WWE Superstar Randy Orton has gotten a lot of heat from the internet wrestling community as of late. Last week he retweeted a post from wrestling veteran Rip Rogers on the state Of independent wrestling claiming it has become a huge spot fest with no real storytelling, which was met with criticism throughout the wrestling industry.

Everyone from the Young Bucks to Tommy Dreamer has weighed in on the matter bashing the post. Even a maybe subtweet from former colleague CM Punk. Bully Ray and Orton had an exchange on twitter as well, as he and Randy had issues going way back including Randy Orton breaking his arm in a match with Bully when the apex predator first started.

The viper decided to strike back on his naysayers with an “apology” claiming that he makes a lot of money and works in front of giant crowds. Essentially meaning that is what makes a successful performer in the wrestling industry.

I have long been a Randy Orton fan especially the 2009, 2010 Viper when he first shaved his head bald got all those sick tattoos and started hearing “voices.” However the past several years it seems as though there is a lack of passion when I see Orton’s work. I don’t know if it is just me but that hunger in all of his matches just isn’t there and as a viewer it is disengaging. Orton has been able to stay at the top of WWE especially with the influx of new talent over the years. Every Orton match goes stomp, stomp, backbreaker, scoop slam, rope ddt, pound mat miss the RKO then 10 seconds later outta nowhere, finish, pose. Randy is a talented performer but he has had the luxury of being a third generation superstar not saying he hasn’t had to work hard but that  definitely put him to the front of the line.

Not every wrestler is afforded the opportunity to go to WWE let alone a promotion that has a television deal since WWE pretty much took over wrestling with the purchase of WCW in 2001. If you are an independent wrestler you have to do it because of the general love because of all of the travel and never having a guaranteed check to rely on.

I think there is room for all wrestling to coexist rather that be traditional or the more modern style utilizing more of the aerial techniques. I do agree that some independent wrestling can be too video game like with no sense that either competitor is trying to win  whether who just pulls off the most extreme stunts. But not all independent wrestling is this way. My only issue is the notion that if you do not make a certain amount and work in front of a large audience then you are some what less of a performer.

Independent wrestling relies on the belief from their fan base as well as promoters tireless efforts to advertise and produce a show with very little money, just their love for the business. Regardless of your preference those workers bust their ass to entertain the audience. Who cares rather you take filet mignon or a packed lunch you are all doing the same job. It’s just entertainment.

-Caleb Raves