WWE WrestleMania 28: Who Owes Their WrestleMania Moment to Wade Barrett's Injury
In late February, Big Show threw Dolph Ziggler onto Wade Barrett and R-Truth outside the ring near the announce table.
Barrett was injured, dislocating his left elbow.
Because of that, WWE changed its mind about returning the Money in the Bank match to WrestleMania.
A couple weeks later, they had cemented the idea of a 12-man tag match to unify the GM positions of RAW and SmackDown.
While this was a bad trade for fans and Barrett, it means four more guys (five if you count Barrett's replacement) get a shot at WrestleMania glory.
So who's in now that wouldn't have been otherwise?
We can't know, but we can have fun speculating.
Would-Be MITB Participants
These guys probably don't owe Barrett (or Show, rather) any favors, as they probably would have been involved in a Money in the Bank match at WrestleMania.
Of 2011's MITB participants, Wade Barrett, Sin Cara, Alberto Del Rio, and Rey Mysterio are too injured to participate in WrestleMania.
Heath Slater, Justin Gabriel, Alex Riley, and Evan Bourne are not currently in a position in the company to get a spot on the show.
Daniel Bryan, Cody Rhodes, and Sheamus are in other matches.
That leaves Kofi Kingston, The Miz, R-Truth, Kane, and Jack Swagger. Those five probably would have been involved in the Money in the Bank match this year, and so they don't owe anything to Barrett's injury.
To that list, I would add Dolph Ziggler and Santino Marella.
Both men do great work, and Ziggler would probably be thrown in so he could have a storyline with Swagger, and Marella could once again tease a great upset before losing to Barrett.
Drew McIntyre actually owes his spot not only to the injury to Wade Barrett, but also to Christian's inability to return from injury in time...and by extension, also Alberto Del Rio's.
If any of these men were ready to go, there's no way this kid latches onto the biggest stage of them all.
In fact, McIntyre owes his job to the GM vs. GM feud.
If not for the one-week job switch, he'd still be in the unemployment line.
The Great Khali
The 12-man tag match is the ideal match in which to book Khali.
He gets to dwarf all his opponents.
He gets to show some power.
He doesn't have to move from one spot for 95 percent of the match.
Now imagine Khali in a ladder match.
Are you imagining it?
I don't even have to explain this one, do I?
Booker T feuded with Cody Rhodes over his Intercontinental title at the beginning of the year.
He appeared in the Royal Rumble, but what little legitimacy that had was torn away when King and Cole did the same thing.
Since then he's shuckied some duckies and quacked some quacks, and that's about it.
The only reason he's even involved in this match is because he's more popular than Ted DiBiase or Justin Gabriel.
No way he's in a match unless they're scrambling with faces to fill out a huge match.
No way WWE puts an announcer into a major WrestleMania match.
David Otunga owes his very relevance to the existence of John Laurinaitis.
And if it weren't for Laurinaitis having a match to wrest control of SmackDown from Teddy Long, and going to his main flunky to head up the project, he wouldn't be doing more at WrestleMania than sipping coffee.
And if Wade Barrett didn't get hurt...
You get the idea.
It's kind of sad, but Mark Henry owes this spot to Barrett's injury as well.
After dropping his World Heavyweight Title to Daniel Bryan, I mean, The Big Show, Henry has become an afterthought.
Since the Royal Rumble, he's no longer been feuding with Bryan or Show, having to make way for Bryan's impending clash with Sheamus, and Big Show's...whatever Big Show is doing.
Now, I can't say Henry wouldn't have gotten something to do on April Fool's Day.
But it probably would have been as important as Kane vs. Orton.
Are you serious, bro?
It's almost hard to believe that Ryder could be left off the WrestleMania card.
But with only eight spots in a Money in the Bank ladder match, and the push behind Santino Marella...
Can you say for sure he'd make it in?
Maybe Marella could be called on to defend his title against its rightful owner, Zack Ryder, who never lost it fairly.
That would leave one spot open in the ladder match for someone like Randy Orton.
So yeah, you could make it happen.
But would WWE do that?
The fact that Ryder is in the tag match speaks to his position in the company.
Basically, on the cusp.
Popular and well-known enough to be brought out to fill a spot...if a spot needs filling.
Who's In? Who's Out?
What do you think?
If Barrett was healthy enough to win MITB, which five guys would he go over?
What other matches might these tag participants find themselves in?
Who would not be making their appearance on the biggest stage of them all, if not for one wayward spot?