CB’s World: Blaming SummerSlam Booking and Other Factors for More of the Same at Night of Champions (Alberto Del Rio vs. Sheamus)
by CB on August 27, 2012

As New York Mets radio broadcaster Howie Rose would say, “Put it in the books!” … Again. And Again. And Again. Of course, I am not talking about baseball in this instance, but rather the WWE World Heavyweight Championship title picture that has resembled more of a photo flip-book than a flipping of the page over on SmackDown and across several PPV events. That’s right, for the third straight PPV, it was revealed on SmackDown! that Alberto Del Rio will face Sheamus for the World Heavyweight Title at Night of Champions on Sunday 9/16/12.

Let’s take a look at their PPV history a little more closely:

No Way Out 6/17/12: Sheamus def. Dolph Ziggler after Alberto Del Rio was a late scratch

Money In The Bank 7/15/12: Sheamus def. Alberto Del Rio with the Brogue Kick in a grueling match where Sheamus was attacked before the match began. This was to illustrate Sheamus’ toughness.

SummerSlam 8/19/12: Sheamus def. Alberto Del Rio again, this time in controversial fashion. With Alberto Del Rio’s foot on the ropes before the count of 3, the ref continued to count anyway and Sheamus left with the title.

And now, at Night of Champions 9/16/12, Del Rio will face off against Sheamus one more time for the Big Gold Belt after Del Rio beat Randy Orton on SmackDown to reclaim his No. 1 Contender’s status.

So, my question everyone reading is this:

Is Alberto Del Rio vs. Sheamus becoming an epic rivalry that has you invested / on the edge of your seat, or is WWE giving us more of the same for other reasons?

Personally, I think that there are several ways this can go:

The Randy Orton Factor

Something tells me that if Randy Orton wasn’t leaving to film the ’12 Rounds’ sequel in a few weeks, the outcome on last week’s SmackDown episode may have been a little different. I do give WWE credit for giving Del Rio a very credible win over Orton in that spot, and it does make Alberto seem like even more of a threat to Sheamus’ title than he has been booked as over the past two months. But if The Viper wasn’t suspended earlier this year and not departing again for a little while, Del Rio would not have been the only WWE superstar for Sheamus to contend with.

The Dolph Ziggler Cash-In Conundrum

If only Dolph Ziggler would have cashed in his Money In The Bank contract at SummerSlam. Seriously, if Ziggler was going to be booked to lose to Chris Jericho anyway on the big stage, it would have made perfect sense for Del Rio to lose to Sheamus and then give the Celtic Warrior a good old-fashioned post-loss beat-down, and then have Ziggler re-emerge on the SummerSlam to cash in, win the Big Gold Belt, and stake claim to being able to “win the even bigger one” in such epic fashion.

Then, the SmackDown title picture would have been completely different, as at Night of Champions, while Sheamus and Del Rio could settle “business that is now personal”, Randy Orton could have won on SmackDown this past Friday, then lose to Ziggler at Night of Champions before leaving to film his movie. With Orton gone for awhile, you then would have had Ziggler with a VERY credible first title defense, with Sheamus and Del Rio lurking on the horizon after they just BRUTALIZE each other in their grudge match.

But what do I know?

Where are the rest of the heels on SmackDown?

Since WWE didn’t go the route I just suggested and Dolph Ziggler will not be booked in the title match since they are still waiting for him to cash in, you’d have to look at the remaining heels on SmackDown to find a new opponent for Sheamus if you didn’t want him to face Del Rio again. Granted, WWE could have also went with Orton vs. Sheamus at Night of Champions as well, and who knows, maybe they will still do a Triple Threat of Orton vs. Sheamus vs. Del Rio.

Either way, there is a sad state of affairs in terms of finding other bad guys on the blue brand to put up against Sheamus. The only other candidates that might even make a lick of sense would be Big Show if they shuffled him back over to SmackDown for this, or Cody Rhodes if they dropped the whole “I want unmask Sin Cara” nonsense. However, both of those don’t appeal to me as much as Sheamus-Del Rio III, which is likely why we are getting the rematch instead of something new.

When I add all of this up together — and since I can’t change the booking from SummerSlam — Alberto Del Rio vs. Sheamus for the third straight PPV does seem to make the most sense.

I just wonder how much more interesting it all could have been had WWE done a few things differently last month.

That’s all from me — CB.



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