Duggan’s Words Ring True For WWE

The WWE's second pay-per-view of 2022 raised more questions than answers about the direction the company is heading.

Two former UFC emerged victorious at the Royal Rumble on Saturday, with Brock Lesnar and Ronda Rousey winning the respective men's and women's matches.

While Rousey's return could be argued to be a positive in a decimated women's division, Lesnar winning his second Rumble struck a negative chord with the WWE fanbase. His success demonstrates the current dearth of talent in the WWE, a point hammered home by the underwhelming lineup for the men's Rumble.

A quick look at the list of entrants for the first-ever Rumble in 1988 highlights why so many fans were disappointed with the 35th edition of the event.

Legendary names such as Bret Hart, Tito Santana, Jim Neidhart, Jake Roberts, and The Ultimate Warriors were amongst a star-studded lineup in the inaugural Rumble. However, they were all upstaged by an unexpected victory, with "Hacksaw" Jim Duggan upsetting the odds to etch his name into wrestling folklore.

Ahead of the latest Rumble, the 68-year-old told Betway Casino that the creative controls implemented by WWE bosses are hindering the company in the modern era.

"You had a unique group of guys back then," said Duggan.

"I think overall the talent nowadays is much better in terms of athletic ability, but my generation of guys were much more creative.

"We didn't have a board of guys coming up with our character -- I own Hacksaw Jim Duggan and trademarked it long before I went to WWE -- so we were much more willing to try something new."

Duggan's comments were noteworthy given the unsatisfactory nature of the latest Rumble, particularly Lesnar's triumph in the men's event.

Lesnar had lost his WWE Championship to Bobby Lashley earlier in the evening following interference by Roman Reigns and Paul Heyman.

His subsequent appearance in the Rumble as the 30th entrant was hugely predictable, while his eventual success was completely unsurprising.

The result sets up the prospect of a Reigns vs. Lesnar main event at WrestleMania for the third time in seven years, highlighting the lack of other viable alternatives on the current WWE roster. It is fair to stay that the WWE's glory days from the late 1980s through to the early part of the new millennium are increasingly becoming a distant memory for wrestling fans.

Duggan was hugely popular during his time with the WWE, but he was far from being the biggest star during that era. ubsequent years saw the likes of The Rock and "Stone Cold" Steve Austin take the WWE to even greater heights, but things have gone downhill since then.

While another Reigns vs. Lesnar match at WrestleMania suggests the WWE has forgotten how to develop truly top-level talent, the pair will no doubt put on a decent show.

However, as Duggan told Betway, WWE bosses must start becoming more imaginative if they want to keep the company at the top of the wrestling business.

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