Dolph Ziggler should be one of the WWE's fastest rising stars. He's got everything you look for in a superstar, from elite in-ring ability to mic skills. But for some reason the company keeps holding him back by not allowing him to go out on his own.
He's been stuck working with Vickie Guerrero and Jack Swagger in recent months in an attempt to garner extra heat. Unfortunately, Guerrero only generates a negative reaction for herself and Swagger doesn't provide any help to Ziggler whatsoever.
Now it appears another superstar will be added to Ziggler's corner. Marc Middleton of WrestlingInc.com reports Mason Ryan, the former New Nexus giant, started serving as Ziggler's bodyguard at recent house shows. Ziggler cut a promo about needing reinforcements to reach the top.
In reality, the opposite is true. For Ziggler to ever reach his maximum potential, he needs to be given more freedom and respect from the creative team. All of these extra pieces simply distract from his own ability, which has vastly improved since his days in Ohio Valley Wrestling.
It's important to note things that occur at live events don't always carry over to weekly television, but the fact Ziggler had a promo about Ryan's presence makes it seem like something we'll likely see more of moving forward.
Ryan's size makes him an interesting character, but his wrestling ability is still well below what it takes to get featured prominently. And with the emergence of Ryback, the spot Ryan would assume has seemingly been taken.
Whenever a superstar lacks direction like that, they usually get thrown around randomly. Just ask Zack Ryder, who quickly became a pawn in John Cena's feud with Kane and hasn't fully recovered since despite his tremendous popularity.
Speaking of Ryder, it's disappointing that Ziggler's best moments usually come from the Long Island Iced Z's YouTube show rather than Raw. The pair has been talking about doing a WrestleMania match next year for Ryder's fake Internet title.
If by next April the best thing Ziggler has going for him is a shot at a fake championship, the company will have completely butchered his booking even more than they already have. He should be one of the top talents, but he gets treated like a midcard lifer.
We should find out within the next couple weeks whether the Ryan storyline will become reality. If so, it would be a major mistake by the creative team and another step in the wrong direction for Ziggler.
Even if he were to win a marquee title with Ryan in his corner, he would look weak because he needed an army of help to make it happen.
It's time for the WWE to stop handling Ziggler with kid gloves. When CM Punk was given more opportunity, he shined and became a fan favorite almost instantly. The same would happen with the "Show Off" if he was granted the chance.
Sadly, that doesn't seem like it will happen anytime soon.