthy because the chorus of boos lasted several minutes. Owens and Elias looked flustered as they had to essentially yell the rest of their scripted, contrived lines into the microphones in order to be heard over the deafening boos in the arena.
Some would say that’s great! Heels generated heat!
But it’s not the right heat … it’s cheap.
No one outside of Seattle gives a damn about Seattle losing its NBA franchise. Hell, fans in Oklahoma City could have been applauding Owens and Elias from their comfort of their couches, for all we know.
Owens and Elias putting down Seattle doesn’t make anyone outside of Seattle more interested in their tag team match at Super Showdown this Saturday against Lashley and John Cena.
What if Cena (who is training in China for a movie, I believe), appeared on Raw Monday? Would Cena be suddenly cheered had his music hit in the middle of the Seattle-bashing promo?
The strategy Owens and Elias used — very likely under the direction of WWE’s “creative” team — works at a house show or non-televised live event. But for a television product, it’s simply a waste of time.
Moreover, while the line the worked, I guess you could say, the fact that Owens and Elias had to abandon the topic and immediately go back into their scripted promo looked silly. They’re getting this mega reaction, and instead of reacting organically, they were handcuffed back to a script that sounded contrived and made up.
The entire thing came across as one giant mess. And if you don’t care about the Seattle Supersonics moving to Oklahoma City 10 years ago, you probably didn’t care much about the segment as a whole.