WWE's annual Extreme Rules PPV is just days away. It is an event where almost every match is contested under some kind of stipulation, allowing for more punishment.
This year's event is looking like a card full or rematches and feuds nobody cares about, but in comparison to last year, a lot of people are in different positions within the company.
People's stock within WWE rises and falls all the time, and while some people are in matches similar to last year, others find themselves in a whole different position.
I had the pleasure of attending the event live last year, and if this year's event is anything like that, then we are in for a pretty good show.
Let's look at everyone who was at Extreme Rules 2012 and see if their stock has gone up or down in a year's time.
In 2012, the pre-show saw Santino Marella successfully defend his US title against The Miz, who was still a heel at the time.
This year, we find Miz back on the pre-show in a match with Cody Rhodes, while Santino is nowhere on the card.
Santino was not really being pushed as champion last year, so he is not in any worse or better position than he was, and Miz is literally in exactly the same place.
Two years in a row on the pre-show is not a streak he would like to extend to three, but this year he is in a little different spot than he was last year.
He has filmed two movies this year, and WWE had Ric Flair give him the Figure Four as a finisher. Miz's stock has risen in the last year, even if his spot on the card has not.
Last year, we saw Nikki Bella defend her Divas title against the returning Layla. Layla won the title, and the Bellas were soon gone from WWE for an extended period.
Neither Layla nor either of the Bellas find themselves on the card this year. Layla has become all but an obscurity in recent months, unfortunately, while the Bellas find themselves with some attention after recently returning.
Since nobody was able to get on the card two years straight, I would have to say that all three women have seen their stock fall a bit.
This year, we find Randy Orton in an Extreme Rules match with Big Show, while Kane is co-defending the Tag titles with Daniel Bryan against The Shield.
Orton is essentially in the same place he was last year. He is still popular but nowhere near a title and not involved in anything interesting.
Kane, on the other hand, has been in one of the more entertaining pairs of the last few years with Daniel Bryan and currently finds himself defending a title on the card.
Kane has found a little bit of a better spot than he had last year, while Orton is in the same exact position.
Brodus Clay defeated Dolph Ziggler in a quick match last year. This was in the midst of Clay's big singles push at the start of his run.
This year, we do not see Brodus Clay, or his partner Sweet T, anywhere on the card. Despite being in a team that has been winning some matches, Clay is definitely not the hot product he was last year.
Ziggler may have jumped up the roster the most out of anyone. Last year he was jobbing and this year he is World Heavyweight champion. That is a pretty good leap forward.
Unfortunately, we will not see Ziggler due to a concussion, but there is no denying that his stock has risen significantly in WWE.
Brodus Clay: Down
Dolph Ziggler: Up
Last year, we saw Big Show defend the IC title against Cody Rhodes in a tables match, which saw Rhodes come away as champion.
This year, Cody finds himself without a title and on the pre-show facing Miz, who is fresh off a return from shooting a movie.
Rhodes' stock has fallen a bit in the last year, even though his team with Damien Sandow has been one of the highlights of the tag team division.
Big Show finds himself in a match with Randy Orton that is not for a title. So basically, he went from Legacy underling with a title to Legacy leader without one.
Big Show is not in any better or worse shape than he was last year, unless you count the fact that he is a heel this year, then his stock has certainly risen a bit.
Big Show: Same
Cody Rhodes: Down
The World title match last year featured Sheamus and Daniel Bryan going at it in a 2-out-of-3 Falls match for the belt.
Sheamus finds himself in a match against Mark Henry this year, while Daniel Bryan is defending the tag titles with Kane.
Sheamus has not been in the hunt for the World title in recent weeks, and with this match being simply over pride, it seems as if Sheamus has fallen a bit over the last year.
Last year, Sheamus was red hot after beating Daniel Bryan in 18 seconds, and he was not in nearly as big of a rut as he finds himself in this year.
Daniel Bryan went from failing to capture the title last year to defending the Tag titles this year. It will all depend on the outcome of the match on Sunday as to whether Bryan is in a better spot within WWE than he was last year.
Bryan was in the main event scene for awhile, but he wasn't really considered a main eventer. If Bryan wins, then his spot will not have changed that much; but if he loses for the second year in a row, then there is no denying that his stock has fallen a bit.
His team with Kane may be entertaining, but it seems like they have been treading water for quite some time with the angle.
Daniel Bryan: Same
Last year at Extreme Rules, we saw Ryback defeat two jobbers while everyone in the arena chanted "Goldberg!" This year, he is in the WWE title match.
I don't think I need to go into more detail about how Ryback's stock has risen in the last 12 months. You don't have to like him to acknowledge that his spot has gotten better.
Extreme Rules 2012 featured an excellent Street Fight between Chris Jericho and CM Punk for the WWE title.
This year, we do not even have CM Punk on the card, and Chris Jericho is facing Fandango.
CM Punk's spot certainly didn't improve when he lost the WWE title, but he is not viewed in a different light than he was last year.
Chris Jericho is someone who seems to let WWE use him how it sees fit. To say his stock has fallen because he is facing Fandango is ridiculous.
If anything, Jericho's position within the company is rock solid, as he only serves to elevate others. When you are as good as Y2J, you can lose and still come back the next night and talk trash like you won.
Often times, that is exactly what he does.
So in other words, both guys are no better or worse off, even if the WWE title is around Cena's waist instead of Punk's.
CM Punk: Same
Chris Jericho: Same
The main event of Extreme Rules 2012 was John Cena facing the returning Brock Lesnar in an Extreme Rules match.
This year, we see Brock Lesnar taking on Triple H and John Cena defending the WWE title against Ryback.
Brock Lesnar was having his first match back this time last year, and since he is not really a full-time member of the roster, it does not matter what his win-loss record is like.
Last year, John Cena was fresh off a loss to The Rock at WrestleMania, and this year, he is fresh off not only a win over Rocky, but he is also WWE champion.
Cena's stock has certainly risen in the last year, while Lesnar is more like a privately held entity who is just there to sell tickets and not care if he wins or loses.
John Cena: Up
Brock Lesnar: Private (No change)
There have been some changes to the roster in the past year, but almost everyone who wrestled at Extreme Rules 2012 will be wrestling at Extreme Rules 2013.
The only people not making the event who were there last year are CM Punk, Santino, Layla, Brodus Clay and the Bellas, but there could always be last-minute changes.
Even with all the people who will be performing for the second year in a row, there are a lot of people who did not appear in 2012 who will be there this year.
The people who did not make 2012 who will be featured this year are Triple H, all three members of The Shield, Alberto Del Rio, Jack Swagger, Mark Henry, Fandango and Kofi Kingston.
Let's recap how everyone's value has changed in the last year. (Please remember that this is for entertainment purposes, and these numbers were developed by me, not some official system.)
|Symbol||2012 ER Quote||2013 ER Quote||Difference|
|Cody Rhodes||CDY||14.00||11.00||Down 3.00|
|Brodus Clay||CLAY||11.00||8.00||Down 3.00|
|Dolph Ziggler||DLZ||14.00||19.00||Up 5.00|
|John Cena||CENA||17.00||20.00||Up 3.00|
Thanks for reading and feel free to leave your thoughts on how everyone's status has changed within the last year.
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