Brad Maddox fell short in his attempt to score a $1 million contract with WWE as he was squashed by Ryback on Monday, but his angle is far from over, and it promises to pay big dividends for the company moving forward.
Maddox began his WWE career as an unassuming official a couple months ago.
According to the storyline, he was hired by then-RAW general manager A.J. Lee in order to support the shows move to three hours. Maddox made an instant impact, however, as he didn't see CM Punk's foot on the ropes during a pinfall in a tag-team match the night after Night of Champions.
This led to both Punk and Paul Heyman berating Maddox, as well as A.J. Maddox faded into the background following that incident and appeared to be a normal referee, but he found himself in the spotlight once again at Hell in a Cell.
Ryback was en route to defeating Punk for the WWE Championship, but Maddox hit him with a low blow out of nowhere and executed a fast count on Punk's behalf.
Maddox's involvement came out of nowhere and many fans were shocked and confused by the incident. Punk and Heyman have denied having anything to do with Maddox's actions and Maddox didn't mention them as part of his motivation.
He said that he simply wanted to be noticed and wanted a chance to become a WWE superstar.
Had he defeated Ryback on Monday, that would have been the case, but Maddox was decimated by The Big Hungry. On the surface it may seem like this storyline is over, but there is no doubt that we'll be hearing from Maddox again.
The fact that he and Heyman had a conversation before the match was glossed over, but it figures to play a role moving forward.
Even though Maddox wasn't allowed to get any offense in against Ryback, I was pretty impressed with him. He's on the small side, but guys like Punk and Daniel Bryan have been able to excel, so that shouldn't be a problem.
He has a good, unique look and an interesting promo style, meaning the WWE could have a capable heel superstar on its hands if it handles this storyline correctly.
Ultimately, Maddox has to be part of a Heyman-led stable. I have been waiting for one to form for quite some time, and although it hasn't come to fruition yet, all the pieces are in place.
There is a good possibility that Brock Lesnar will return to help Punk beat Cena and Ryback at Survivor Series, and that should set the wheels in motion.
Also, Wade Barrett is owed a favor by Heyman for joining Punk's Survivor Series team, so I can see him being part of it as well. Perhaps most importantly, though, Dolph Ziggler and Vickie Guerrero are likely involved.
Ziggler has been somewhat of a loose ally to Punk and Heyman over the past several weeks, while Heyman has been trying to get on Vickie's good side as well.
If Heyman is indeed working with Vickie, then his conversation with Maddox would make sense. Vickie is the managing supervisor of RAW, and since she had the power to make A.J. a diva again and fire Beth Phoenix, then she would certainly have the power to hire Maddox as a superstar. With that in mind, expect Maddox to help Punk again down the line and be rewarded with a contract of his own.
In addition to that, A.J. has to be a part of this entire conspiracy as well. The way in which she willingly ceded control to Vickie is suspicious, as is the fact that she hinted toward wanting to start a relationship with Cena on Monday.
Vickie also obtained supposed voice-mails that A.J. left on Cena's phone, and the only logical way she could have gotten them was from A.J. sending them to her purposely.
It's important to remember that A.J. is the one who hired Maddox as a referee, so she may have been well aware of Maddox's aspirations and intentions. If all of these pieces ultimately fit together and come to fruition, then it will be a major coup for the WWE creative team.
Not only will it have a new, dominant heel stable, but it will have a potential star on its hands in Maddox.
The writers have been accused of being too simple and unimaginative in recent weeks and months, however, a sophisticated angle such as this one would get the fans believing in WWE creative once again.