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Posted in: Chair Shots
Chair Shots: Has Punk's Injury Cost Dolph Ziggler His Briefcase?
By TripleR
Dec 5, 2012 - 9:59:09 AM


Welcome back loyal readers! It’s a trying time being a WWE fan right now. The product is stagnant, the ratings are down, and there hasn’t been a whole hell of a lot to be excited about as of late. But as a wrestling fan of some 35 years or so, I’ve been here before. There have been plenty of instances where the product just hasn’t been up to par. We’ve had angry dentists, evil plumbers, and happy go lucky trash men in the ring, so I know all about the down times. But has my fellow colleague Super Chrisss so eloquently put it, the WWE has problems.

CM Punk has been WWE Champion for over a full year. That’s unheard of in today’s wrestling market. His title reign has at times been thought of as secondary to other storylines, like John Cena and The Rock, but as of late, he’s been front and center, hoisting his belt up high reminding everyone that he believes he’s “The Best in the World.” But now he’s hurt, and things could dramatically change because of it. Punk will not be able to wrestle Ryback at the TLC Pay Per View. For the first time since his title victory, Punk will not be on the PPV card, in any fashion. So how does that impact what was originally planned for TLC?

Ryback will now be teaming with Team Hell No against the NxT force known as The Shield. I honestly can’t see this being the Main Event of TLC, so Ryback has not only lost his title match, but he’s also lost his Main Event match. This match has a lot of questions as well, because if the WWE wants to cement The Shield as a major force in the WWE, it wouldn’t make any sense for them to lose. The Shield HAS to come out of this match with a victory, but they surely won’t be pinning Ryback. Unfortunately, either Daniel Bryan or Kane will have to take the pinfall here, which can continue to build a feud with The Shield for a possible Tag Team Title shot down the road. I actually like the thought of them going after the gold, because they could bring back “The Freebird Rule” which would allow any of the three to defend the belts. Whatever the case, both Ryback and The Shield have to come out of this match looking strong, and that doesn’t bode well for Team Hell No.

But my concern now goes to Dolph Ziggler. This is a man that has busted his ass for the better part of a year to get to the Main Event status that so many wrestling fans think he deserves. Yes there are people not aboard the Ziggler bandwagon, and that’s fine, but he’s certainly done everything in his power to make a claim to be World Champion. He’s often pulled double-duty on PPV’s. He sells as good as anybody in the business, and you can tell he has a love for what he does. I’m a fan, and I was hoping that he’d come out with a victory over John Cena at TLC and retain his briefcase.

Prior to Punk’s injury, Ziggler vs. Cena would have probably been two matches prior to the Main Event. The WWE would shove a Divas match in between them just to torture us, and then we’d get Punk/Ryback. Now, with the card so drastically changing, Cena vs. Ziggler, in my opinion, HAS TO BE the Main Event of this PPV. There isn’t much else on the card that warrants closing out the show, as a Big Show/Sheamus Main Event just screams disaster. All indications were that Ziggler was more than likely going to retain his briefcase and get a win over John Cena, especially after taking two consecutive losses on Raw. Now I’m not so sure that’s going to happen.

Vince McMahon is without a doubt beside himself right now, and when that happens he does one of two things. He either brings Triple H back onto television, or he relies on John Cena to pick up the pieces and hopefully kick start interest and ratings a little bit. With the card the way it is, the show could be very Heel heavy in terms of victories. Antonio Cesaro will likely retain his US Title, The Shield will hopefully get a victory, and Wade Barrett could potentially win the Intercontinental Championship. The only face I see possibly winning is Sheamus defeating Big Show in a Chairs Match and reclaiming the World Heavyweight Championship. So Dolph Ziggler keeping that MITB briefcase isn’t such a sure thing in my mind anymore.

The World Heavyweight Champion is on Raw every week anyway, so it’s not like John Cena would be going to Smackdown permanently, and without CM Punk on the card, Vince may be looking to send the fans home happy from the PPV. Having Cena defeat Ziggler and capture the briefcase could do just that. An even worse scenario for Ziggler would be if they had him cash in the briefcase earlier in the evening on either The Big Show or Sheamus, become the World Heavyweight Champion, and then lose the title later in the evening to John Cena. That would be the ultimate in hot-shotting the title, with the potential that the belt could change hands THREE TIMES in one evening. I doubt this will happen, but Vince has been known for having some kneejerk reactions to things, and this ridiculousness would fit right into his current state of running things.

Let’s just be real for a minute- John Cena is NOT the answer to the ratings problems. John Cena is NOT the answer to a stale product. In fact, John Cena is part of the reason for the state product. Vince continues to rely on the same things over and over and over and over again, without looking to the future where new stars need to be built. Dolph Ziggler is a star of the future. Scratch that, Dolph Ziggler is a star of today, but he hasn’t gotten that chance to shine. My fear is that come TLC, his star will be thrown out of the heavens by Super Cena, and that is something I DO NOT want to see happen.

Until next time,
Trip Out!

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Follow me on Twitter:@TripleRLOP

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