WWE Night of Champions 2012: Sheamus Defeats Alberto Del Rio and What It Means

Michael Prunka@MichaelPrunkaCorrespondent ISeptember 16, 2012

DURBAN, SOUTH AFRICA - JULY 08:  The Celtic Warrior Sheamus during the WWE Smackdown Live Tour at Westridge Park Tennis Stadium on July 08, 2011 in Durban, South Africa.  (Photo by Steve Haag/Gallo Images/Getty Images)
Gallo Images/Getty Images

Sheamus' dominant reign as world heavyweight champion continued at Night of Champions when he cleanly pinned No. 1 contender Alberto Del Rio. As expected, the two competed in a well-wrestled match. In the end, Sheamus was able to defeat the "Mexican Aristocrat" for the third month in a row.

What does this mean? Has Alberto Del Rio finally run out of chances?

One decisive loss is enough to remove someone from the title picture. Del Rio has lost cleanly to Sheamus on multiple occasions. Even though Del Rio has consistently come up short, he has remained the No. 1 contender.

The WWE attempted to build up Del Rio as a threat before each of his last few shots at Sheamus and the World Heavyweight Championship. This time around, they banned Sheamus' Brogue Kick finishing move only to reinstate the maneuver prior to the match.

Del Rio does have an out for losing in that the Brogue Kick was reinstated as a legal move just before the match. The fact is, though, that Del Rio simply cannot beat Sheamus.

Sheamus is long overdue for a new opponent. It has never been more apparent than it was at Night of Champions. The crowd made it clear that they didn't take Del Rio seriously as a contender—especially after Booker T reinstated the Brogue Kick.

Sheamus' win means that it's time for both men to move on. Sheamus needs a more believable challenger. Wade Barrett comes to mind. He has plenty of momentum following his return. In addition, his style would mesh well with Sheamus'.

Del Rio needs to move into a transitional feud to rebuild his credibility. Perhaps once Ziggler and Orton are done feuding, Del Rio could enter into a program with "The Viper." Not only would it be a fresh matchup, but Orton could also do wonders for helping Del Rio look credible again.

Sheamus and Del Rio had an entertaining match. A more compelling story behind the match would have taken it to the next level. Hopefully they move on from Sheamus versus Del Rio and each man gets paired with a wrestler he can have a more compelling story with.


Michael Prunka is a Bleacher Report Featured Columnist. To stay up to date with his WWE and NHL commentary, you can like his Facebook page, follow him on Twitter and follow him on Tout.