7 Things WWE Could Learn From NJPW Dominion 6.9

7. How To Pace A Pay-Per-View


As with January's Wrestle Kingdom 12, NJPW flew over the five-hour mark for Dominion, but there's still yet to be a report written or anecdote shared of a fan choking on bloat, begging the pleading for the card to come to an end as is so often the case with the supersized supercards offered by WWE.

It was a remarkably gradual ascent to this terrifying new era of multi-hour multi-platform monthlies from the company, with the Network removing the restrictions previously in place on pay-per-view time despite little consideration giving to the creative directions of all the wrestlers or the wrestlers themselves that suddenly had more time to fill. WWE's old method of hot opener/bland middle/Divas cooldown/hot main event was elongated, rather than exterminated. The loss of the Diva spot plus the company's profound misunderstanding of what makes a hot main event in 2018 has knackered it further, with cards becoming an ungainly slog. Roman Reigns is the connective tissue between the catastrophic main events at both WrestleMania 34 and Backlash, but those audience would have probably only been bored or exhausted rather than angry or half-way out the door.

The never-decreasing rise in momentum (actual momentum, not WWE word-of-the-week momentum) of the NJPW cards is something that helps extract the best of every match. The short time-fillers are short time-fillers, whilst the big matches are Big. F*cking. Matches. Ordered like they're listed on websites (by titles and prestige), very little outstays its welcome and there exists a tangible target for those underneath the headline attraction to get there.


Square eyes on a square head, trained almost exclusively to Pro Wrestling, Sunderland AFC & Paul Rudd films. Responsible for 'Shocking Plans You Won't Believe Actually Happened', some of the words in our amazing Wrestling bookazines (both available at shop.whatculture.com), and probably every website list you read that praised Kevin Nash.