What does it mean to cut a promo in pro wrestling?
“Promo” is short for promotional video, cutting a promo is a promotional interview that involves delivering a message or setting the tone between two wrestlers to have the audience invested in the rivalry and the storyline. It usually involves insults and derogatory.
Cutting a promo is as important if not more important than the matches themselves.
There are quite a few wrestlers with the uncanny ability to cut promos so good the matches are like drops of water in the desert to the audience, in professional wrestling these wrestlers are said to be “good on the mic”.
Paul Heyman is one of the best managers who can cut the best promos
Listen to Paul Hayman speaking about how to cut a good promo
Pro wrestlers who are “good on the mic” include :
- Dwayne” The rock” Johnson
- John Cena
- Triple H
- Hulk Hogan
- Dusty Rhodes
- Stone Cold
To mention a few, with this ability a lot of wrestlers have made their careers through cutting promos.
A good promo usually requires the wrestler in question to be aggressive and antagonistic or exude an ego of invincibility that can get the fans on your side or in the case of a heel on his back.
Promos are not limited to just individuals and can be aimed at other promotions like the feud between WWF and WCW or the inter-brand wars of the survivor series.
The ability to handle the mic has become a hot commodity in professional wrestling as it helps the wrestlers to transition into other areas in the industry like commentary and management.
Like most things, there are always exceptions to the rule, and these exceptions rely majorly on their in-ring ability to tell their storylines as they might lack the oral ability to cut good promos or don’t have the tone to cut them effectively or on the rare occasion do not think that they need to be good at it and just don’t work at it.
In these cases, there might be a need for the addition of a manager to support the wrestler in cutting promos while the wrestler focuses solely on his in-ring performance.
Listen to Dolph Ziggler teaching how to cut a good promo
Some examples of wrestlers that lack the oral ability to cut a good promo are:
- Rey Mysterio
- Shelton Benjamin
- Late Chris Benoit
- Cedric Alexander
- Bobby Lashley
- Big Show
The rarity earlier discussed is represented by Randy Orton who spun his way through cutting good promos with his gimmicks, slight movements, and in-ring style in his earlier years while neglecting the oral requirements of the professional wrestling industry.
Orton made the confession on one of his Broken skull sessions with host “Stone Cold” Steve Austin, he said that he has only recently found out the importance of mic skills and that he is working to become better at it.