7 Ways To Make WWE Kings And Queens Matter Again

WWE royalty has lost its lustre in recent years. Here's how to get it back.

wade king barrett

When WWE talks about the storied history of its King of the Ring tournament, they’re quick to call attention to many of the vaunted former winners and their accolades. After all, the tournament has boasted winners such as Bret Hart, Randy Savage, Steve Austin, Edge and Booker T.

When a wrestler won, it often signaled to fans that they were destined for a major push, that the company believed they were destined for big things. Austin ratcheted up the card after winning, as did Triple H, Kurt Angle and Brock Lesnar.

But lately, being WWE royalty simply means you get a crown and scepter, a ring name change and a new persona. It’s like everyone saw how Booker reinvented himself and decided to do a poor copy of that. But when that isn’t accompanied with any kind of serious push, it just becomes a lame crutch for the writers.

King Barrett lost a lot of matches after gaining the crown. Zelina Vega was a glorified jobber before suddenly winning this tournament, and so far, she’s simply taken on the stereotypical heel royalty persona, complete with a fake British accent.

So how can WWE ensure that the King and Queen tournaments actually mean something? It’s not as hard as you might think, though it would require the company to actually put some thought and planning into it.

We’ve identified some simple ways for WWE to make these royalty tourneys matter again, beyond the forced pomp and circumstance.

Let’s get to it…

7. Just A Normal Push

wade king barrett

Let’s get the most obvious and simplistic solution out of the way here. Just push the damn wrestler consistently after they win the tournament.

This used to be easy. In the late 90s and early 2000s, winning the tournament essentially meant you were destined to be a major player very soon. Steve Austin, Triple H, Kurt Angle, Edge and Brock Lesnar were all winners between 1996-2002. Only Ken Shamrock and Billy Gunn could be considered duds during that span.

Now look at winners since 2008: William Regal, Sheamus, Wade Barrett and Baron Corbin. Notice the difference? Regal had potential but got suspended. Sheamus and Barrett either treaded water or lost a bunch of matches and never were elevated above their station. The crown simply became part of their persona and did nothing for them.

While there’s hope for Xavier Woods, Zelina Vega was a straight-up jobber before winning the Queen’s Crown last week. If WWE wants to show these tournaments matter, have the winner actually rack off a series of victories and get a real push on TV.

Maybe Woods captures the Intercontinental Championship after a couple months of wins. Perhaps Zelina wins the tag titles. But do something with them beyond delusional promos.


Scott is a former journalist and longtime wrestling fan who was smart enough to abandon WCW during the Monday Night Wars the same time as the Radicalz. He fortunately became a fan in time for WrestleMania III and came back as a fan after a long high school hiatus before WM XIV. Monday nights in the Carlson household are reserved for viewing Raw -- for better or worse.