Chris Jericho Brand Diminishing With Returns

By Ryan Ball
Chris Jericho
Chris Jericho @wwe

Front man for a hard rock band, podcast host, reality show contestant, game show host and actor — these are the occupations Chris Jericho can put on his resume. The man has lived the dream and has been able to do everything he’s wanted, and I  haven’t even mentioned his wrestling career yet! It’s subjective based on what style of wrestling one enjoys, but a top-10 list of North American born grapplers would be lacking without including the name Chris Jericho.

Jericho made waves in every major promotion in the United States. In fact, he made such a wave in ECW by winning the Television Title and having great matches with the likes of Sabu, Taz, Rob Van Dam and Cactus Jack that it wasn’t long before the WCW came calling.

WCW may have been “Where the Big Boys Play,” but it was the cruiserweights who often stole the show. Jericho carried a lot of that weight. While the cruiserweights were more than exceptional in the ring, they weren’t known for their ability to entertain with the microphone. Many were not English language speakers; others were just not good with the stick. No offense, Dean Malenko. Jericho was able to be the personality of the entire division.

Unfortunately, WCW was so top heavy and political, he never really stood a chance to get to the top. In 1999, Jericho made one of the most electrifying debuts in WWE history. After a slow start, Jericho became a record nine-time Intercontinental Champion and the first Undisputed World Heavyweight Champion.

Jericho’s in-ring resume rivals his out-of-ring resume. Despite a busy schedule, he still finds time to come back to the squared circle to work with younger talent. His willingness to put over fresh faces shows a great passion for the business; but does it still mean anything?

As a huge Jericho fan, each returning feud feels less and less meaningful and this is especially true with the current Bray Wyatt program. The matches have been rather lackluster. Jericho looks heavier and slower, and missed spots and awkward transitions with Wyatt has been the result. Not all the blame can be put on Jericho; the Wyatt character has been rather static as of late. If they have the presumed rubber match at Night of Champions, it is obvious Wyatt would win and Jericho would go back to being the multimedia star that he is. Would Wyatt all of a sudden feel like a major threat? It’s hard to think so. The brand of Chris Jericho is sadly in the phase of diminishing returns.

Fortunately, Jericho has created enough memories and had enough great matches to be held in high regard for a life time. However, he needs to stay away from the ring after Night of Champions. WWE needs to allow fans to miss Chris Jericho and not tire of another three-month comeback.

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