WWE’s United States Champion does not like the United States’ signature sporting event that will take place Sunday night in New Orleans.
In a full-character interview with the Daily Mountain Eagle in Jasper, Ala., Antonio Cesaro maintains his storyline that he likes America as a country but is not fond of Americans and their traditions. And one of the biggest American traditions is the Super Bowl:
The American Super Bowl is Sunday. I care nothing about American football. Rugby and wrestling are sports for real athletes…If I was a fan, I would much rather be at a WWE event instead of sitting on my couch watching pre-game shows and being lazy.
Incidentally, the interview with Cesaro promotes a special Super Bowl Sunday WWE house show in Birmingham. WWE recognizes the importance of not keeping fans away from their TV sets by scheduling the “Pregame Pandemonium” event for 1 p.m. Sunday.
In that event, Cesaro will face The Miz in a repeat of last Sunday’s Royal Rumble pre-show match on YouTube.
In the interview, Cesaro apparently allows himself to break character for a moment when he says he is looking forward to his first trip to Birmingham. But he pulls himself right back when he says that Birmingham fans “should respect a great athlete like Antonio Cesaro.”
And when it comes to commenting on Miz, Cesaro definitely does not let his character guard down. He says in the interview that he respects Miz for what he has accomplished in WWE, but that is all he respects:
With that said, he still isn’t the caliber of athlete that I am…He’s just like all Americans. He’s loud and obnoxious.
Cesaro (real name: Claudio Castagnoli) began his wrestling career in 2000 in his native Switzerland. He spent the first 11 years of his career on the independent circuit and in Ring of Honor before joining WWE’s developmental territory in 2011. He made his WWE television debut last spring playing the part of WWE diva Aksana’s boyfriend.
Cesaro’s storyline has focused on what he deems the intellectual and physical superiority of Europeans over Americans. Since winning the U.S. Championship at SummerSlam last year, his character has intensified his attacks on all things American.
Cesaro has been projected as one of the top rising stars in WWE, leaving many to think 2013 will exceed the success of his freshman year.
The Birmingham show might also be testing the possibility of a new storyline for The Shield. According to the card lineup, Team Hell No (Kane and Daniel Bryan) will defend their tag team championships against two members of The Shield.
While it is unlikely the belts will change hands in a house show, WWE must be using live events to measure the viability of booking The Shield in the tag team championship picture.
Follow Bill Atkinson on Twitter at @BAtkinson1963.