Cleat Geeks

Mid-Card Monday: Braun Strowman

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The modern era of the WWE has allowed its fans to learn more about their favorite superstar than ever before.  The WWE website used to be the source for news and insight into the comings and goings of professional wrestling, but with the advent of both the WWE Network and podcasting/Youtube programming, the real life stories of the athletes that entertain us week after week can be told, characters can be dropped, and even stronger connections and respect can be fostered between fans and the men and women of the WWE.  We were treated to this experience yet again when Adam Scherr, AKA Braun Strowman of the Wyatt Family sat down with former WWE mega star, Stone Cold Steve Austin.

WWE fans were able to learn about the man behind the muscle during last week’s Stone Cold Podcast.  Adam Scherr is a former strongman who, on paper, should have been a mega star in pro football, but because of poor grades and a lack of experience on the field, the 2007 NFL Combine didn’t reap the results he was hoping for. Scherr has always been a mammoth of a man; he graduated high school at a staggering 6’5″ and 315 lbs, not that much smaller than his 32-year-old-frame that we see today.  He was charismatic and intriguing as he discussed his life previous to WWE, working at clubs as a bouncer, being able to avoid physical altercations be defusing situations with talk rather than brute strength that he clearly possessed.  For anyone who didn’t offer their interest to Strowman the character now has a down-to-earth, guy’s guy to get behind and support when he steps into the squared circle.

I have been talking about the term agency for the past two weeks, a term that means motivation; why would Anderson and Gallows attack Big E?  why would Dean Ambrose nail Dolph Ziggler with the Dirty Deeds just after claiming a victory against the Wyatt family with Ziggler as his partner?  why  would Randy Orton come back after injury and choose the biggest, baddest SOB in the company as his first opponent upon his return?  The answers to these questions tell another piece of the story of who these athletes are, and hopefully make WWE fans intrigued enough to follow their building storylines.

In the case of Braun Strowman, his emergence into the WWE main roster was greatly supported when he was automatically teamed up with the Wyatt Family, an intricately developed gang of mystic and sinister men who have been crafting their presence in the WWE since their debut on the main roster on July 8, 2013.  This association did much of the heavy lifting for Strowman, but now that the brand split has divided him from Wyatt and Erick Rowan, he must stand out on his own.

What the Raw team has been developing for Strowman since the brand split has worked towards maintaining his monstrous persona.  The squash matches that used to feature Baron Corbin in NXT are now the weekly feature for Strowman.  Having the local victim wrestler interviewed just before stepping into the ring to face their maker is genius!  We already know that facing a 6’8″, 375 lbs. brick house is going to mean a lot of power moves that will devastate your body, but these aren’t truly wrestling matches; they’re a display of the power and intensity that Strowman brings to the WWE.  Will this be enough to sustain him in the long term?  Perhaps not, but after learning about Adam Scherr, not just watching a giant of a man toss another human around the squared circle just might.


Updates on Apollo Crews and Baron Corbin

Crews was off SmackDown this week because he is touring in Australia with the WWE, which could help develop his world-wide fan support.  There’s nothing like a live event to bridge the fans closer to the WWE athletes.

Baron Corbin, on the other hand, was back to what he does best: take out his aggression on whomever stands in his way.  In this case, it was Kalisto who “cost” Corbin his shot at the Intercontinental Championship during last week’s SmackDown Live.  Kalisto took an old-school bully beating from Corbin backstage.

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