Being able to cut a great promo is the single most important key to succeeding in pro wrestling. At least that’s become the conventional wisdom. Bad matches are quickly forgotten, but not being able to talk is the kiss of death. It’s why we cringe extra hard when our favorites bomb on the mic.
But do we need to be so worried? Sure, some stars like Kevin Nash and CM Punk have jawed their way to the top, but there are plenty of others who have found great success despite not being able to string two words together. Here’s a few names that overcame severe microphone allergies to become big stars …
Note: This list doesn’t include any wrestlers that aren’t fluent in English, since that wouldn’t really be fair. So, sorry, no Great Khali jokes.
Accomplishments: NXT and WWE Women’s Champion, currently the most popular woman in WWE
Well, may as well get this article off to a controversial start. When Sasha started in NXT, she was this stilted, one-note mean girl, and whenever she speaks, she becomes her early self again. Don’t get me wrong, Sasha has a ton going for her, and can be effective on the mic when the moment has been built up properly and she’s allowed to express real emotion. Unfortunately, when she’s asked to play make-believe (which wrestlers have to do 99 percent of the time), it’s usually pretty cringy.
Rob Van Dam
Accomplishments: Only person to hold the WWE, ECW and TNA World Championships
I don’t mean speak out of school here, but I suspect Rob Van Dam may occasionally come to work under the influence of marijuana. Most every Rob Van Dam promo has exactly one note — “Hey, maaaan. Pleased to be here.” The guy is practically squinting at the cue cards in half his interviews (I thought that stuff was supposed to be good for your eyes?). In a way, RVD’s stoner dorkiness is kind of lovable, but after 20 years, the act is starting to get pretty stale.