WWE: 7 Losses That Helped Sheamus' Career
The ultimate goal in WWE, or anything for that matter, is to win as many matches as possible. Nobody in WWE has won nearly as much as Sheamus, who has been a dominant World Heavyweight Champion since WrestleMania this past April. It has been the road back to relevance for a superstar who was shot to the moon from the beginning, only to see his stock fall back down and crash.
Now, it seems like Sheamus is almost unbeatable. We all know that this will not hold up, as every winning streak ends and every title reign, no matter how long, eventually ends. He sure hasn't been a lot like Goldberg with his constant winning and big gold belt, but it has been a hot streak that has turned The Great White into the great winner in WWE this year.
Even the greatest men lose from time to time, and those who truly are great will lose and come out a better man on the other side of things. In a way, losses happen for a reason and should be treated as such. In the grand scheme of things, a loss can actually be a good thing that can readjust a mindset and lead to future success.
With his successes right now, it's only right to look back at some of the great losses for Sheamus and why those defeats actually worked out in the long run for the Irish-born champion.
Elimination Chamber 2010
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It was February 2010, and Sheamus was still WWE Champion. Only weeks before WrestleMania, absolutely nothing was clear for the WWE Championship match.
With Edge, the Royal Rumble winner, choosing to go after the World Heavyweight Championship later that week, this chamber match would decide everything, essentially.
Sheamus began the match with Kofi Kingston, and all six men would enter the match before anyone was close to elimination. Just after the 24-minute mark, Orton was pinned, following a strike to the head with a lead pipe from "ally" Ted DiBiase and an Attitude Adjustment from John Cena.
It was DiBiase, of all people, who got the cover on The Viper. DiBiase would catch Trouble in Paradise from Kingston a minute later to join Orton in the locker room.
Kingston would be gone roughly 30 seconds later after Sheamus did some damage, including a High Cross to finish it all off. Sheamus now had only Triple H and John Cena left in his way for a WrestleMania world title match.
The Game and his Pedigree would ultimately force a new champion to be crowned in the match. Triple H would lose to Cena and his STF, making Cena champion for a short time before Batista came in and destroyed Cena for it.
Sheamus had only been champion since December and did so in a way that it looked like a mistake at first. Sheamus would lose his title that night, as well as his initial chance at a major WrestleMania match. As long as he was involved, Triple H, who had eliminated Sheamus from the chamber match, would have something to say about that.
WrestleMania 26 vs. Triple H
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Eventually, every young rising star needs to collide with the accomplished veteran in a clash of old school and new school. For Sheamus, that collision came with Triple H, who was the reason Sheamus lost inside the Elimination Chamber just a few weeks earlier.
In the build to the match, Triple H made a reference to his first-ever WrestleMania match 14 years before this. At WrestleMania XII, Triple H took on The Ultimate Warrior and was disposed of in less than 100 seconds. It wasn't quite a Daniel Bryan-esque squash, but it was pretty uninspiring.
Triple H's entire claim to this match centered around Sheamus showing some respect and not letting the early success get to his head. Well, we know that all wasn't working out. It took a match at WrestleMania for Sheamus to try and start learning his lesson.
Sheamus lasted longer with The King of Kings than Triple H's WrestleMania debut, but that was because a lesson needed to be taught. Sheamus would lose on that grand stage but would get payback on Triple H in a Street Fight at Extreme Rules. Though the lesson may not have sunk in that night, Sheamus certainly paid some dues in this match.
Six-Pack Challenge at Night of Champions
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It was Night of Champions 2010, and Sheamus entered a match with five other men as the current WWE Champion. His five challengers were Chris Jericho, Edge, John Cena, Wade Barrett and Randy Orton.
All of the men, except for Barrett, had been a world champion in the past. The feeling was that, with five other opponents, surviving would be next to impossible for Sheamus.
Within the first two minutes, Jericho was eliminated, and the feeling of his WWE career ending came with it. Jericho would return to the ring but is currently out of wrestling once again.
Edge would be the next to go, pinned by Cena's Attitude Adjustment. Edge would be out of wrestling roughly six months later when he was forced into retirement due to injury.
Cena was a surprising next elimination, falling victim to Barrett's Wasteland finisher. It left the champion with a rising star in Barrett and a thorn in his side in Orton. Barrett would fall into an RKO to be eliminated, which was exactly how Sheamus lost roughly a minute later. Orton would win the match and become the new WWE Champion.
This ended the second WWE Championship run for Sheamus. At that stint in his career, Sheamus was a multi-time WWE Champion, but had little else that he had accomplished.
Sheamus would get a rematch inside Hell in a Cell just a few weeks later but fall out of the world title picture after that. With the hot start to his career, this match effectively ended his spot at the top until he earned it back. It was a humbling loss and a very valuable one at that.
