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Did anyone else feel it had a really contrived air to it? I find it hard to think of another figure pushed in a similar at all fashion. They seemed hell-bent on putting lipstick on a pig.

With legitimate stars, commentators emphasized traits of theirs that the fans already recognized and admired. With Triple H, his actual shortcomings were glossed up. "No no, fans. It's not that he's boring because he can't work fast in his plodding, overly-bulked out frame. It's just that he's cerebral. Why, he's the cerebral assassin!"

"The Game" was a curious gimmick in itself. It seems pretty desperate to allude to his real-life political maneuvering to get him over as a heel after he couldn't get over that way with pure kayfabe. It also played on the tired talking point at the time of his being a "student of the game," which is pretty vague fare. I struggle to see why that would excite a wrestling fan at that time.

The company really put on the full-court press for you to believe in him as a top guy, circumventing the requisite "it" factor they seemed to know he was missing. People talk about Roman's push not being organic and they are right. We forget it because he was pushed as a heel, but Triple H in 1999 felt like the original inorganic push that the fans didn't sign up for but that the company was going to find a way to jam down your throat.
 

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He was going to be forced as a heel regardless, simply because there was nothing up until the point of to justify him turning heel. He wasn't on that path, so it wasn't going to be organic. At the same time, is there really a way to organically turn someone heel without having them fail as a babyface? Because, to me, organic means the fans are already pointing you in that direction and buying you as such, which prompts the company to follow suit. Aside from failed babyfaces, heel turns are almost always forced. And in Triple H's case, you're taking someone the fans universally back and forcing them to despise him, without them being conditioned to do so ahead of time. There's no way around that.
 

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Trips is a tremendous in ring technician. Hes not Shawn Michaels or Chris Benoit or Shinksuke Nakamura. But Trips is a classic Harley Race/Ric Flair type of wrestler. And hes great at it. I don't think anything was forced. He earned his spot over time, and was tremendously over. All in all Triple H is one of my all time favorites.
 

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Haven't watched WWE shows from April 1998 to January 2002, so I wouldn't know about the then future son in law popularity.

But I'm sure as hell Degeneration X should have disbanded the day after 'mania 14, because replacing Shawn Michaels with Billy Gunn and those two losers was dumb as hell.

If anything he should have stayed as a power couple with Chyna managing each other with a fiery attitude, not trying to copy HBK.
 
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Haven't watched WWE shows from April 1998 to January 2002, so I wouldn't know about the then future son in law popularity.

But I'm sure as hell Degeneration X should have disbanded the day after 'mania 14, because replacing Shawn Michaels with Billy Gunn and those two losers was dumb as hell.

If anything he should have stayed as a power couple with Chyna managing each other with a fiery attitude, not trying to copy HBK.
Yeah, who remembers DX from 1998 hahaha.


Why shit of Triple H? WWE tried to push young and upcoming stars, they could not just rely on Austin, Rock and the Undertaker.

WWe tried to push Kane, Big Show, Shamrock, Gunn and Helmsley in 1998-1999. Triple H was the best choice hands down.

To say his puch was forced and then endorse, Austin, Rock, Hogan, Lesnar etc is laughable.

Of course WWE will try to push certain people. That is wrestling 101
 

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Haven't watched WWE shows from April 1998 to January 2002, so I wouldn't know about the then future son in law popularity.

But I'm sure as hell Degeneration X should have disbanded the day after 'mania 14, because replacing Shawn Michaels with Billy Gunn and those two losers was dumb as hell.

If anything he should have stayed as a power couple with Chyna managing each other with a fiery attitude, not trying to copy HBK.
You might want to check those shows out before commenting on them. The reformation of DX the Raw after Mania XIV is one of the defining moments of the era. That lineup of DX took it to places far beyond what Shawn and Hunter did.

I don't remember seeing it as forced. Triple H was over as hell as a face and the heel turns that hurt the most are the ones when you are already enamored by the face character and it pains you to see them fall to the dark side. It would be like if you found out your lovable old grandmother was the head of a child slavery ring.

That being said, Foley made that character great. The Three Faces of Foley Debut of Cactus Jack in a Madison Square Garden Street Fight was the moment heel Triple H became legit.
 

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If anything is forced, its criticism of HHH's 99-00 work, not his push.

He has said in interviews that he knew he had to knock it out of park the night after Mania 14 and he certainly did, imo. I will always prefer the original DX, but that doesn't mean that DX under HHH's leadership was anything short of great, too. The Nation vs DX and more specifically HHH vs Rock is one of my fav feuds of the AE. Excellent story. Two guys running parallel headed to the top. Wondering who was going to get there first. Their ladder match is a fucking classic!

The company got Austin to the top and then we see HHH vs Rock with Rock striking next, Foley getting his first title, so HHH was the clear next in line. It all felt very organic to me. Once HHH made it to the top I don't see how anyone can complain about the work he did. It was awesome. There are things later on that I criticize him for but that is for a different thread. His 99-00 work was him at his best.
 

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What would you do, have Taker against all 3 top faces...

HHH did phenomenal work in 99 and got over bigger than ever before. He was called The Game because he was an amazing technician and ring general, easily one of the best active in WWE 1999-2000 and the dirtsheets and smarks were creaming themselves over him on a weekly basis.
 
