Re: Why is in ring skills more important in WWE now?
It somewhat matters to me but will ultimately always take a backseat to promo ability, personality, and story. Unfortunately, this era is weak on all three of the latter and as a consequence, fans seeking those three components have given up and bowed out, leaving a crowd whom will legitimately attempt to sabotage the career of one whom does not work a match like they believe they should. I'd personally take any Austin vs Rock main event over any Seth vs AJ dream match (with their current characters.) There's nothing the latter duo will do that will make the event feel bigger than Rock & Austin squaring off despite the fact the former will have a match that consists of 90% punches, stomps & clotheslines, 5% suplexes, and 5% rest holds. They didn't need to kill themselves because they were larger than life and WWE effectively wrote gripping narratives. Not the case today which is why KO & Seth have to nearly kill themselves on RAW to get a pop when a simple stare down in the past from bigger, better booked characters got a larger reaction than any flip gets today.
It's also detrimental to the perforners, as they're having to push their bodies harder and harder to appease a fanbase that is only growing more vindictive and densitized to the action in ring. People harp on the dates worked being the cause for injury but the style so many are working is a huge factor, too. There's a reason a guy like Ambrose hasn't had a single injury since debuting in 2012. The longer the talent allow the fans to dictate how they work, it's only going to get worse as the stakes continue to be raised. It's simply not worth it in the long run.