No, not the Road Dogg who utters phrases such as “X-to-the-p-to-the-a-to-the-c,” or “two tears in a bucket.” No, not the one who serves as a lackey for Triple H, and not the one who seems to be nothing more than fodder for other Federation Superstars.
As anyone seen the five-time Tag Team Champion? Has anyone seen the man who both held the Intercontinental title and legitimized the Hardcore title? Yes, that Road Dogg. The one who seemed poised to break out on his own, form a new stable, and make a run for the Federation’s ultimate prize. If anyone’s seen that Road Dogg, please let the Federation know. They’d sure like to see him, and based upon the letters they received, so would a lot of other people.
It seems hard to imagine, but it was only a couple years ago that Road Dogg was sitting on top of the sports entertainment world. He seemed destined for Federation immortality. His merchandise was flying off shelves. In the previous six months, he had held three different titles in the Federation and make no mistake about it, it was HE who the crowds couldn’t wait to see and chant along with as he made his way to the ring. So, what happened to the man who had, for all intents and purposes, invented the “sing along,” and reinvigorated the Federation with his jiggin’ and jivin’ in the ring? How could such promise turn into such despair?
Well, it’s said that you can’t teach an old dog new tricks, and apparently just when Road Dogg seemed primed to take that next step on the path to Federation glory, just when he needed to try something new to ensure his place in history, he fell back into some old, hard-to-break habits.
If you remember, it was in September 1999 that DX shocked the world once again and reunited after their “irreparable schism” only a few months earlier. The DX reunion paid immediate dividends for Road Dogg as he and Mr. Ass soon won the World Wrestling Federation Tag Team Championship and all seemed well. This title reign would last only three weeks, however, as The Rock ‘n’ Sock Connection took the title from Mr. Ass and Road Dogg in Birmingham, Ala. Still, Road Dogg and Mr. Ass stuck together, gutted it out and defeated Al Snow and Mankind to reclaim the title in November. At the time, it appeared that Road Dogg had made the right decision by reuniting with his old pals.
Well last February, Mr. Ass and Road Dogg lost the title to the Dudley Boyz, and their alliance came apart at the seams. Buh-Buh Ray put Mr. Ass on the shelf by nailing him with a lead pipe, and Triple H made sure Mr. Ass wouldn’t be around by convincing Road Dogg and X-Pac to administer a beating to the already injured Billy Gunn. So now, Road Dogg was once again at a crossroads. He could have gone out on his own and broken away from DX. He could have formed a new alliance with one of the many up-and-coming Superstars, or he could have decided to take a break and re-evaluate his situation. Instead, he once again fell back into the familiar. He remained loyal to Triple H and decided to team up with X-Pac full-time.
The results have been disastrous. Rather than elevating Road Dogg to a new level, this partnership has dragged Road Dogg down. He’s lost his focus, seems to be wandering without a purpose, and one can hardly imagine that this is the same man who was ready to lead the Federation into the new millennium such a short time ago. So what to do? How can Road Dogg regain the drive, fire and focus that will once again make him one of the best and most popular Superstars? I know, I know, advice is cheap and everybody thinks that they’;re an expert. But Dogg, if you’re listening, make a five point plan that could turn your career around.
Will Road Dogg listen? Probably not. But he should remember this: his critics are saying that he’s stuck in a rut and that this Dogg can’t learn new tricks. They are saying that he will fall back into the same comforts of his old ways and once again find himself chasing his own tail. So perhaps Dogg should study his past and search his soul. For a very prophetic and wise man once said: Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it.