A lot of people put so much focus on the WWE World Heavyweight title belt that the other ones sometimes get forgotten. People stay champions for an extended period of time and never really defend their title, it grows stagnant and fans begin to grow bored. Fans begin to crave something new, dynamic, and different. The WWE certainly delivered that to the WWE Universe the last two weeks.
The hunt for the new #1 contender for Big E’s Intercontinental title certainly got a much-needed shot in the arm. The last two weeks saw eight men fight for their chance to face the champion at Extreme Rules. Six fantastic matches took place and there were two HUGE moments that stood out and gave a glimmer of hope that the competition for the Intercontinental title can be revitalized.
Wade Barrett has been the shining star of this entire tournament.
After a long absence from television, he came back as Bad News Barrett. A man whose greatest pleasure in life is dampening the happiness of others, and he does it with a smile and giggle that really got him over. I, among others, eagerly awaited his return to the ring and it was well worth it. Wade Barrett has this quiet enthusiasm about him. He comes down that ramp and he is psyched up but he is also calculating how he’s going to beat the holy hell out of his opponent.
On Raw, Sheamus threw everything he had at Barrett but could not take the bare knuckled brawler down. He got some good shots in but he was no match for Barrett by any means. That Bullhammer Elbow caught him and he was finished and Barrett advanced to the finals of the tournament. In celebration, I screamed ‘BULLHAMMER ELBOW!’ and threw my arms in the air.
The second shocking moment of the tournament was that Rob Van Dam beat Cesaro, getting to face Wade in the finals. You heard me right ladies and gentlemen, Rob Van Dam beat Cesaro.
It’s not that I don’t like Van Dam or anything, I actually really enjoy his wrestling. It was actually shocking that they had Cesaro lose via count out. You could see it in the faces of the fans that even they couldn’t believe it. Swagger interfered, Cesaro ate the ring post and then was incapacitated for the ten count. He got his revenge though and swung Swagger around that ring like a frisbee.
After the initial shock wore off, I actually thought that it was a good idea. They had toyed with the idea of a Cesaro/Swagger feud before but it appeared to be dropped. I do think that Cesaro is ready to hold a belt but this story with Jack is just too good to ignore. This could end up in a tag team match that would see Cesaro and Heyman take on Zeb and Swagger. How absolutely amazing would it be to see Zeb Colter slap Heyman right in the face? That’s the type of things dreams are made of.
Monday Night Raw this coming week will see Barrett take on Van Dam in the finals. My money is 110% on Barrett, he is the type of competitor that they need to make fans interested and hold their attention. Big E is going to have to face a completely different type of competitor at Extreme Rules when Barrett captures his victory on Raw.
With everything that has happened in the last few weeks and months, this is the younger talents time to shine. These guys need to step up and show everyone what they are made of. They need to show the fans that they are worth every dollar spent and every cheer shouted in that arena.
I’d insert some inspirational quote here but I don’t have one ready at the moment so all I have to say is take your opportunity and run with it guys!