Why Vince McMahon is the reason so many WWE fans have turned on WCW legend

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Bill Goldberg is a contentious name to talk about in wrestling today.

The former WCW icon spent 12 years away from professional wrestling after leaving WWE in 2004.

Goldberg prepping for his legendary spear

Goldberg prepping for his legendary spear during his prime

Many assumed we’d never see Goldberg in a ring again. He’d shown no desire to return and harboured plenty of ill-will against WWE for how they had handled his sole year with them creatively.

Thanks to some prompting from 2K after including him in one of the WWE games, the stars aligned for Goldberg to return in late 2016. He would find himself Universal champion a few months later and facing Brock Lesnar at WrestleMania a couple months after that.

Since then, Goldberg, now 53, has appeared sporadically on WWE TV and is signed to perform two matches a year with the company through to 2023. That means we’ve got at least six more matches of Goldberg.

The problem is, outside of his aforementioned match with Lesnar at WrestleMania 33 – which was admittedly entertaining – Goldberg’s quality of matches in WWE has not been very good at all.

Goldberg captured the Universal title for the first time in 2017

WWE

Goldberg captured the Universal title for the first time in 2017

Furthermore, a limited worker like Goldberg on a minuscule schedule should not be defeating the hottest character WWE had created in years for the world title. And yet, in Saudi Arabia no less, that’s exactly what happened and The Fiend was the victim.

The former NFL player stumbled into professional wrestling after a chance meeting with Diamond Dallas Page and Eric Bischoff in a gentleman’s club in the mid-1990s.

Although he got a basic schooling at WCW’s Power Plant facility, he never really learned to ‘work’ and certainly didn’t get any real experience prior to being put on WCW TV. What he did learn to do was what he needed to do to appear dominant.

You don’t always need to have worked multiple independent territories, but he was greener than grass when he was thrown into an undefeated streak that – allegedly – saw 173-0 victims fall to him to kick off his career.

The Rock put Goldberg over in 2003

The Rock put Goldberg over in 2003

His offence was strike heavy and culminated in a spear and a jackhammer. Save for a couple of suplexes here and there, Goldberg has never graduated from that very rustic move set.

He’s always had the look. There’s no doubting the Atlanta native carried an intimidating physique and an intense aura that made him intriguing. And his original streak in WCW from 1997 to Starrcade 1998 was red-hot and one of the star attractions of the Monday Night Wars.

But there has to be more. Especially in this day and age where the in-ring work has progressed to unbelievable levels, you can’t just come in and spear a guy working 300 days a year out of his boots and expect people to revel in it.

Goldberg keeps saying “I’m just doing what I’m told to do. I’m a company man.” To be clear, it’s not his fault. Chairman Vince McMahon pays him an exorbitant amount of money to work so little and do so little. Honestly, looking like Goldberg is the hardest part of his job at this point.

Reigns and Goldberg were meant to fight at WrestleMania 36

WWE

Reigns and Goldberg were meant to fight at WrestleMania 36

WWE superstar ‘The Undertaker’ on his 30 year career with the company and reflects on famous ladder match with Jeff Hardy

You can’t blame Goldberg for making the most of his legendary status and certainly the value McMahon puts on that.

It’s the boss who thinks Goldberg having a title reign at this stage is helpful. It was okay in McMahon’s mind to sacrifice The Fiend in Saudi Arabia because it meant Roman Reigns would have got over at WrestleMania 36.

Spoiler: It’s unlikely he would have. And another spoiler: WWE are going to revisit that matchup at WrestleMania 37, except now Reigns is finally red-hot and anything other than dominating Goldberg – or a seriously unlikely classic – won’t help anyone.

The fans have seen Goldberg’s act now. It is, give or take a few moves, the exact same every time.

In terms of actual talented wrestlers, WWE has many right now. Fans don’t want to see their favourites work hard to then be fed to Goldberg at this stage of his career.

And it’s not a situation Goldberg gives someone the rub by working with them; he’s incapable of doing that because his limited moveset purely serves to make him look destructive.

Kevin Owens never got a shot at redemption with Goldberg

Kevin Owens never got a shot at redemption with Goldberg

And that move set has failed him a few times in recent years with The Undertaker debacle – also in Saudi Arabia – and the jackhammer turned basic suplex on The Fiend earlier this year.

You can’t wheel him out against other legends as attraction matches because The Undertaker bout is all the evidence you need there.

You can’t have him work with younger talent either because all they can do with Goldberg is what he can do – and that isn’t much. Match that with McMahon’s stubborn insistence that Goldberg retain the invincible aura he once did then it’s a recipe to upset today’s fanbase.

Fans appreciate and respect what Goldberg did in his prime, but it’s an uphill battle for him now to prove he can deliver and defy expectations at this stage of his career.

A section of WWE fans were not happy with Goldberg’s second Universal title reign earlier this year

WWE

A section of WWE fans were not happy with Goldberg’s second Universal title reign earlier this year





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