My Two Centsss - Five Reasons Why Del Rio Winning The World Title Makes Sense
By Super Chrisss
Jan 9, 2013 - 12:28:22 PM
I usually issue a **SPOILER** warning whenever I talk about something that has not aired on television or Pay-Per-View yet, but with WWE releasing the above photo on their website, it's not really a spoiler anymore since everyone knows Alberto Del Rio is the new world heavyweight champion, is it? Of course it's not, so let's continue.
WWE shocked the world by having a newly-turned babyface Del Rio defeat The Big Show in what was originally promoted as a non-title regular match for the world title in a Last man Standing Match at last night's SmackDown tapings. Unsurprisingly, the IWC have already started complaining. They've berated LOP for spoiling the result (even though wwe.com posted the picture first, but I digress); some people believe Wrestlemania is ruined (LOL); others are predicting Dolph Ziggler will cash in his Money in the Bank contract soon and lose against Del Rio (again, LOL).
I, on the other hand, see things a bit differently. I think putting the world title on Del Rio and immediately announcing the title change is one of the smartest things they've done in months. And here's five reasons why:
1. They were in Miami
First of all, it is not a coincidence that Del Rio won the world title in Miami. Had the title change took place in almost any other city in the U.S. - Washington, Dallas, even Chicago or NYC, it wouldn't have worked. Why? Because not only does Miami have a large Hispanic population, but it also happens to be the town The Rock currently resides in. Speaking of Dwayne, he was at last night's SmackDown tapings, so the crowd already had a reason to be pumped up for the show. Love him or hate him, The Rock brings a distinct aura to any arena he graces with his presence, and arguably no other town loves him more than Miami does. So how do you capitalize on the momentum from Rock and Punk's war of wards on RAW and Rocky being in the building? Book a title change, with the new champion being of Latino origin. I wasn't there in person, but if I was, I would have guessed the stars lined up perfectly for Del Rio to shock the world last night.
2. SmackDown suddenly seems important again
For the past year or so, SmackDown has devolved into a "meh" show. Whether it's because of the continuous tag team main-events week-in and week-out, Sheamus and Big Show's boring title reigns, or SmackDown becoming more of a RAW recap than anything else, WWE's B show became a chore to watch more often than not. You didn't have to read the spoilers to realize nothing of importance would happen on Friday night: 95% of the time, you could skip SmackDown and not miss a thing. However, WWE have gone all-out to make this Friday's SmackDown must-see. When was the last time Rock appeared on SmackDown, not via satellite? Many, many years. When was the last time the world title changed hands on SmackDown? Not since May 2011, when Randy Orton infamously defeated Christian. You know what happened when WWE spoiled the results of that match? Friday's show got a ratings pop. Now, WWE has repeated history by spoiling a title change, but they're also capitalizing on the momentum from Monday's RAW and are promoting an appearance from The Rock. In all honesty, I'd be shocked if Friday's show doesn't get AT LEAST a 2.0 rating.
I doubt SmackDown will remain interesting and unpredictable for long, but at least it's a step in the right direction.
3. Del Rio >>>> Big Show
I remember when Sheamus and Big Show were set to face off for the first time at Hell in a Cell last October and I predicted (and hoped) Sheamus would retain the title because he was "the lesser of two evils". Unfortunately, Show won the title that night, and he has had one of the worst, most boring title reigns in history. But with Del Rio the new champion, there is once again hope for the world title picture. Del Rio is not everyone's favourite wrestler, but as I mentioned in my RAW: Pros & Cons column last week, The Mexican Aristocrat has a lot of potential to succeed as a babyface. He may not have the charisma or comedic timing of the late Eddie Guerrero, but he certainly has the ring ability. Del Rio can definitely go in the ring, unlike Show, who's matches bore me to tears. While I don't think Del Rio is the second coming of Eddie just yet, the potential is there for Del Rio to become WWE's next big Latino star, especially with Rey Mysterio's days seemingly numbered. In any case, a Del Rio/Ziggler feud sounds a lot better than a Big Show vs. anyone feud.
4. A new Hispanic star is born
It would be hard to argue that Del Rio's first two title reigns were anything but rushed. As the story goes, Vince McMahon wanted to put the WWE Championship on Del Rio two summers ago so he can headline the fall tour of Mexico as the top dog. As we all know, that experiment was a massive failure, and hurt everyone involved - Del Rio, Punk. Fortunately, they have a chance to get it right this time with Del Rio as I truly believe he is a natural face. People call him "The Black Hole of Charisma" for a reason - as a heel, he has a never-changing facial expression, and his promos are on par with Big Show's. However, as we saw last week on RAW with his exchange backstage with Ricardo Rodriguez, and we can see in the above photo, Del Rio CAN show emotion when he's a good guy. Like I said, I don't think Del Rio can fill Eddie's shoes, but winning the title in Miami last night was a great idea, as the positive fan reaction will translate well to those watching at home and help get him over for mercifully ending Big Show's reign of terror. If done correctly, Del Rio could become a huge draw in the Hispanic market, and possibly even become a top babyface in the eyes of American fans as well.
5. Wrestlemania season got even more interesting
Most important of all, Del Rio unexpectedly winning the world title last night was awesome because Wrestlemania 29 is suddenly not so predictable. Pretty much everyone was sure we'd get Cena/Rock II, Punk/Taker, Lesnar/Triple H, and Ryback or Orton winning the Royal Rumble to face Big Show. Now, we all have to think again. While there's always a possibility of Show regaining the title in what I assume will be the rematch at the Rumble, I have a feeling Del Rio will at least make it to Elimination Chamber as world champion. Suddenly, the world title match at Wrestlemania is anyone's guess, especially with Dolph Ziggler still carrying around that MitB briefcase. Furthermore, I have to change my pick for the Rumble, as I was sure Orton or Sheamus would win it, but now I'm not convinced. We could get Del Rio vs. Ziggler at Mania. We could get Del Rio vs. Orton, with the roles reversed this time. We could get Ziggler vs. Orton. I honestly don't know what WWE has planned for the Rumble, Elimination Chamber, OR Mania, now that Del Rio is the new world champion.
And I like it.
In the span of one month, Del Rio has gone from squashing the Del Rio JOB Squad on RAW, to turning face at TLC, running over Santa Claus and getting destroyed by John Cena the next week on RAW, to winning the world title as a babyface again on SmackDown. It's been quite the interesting journey for Del Rio, that's for sure.
Before you complain about Del Rio becoming champion or WWE spoiling the result, tell yourself one thing: we're on the Road to Wrestlemania, where anything could happen. So sit back and enjoy it.
Finally, I want to know what you think. Did WWE jump the gun by putting the world title on Del Rio in an unannounced title match? Or do you agree it was a smart move for business? Does Del Rio have what it takes to be a top Mexican babyface? Or will his babyface turn and reign as champion fail miserably?
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Coming soon: re-drafting the WWE roster post-Wrestlemania 29...