The primary talk amongst WWE fans these days, is all about the brand-split and the new era, which is to be expected. We are in the midst of some very exciting times in wrestling's history. Not only have we seen the birth of a new era, but we are also privileged to be watching what's going on in Orlando with NXT, which is nothing short of amazing. Needless to say, it's a fun time to be a wrestling fan.
With the current state of the new era, a big source of talent is coming from guys who fit the Cruiserweight body type. Most of what we are seeing today is the high flyers and the talented spot artists, who can turn things around with one unrealistic maneuver.
One of the newer guys who is garnering attention from the WWE Universe, is a guy who doesn't fit that smaller, cookie cutter, spot monkey style. In fact, he's a legit monster, for all intents and purposes. The superstar I'm referring to is Braun Strowman.
Braun Strowman is currently on the Raw roster, while his former Wyatt Family members are currently dominating the scene on Smackdown Live. Not to worry, though, Strowman is holding his own and doing so with ease as he is currently on a nationwide jobbers squashing spree. Over the past few weeks, WWE creative has been allowing Braun to make his money pretty easily. Just this past a week on Raw, Strowman obliterated a Los Angeles area local wrestler in all of roughly 40 seconds.
So, we know who Braun Strowman is, but exactly who is this guy? Well, he's a big, powerful stud of a man who has one goal in mind...gold. During his recent podcast interview with Stone Cold Steve Austin, Strowman made it crystal clear why he's here. He's here to become a world or Universal Champion.
With that said, the 6'8" monster isn't oblivious to the fact that he's still relatively green in the ring and still needs to hone his skills before considering himself main event ready. His exact words to Austin were that he does not want to be rushed. Knowing he's got some work left to do, Strowman has a desire to be a top contender, but he also wants to be a great all around performer and that should be commended.
At 17 years old, Braun was six foot five and weighed in at a solid 315 pounds. He was a beast, to say the least. It was about this time in his life that he began weight lifting and competing in strongman competitions. In 2009, Braun competed in his first amateur strongman competition, which he won. Two years later, he received his pro card, becoming the fastest American to ever go pro.
In 2011, Braun qualified for the nationals, which he won. This would earn him a trip to the Arnold World Championships. During the Arnold, Strowman would win 5 of the 7 events he competed in, with a field of 52 opponents.
Strowman became a household name in the powerlifting and strongman world. During this time, he would meet and become good friends with another strongman, Mark Henry. Considering the fact that Braun was a devout wrestling fan, Henry encouraged Strowman to become a professional wrestler.
All of that sounded like a dream to Braun. However, what he didn't realize, was that Henry would start planting seeds among the powers that be, within WWE management. He was telling anyone who would listen, that this big guy from North Carolina deserved to be looked at. Well, his time would come, he would get those looks and the next thing you know, Strowman was training at the WWE Performance Center in 2013.
Immediately upon arrival, Strowman would turn heads in Orlando. NXT coaches and staff took notice of his impressive stature and respectful demeanor and realized they had a huge piece of clay that they could work with and mold into something special.
As we all know, Braun Strowman would debut as a new member of The Wyatt Family on an episode of Raw, in August of 2015. You could see the jaws drop when the black sheep of the Family emerged. Despite still being relatively new to the industry and in need of more work, as far as his in-ring skills are concerned, WWE's creative squad took a chance and rolled the dice on the big guy, with the idea that his massive size and in-ring presence would compensate for what he lacked in his in-ring arsenal. Little did they know, they made a very wise decision by taking a chance on the new mountain of a man.
During his time with The Wyatt Family, Strowman was able to focus on developing his skills, while his Family brothers picked up his slack in the ring. Braun would prove to be a tremendous asset to the main roster as he would improve his abilities in an unbelievably quick time.
Now that the rosters have split, Braun Strowman has been forced to step out of his comfort zone, so to speak and stand alone, on his own two massive feet, without the assistance of his fellow Wyatt Family henchmen.
So far, he's done just fine as a singles competitor. Week after week, match after match, Braun Strowman has improved leaps and bounds. No longer is he the third wheel on a big time faction. Instead, he's his own man, a man's man...a big man among average men and with his new found direction and status, he's handling the pressure just fine.
So, where do we go from here? Well, first things first, don't be concerned with the lack of quality talent Strowman is facing on Raw. This is the perfect path for Braun. He's squashing local talent on a regular basis, which is enabling him to not only continue developing his ring work, but it's also helping Strowman become more confident in himself and his abilities.
What they are doing and how they're booking Braun Strowman is not only okay, but it's perfect. Let's give this guy some serious confidence, so when he steps up and starts facing legitimate competition on a weekly basis, he won't have to worry about his ability to get the job done.
Sure, there's still some work to do, but the resident monster is coming along just fine. Each week that passes, Strowman becomes more confident, more skilled and more prepared for when that day comes and he steps through the ropes to do the work that started with his mentor, Bray Wyatt and to take down the machine.
Braun Strowman is the next big thing. Prepare yourself for the era of the mountain.