Edge’s retirement on Raw last night was surreal. As he delivered a heartfelt speech about his long career I kept waiting for Alberto Del Rio to make his way down the ramp and interrupt Edge. Maybe a brawl would start and further their rivalry heading into their ladder match at Extreme Rules in three weeks.
Unfortunately for the fans, Del Rio never came out. Edge will forfeit the title this Friday on Smackdown. Edge debuted with the WWE in 1998 and quickly became one of its top competitors. Thirteen years later he has won more titles than anyone else in the history of the company. I especially liked the part of his speech where he reminisced about all the personas he went though during his career. From his time as a Vampire in The Brood all the way to his relationship with Lita. Edge pretty much did it all in the WWE.
His TLC matches as one-half of Edge & Christian were legendary. The Hardy Boyz and The Dudley Boyz were right along with them when the tag team division in the WWE was something you had to see. His one-on-one hardcore match with Mic Foley at Wrestlemania 22 stills stands out in my mind as one of the best in his career. And that’s what made Edge so great. He could hang with the high-flyers, the hardcore guys and mat wrestle. He was one of the best heels for a while and at the same time he was a tremendous face.
As sad as it is to see him go I’m glad he is leaving. Edge said he felt numbness in his arms and a recent MRI was the tell-tale sign that it was time to hang up the boots. Edge never mentioned the specifics of the MRI, but he did have spinal fusion surgery a few years ago. I’m guessing the MRI took place sometime after Wrestlemania because Edge could have dropped the title to Del Rio right then and there. For the WWE and Edge to pull the trigger this quickly on his career, right after the biggest pay per view, you know it had to be serious. Quality of life is way more important than entertaining fans. Edge is still a young guy and he needs to think about his future.
If this was 10 years ago, there’s a good chance Edge doesn’t call it quits so quickly. The health and quality of life of pro wrestlers after their careers ended have become a huge issue in recent years in the main stream media. The WWE has done a good job lately of keeping guys away from the ring if they’re not able to complete for whatever reason. Matt Hardy, Jeff Hardy, Kurt Angle are just a few that come to mind. The WWE pulled those guys off the road when they felt they were in no shape to compete. They felt they could compete and now none of those guys are with the company anymore.
As for the World Heavyweight Title, Christian, Edge's real life and on screen best friend, could easily be the man to take Edge’s spot at Extreme Rules. But Smackdown is in need of main event faces. I would love to see John Morrison move over because he is just getting lost in the shuffle on Raw. Rey Mysterio is another guy who can take the ball and run with it. I would love to see The Undertaker come back, but that’s a pipe dream with his part-time schedule.
As for the rest of Raw…
I’m glad that one of the obvious guys was not named the number one contender. Dolph Ziggler would have been a good choice, but Morrison would have been the best choice. John Cena is a given; he has to be in the main event scene. But R-Truth? How did the WWE pass over John Morrison, again? Randy Orton will continue his feud with Nexus as we saw last night. I understand the WWE wants to push new guys, but R-Truth is not the guy to be pushing. Morrison is younger and has better overall ring skills. He can do things in the ring that 99 percent of the roster can’t. The WWE needs to feature that as a centerpiece on Raw.
The hype video was for the WWE’s newest Diva, Awesome Kong. She is not your typical WWE Diva and it will be interesting to see how she is perceived by the fans. It’s only a matter of time till she is champion in the women’s division.
The Jerry Lawler-Michael Cole took another turn last night. Since King defeated Jack Swagger, there will be a tag team match at Extreme Rules: Lawler and Jim Ross against Cole and Swagger. Cole slapped Swagger in the face last night before the tag team match was made. Now Cole has to hope Swagger will swallow his pride and be his partner.
Once again, thank you, Edge. It has been a wonderful experience to watch you in the ring over the past 13 years. See you in the Hall of Fame real soon and maybe as a commentator one day. Anything is better than Booker T.