Ladder Match vs. John Morrison at TLC
Since losing that WWE Championship in the Six-Pack Challenge, Sheamus was entered into the King of the Ring tournament, where he won the honor in the finals by defeating John Morrison.
Sheamus was now King Sheamus, joining the illustrious line of former King of the Ring winners. This still brought on a rivalry of sorts between the King of the Ring and the Prince of Parkour.
After a match at Survivor Series that saw Morrison be victorious, this ladder match at TLC 2010 was put together. The stipulation involved a contract for a future WWE Championship match suspended above the ring.
Sheamus hasn't exactly been graceful when ladders are involved, but he has had success at the TLC pay-per-view, including winning his first-ever WWE Championship in shocking fashion just a year earlier.
Morrison and Sheamus put on a fantastic match that ultimately saw Morrison win. It continued Sheamus' slump that had been going on since gaining the King of the Ring crown.
As Morrison began 2011 in a WWE Championship match, Sheamus put the pressure on himself, including having a desire to risk his career if he couldn't win the United States Championship. He did, which seemed to knock him back on his game.
Tables Match vs. Kofi Kingston
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As King of the Ring, Sheamus was not having great luck. When he put the pressure on himself, he became United States Champion. The reign was a good thing to see and lasted just a few short weeks. At Extreme Rules, Sheamus was on his way to SmackDown as the final Supplemental Draft pick. He was all set to take that title with him to SmackDown.
Just before his departure from RAW and onto a SmackDown brand with a lack of main-event talent, Sheamus had to defend his United States Champion against RAW superstar Kofi Kingston in a Tables match. Basically, if Sheamus won, he would have both his title and the Intercontinental Championship on the same brand, so logic suggested a Kingston victory.
In impressive fashion, Kingston launched himself from the top turnbuckle onto the arena floor and through a table that had Sheamus on it. Kingston was champion, and Sheamus was free to go to SmackDown.
Since that move to SmackDown, Sheamus has been very successful with an incredibly high win percentage. It was the best career move for him, and all that he needed to sacrifice was a title he only used as a slump-buster. Not a bad tradeoff.
SummerSlam vs. Mark Henry
Something unexpected happened when Sheamus went over to SmackDown. Eventually, he became a face for the first time in his WWE career.
The reason for the change seemed pretty typical. Not only was it seemingly done for the lack of babyfaces on the SmackDown side, but Sheamus was a bad guy getting good guy reactions from the crowd. If you get cheered when you aren't supposed to, they'll eventually give you a reason to cheer by making you nice.
Sheamus really began his face career by trying to stop Mark Henry, who had become relevant all of a sudden and made some fans wonder where this attitude from Henry was years ago.
Two of the biggest men on SmackDown on two of the more dominant runs in all of WWE fought at SummerSlam in what was essentially a No. 1 contender's match for the World Heavyweight Championship.
Sheamus hung in tough with Henry but was ultimately not successful. Still, he was never actually pinned. It took the brute strength of Henry to ram Sheamus through the barricade at ringside and get Sheamus counted out from the match.
Sheamus lost a tough match that night, but it did good things for him afterwards. He would get on a hot streak once again and win the Royal Rumble the following January, leading to the World Heavyweight Championship win at WrestleMania.
Sheamus Ends Current World Heavyweight Championship Reign
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I'm getting ahead of myself. I even cheated on this list a bit. This doesn't take away from the fact that Sheamus inevitably losing his current World Heavyweight Championship will be the best thing for him going forward. It has been months as champion, easily the longest reign that Sheamus has had with any title in WWE to this point.
Sheamus seems to be unbeatable right now, and losing the title would move him back in line with the rest of the superstars.
The cheers aren't always there for Sheamus anymore. Even as a well-liked guy who keeps on winning, Sheamus seems to be losing some of the fans, who are booing him instead.
When a babyface champion is getting some boos and the larger positive reaction is being given to a heel rival, there is an issue. I don't know how much you would have to or even could restructure Sheamus and his image. Even still, that really cannot happen until he drops the title.
It isn't as if there aren't the challengers for it. Alberto Del Rio has been hovering over it for months now. Randy Orton could use another reign as world champion. Even a former champion like Big Show or Daniel Bryan would always be interested in getting the title back around their waist. There's also Dolph Ziggler lying in the weeds with his Money in the Bank briefcase.
It may be Ziggler who takes it from Sheamus, or it may be that Sheamus is handing it off to the guy who Ziggler cashes in against. This title change could come next week, next month or even next year.
The point is that when it happens, Sheamus can get back to solidifying himself as a character and moving forward. At some point, the three-time world champion will need to shake things up a little bit.