No Chance – Sheamus and his spiraling career

Welcome back to the No Chance column where I pick a topic in the wrestling world and spend time over-analyzing it. I’m your humble host, Joel, and lets get started.

I was going to tackle this issue at a later date, but some developments from this weeks Raw caused me to go ahead and take a look at the current state of the career of Sheamus. What has happened there? Why is a two-time champion about to lay his career on the line for the mid-card belt? Where did he go wrong?

Sheamus has often been called the fastest rising champion in WWE history, but sometimes I forget just how fast that rise actually was. Sheamus first appeared on ECW on June 30th 2009. Less than six months later (December 13th) he was throwing Cena through a table to become the WWE champion. Now it’s easy to say that WWE was over pushing the new star, but Sheamus was having no problem keeping up. Taking a look back at those six months, Sheamus was more than able to keep up with, and provide a legitimate threat to top card wrestlers.  None of his major victories ever felt handed to him, and in his first championship match, he even won the title without the cheating. Something that so often happens when heels are getting the belt.

But while his first year in the WWE was a great one, the past several months have featured nothing but a downward spiral for Sheamus. Raw seems to have nothing but loss after loss for Sheamus. And on top of that, pointless rivalries including one several episode rivalry with Santino which featured more losses for Sheamus. Even before he was a contender for WWE champion, Sheamus had no trouble defeating Santino, and now he has a multi-loosing streak against him?

Last week I mentioned Sheamus vs. Triple H in relation to the upcoming streak match, but in relation to the current career of Sheamus, it gets even more depressing. A year ago Sheamus was a credible enough threat that he not only had a rivalry with Triple H, but also was his Wrestlemania match. Now with less than a month away, does Sheamus even have a match scheduled for Wrestlemania yet?

What is going on here? Sheamus is a good heel. He has proven that he is able to retain heat from audiences both with and without the championship. He has constantly put on entertaining matches with a plethora of opponents. Why is he doing so badly now? Yes Sheamus won the King of the Ring tournament in November, but has he won a single since then? If he has, I honestly can’t remember it. A single night of victories is not enough to counter the months of pointless loosing that he is suffering.

This past week on Raw, Sheamus had a match against Daniel Bryan that continues to show how badly the WWE is currently burring Sheamus. After the double beat-down that he received last week, Sheamus once again continued his loosing streak this week. And how did he loose? By a count out. And how long did the match last? From bell to bell, 70 seconds.

70. Seconds.

Are you telling me that Sheamus, who has been able to go toe to toe with the likes of Randy Orton, John Cena, and Triple H, can’t last more than a minute in the ring with Daniel Bryan? Loosing is one thing, but when did Sheamus become a straight bad wrestler? Was there an ancient curse laid on Sheamus in a story line I missed somehow?

Now, Sheamus has put his career on the line for the US Championship, meaning that Sheamus has been bumped from the level of contenders who might be able to fight for the WWE Champion belt. Even if he wins the belt next week, there is still a lot of repair that needs to be done to his reputation before he will be a believable threat to the likes of Cena again.

Perhaps this is the real risk of having a superstar rise so fast. Not that the audience won’t buy his rise to success, as Sheamus successfully sold that. But instead when he has to have an eventual loosing streak, not enough legacy has been built up that the character can survive. For example, Chris Jericho was having a bad streak right before he got punted last fall but when he returns after Dancing with the Stars (side note: Dancing with the Stars?) he will still come back as a top tiered wrestler. This may not be possible for Sheamus.

If WWE wants to turn Sheamus into a joke wrester, there’s plenty of material. His accent, pale skin and overuse of the word “fella” have all been mentioned and made fun of in the past. I can understand the appeal, but if that’s the route they choose, I think they’ll be wasting the potential of one of their stronger heels.

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