Sometimes, a golden opportunity presents itself to a wrestling company, when an inadvertent accident creates a natural storyline that can propel a wrestler into a new level of stardom.
These moments can come at unexpected times and require quick wits to capitalize upon them. Unfortunately, last night’s Hell in a Cell pay-per-view highlighted the lack of flexibility when one of these moments happened in the battle between Kofi Kingston and The Miz for the Intercontinental championship.
Miz caught up with the high-flying Kofi on the ring-ropes, and was looking for some sort of reversal. Instead, Miz dropped the Ghanaian and Kofi came down badly with one knee extended. Most people viewing that moment appeared to believe that Kofi was genuinely hurt.
It may have been a freak accident, but it perfectly underlined Kingston’s need to stick and move to be effective. For Miz the accident was a opening to show how ruthless he has become, as he went after the injury in a savage way that inflicted as much damage as possible.
Such a nasty turn of events should have been utilized as a way to both increase the emotion and intensity of the two men’s rivalry, and improve their reputations.
Miz has already returned as a remorseless character since his time away, and inflicting such a cruel-looking injury on an opponent would have gone a long way to prove that he is willing to do anything to be successful.
Doing knee damage to Kingston would have been all the more empowering to Miz’s character, due to the reliance the Ghanaian has on his legs to perform most of his offense. A standout moment like this could be enough to get the crowd accepting the Miz as a main-event heel once again.
Such an injury, especially if it is not legitimate, could also do wonders for Kofi, as he has often been criticized for being one-dimensional and poor on the microphone. In the fight against Miz yesterday he proved that he could brawl, so the time spent away from the ring in recovery could be used to sell Kingston as a new fighter.
Kingston being unable to compete would also force WWE’s creative team to use him as an on-air personality, so he could work on his mic skills and finally establish his character with the WWE universe.
A return feud against Miz would automatically raise Kingston’s status within the company and the intensity of their battles, all because of one moment in history, could have become career-defining.
This opportunity to give emotional depth to both characters was lost as no-one was empowered enough to make the snap decision to change the finish to a Miz victory. Kofi winning on one leg diffused any tension that might have run between the two men, and the emotional impact was lost.
It also did harm to both Miz’s and Kingston’s characters. It now appears that the Miz wasn’t willing to do anything to get the job done and was caught out with one big shot, and Kingston’s stereotype of relying on high-flying moves to get him out of a situation which does not move his character forward was reinforced.
Despite the possibilities of this moment and the negativity of not capitalizing on it, the incident between Miz and Kingston will soon be forgotten. These moments come up time and time again in the WWE, as hundreds of matches play out over a month, creating numerous unique situations that are never expected.
What the WWE must do is take advantage of a few more though, so their star attractions build a personality that is more than just the character assigned to them. When this opportunism happens regularly, the WWE will be a better place.