In the opening segment of Monday Night Raw this week, The Authority elected to fire and destroy the most well-dressed Raw General Manager in WWE history, Brad Maddox. Maddox took over as GM on July 8, 2013, so he came up just a tad short of a year on the job. Maddox may have had the title of General Manager, but with The Authority around he never really had any power.
Basically, Maddox was the Dwight Schrute of the WWE; the Assistant to the Regional Authority Figure.
I'll miss Maddox's quirkiness and facial expressions, but I won't miss having a Raw General Manager booked the way Maddox was.
Since Eric Bischoff's 1,239 day reign over Raw from 2002-2005, WWE hasn't been able to find a permanent long-term solution for the General Manager post. They've tried Stone Cold, William Regal, The Coach, Bret Hart, Hornswoggle, A.J. Lee and many others, but none have been in charge even close to the amount of time Bischoff was running things on Monday nights.
WWE has wasted no time finding Maddox's replacement, already putting up a poll to find out who the fans want to see as the next General Manager of Raw. Rumors have been swirling for a while that the plan has been for Hulk Hogan to get the gig, and this poll seems to confirm the company is at least thinking of it and wanted to see if support is there.
Sadly, it is:
Hogan in small doses around WrestleMania season is fine, but making him a permanent on-screen character probably isn't in the best interest of the company. He fumbles his lines, can barely walk down the ramp, and isn't a viable long-term solution for the GM position. Yes, this is isn't a real position of power, and with The Authority around it isn't necessary, but if you're going to keep the position around you might as well try to find a suitable long-term candidate you can mold into an interesting figure who challenges The Authority.
NXT has been a great long-term addition for WWE for a multitude of reasons, but it could be even better if they added one more key component -- television executive role development. NXT trains wrestlers, divas, and commentators for the big stage, but not potential General Managers. With Vickie Guerrero also reportedly on the way out soon, it should be a wakeup call for the company that perhaps they should start scouting and signing potential on-screen authority figures.
In the last couple of years WWE has made great strides in preparing for the future, but they can still improve. Bringing Hogan in as the interim GM won't be the worst thing, but there's a strong possibility he doesn't even last past the summer. The problem isn't going away, so the company might as well address it.
If the company insists on keeping the General Manager role on television, it's time to start making a conscious effort in finding a stable long-term solution for Raw, and even SmackDown too.