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Discussion Starter #21
Yes and no.

Her wwe tenure was only 2,5 years long, and she won the may young classic, nxt womens title and womens tag titles.

She has no english skills, and she didn't have the same "it" factor as Asuka, so I think upper midcard with the occational main event was her ceiling anyways.

Maybe they should have used her for more big matches. But I'm pretty sure they were building her up. But once she let it be known that she wanted to go back to japan, any planned push was obviously put on hold.
My point is Kairi deserved much better booking and casting than she was given. Even if she can't speak English, they could give her a manager, or, SUBTITLE THE PROMOS. Apparently, we have the technology to do that now.
 
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As for the first part, I still think Kairi was never going to have been given the chance to shine with Vince in charge.
She would. Believe me, Vince watses everyone but at the end of the day, if you end up surviving all of his bull to a certain extenet for a long enough period of time, he ends up begrudgingly using you purely because he going to have no choice but to do it. Keep in mind, during their 1 year of existence, KW sold got a decent amount of merch that sold well enough for them to churn out more, and it was some awful looking merch that i wouldnt buy to my worst enemy. That was as much Kairi as it was Asuka. So, you have someone who can sell merch, is over (she may not have been top 3 over but she was defo over on the MR) and can work.

The heel turn I don't think hurt her at all. Besides, it helped her prove that she wasnt monodimensional an could work other roles beyond that of the cookie cut underdog.


Maybe they should have used her for more big matches. But I'm pretty sure they were building her up. But once she let it be known that she wanted to go back to japan, any planned push was obviously put on hold.
This is key. She married in February , so she probably already told them she wasnt going to renew with them by January most likely. Couple that with the untimely concusions, and doesnt come off as a surprise that they decided to phase her out as quickly as possible. Despite that, she still main evented a PPV not even 7 mnoths into getting called up and got one of the best booked tag runs from October to January.





My point is Kairi deserved much better booking and casting than she was given. Even if she can't speak English, they could give her a manager, or, SUBTITLE THE PROMOS. Apparently, we have the technology to do that now.
I don't think the english would have been that much of an issue. I mean, those KW promos may have pissed off the promo purists, but they certainly had their fans, judging by the increased amount of mic time that they got. At the end of the day, she had a history with concussions and was already deciding on retiring (dont think her booking had anything to do with it, or else she would have departed on worse terms), so they obviously couldnt keep investing in her. At the end of the day, the one who's probably benefited the most from Kairi leaving is Io. Prior to that, it was obvious that they were going to compete over who would step into Asuka's position once she got phased out. Now that Kairi's left,short of any untimely injuries, Io's practically going to comfortably step into that role by late 2021- 2022.

If there's one thing that wwe certainly wasted, it was teasing that Asuka-Kairi title match only to backtrack on it the following week. That was pretty annoying.
 

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Mayu. Now that's someone who would certainly get wasted by the e and who a good chunk of the American audiences wouldnt get.
 
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Discussion Starter #25
"At the end of the day, the one who's probably benefited the most from Kairi leaving is Io. Prior to that, it was obvious that they were going to compete over who would step into Asuka's position once she got phased out. Now that Kairi's left,short of any untimely injuries, Io's practically going to comfortably step into that role by late 2021- 2022."

I hope Io NEVER goes to the main roster. Going to the main roster isn't exactly a promotion. Also, Io is the most talented wrestler, man or woman, currently alive. She can easily be much more than Asuka's sidekick. You know Io would get treated like a nobody with Vince over the MR
 

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Vince has no idea of how to deal with any form of "potential" that he didn't come up with (99% of it) and only deals with yes men
 

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She doesn't speak English, weighs 80lb.

She still won MYC, NXT title, women's tag title, mainevented and won a main roster ppv (lots of male wrestlers can't say that last one).

You ain't booking her over Lynch. Asuka, Bayley, Charlotte, Sasha, Rousey etc. Maybe if the roster wasn't so stacked during her run but it was and that's life.

