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Temp-to-Perm General Managers: Who makes the grade?
With the momentous Raw 1,000 right around the corner, the WWE Universe is braced for one of the most exciting Monday nights in history. As that landmark episode draws near, though, so does the promise of a monumental change in leadership that may forever alter the landscape of WWE, too. After months of a revolving door of Interim General Managers, a Permanent GM will finally be chosen Monday night.
Questions and speculation as to who might fill the vacant shoes of the previous GM abound, and WWE.com couldn’t help but wonder if a former Interim General Manager might have the best chance to permanently take hold of the reins. With that in mind, we take a look back at the five Interim General Managers and give each a grade for his or her performance.
So, who made the grade and has what it takes to be the full-time GM? Find out now!
While maybe not the first choice for many members of the WWE Universe, a very strong argument can certainly be made that Vickie Guerrero had a great week as Interim General Manager. Serving as GM of both Raw and SmackDown several weeks ago, WWE’s Queen Diva didn’t hide the fact that she had her sights set squarely on a full-time position. To that end, Vickie even managed to garner endorsements in her favor, as both Dolph Ziggler and Daniel Bryan publicly lauded her efforts.
Vickie has experience in the role, and more importantly, she’s shown a marked ability to get the job done, as demonstrated by her scheduling a Three-Way Elimination Match between WWE Champion CM Punk, Daniel Bryan and Kane on the June 25 Raw SuperShow. After that match, Vickie announced a No. 1 Contender’s Contract-on-a-Pole Match for later in the night between Alberto Del Rio and Dolph Ziggler, with the winner facing World Heavyweight Champion Sheamus for his title days later in an epic Triple Threat Match on the June 29 edition of SmackDown.
Whether it’s helping to guide The Showoff to a Money in the Bank Contract or constantly seeking the approval of WWE’s Board of Directors, Vickie seems to thrive in the General Manager’s chair.
Final Grade: A-
Anyone who’s watched WWE through the years knows a thing or two about Teddy Long’s unique style as General Manager. With his trademark swagger and penchant for exciting tag team battles , Long is a proven leader of both brands who has consistently delivered a high quality product.
Case in point, when given the opportunity to take over SuperSmackDown LIVE: The Great American Bash, Teddy exposed the WWE Universe to one of the most fun nights in recent memory, kicking things off with a memorable barbecue celebration and scheduling a pointedly retributive Mixed Tag Team Match between The Great Khali & Divas Champion Layla and Antonio Cesaro & Aksana. Teddy was also responsible for the thrilling 20-Man Battle Royal that served as the night’s main event and saw Zack Ryder walk away victorious. Just one night earlier on Raw SuperShow, Long proved he’s not just capable of helming the blue brand. Assembling a card that featured Sin Cara attempting to deliver some vengeance on Alberto Del Rio and a No Disqualification Match that pitted Kane against Big Show, Teddy showed he’s just as capable on Monday nights as he is on Fridays.
As always, Teddy steered the ship in the right direction with just a perfect balance of style and class.
Final Grade: A
After winning the 20-Man Battle Royal at The Great American Bash, Zack Ryder wasted no time in making Friday night his own, transforming SmackDown into "ZackDown" and leading attending members of the WWE Universe in the world’s largest fist pump. But Ryder proved he wasn’t all style and no substance, demonstrating his GM chops by scheduling two big matches during his tenure at the helm of the blue brand.
Taking the reins just two days before the Money in the Bank pay-per-view, Ryder was responsible for setting up a match between Sin Cara and Alberto Del Rio and another between The Great Khali and Big Show. Both of those bouts were created in the midst of Ryder being openly challenged — first by The Mexican Aristocrat, then by The World’s Largest Athlete — and showed that Long Island Iced-Z wasn’t about to be pushed around.
At the top of the show, Ryder promised the greatest SmackDown ever, and even though there may have been some measure of hyperbole behind that boast, Long Island Iced-Z certainly delivered the goods.
Final Grade: B+
Anonymous Raw GM/Hornswoggle
So ... yeah. Apparently, Hornswoggle was the Anonymous Raw GM all along. While no one in the WWE Universe saw that particular turn coming, the revelation actually has some interesting ramifications for the pint-size Superstar.
For those with long memories, the highly anticipated reveal shed a new light on the usually lighthearted and good-natured ’Swoggle. If you’ll remember, the Anonymous Raw GM had, at times, a very unpopular tenure in the role, and garnered boos on more than one occasion for his actions.
But on the July 9 episode of Raw SuperShow, the Anonymous GM seemed to lighten up a bit, as he gave the WWE Universe something to cheer about. Scheduling a match between WWE Hall of Famer Jerry “The King” Lawler and Michael Cole went a long way in winning back the Raw faithful.
However, since we’re only considering time spent recently as Interim GM on this report card, and not the major controversy he cause during his earlier stint in charge, WWE.com can only give ’Swoggle a passing grade.
Final Grade: B
Mick Foley has done everything there is to do both in and around the squared circle. And now, thanks to a turn as Interim GM during the week of June 18, The Hardcore Legend has yet another hat to add to his collection.
The first of the Interim GMs, Foley led the WWE Universe in their farewell to the previous GM, and ushered in the start of a monthlong string of Interim General Managers. Foley’s turn as Interim Raw GM put him in the front seat for a wild ride, as AJ famously (or, is that "infamously"?) arrived at ringside wearing Kane’s mask while skipping to what was, unquestionably, the beat of her own drum. Then, on SmackDown later in the week, The Hardcore Legend and Long Island Iced-Z shared a classic moment of Broski-mance.
So, how did Foley fare as GM? Just ask the WWE Universe. Out of the more than 68,000 votes compiled in a WWE.com poll, 68 percent of voters rated The Hardcore Legend’s performance as GM at an A or above.
As for Mrs. Foley’s Baby Boy, the former WWE Champion gave himself an honest assessment, saying that while he could have done better, he felt that he did a good job overall.
We agree with Mick, and The Hardcore Legend definitely makes the grade.
Final Grade: A-