Midcard followup

I was thinking about the conversation I had with K. Swayer Paul about the current state of the midcard in the WWE.  I was thinking it is important to know that forces outside the wrestling world.  I mad a blog post recently about how Wrestling is a form of fiction that uses sports as a metaphor.  I think there are things in the world of sports and in the wider world that effect the way people view wrestling and impact the midcard.

The culture of championships or nothing has developed in sports over the last few years.  There are a lot of reasons for this attitude among fans.  The first thing that changed the expansion of playoffs.  For the first almost 70 years of baseball only had two teams get into the playoffs.  As a result as there a lot of teams that where out of the running for the playoffs by the All-Star break.  Sports leagues have expanded their playoff teams to keep fan interest. 

The second thing is the way free agency in all the major sports.  Before free agency it was hard for teams to develop.  Good teams stayed good longer, bad teams had long stretches of being bad. Fans had to put up with how terrible their team was.  Teams got good almost by accident.  There was always hope your team would get better, but fans did not feel like they could pressure the front office.  In the world of free agency the fans had the ability to pressure the front office to take action.

The third thing is Sports Talk Radio. In 1986-1987 full time sports talk radio started to be successful. I really feel that sports talk radio has had more impact on fan culture than anything else.  The loud mouth hosts doing anything to get a reaction from fans and the callers expressing themselves to the rest of the world changed the way fans see sports.  We all get to find out how much we hate the team we love. 

I realize that most the people we mention as great mid-card wrestlers were top wrestlers in smaller promotions.  Jim Duggan was a main-eventer in the UWF before getting a following in the WWF.  Right now the two wrestlers who spent the most time at the head of independent promotions are two of the best performers in the WWE. 

You can call bull shit on any of these items if you like.  I still think you have to thing about the change in how fans relate to sports to understand how they relate to wrestling.


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