When Dolph Ziggler first won the Money in the Bank briefcase, none of us would have seen it coming: his cash-in title victory would be spoiled by a severe concussion even before his first title defense.
Now that this is the situation WWE has to deal with, speculation has turned to whether or not Ziggler will be stripped of the World Heavyweight Championship.
The consensus seems to be that if Ziggler is out for too long of a period, it would be foolish for WWE to keep the title on him. At the same time, patience should play a big factor, and if Ziggler is able to come back relatively fast, this will all brush over and be ok in the long run.
Just how long of a time frame should WWE give Ziggler to heal up before the powers-that-be take action and crown a new champion?
There are two general rules of thought in this situation: sooner or later.
Some people are of the opinion that Ziggler should be stripped of the championship in the coming days or at least before the upcoming Payback pay-per-view.
The argument for this is that WWE would be making a mistake to have their World Heavyweight champion unable to perform on events for nearly a two month span when they have others waiting in line to fill that slot.
After all, WWE Creative could always figure out a way to give the title back to Ziggler once he's healthy, couldn't they?
By stripping Ziggler of the championship now, you negate the risk of spending an extra month dedicated to someone who is unable to defend the title that you are building up a purpose around.
I, on the other hand, am a subscriber to the argument that WWE should be patient and not do anything for quite some time.
Choosing to strip Ziggler of the title later rather than sooner does come with a risk of it being a stall, but when has that ever stopped WWE in the past?
There is a long track record of plot holes, dropped storylines, pushes that go nowhere and time frames where nothing happens only for things to heat back up several months down the line.
Simply because Ziggler is currently out with an injury does not mean he will be incapacitated for a year. For all we know, he has already cleared his medical tests and we just aren't privy to that information.
Enough time has passed that it might be a better option to keep Ziggler off television until the Raw before Payback in order to build up more suspicion that he could drop the title.
What has the potential to sell a card better: when a champion looks weak and could drop the title or when the audience feels as though retaining is a guarantee?
If Ziggler is unable to wrestle come Payback and there is no known time when he could return, I feel as though it is WWE's responsibility to bite the bullet and strip Ziggler of his championship.
However, if there is a possibility that he can wrestle in the coming weeks, it would serve the company better to keep the championship on him.
Dolph Ziggler has finally earned his World Heavyweight Championship, and this reign should not be as lackluster as his previous one. That has the potential to seriously hurt his credibility as a main event star for the future, as prior situations have shown us that a new champion creates new storylines and someone like Ziggler would be pushed aside.
If this happens, he may go through the rest of 2013 without regaining the World Heavyweight Championship, which could cause a downward spiral of his career that he might never come back from.
In the grand scheme of things, WWE should do their best to keep the championship on Ziggler for as long as possible not only for the company itself, but for Nick Nemeth as well.
When do you think Dolph Ziggler should be stripped of the World Heavyweight Championship if it comes down to it? Leave your thoughts in the comments below.