Alberto Del Rio’s latest World Heavyweight Championship win was unexpected , to say the least . WWE is increasingly using pay-per-views as the only vehicle for a title change, which is why Del Rio’s scheduled title bout against then-champion Big Show was surprising.
However, The Rock was scheduled to appear on that same night so they were capable of drawing more viewers on Friday program. And with the attention, Del Rio was able to seize the moment and capture the World Heavyweight Championship for the first time in a last man standing match.
The title last changed hands on an episode of Smackdown was in 2011, as Edge vacated the title upon his retirement.
Del Rio is set to feud with the Big Show leading up to the Royal Rumble pay-per-view. And despite being the reigning champion, Del Rio needs a win to solidify himself as one of WWE’s best superstars. He has a fairly short yet accomplished career in WWE. However big his astronomical highs have been, he has faced equally anticlimactic lows .
A win at the Royal Rumble would give his inconsistent career more credibility, especially now that he recently dumped his arrogant heel persona in favor of a face turn.
Alberto Del Rio’s ascension to the top was a fairly quick one. He debuted on Smackdown in August 2010 after weeks of vignettes promoting the Mexican aristocrat. Just months later, Del Rio won the 2011 Royal Rumble.
Going from green WWE superstar to no . 1 contender in a matter of months is unheard of. Del Rio somehow managed to stay in the championship conversation for months on end but never captured gold. Throughout this, he arrogantly proclaimed that it was his destiny to win a championship.
He eventually managed to win the WWE Championship by cashing in his Money in the Bank briefcase, which is also another indication of how much WWE invested in the Mexican in such a short amount of time . Nevertheless, Del Rio’s heel persona failed to connect with fans as effectively as WWE wished it would have.
After dropping the title that started CM Punk’s current historic championship reign , Del Rio had questionable feuds : one was with former champion Randy Orton . The other was against Santino Marella , which was started due to his ring announcer Ricardo Rodriguez .
But now that Del Rio has the World Heavyweight Championship around his waist , WWE needs to take capitalize of the little momentum that he has left.
His swift face turn instantly makes his more exciting, as his heel persona became stale and predictable throughout the years.
At first , it seemed that he would play the tweener role much like Randy Orton or The Miz, but he may slowly transition to a traditional face based on last week’s episode of Raw. His mocking of Big Show was more reminiscent of John Cena’s sophomoric and playful antics than the lashings of someone like Wade Barrett.
Del Rio should win at the Rumble to keep fans interested in his new face persona . Otherwise, he would be seen as a subpar champion, which would be counterproductive since he drifted towards that in his previous title reigns .
The feud against Big Show does not have to end after the pay-per-view. In fact, it should continue to make these two formidable opponents . Especially now that the title match is to be a last man standing match , Del Rio can come away with a close victory and still manage to keep the momentum of his recent face turn.
In a way, Del Rio can act as a transitional champion. This , however, does not mean he is a champion in waiting; instead he can use his momentum to regain the prestige and popularity of the World Heavyweight Championship.
And based on the fans ' reaction during last Monday 's Raw , Del Rio once again has the spotlight . Fans began chanting "si, si, si," during his match and even collectively joined in Ricardo Rodriguez's announcement of the new world champion.
Now fans have to simply wait and see if the 10-count is counted in English for Big Show, or in Spanish for Del Rio .
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