Monday 22 June 2015

French Connection

We haven't seen Sylvester LeFort for a while have we? Not since the September 25 episode of NXT in fact. On that show he was beaten up by his one time pal Marcus Louis and left a lifeless puddle in the ring, finally putting an end to the Legionnires pairing. And it's a shame we've not seen him since because Sylvester LeFort is great.

I probably need to clarify that. LeFort is not a great wrestler. He's, at best, competent and has never dazzled in the ring. He doesn't seem like someone who has the potential to dazzle either. But he does have a good look and an even better gimmick.

This look is money.
The thick beard, the greased back hair, and the hairy chest all help to make LeFort look like a sleazy Eurotrash-esque scumbag (which is surely the point). That's a good thing. Wrestling needs more sleazy Eurotrash-esque scumbags. It's a heel trope woefully underrepresented in the current business. There's so much potential in it and LeFort fits the part so well that I think WWE are foolish to not have him as a regular on TV.

I don't necessarily want to see him wrestle though. Personally I enjoyed LeFort when he was working as a vaguely ineffective heel manager. I liked him having his stable of Legionnaires, all of whom were a bit generic and not particularly impressive. I liked the fact that the only guy he brought into the stable who showed any promise, a lad called Alexander Rusev (maybe you've heard of him?), was fairly swiftly nabbed by a more efficient manager in Lana.

It was a simple, fun little role that felt real. Not every sports manager is going to be world class and it absolutely made sense that a guy who wasn't able to keep hold of any above average clients was operating in the developmental league. It played to LeFort's strengths (looking like an idiot in ridiculous shiny jackets and talking with a foreign accent to remind everyone he's a heel) and disguised his weaknesses (specifically that he's not a very good wrestler, as already established).

Bring LeFort back to NXT as a manager. There's mileage left in his storyline incompetence. He could reunite with his old Legionnaires client Scott Dawson. He could bring in a new team altogether. He could introduce a singles act to help him get reverence on Marcus Louis (not that anyone's begging for that rivalry t be reprised). With Hideo Itami, Sami Zayn and Kevin Owens gone or about to go from NXT Triple H is going to need to become more inventive with the stories he tells and the stars he features if NXT is to remain the hot brand it currently is. I don't think Sly could be a major part of that but he could certainly contribute. 

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