|Dolph Ziggler and Christian compete at Smackdown Tuesday night in Ottawa. Photo by Errol McGihon, Ottawa Sun
More than 7,000 fans soaked up WWE’s travelling soap opera Tuesday night at Scotiabank Place.
The Smackdown/NXT TV taping featured the classic elements of wrestling — some microphone magic and the classic good vs. evil storylines that aren’t as cut and dry as they once were.
It was wrestling’s past, present and future with guys like Jack Swagger and Kofi Kingston very much in the spotlight.
While Kingston fed off the crowd’s cheers, the villainous Swagger, the champ, did his best to get the fans to hate him.
All in a day’s work for both.
“I take a listen and when I come out, I feed off those cheers,” says Kingston. “It feels like the whole building is on fire.
“When I started, I didn’t know if they would like me, or it would be crickets.”
He doesn’t have to worry about that now. The fans love him.
Kingston says the roles aren’t necessarily defined for WWE stars. “We don’t go out there with the purpose that this guy is good and this guy is bad,” he says.
Swagger says he’s a heel and will do anything to get the boos pumped up.
“If they’re cheering, I’ll do anything to turn it around,” he says. “I really enjoy it. There’s something about having the whole place boo you.
“For me, it started back in high school. My high school wrestling team was so dominant, we were the bad guys. We were booed.
“In real life, I’m a little more laid-back. But once I walk through the curtain, I really get into it. I become obnoxious.
“I love the name. Jack was my grandpa’s name. And Swagger is such a great name.”
The action-packed show featured the return of Christian’s Peep Show, some more head-shaving by The Straight Edge Society and a jolly giant, The Big Show, further tormenting Swagger.
To be sure, there was plenty of swaggering going on at Scotiabank Place, with twists and turns along the way.
Tim Baines is the Sports Editor for the Ottawa Sun and can be emailed at Tim.email@example.com.