The Next Stars Of WWE Have Arrived To Carry The Flag

Justin LaBar

wweI write a wrestling column every Monday and Friday for the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review. It can be found online at

Today, I wrote about WWE's success rate in turning out new talent for the future and how they're doing it. The following is an excerpt:

It looks so simple, but WWE is doing it again.

John Cena and Randy Orton aren't leaving tomorrow, but preparing for them to not be there is organically happening.

WWE had the famous Ohio Valley Wrestling class: John Cena, Randy Orton, Batista and Brock Lesnar all came through what then was the developmental territory for the company in 2002. They were the next generation to wave the WWE flag after The Undertaker, Shawn Michaels, The Rock and Stone Cold Steve Austin.

Cena, Orton, Batista and Lesnar are all front and center right now, all focal points in WWE's programming helping usher in the new class of Daniel Bryan, Roman Reigns, Bray Wyatt, Big E. Langston and Cesaro.

The company focuses on the worth of its stock on Wall Street, which merchandise is moving where, what international television deals they can acquire and how to be more mainstream. All of which can present factors that, in the microscope of things, can hinder the product. I, and others, have written and talked about them all.

But to be fair, let's talk about how in the past few years, WWE's quietly done a great job at developing new talent. The success rate will never be perfect in any developmental system, be it baseball, hockey or wrestling. Any and all institutions that try to streamline talent of any kind can't win them all.

However, WWE has really been on a roll of late. It started with the rebranding of Florida Championship Wrestling to NXT, a change in the banner for WWE's minor league. It was followed up by going from the generic gyms WWE had put some rings in to putting on shows at Full Sail University in Winter Park, Fla.

Click here to read more on how WWE's future has arrived and who else will be carrying the flag.

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