Welcome to the Heel Report, a weekly breakdown of the best heels in professional wrestling right now. Each week the heels will be ranked out of ten and then those numbers will go on to form the rolling chart that continues each week. This is a place to evaluate and praise the ‘baddies’ of wrestling in their efforts to make us boo them mercilessly so let’s show them some love and get on with the report!
Weekly Top Ten:
I think this was the right time to make this change since Nikki came back with a wave of face momentum and the Smackdown audience has not taken to Carmella the way NXT did, and even that took awhile!
9: Mike Bennett & Maria
So wait, when does Mike Bennett get a shot at Lashley? What is going on with the KotM title? Impact confuses me some times, although I guess it is good to keep Bennett looking strong and it progresses the Moose-Bennett program, still though, why this way?
8: Rockstar Spud
Spud went off on one this week on Fact of Life against the rest of the X Division competitors, which is now just a glorified cruiserweight division (just with less people). This was a nice showcase for the Rockstar though and I would love to see him associated with someone like Eli Drake, think of how annoying they could be together!
7: Eli Drake
Speaking of Drake, he did his usual patter on Impact and stirred things up. I really don’t get why TNA thought it would be a good idea to take the title off of this guy as I think him holding it really did add something. Now the guy, no matter how much he works on the mic, has no direction and I just hope that it doesn’t hurt his momentum too much in the long run.
6: Seth Rollins
The Architect got screwed in a big way on Raw when HHH came back and Pedigreed him to give Owens the win in the Universal title match (more on that later). I know they are setting up a program for HHH vs. Rollins at Wrestlemania but I am curious to see how they are going to explain these actions going forward. One good thing was that HHH took out Roman first and didn’t just ignore him since that would make no sense. You’d think that would be obvious, but with the WWE you can never guarantee that they won’t just forget about something that happened only six months ago.
I still have no idea if the toss into the turnbuckle was supposed to happen. On the one hand it looked like a super sloppy backtoss that was supposed to land Cesaro on the floor, rather than him hitting the post. Then again you’d think if it was a cockup that Sheamus wouldn’t have grabbed him and put a back-focused submission on him to end the match rather than taking an impromptu count out or something. Even if it was planned you have to think that it hurt like hell and was super dangerous. I just hope Cesaro is okay, Sheamus gets this high because he gave a good promo and is now up 2-0 in their best of seven series.
4: Chris Jericho
What is better than making the word ‘It’ a catchphrase? Bating in an announcer with the catchphrase and then turning it back on him like he is an idiot and that it doesn’t even mean anything before delivering your other new catchphrase. At the same time Jericho gets props for then blocking Phillips’ face at the end of the promo, that is why Jericho is a great heel. He is now also at least partially associated with the Universal champion, which has a bunch of potential heading forward. Plus he beat Neville in a nice and brutal match, I don’t think the Lion Tamer has ever not looked impressive, I wish it was used more.
This might have come a little bit too soon but I can’t say I don’t approve of the former Cherry Bomb winning the Knockouts title. The only problem with this is that her character is supposed to barely be able to wrestle it seems so how are they going to do title matches and keep the character that has made her great TV? I don’t want to see a competent and non-squeaky voiced Allie, I want her to be terrible in the ring and a liability who somehow gets over and pats herself on the back. In the past few weeks I have become a big fan of her work but a title win here will probably lead to a face turn and that would be way too soon as we have only just started exploring the character. Also seriously to those who complain about her squeaky voice; you are the type of people who would vote the troublemakers off of reality shows, stop trying to sabotage your own entertainment!
2: AJ Styles
If it weren’t for Owens, Styles would have ruled the chart this week. It still surprises me how much better AJ gets on the mic from week to week, and not only that but he also saw off the potential threat of Dolph Ziggler to make sure that he got a one on one shot at Ambrose for the WWE title at Backlash. I’m looking forward to Styles vs. Ambrose, but I’ve noticed that since winning the title, I am now always rooting against Ambrose to lose it, I feel like such a flip-flopper. Watching the Stone Cold podcast with Ambrose has just made me worried that in his head, winning the title was the end goal and now that he has achieved it he feels like he has nothing left to prove, and that is just not entertaining as a character.
There is still the possibility that Ambrose will turn heel, but it is much more distant now that he has moved on from Ziggler to Styles. Then again while AJ is lighting it up as the top heel of the show I could see a double turn in the works since I bet he would sell even more merchandise as a face and I think he moves a ton now already. When the two face off it will be battle of the guys who have nothing left to prove and it will be interesting to see if that fires them up somehow or if they will be on auto-pilot for the next few weeks.
1: Kevin Owens
Can you believe it? I mean seriously, the guy whose whole gimmick outside of the WWE was that he would never be champion there is now THE GUY. I remember a few years ago I wanted this to happen so bad but I never actually thought it would! Now sure, in kayfabe terms HHH was the one responsible for giving him the title due to his turning on Seth Rollins. However, he still managed to beat the two top guys on Raw and eliminate the biggest up and comer of the new era, at least in Vince McMahon’s eyes, which is pretty good when all is said and done.
It sounds weird but the big red belt actually looks good on Owens, although maybe I am just blinded by bias. It will be interesting to see where the WWE goes from here on who will challenge him for the belt first, especially since they have awhile to build the match. There are rumours that he was supposed to be the first challenger for Finn’s belt and then that would go on to a triple threat between him, Finn and Jericho at Hell in a Cell. It is possible that a variation of that match will still occur, but I doubt anything is set in stone at this point.
Owens as champion gives the WWE a chance to make him the true top heel of the brand and honestly with what happened I wouldn’t mind seeing a face Rollins go against him a couple of times for the belt, although Rollins hasn’t shown any signs of going face at all yet so who knows. The biggest challenge Owens could be given by the company is to go against Roman and have the casual fans actually start to cheer for the guy as a majority, if there is one guy that can pull that off, it is Owens.
Rolling Chart – Week Thirty-Three
1st Place: Kevin Owens (235) (-)
2nd Place: Chris Jericho (153) (-)
3rd Place: Maria & Mike Bennett (105) (-)
4th Place: Charlotte (107) (-)
5th Place: Matt Hardy (101) (-)
6th Place: The Miz & Maryse (97) (-)
7th Place: Seth Rollins (81) (-)
8th Place: The Club (74) (-)
9th Place: Bobby Lashley (65) (-)
10th Place: AJ Styles (61) (New Entry)
That’s all for this week, Owens winning the title, while a good option, is still a pretty big surprise. At this point it is a complete ‘what if’ in terms of if Balor hadn’t got injured. There are those rumours that Owens would have been put into the title picture anyway, but just as likely plans could have gone down where he would have been working feuds with Jericho in their tag team for a few months, probably against Zayn and Neville. I know that their feud is now done but I really wouldn’t mind seeing Zayn vs. Owens for the title at a PPV down the line, or team Owens vs. Team Zayn at Survivor Series. The two together are just money, and if you are not going to do something with Cesaro then it is better to use Zayn than throw the failed experiment that is Roman Reigns into the title picture again any time soon!
Agree with the rankings? Disagree? Who was your favourite heel of the week? Whatever the case, leave comment down below and come back next week for another dose of heel-ly goodness and for now this is James Wright signing off.
Tags: AJ Styles, Carmella, Chris Jericho, Kevin Owens, seth rollins