Degeneration-X: The Solution to the Invasion Problem
Article by Harold Williams
On the August 25 edition of "WWF Excess", Triple H was asked who's side he will be on when he returns to action: The WWF's or the Alliance's? Triple H's response indicated that he will be a man on his own, taking on everyone, WWF and Alliance members alike.
No man is an island upon himself. If Triple H will not stand with the WWF, there is no way that he would be able to take on the invading Alliance alone. There is only one way that Triple H can stand up to them, while remaining separate from the rest of the WWF, and that is by reforming the outlaw faction known as Degeneration-X.
When Shawn Michaels lost the WWF Title at WrestleMania XIV, Triple H, feeling that Shawn Michaels ?dropped the ball?, took control of the Degeneration-X faction. As a combined force, Triple H, X-Pac, the Road Dogg, and Billy Gunn dominated the World Wrestling Federation for almost two years. No matter what other faction got in their way, whether it was the Nation of Domination, the D.O.A., or even The McMahon Family, DX accepted the challenge. As a matter of fact, even though WCW can make claim to invading the WWF in the year 2001, DX made the first striking blows against WCW three years ago. On April 27, 1998, DX intruded on a WCW event. They continued their assault, on May 5, 1998, invading CNN Tower, which is where the WCW offices were located at that time.
It would be fair to say that Degeneration-X was at least partly responsible for the Time-Warner-led demise of WCW. While Degeneration-X was dominant in the WWF, Raw managed to put an end to the winning streak of, ?WCW Monday Nitro? in the ratings. Adding fuel to the fire, the DX Army spread their anti-WCW propaganda all over Atlanta during their invasion of the CNN Tower, attempting to make WCW fans lose interest in the competitor of the WWF. Now that the talent of WCW is in the WWF, a reformed Degneration-X would have the opportunity to face-off with WCW once again, this time in the ring.
The Alliance is a formidable faction, there is no disputing that. Stone Cold Steve Austin betrayed the WWF in favor of the Alliance, and took the WWF Title with him into enemy lines. Lance Storm managed to capture the WWF Intercontinental Title, Diamond Dallas Page and Kanyon briefly held the WWF Tag-Team Title, Hurricane Helms made the WWF European Title property of the Alliance, and Rob Van Dam has used his extreme style to capture the WWF Hardcore Title on more than once occasion.
However, The Alliance, nor any faction that has entered the WWF previously, has been able to compare to Degeneration-X. Not only can DX gain the upper-hand in a situation by brute force, but they can do so mentally as well. Even though the WCW-ECW alliance has the reputation of being calculating, the stealthiness of Degeneration-X could never be denied. After Triple H announced in 1999 that he had secretly married Stephanie McMahon (and allegedly without her permission), Triple H battled Vince McMahon at Armaggedon, with the stipulation being that if Triple H lost, the marriage would be annuled. The forced marriage angle turned out to be a swerve, as it was soon revealed that Stephanie had willfully married Triple H. Marrying the bosses daughter led to the McMahon-Helmsely Era, which gave Degeneration-X even more power than ever before.
One thing about Degeneration-X that has been consistent, is that it has always been unpredictable. No one expected the group to form back in 1997, nor did anyone expect Triple H, Chyna, the Road Dogg, and Billy Gunn to reunite on November 6, 2000 to bring DX back for one last night. The DX website still stands as a reminder of an important aspect of the WWF?s history- but perhaps also as a sign that the dynasty of DX has not come to end, but merely has been put on reserve, standing ready for a moment when there would be a great need for it to return. With the WWF currently defending itself against the Alliance, the time would be now. Although Degeneration-X has always been a faction that has only fought for their own benefit, a DX victory over the Alliance would undeniably be a victory for the WWF as well. DX simply wanted to rule the WWF, as opposed to The Alliance, who want to destroy it.
All of the characters for a Degeneration-X of the new millennium are in place. Shawn Michaels, although no longer seeing ring action, would be the perfect choice to help Triple H lead Degeneration-X against The Alliance. Not only because Michaels was the founder of DX, but also because as spokesperson of the WWF, he would be able to give DX stroke in the office. With that ace in the hole, it would be easy for DX to rule the WWF once again after ridding it of the Alliance.
X-Pac would most likely be more than willing to climb back aboard the DX express. He recently teamed with Albert and Justin Credible to form X-Factor, but X-Pac saw that idea quickly burn to the ground, as Credible could not resist returning back to his ECW roots, and joining the Alliance.
As a member of Degeneration-X, Billy Gunn captured the WWF Tag-Team Title on multiple occasions, and earned the nickname, "Bad Ass". However, Gunn's post-DX career has been a rough one. Although he is as talented as ever, he has lost much of the intensity that he had during his time in DX. Perhaps rejoining DX would be the shot in the arm that his career needs.
Is Degeneration-X on the verge of coming back? Time will tell. One thing for sure though is that the idea should be seriously considered. DX fans are still out there, and they miss the days of the green & black attack. If the powers that be decide to bring DX back, it'll mean one word for them- Ratings.