When I think of the word black excellence, I think of great revolutionary leaders like Malcolm X, Fred Hampton, MLK, Thomas Sankara and, of course, Cody Rhodes (also that infamous Dr Umar Johnson’s clip of him passionately uttering the word, “black excellence”).
Now, why does this particular stable represent the word, “black excellence”? Well, it’s because the group was formed as a result of being misused and misguided in WWE and due to one man that saw the gold mine potential of all three individuals, they’ve achieved greatness in a short period of time. Let’s further explain that point.
Bobby Lashley who at that point was all over the place ever since he returned to WWE in 2018.
Lashley started off smiling so hard, you would think he took the Joker toxin, then teamed up with Lio Rush who quickly went to NXT’s cruiserweight division and let’s not remember the mess Bobby involved himself during the whole Rusev, Lana, Liv Morgan arc or that godawful storyline with Sami Zayn (and yes, he did win the intercontinental championship twice but to be fair, you probably went, “oh, I forgot about that” after I mentioned it).
Cedric Alexander was the highlight of the 2016 cruiserweight classic. While he later won the cruiserweight championship in another very enjoyable tournament and main evented an episode of RAW in Madison Square Garden, he was just kinda there.
The latter can be said for Shelton Benjamin.
That man’s fingerprints were seen across every Monday Night RAW-related highlight reel with the sweet chin music he took from Shawn Michaels and the running clothesline off the ladder as seen in the first-ever Money In the Bank ladder match at Wrestlemania 21 that was later added in the Smackdown vs RAW games.
What all of them have in common is how, as mentioned earlier, misguided they were that without uttering a single word, I knew as a fan in their facial expressions that they needed an Uncle Iroh, a Mister Miyagi type of mentorship in order to create a linear direction in their careers.
The person that helped them to get that linear direction was Montel Vontavious Porter aka the man that dressed as a blue power ranger in his debut almost 17 years ago.
A returning MVP knew at this period of time that he didn’t have a lot in the tank to perform.
Instead, he established himself as a mentor in order to lead those talented people to greater heights of success and formed a group out of it.
And man did the Miami native lead them to greater heights of success.
Bob Lashley became an unstoppable protected monster leading to his first-ever WWE championship victory while Cedric Alexander and Shelton Benjamin defeated one of the greatest tag teams of all time in the New Day for the RAW tag team championship.
What especially makes The Hurt Business stable different from let’s say, Evolution in terms of how it was formed is that the stable wasn’t created by Triple H out of the misdirected nature of an old veteran named Ric Flair and the needed escort of sorts for Randy Orton and Batista but rather a way to produce a cartel for himself on the Monday RAW roster in order to stay on top, essentially having a selfish motive (no sh*t, Omar).
The Hurt Business proved to me that mentorship and guidance is the most powerful tool that can empower people at a greater altitude even when they need it the most with or without even knowing.
To quote Phil Collins in that amazing Tarzan soundtrack, “In learning you will teach, and in teaching you will learn.”