We've had a couple of weeks to deal with the fallout from Night of Champions, which I'm sure most you will agree was a decent enough pay-per-view by current standards and featured several strong matches.
However, the current WWE product remains stale and is in desperate need of up-and-coming stars and fresh rivalries. With the benefit of hindsight, here are a few things the WWE should have done differently to enhance the overall product.
Dolph Ziggler loses clean to Randy Orton.
I'm sure I don't need to tell you how good Ziggler is in the ring. In fact, in my opinion his clash with Randy Orton was match of the night. It is a sign of Ziggler's growing popularity with smart wrestling fans that he receives a pop from the crowd, even after following the intolerable Vickie Guerrero.
Unfortunately it doesn't seem as if the booking team has as much confidence in the man as we do. Being the current Money in the Bank holder and thus an automatic threat to the World Heavyweight Championship, Ziggler should be booked stronger than has since winning the briefcase.
Had he defeated future Hall-of-Famers Chris Jericho and Randy Orton on successive pay-per-views, he would be deemed as a legitimate threat to Sheamus that has defeated former World champions and can cash in the briefcase at any time.
At the moment it seems as though the WWE will book his inevitable cash-in as a fluke, and we all remember what happened to The Miz and Jack Swagger following their surprising title wins.
A win on Raw over Kofi Kingston hardly screams 'future World champion', and neither do the constant beatings at the hands of Sheamus.
What Should Have Happened:
Ziggler ends a hard-fought contest with a victory.
John Cena and CM Punk fight to a draw.
Many people are excited to see another CM Punk-John Cena feud, especially with the added excitement surrounding any involvement The Rock might have. CM Punk's slow-burning heel turn and the introduction of Paul Heyman. These elements all but guarantee that the storyline will dominate WWE programming for the rest of the year.
The downside is that once again the WWE is booking Cena to the detriment of the WWE champion. When the two top stars in the company are engaged in a rivalry, it makes common sense to book them as equals.
A draw is fit neither for a WWE title match or a pay-per-view main event; it makes CM Punk look as though he is unable to cleanly defeat Cena, and does nothing to dispel the anti-Cena chants that have dogged him for years.
If you've just turned the champion heel and put him in a program with the face of the company, a tainted win for Punk would have increased his heel reaction whilst also increasing sympathies towards John Cena, thus making him seem more human.
What Should Have Happened:
CM Punk scores a controversial pinfall win.
Zack Ryder wins a Battle Royal; loses to Antonio Cesaro.
We all know that WWE doesn't give a damn about their lower-card titles, but that doesn't have to be the case. In years gone by, many classic matches and feuds have been fought over the United States and Intercontinental titles, but in the dark days of Santino Marella's reign, the title was rarely defended on television, never mind pay-per-view.
When Antonio Cesaro, the former Claudio Castagnoli, defeated Marella for the title we believed that it could be the making of both the title and the man carrying it. Nope.
Instead of starting a feud that could both bring some prestige back to the title and ultimately enhance the character of Cesaro, we had the WWE do what they always do when there's a Battle Royal; have Zack Ryder win.
I'm not knocking the Ryder character, who's as over as he ever will be, but he lost the match and that seems to be that. Cesaro needs to enter a long-term feud to let the fans invest in his character and actually care about the title that he wears.
Instead; he beats Ryder and then Marella (again) in a non-title match (obviously). A win for either Ted DiBiase and Drew McIntyre would have made more sense, as both were labelled as future main-eventers before WWE destroyed their credibility.
What Should Have Happened?
Ted DiBiase or Drew McIntyre win the Battle Royal; losing to Cesaro before entering a feud.
As you can see, I can't make many complaints about the pay-per-view, but there were definitely a few missed opportunities for the WWE that could have added a new dimension to the product.
What would you liked to have seen happen at Night of Champions 2012? Sign off in the comments.
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