Your friendly neighborhood Ryback is back, saying stuff guaranteed to get him headlines on wrestling websites like this one - and taking shots at, I guess, everyone writing and reading those websites?
Here’s what we’ve got.
On the latest edition of his podcast, Conversation with the Big Guy, the former Intercontinental champ discussed his time with Nexus, the heel stable made up of “contestants” from the first season of NXT that was a focal point of WWE’s main event scene in 2010.
After a fantastic debut on the June 7 episode of Raw, the group began a long program with John Cena. What seemed designed as a way to at least get Wade Barrett over as a top act slowly fizzled out due to a number of things - including the firing of Daniel Bryan and injuries to Ryback (then going by Skip Sheffield), Darren Young & Michael Tarver - but mostly attributed to Cena never really putting them over in any meaningful way, particularly his defeating Barrett and Justin Gabriel (now Lucha Underground’s PJ Black) in the two-on-one finish of an elimination match at SummerSlam.
Include Ryback in those blaming Cena for Nexus not helping Barrett, or really any of its members (with the possible exception of Bryan, depending on if you think his babyface return at SummerSlam had much to do with his eventual popularity among WWE fans), become big stars.
It was a great faction and it was underutilized.
It was not used properly mainly because of John Cena. F***ing marks, that's your headline for the f***ing week. And it's a fact across the board. Everybody knows it and he did not want that to go any further than what it was going to go passed because it was working, because it was eight guys getting over naturally. That's why. God forbid guys get over naturally.
So, there marks.
Ryback isn’t the first guy to raise this point - Edge and Chris Jericho had a pretty famous discussion of the SummerSlam finish. But there are reasons to cast a little side-eye at the Big Guy, and not just because he’s decided to lash out at the folks listening to and promoting his show.
For one thing, he believes he was the “physical leader” of the stable, which really doesn’t jive with my recollection of how he or the group was presented - even before he went out with an ankle injury (another “headline” the big guy’s given us marks lately) shortly after SummerSlam.
[Barrett] was the mental leader. I was the physical leader. I always kind of put it as that. Like, and I felt like that came across very well with the dynamic of the group that we had. And I felt like people got that. I felt like we both played our roles perfectly in that.
Was he “the muscle”? Yeah. But “physical leader” is some generous spin.
He also attributes Cena’s not doing the job for Nexus to his not playing football... I guess?
That's what happens when you get a noncompetitive athlete in the top position who's not used to competing in real life.
And here I thought it was because he was good at backstage politics.
Anyway... what do you think about Ryback’s latest claims, or the way he puts them out there?