What the fuck is going on with the booking of Keith Lee?
The journey of Keith Lee in Evolve has been a series of bizarre decisions that shine a light on the lack of long-term vision in Evolve. The dude has had seven singles matches, and he had a 3-3 record going into this battle with a non-roster member.
The storyline for Lee is that he is lacking the “killer instinct” necessary to reach his full potential. That got going after he lost his debut against Chris Hero. Keith Lee is an exceedingly calm wrestler who likes to take his time during matches. “Bask in my glory” is not simply a catchphrase for him. It encapsulates how he moves in the ring. You could argue that mentality holds him back from winning matches.
From there, he went on to cleanly defeat Zack Sabre Jr. and Hot Sauce on back-to-back nights. Based on that turnaround in result and the “killer instinct” story, you would assume Keith Lee would be wrestling like a viscous monster in those matches. You would be wrong of course. It was the same calm Keith Lee, but he just won both times this weekend. The holes in the story were already there.
It only got stranger though on the following weekend. He faced Ricochet in what was an eye-opening contest for a lot of fans. He once again lost though. He then faced Donny D in another beloved match. He won that one though this time. After seemingly turning the corner, he had a 50/50 weekend that did not really progress the killer instinct story.
On the next Evolve weekend, he had his second straight 50/50 weekend. He lost to the returning Kyle O’Reilly and then defeated the Evolve irregular David Starr in this one. He once again worked both matches in a super calm manner so it seemed that the results of his matches have been completely random and not reflective of how he works which kills the “killer instinct” story.
That is lazy and typical dumb 50/50 booking that does not help anyone.
It gets even weirder when you consider the context of when he faced certain opponents. He lost to Hero in the latter’s final Evolve weekend.
His next match featured him defeating Zack Sabre Jr…the night before Zack finally won the Evolve Championship. That seemed to be an opening for Keith to become a logical challenger for the title, but he’s been 50/50 in Evolve singles matches since which means there is no longer any real momentum or justification for him to get that title shot.
From there, he lost to the Evolve irregular Ricochet who clearly did not need a win. He then defeated Dijak who probably could have actually benefited from a win.
In conclusion, what the fuck is going on with the booking of Keith Lee?
(The match was solid.) (***)