Tomorrow will mark the first time that many wrestling fans will see the in-ring stylings of Brad Maddox as the former referee will make his WWE in-ring debut tomorrow night on RAW.
Maddox will have the misfortune of taking on Ryback, who in all likelihood will continue to build back his momentum with a decisive victory over the screw job suspect.
Prior to being called up to the main roster as a referee, Maddox honed his craft as a wrestler in WWE's developmental territories of Ohio Valley Wrestling and more recently for Florida Championship Wrestling.
Like his opposition tomorrow night, Maddox has been ingrained in the WWE developmental system for several years, and based on his recent work in FCW he appears more than ring ready.
During a brief match of FCW against Briley Pierce from October of last year, Maddox showed many signs of being ready for prime time, from above-average mat skills to an abundance of showmanship.
In fact, Maddox spent the majority of his match against Briley Pierce playing to the crowd, as evidenced by a prolonged knee to the gut while working Pierce over in the corner.
Maddox should feel quite comfortable in his newfound role as a cocky, young heel with a chip on his shoulder looking to make an impact and earn a WWE contract.
Maddox may not have the size to sustain a long-term gimmick as a heel in the WWE, but he indeed does have the aggression. The FCW storyline and finish of his match against Pierce suggested that he indeed was the babyface. But watching this match on mute, as I did the first time I saw it to draw an unbiased first impression, suggested that Maddox was the clear-cut heel.
Brad Maddox may have a long way to go should he eventually break out as a major player in the WWE. But judging by his impressive work while paying his dues in WWE developmental territories, he looks to have the tools to become a promising midcarder sure to have the proverbial rug pulled from beneath him as has become status quo.