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  #1  
Old 11-27-2012, 08:46 PM
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Default First Impressions

Now I have been watching wrestling for a long time and when a new person comes, I think their first impression when they speak really says if that person is going to go far or not. Sometimes this is true and sometimes it is not, but I would like to think when a new superstar speaks for the first time or when they do their first ever promo, they need to hit the nail on the head because second chances don't come naturally to capture that moment.

Now I was watching Raw last night and I have never heard of Ambrose. No I don't watch NXT, and I don't follow the Independents. I am a WWE mark if you want to call me that. I come on here often and I hear a lot of Ambrose. I hear how awesome he is and how he is going to be the next breakout star. I even hear and read Justin Labar's stuff on how awesome this guy is but I wanted to see for myself. One word sold me on Ambrose.."Nope"..... For me, his first promo stood out and now I see what everyone has been talking about.


So what WWE superstar really gave you a good first impression or a bad first impression and why?
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  #2  
Old 11-27-2012, 09:14 PM
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The Great Khali debuting was a great first impression on myself. Sure it didn't last long, but it was a solid debut. To see a guy of his stature, was impressive, let alone, man-handling the Undertaker in his debut.



The way Cena came out and showed no fear in Angle, was quiet a first impression. Even though he didn't win his debut match, he was still booked strong and showed potential talent.




Coming out and destroying everyone in the middle of a lower mid-card match was epic. He just looked so powerful and I knew greater things were yet to come.

Those are just three that had good first impressions, off the top of my head.
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Old 11-27-2012, 10:39 PM
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The Undertaker, Brock Lesnar and Giant all made big impressions on me the first time I saw them. Mostly due to their size. I was just a kid when Giant and Taker debuted in WCW and WWF respectively, so it really made a huge impression back then.

First time I watched a CM Punk match was his ECW debut, thought he was really good and been a fan ever since. Same also goes for Steve Austin, he was a Hollywood Blonde at the time I first saw him and was a fan of his long before he was Stone Cold, same goes for Pillman, he was great back then and also had that edgy attitude like Austin.

Those are just a few.
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Old 11-27-2012, 10:42 PM
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Probably the most obvious choice but I just can't help not picking it, this debut was pure gold and I don't know if it will ever be topped. Jericho was a talented mid-carder back in WCW (I had never seen what he did in WCW until after his debut in the WWF), but this debut brought Y2J to a whole new level, it solidified him as more than just a mid-carder. Great crowd reaction, great build up in the weeks leading to the debut, and a great back & forth between two guys so awesome on the mic.
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Old 11-28-2012, 01:36 AM
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Ryback for me. The moment he came back with the new Gimmick i thought he was going to reach the top. Although WWE seem to be rushing him a bit to fast, he is doing great at holding his own with the top stars. This weeks Raw was a good example. The crowd was pretty dead most of the night, then at the end Ryback had them going nuts when he came out to help Kane and Daniel Bryan with Ambrose and co.

Ryback had a lot of Critisism a few months ago, people claimed he was to dangerous to work with the top stars. It's pretty satisfying that these people who said this have no idea what they are talking about.
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Old 11-28-2012, 05:50 AM
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I don't put a massive amount of stock in first impressions of a wrestler. Just like in real life, first impressions sometimes don't often give you the whole story on people.

For example, in TNA, they've had the Gut Check concept going for the better part of a year. Now the concept in and of itself is essentially built around first impressions. In my eyes, and in the eyes of many from what I've read & heard, the vast majority of those Gut Check competitors made lousy first impressions. It doesn't mean that they can't be or aren't good wrestlers, but they certainly didn't convey that impression on most people during their first TNA appearances.

Guys who didn't particularly floor me when I first saw them include guys like Triple H, John Cena, CM Punk, Cody Rhodes, Dolph Ziggler and others. I wasn't crazy about their characters or their mic work or whatever, but they didn't make a positive first impression with me. Look at them now: Triple H will probably be running WWE in the next couple of years and is has had a Hall of Fame career. John Cena has been the face of the company since the mid 2000s and will also be in the HOF someday. CM Punk is at the top of his game and, generally speaking, has probably been the most over guy in wrestling as a babyface or a heel since last summer. Cody Rhodes is a young guy with a promising future who has established himself as a rising star in WWE and same goes for Dolph Ziggler. So yeah, first impressions don't always tell the whole story, sometimes it doesn't tell the story at all.