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Pushing HHH the way they did only served him in getting more heat along the way.

Its why the WWE needs to go back to not giving a shit what the fans on the Internet say and push guys who are actually going to get heat from being pushed in the spotlight and not "heels" who are loved by the fans.
 

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Triple H's 99 run was forced and badly booked but it did pay off in the end - he was legit enough to go against Foley and Foley legitimised him. If the WWE hadn't bothered pushing HHH in the first place then he might not have had that opportunity.

However, the way they booked him was frustrating - he would always get his ass kicked but always come out on top with some jammy finish and not from good heel work but from daft blunders from Rock, Austin etc. 99's HHH also never got his comeuppance - Vince did pin him but he destroyed Vince at Armageddon and lost the title to Show who had no beef with him.
 

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Yeah, the DX reforming was probably not needed. Still Triple H's heel run was amazing back then, perhaps the best run by a heel in wrestling history.
 

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LOL, forced and inorganic.

Both The Rock and Triple H were future main eventers after their classic Summerslam match but as The Rock was the more popular of the two, he went first and Triple H was supposed to have a proper IC Title run if he hadn't gotten injured, so he was a rising star waiting in the wings until the time was right.

And by the time Wrestlemania 15 rolled around, it was the right time to have Triple H turn heel, split from DX and start his rise towards the main event, building him up as a cold ruthless evil cerebral assassin heel who was completely different to his DX personality. His DX personality wasn't going to get him the WWF Title, he faced The Rock a couple of times for the belt while in DX and he failed to win, so he realized he had to turn into The Game cause with that type of character, he was more capable of finally winning the belt. WWF had done everything they could with DX by that point and it was fitting that they did pretty much disband DX at Wrestlemania 15, one year after forming the new DX with X-Pac, Road Dogg and Billy Gunn. Each of the members were over and popular enough for the WWF to try and push them as singles wrestlers and yeah it didn't work out in their cases, that's just how it is in life with anything, either it works out or it doesn't but you have to try, and that's what the WWF did, they tried with them unlike with today's guys.

Trips was a solid heel in 1999, beating The Rock for the #1 Contendership, kayfabe putting Austin on the injured list, shattering his knee at Summerslam, beating Mankind for the WWF Championship, beating Austin to retain the belt at No Mercy, terrorizing Vince and stealing his daughter from him. And then going on to become a huge credible mega-heel with his feud with Cactus in 2000, retiring him, and being the first heel to walk out as champion at Wrestlemania 2000. How you can call this forced, inorganic and try compare this to Roman Reigns' push is absolutely laughable. You can crap on the Triple H from the Ruthless Aggression Era going forward all you want, I'm not a fan of that Triple H period either, Trips will always be one of my favourites just for 98-01 alone, but Triple H in the Attitude Era was fucking phenomenal.

Haven't watched WWE shows from April 1998 to January 2002, so I wouldn't know about the then future son in law popularity.

But I'm sure as hell Degeneration X should have disbanded the day after 'mania 14, because replacing Shawn Michaels with Billy Gunn and those two losers was dumb as hell.

If anything he should have stayed as a power couple with Chyna managing each other with a fiery attitude, not trying to copy HBK.


You've gotta be kidding me? They were the best and most popular version of DX. They took it to bigger heights than Triple H and Shawn together did. Every one of them was over. In fact, X-Pac was the most popular of the group in 98-99.
 

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I remember hating HHH as a kid organically because he was a heel against my favs Austin and the Rock. He was a cool heel in my mind and those sledgehammer spots really got a ton of heat.

I hated it even more when someone would use that against me when I was playing Raw Deal.

 

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Totally forced.

At the beginning of the push, he would randomly interfere in Rock n Sock matches(to get some heat since they're the hottest act at the time), but not a single fuck was given by the fans. Rock and Foley weren't even in the world title picture, they got dumbed down to midcard, just so that Mr.Helmsley can have all the spotlights on him and it backfired. Before regrouping DX and the program with Foley, no one gave a shit about him. His partner Chyna was light years ahead of him in terms of "overness".
 

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Pushing HHH the way they did only served him in getting more heat along the way.

Its why the WWE needs to go back to not giving a shit what the fans on the Internet say and push guys who are actually going to get heat from being pushed in the spotlight and not "heels" who are loved by the fans.
coughROMANREIGNS
 

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1999 HHH did not deserve the Title.

HHH better kiss Foley's ass during his HOF speech because Foley MADE his fucking career. Royal Rumble 2000 he was MADE. Really need to watch it. Probably his best 1-on-1 match.

My disdain for HHH really picked up during The Reign of Terror.
As much as I agree with you on the reign of terror...

And how much I REALLY agree with you on Foley making Triple H legit...

I don't know who else they could have pushed in 99, and they had to push someone, due to Austin being out, Foley winding down, and a handful of other guys either not being ready or already having floundered.

Whether or not his 99 push was forced or another variation of too soon, Haitch prooved he belonged in that spot, his work in 99 and 00 was top notch. Dispite all the problems I have with him, his stepping up was one of the final death nails for WCW.

With Austin out it was a chance for WCW to make a move in the War on Monday Night, Trips was one of the reasons they weren't able to make a move... granted WCW didn't exactly help themselves regardless of what WWE did.
 
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