Quickly, without thinking, who is the best wrestler in WWE?
Right off the top of your head, who you got?
Time is ticking away, hurry up! Who is it?
. . .
You picked Ziggler or Cesaro, didn’t you? I’m willing to bet most of you did. Oh sure, some of you MAY have said Seth Rollins. . . I bet even a small few of you picked Randy Orton. And we all know that one guy who said “John Cena”, just to be a jackass…
But if we picked a random sampling of 100 fans and asked them who the best wrestler was - not their favorite, per se, but just the most talented between the ropes, Dolph Ziggler or Antonio Cesaro would be the top names mentioned.
Now, while I could spend quite a few lines bemoaning the lack of solid direction or push that Cesaro, Ziggler or the IC belt itself has received over the last 12 months, this is not what this column is about. Being The Teacher, I’m all about #PromotingPositivity, so if you don’t mind, I’m about to make a very bold statement of optimism.
Ziggler and Cesaro are going to steal the show this Sunday.
Scoff if you must, but it’s true. Despite not being inside “Satan’s Structure” and with the near-mathematical certitude that this match is going to open the PPV, I firmly believe that when the dust clears and the cage is lifted, it is the IC title match we’ll be talking about most.
The random sampling of 100 fans aren’t wrong, even if they only exist inside my head. These two guys are the highest quality talents WWE has to offer right now, so logic dictates that when put together on a grand stage, they will perform to their optimal level.
Off-hand, I can think of two of these matches that have taken place in 2014. The first and most obvious is the Tag title match between The Usos and The Wyatts, which was arguably the best match of Battleground. (Unless, of course, you really enjoyed watching The Miz cowardly win the IC title, which I totally did.)
The second one apparently took place on some house shows. Natalya vs. Paige, I believe. All reports were that the two divas also blew the roof of the untelevised joint with their match.
Historically, in fact, 2 / 3 falls matches have almost always been solid, if not quite good. Want more proof? Grab your WWE Network, folks, and look up the Doink vs. Marty Jannetty classic from the first year of RAW…
No, I’m not kidding. Seriously, go watch it. It’s excellent.
Why are they having such a match? I have no idea. Even without any story that I can remember, the two still did a great job.
These kinds of matches are always full of drama and spectacle. The back and forth battle for that first victory... The desperation of the loser of the first fall to come back and win the second (which, of course, almost always happens)... The fact that all those typical “false finish” spots might NOT actually result in a kick out.
Now this one will, as I tend to do here at #2Contenders, anger some folks. However, the feud between Ambrose and Rollins has been SO hot for SO long that we have to consider the possibility that their ‘blowoff’ match (assuming this is the end of their feud) will fail to meet our lofty expectations.
Seriously, take a moment and think about what you’re hoping to see from them on Sunday. You’re expecting one, but likely both, competitors to do a dive from some height. I bet some of you are even imagining that there will be blood, PG be damned.
And if those things don’t happen? Won’t there be some sense of anticlimatism that comes with this match? When we sign on Twitter Monday morning, aren’t we going to see a lot of “Well, it wasn’t THAT good” posts?
That won’t happen with Ziggler and Cesaro.
Take these two matches out of the equation and what are you mostly looking forward to this Sunday? For a good number of people, and rightly so, it’ll be Mizdow TV on the Pre-Show. (Seriously, this is the first pre-show I’ll watch since rejoining the active WWE world. Behold the power of Sandow.
Otherwise, ANOTHER Rusev and Big Show match? ANOTHER AJ and Paige match? As Jason Moltov so expertly put it, ‘the match where the silver and bronze medalist battle for number one contendership”? Not bloody likely.
So, let’s put our equation together. A fairly underwhelming card with only two potential “showstopper” matches, one of which has a HUGE amount of hype to live up to. The other is a match built for drama and ‘edge-of-your-seat’ intrigue, and it features the two best wrestlers in the company?
Which one would you pick to steal the show?