Kofi Kingston has been a proven regular in WWE's midcard title scene in recent years but has never managed to gain a push into the main event scene on either Raw or SmackDown.
Arguably the closest Kingston has come to a main event push was during his feud with Randy Orton in late 2009. However, "The Viper" knocked off "The Wildcat" in the penultimate match of that year's Tables, Ladders & Chairs pay-per-view, rendering Kingston's mini-push done and dusted.
Before defeating Antonio Cesaro for the United States Championship last month, Kingston appeared to be floundering in the lower midcard, failing to earn a spot on the WrestleMania card and frequently jobbing to then "Mr. Money in the Bank," Dolph Ziggler.
After Kingston defeated Cesaro for the title out of the blue, his fans may have started to believe that somebody in a creative meeting once again saw promise in the high flyer from Ghana. Unfortunately, with WWE's annual Extreme Rules event on the horizon, it would appear that Kingston has been set up as nothing more than a transitional champion.
Sure, the United States Champion has been booked strongly since winning the title, having recently defeated the likes of Intercontinental Champion Wade Barrett, but his upcoming match with The Shield's Dean Ambrose spells trouble in paradise for Kingston.
When considering the booking of The Shield since their impressive debut in December, it makes no sense for Ambrose to lose his first singles match on pay-per-view to Kingston, whom the WWE has only just relieved from jobber status. The only way that Kingston can realistically walk away from St. Louis with the gold around his waist is if his opponent is disqualified due to interference from other members of The Shield.
Ultimately, putting the United States and Tag Team Championships on The Shield is probably a solid booking move for WWE's overall programming. But it is a shame for Kingston and his fans, who thought he finally might be getting a renewed and well-deserved push.
In creating new stars, there always needs to be a sacrificial lamb. Unfortunately for Kingston, it is once again his turn to play this role, but his fans should not give up. Despite being on the scene since 2008, Kingston is just 31 years of age.
Time is definitely on this WWE Superstar's side. So even if Ambrose rolls him over cleanly in five minutes on Sunday, do not complain and do not worry.