Drew McIntyre’s redemption story is the best story WWE can tell.
From the guy who was in 3 Man Band, to the guy who WWE fired, to the guy who had to claw his way back up through the independent wrestling scene, McIntyre’s journey to the main event at WrestleMania 36 is the plot of a Rocky movie.
WWE is going all-in on the real-life aspects of his story, and it’s the best decision the company could make.
Last night, McIntyre did a sit-down interview on RAW and he highlighted everything. He talked about how he debuted at 21-years-old in 2009, and how at the time, Vince McMahon said he was the “chosen one” and would be a future WWE Champion. But McIntyre never caught traction in 2009, in large part because McMahon’s attitude changes on a whim.
A few years later, McIntyre was playing air guitar as part of the goofy 3 Man Band trio, with Heath Slater as the leader and Jinder Mahal as his colleague.
What gross misuse of a star.
After McIntyre was fired, he went back to the ground floor of pro wrestling. He was wrestling in high school gymnasiums and bars. After he joined EVOLVE wrestling, McIntyre was pushed as a major star and his character was more himself, with a gritty, rugged edge to it.
McIntyre later joined TNA/Impact Wrestling and he had a great run there as one of the top wrestlers in the company.
Then three years ago, on WrestleMania weekend, he finished up his indie bookings and re-joined WWE on NXT. Again, on the ground floor of the company, he dominated the NXT brand for a year and won the NXT Championship before making his re-debut on RAW in April of 2018.
McIntyre has been a in the upper-mid-card role since his return, and with his showing at the Royal Rumble, kicking Brock Lesnar over the top rope, he cemented himself atop WWE’s card and in a prime spot at WrestleMania, where he will wrestle for his first World Championship.
That’s a story worth telling, and it’s refreshing to see WWE just go with reality rather than gimmick it up with something like the failing marriage storyline that has haunted Rusev and Lashley for the last few months.
McIntyre is a star, and win or lose at WrestleMania, this is McIntyre’s moment to cement himself as a main-event guy, officially getting back on the track he was pushed off of in 2009.