As for guys that made big first impressions that did make good, the top of my list would probably be Sheamus. From the minute I saw him for the first time on Raw, I felt that the guy had the ability to be a major player in WWE. He had the look, he had the personality and he had the in-ring ability to stand out.

Another guy is Damien Sandow because of just how smoothly he spoke on the mic and how comfortably he fit into his current character. Sandow might wind up crashing & burning as he hasn't been around for very long but, all in all, strong first impressions and he's progressed nicely.

There've been lots of others as well but, sometimes, it takes longer to really make an impact. Look at Daniel Bryan, for instance. The first time I saw him, he showed that he had the stuff in the ring by wrestling against Chris Jericho on the first episode of NXT. I wasn't really sold on his promo abilities or anything until he was "eliminated" from the show and delivered a very passionate promo. I knew then that Bryan had the ability and the personality to get over with fans if WWE simply gave him the opportunity to really speak and develop a character. Now, he's one of the most over guys on the roster.
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  #7  
Old 11-28-2012, 08:17 AM
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Cena is the obvious answer. He came out looking like a guy that had all the qualities of a super star with a long career in front of him.

I thought Cody Rhodes had something special when I first say him induct his dad in to the WWE Hall of Fame. I don't remember if it was a great speech but his delivery was great.

Jericho's debut in WWE was fantastic but I was already familiar with him from his work in WCW and a little bit of ECW.

In all my years though the biggest first impression I ever had was for the UT. He was hyped yet seemed to come out of nowhere. The guy looked like he would destroy everyone who got in his way for years to come. As a Hulkamaniac that was hugely depressing for me to the point that I didn't want him around and hoped he would just go away. He just seemed that dominant.
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Old 11-28-2012, 08:32 AM
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As mentioned John Cena's debut really stands out through the annals of time. At that time, Kurt Angle was one of the top guys in WWE, especially on Smackdown. For a young, virtual nobody to accept his challenge and look so good against him, it was like a breath of fresh air at the time. Cena would only improve as time progressed and low and behold, would become the face of the WWE.

I loved CM Punk's WWE debut on ECW. They couldn't have timed it any better, in the Hammerstein Ballroom an arena Punk was somewhat familiar with, in front of a New York/North Eastern crowd who again, would know Punk considering the popularity of pro-wrestling in that region of the States, it created a buzz and considering he got a major pop and reception, its one I always remember.

And Kane. I'd just gotten into wrestling and to first witness the physical Hell in a Cell between Taker and Shawn, to the debut of this abnormal sized man donning red and black, dominate The Undertaker in seconds and immediately have such a feared presence was awesome. I still love Kane to this day and feel he is one of wrestlings greatest assets, a familiar name respected by the intelligent fans for his contributions as a character and performer. His debut will always be memorable to me.
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Old 11-28-2012, 08:58 AM
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Well 1st impressions do last..i am from India, where the only wrestling organizations that we have seen are WWE and TNA(since probably 2004). i remember Cena coming out against Kurt angle, and being a kid who really didnt know much, i was quite impressed...he had the makings of a star written al over him.. the same goes for Punk..his 1st backstage promo was quite gud..and seeing the reception that he got and the way that he carried himself, he was quite impressive..and that impression has remained intact..Punk is my fav wrestler now, and a close third to Shawn Michaels and The Undertaker...
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Old 11-28-2012, 09:38 AM
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I had high hopes for people like Drew McIntyre and Brodus Clay before one got buried and one took on the stupid Funkasaurus persona. Chris Masters? Yeah, about that...

Unfortunately, most "good first impressions" don't last long. Most of the biggest stars wrestling has ever seen don't get big or stay over with their first gimmick. HHH with the Connecticut Bluebloods? Mean Mark Callous? The Million Dollar Champion, Stunning Steve Austin? How many iterations did it take before we finally got the Godfather? Papa Shango, anyone? Etc, etc, etc.

I think the more defining aspect of the Shield is people KNEW who these guys were BEFORE they got to NXT and the WWE. There isn't as much need for trying a gimmick, then changing it if/when it doesn't work. That's likely a reason HHH (and to a lesser degree, VKM) are open to taking guys from the indie circuits. While Vince loves "growing his own", there is definite value in taking a pre-fab star and throwing them into the WWE. It's worked with Punk and Bryan big-time, somewhat with Cesaro - though I believe a rebranding of him once he drops the US title is in order.
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