The cute tiny Asian girl is cool gimmick but how long was Riho AEW champion again before fans shit on it....
 

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Kairi was on the main roster for about 8 months before she signalled to the company she was leaving. We heard reports about her leaving since December of 2019. She arrived on the main roster after Wrestlemania 35.

During that time, she won a tag title, main evented a PPV, wrestled and pinned both Becky and Charlotte in a few matches, and even got promo time.

Not everyone needs to be "pushed to the moon" immediately, but she was on a very respectable clip before she told the WWE she was hanging it up. Almost immediately after those reports came out, they stopped investing in her... as they should. This is a business, and every performer is an investment. If she's not sticking around, there's no use continuing to invest in her.

Now, was Kairi wasted a bit on NXT? That's a more interesting discussion.



The cute tiny Asian girl is cool gimmick but how long was Riho AEW champion again before fans shit on it....
I wasn't a fan...but there are people who argue AEW's women misses her star power right now...nobody has been as over as her since she left. Despite the IWC's grumbling, AEW crowds were hot during her matches, and these reactions for women's matches disappeared since she dropped the title. Even Shida's connection with crowds is fairly lukewarm, and the fans basically don't care much about most of the rest of the division.
 

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I wasn't a fan...but there are people who argue AEW's women misses her star power right now...nobody has been as over as her since she left. Despite the IWC's grumbling, AEW crowds were hot during her matches, and these reactions for women's matches disappeared since she dropped the title. Even Shida's connection with crowds is fairly lukewarm, and the fans basically don't care much about most of the rest of the division.
 

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Could Kairi have been a big star in WWE if Vince hadn't been in charge? Why do you think such an incredibly talented wrestler was booked so poorly and miscast so badly as she was on the WWE Main Roster?
Can you tell me anyone who WWE hasn't wasted in the last ten years?
 

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could she have been bigger? yes

was she completely wasted? no

if you want to talk about women they totally wasted, I'd put Trinity in that category since she never really had any memorable moments while Kairi has.
 

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Also, the "durr no speak english" posts are getting tiresome now, and we've pretty much already passed that bridge--it's clear it's no longer a true impediment to a push, and it's not like most of the promos coming out of native english speakers are that much better these days. Kairi accomplished more in 2.5 years than Lacey did, for example, and much more than Mandy or Sonya has, both of whom have been around a lot longer.

If Kairi stayed, the only thing holding her back long term was her durability. She had gotten multiple concussions prior to coming to the WWE, and her high impact style may eventually have worn her down with the long marathon grind of the WWE. Asuka benefited greatly from just outlasting her peers to see their bodies eventually float down the river while simply staying healthy herself and waiting long enough for her number to get called.
 

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Yeah, I've never been a fan of Riho, but so far no woman in AEW has gotten as over as she did during her run. And I'm actually a fan of Shida, so I think I'm being as impartial as possible.
 

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Couldn’t cut a promo and had a f’n pirate gimmick. If anything she exceeded her potential.
 

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She was wasted a lot of the times. She lost too many matches clean they failed to protect her. I will say that maybe she would have had a better career though if she stuck around longer. Her run in WWE was so short. She would've won the championship for sure.
 

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She doesn't speak English, weighs 80lb.

She still won MYC, NXT title, women's tag title, mainevented and won a main roster ppv (lots of male wrestlers can't say that last one).

You ain't booking her over Lynch. Asuka, Bayley, Charlotte, Sasha, Rousey etc. Maybe if the roster wasn't so stacked during her run but it was and that's life.

The cute tiny Asian girl is cool gimmick but how long was Riho AEW champion again before fans shit on it....
The live fans always loved and cheered Riho. It was you internet forum guys who started the hate on her. I have never heard the crowd boo or turn on her.
 
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If you don't speak English fluently WWE aren't interested 99 times out of 100, and rightly so. It's an American company that broadcasts primarily in English to an English speaking audience and is primarily about storytelling. Why would they want to make a star of someone who can't communicate well with their primary audience?
 
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