Since making his return to WWE at the Money in the Bank pay-per-view (PPV) back on July 14 in Philadelphia, there's little doubting Rob Van Dam's career has seen somewhat of a minor resurgence. He hasn't been pushed to the top of the card or anything like that but he's been putting on some of the best matches of his career or, at the very least, doing work that absolutely dwarfs his in-ring performances during his three-year run with TNA.
So what gives?
He explained as much in a recent rant on ipadio (transcription via PW Torch):
"I was riding my bike a few days ago in Hermosa Beach (Calif.), and someone on the beach said, 'RVD, welcome home, brother!' I'm sharing this because they weren't saying, 'Welcome home,' meaning, 'Welcome home to California.' They were saying, 'Welcome back to WWE. This is where you belong.' You know why? Because WWE is truly the best of the best when it comes to professional wrestling. What makes it the best? Way, way, way more people watch WWE than any other wrestling. The percentage of the global population that tunes into WWE is just fathoms above the amount of people who watch any other wrestling. Does that alone make it the best? Maybe not. But, you have to admit WWE is the standard-setters; they have the best wrestlers.
"Now, you could say, 'That's an opinion,' and 'I prefer a different style of wrestling.' Okay, you have the right to that opinion, but I can tell you from being in the ring with these guys that once I went to WWE, I noticed right away the skill level, the well-roundedness, the talent of the wrestlers in WWE - way above where I had been before.
"Many of you noticed my matches were better, but you couldn't put your finger on why they're better. I'm telling you it's because I'm swimming in a different pool. Some of the other guys - their achievements are not as grand, the stars that they have wrestled are not as well-rounded, they're used to wrestling each other, and they're limited. Fans might prefer that, it's going to be a small group of fans that will support that and that the wrestlers will be exposed to. And, that's fine if that's what you're looking for. But, if you're looking for the best of the best, if you're looking for the best Superstars, it's right here, baby. WWE.
"So, I like my position there. Who else has stood the test of time like RVD? Have I not proven that I'm doing something right? When will people stop trying to give me their unwanted advice? When will people realize I got this? And that goes for life, not just for wrestling. I got this. Okay?"
While it's awful nice that he's putting over the WWE roster for its all around superior talent, it's also a bit selfish for RVD to pass the buck to all the wrestlers he was working with in TNA as if they were the problem and he was out there giving it his all night in and night out.
Anyone who watched TNA during his run knows that's simply not the case.
Sure, you could argue he lost his motivation thanks to the fact that he was working in front of dead crowds of 500 to a few thousand people per show and the star power around him simply wasn't there, but some personal accountability would be nice.