Think back to the golden era of wrestling.
One thing that's prominent -along with the over the top characters and the steroids(allegedly) -Managers. Bobby Heenan, Mr Fuji, Jimmy Hart, Paul Bearer and Freddie Blassie to name but a few.Back in the day, it seemed like every major villain had someone in their corner. They helped their charges win matches allowing them to gain as much heat as possible. This in turn made it even more special when the villains finally got their comeuppance. Heenan in particular was great at this.However, despite playing a major role in one of the biggest eras of the company,Vince apparently doesn't like managers. For what reason we don't know.
The one exception is Paul Heyman -who will tell you at every possible opportunity that he's an advocate not a manager. I guarantee you if Brock was even a little competent on the mic Heyman wouldn't be around.
There are a lot of advantages to having managers in today's WWE: It allows them to help build someone who is really good in the ring but not as good on the mic and can give an extra dimension to an otherwise stale character.Also, a manager helping the heel wingives the faces something to overcome, helping the face appeal more to an increasingly ‘smarky’ Wrestling Audience.Given the state of faces in WWE today,that last one seems more important than ever.
An example of how managers can work in today's WWE is Andrade Cien Almas. When he debuted, he was a bland face before becoming a sub-par heel, then came Zelina Vega. He went on to get a big win at Takeover: Brooklyn and is now building towards an NXT championship match at Takeover War Games. That is all down to Vega.
She told him to quit his laid back approach and get serious. He got serious which lead to him actually winning matches. A story-line that continues in today’s NXT product. Andrade is one of the only true heels in WWE. He isn't like a Kevin Owens who gets booed but the smart fans cheer him, he gets legitimate hate from the audience; a lot of credit must go to his manager who acts as his mouthpiece, adding an intensity to his character.
One superstar that could have benefited from having a manager is Big Cass after his ill-received heel turn.He's not the best on the mic, which was made painfully obvious when Enzo schooled him repeatedly, especially at Great Balls of Fire! Instead of splitting them up, make Enzo his manager. He can be the mouthpiece and push Cass as the 7ft monster similar to the Lesnar/Heyman relationship. It's a win-win because Enzo is way better on the mic than in the ring, a fact that is drummed into us on every episode of 205 Live. The pairing worked from the get go and splitting them up so early was met with confusion from the wrestling public. Keep the team dynamic but push the wrestler and keep the promo guy as his mouthpiece, it seems dangerously logical.
Obviously, the answe rto helping any character is not to just give them a manager,but it can help.That is as long as you pair the right manager with the right wrestler which has often not been the case. Look at when Paul Heyman was paired with Curtis Axel, or even Ryback, no amount of managing prowess could have aided their pushes. It is certainly not an exact science, but if you weigh up the amount of wrestlers who have been aided greatly by their managers; Brock Lesnar, The Undertaker, The Legion of Doom, Macho Man Randy Savage and anyone managed by the late, great Bobby Heenan, it would certainly seem that managers still have a large role to play in the WWE.