In one of the most shocking outcomes of the night, it was Alberto Del Rio that stunned the world and took the World Heavyweight Championship from Dolph Ziggler at the 2013 edition of WWE’s Payback pay-per-view.
Ziggler had missed over five weeks as he recovered from a concussion, and while the fact that WWE did not strip him of the title looked like a clear indication that he was the main character in future plans, that is clearly not the case.
The WWE is all-in on turning Del Rio into a top babyface by any means necessary.
Instead of continuing the build toward an eventual storyline between Big E. Langston and Ziggler for the world title—something the WWE has been teasing for weeks—the decision to go in a completely different direction with Del Rio as champion is not the right choice.
This is far from the end of the feud between Del Rio and Ziggler, but the fact that Langston had gained several wins over the new champion will likely lead to the former NXT champion trying his luck at winning the World Heavyweight Championship as well.
While the feud could be just a matchup between Ziggler and Del Rio, the fact that Langston has been so prominent in the booking over the last two months could signal a feud between the former champion and his heavy with nothing but respect on the line.
The title win is momentous for Del Rio, but the WWE needs to have an intriguing storyline for the Mexican superstar. Del Rio has been extremely boring over the last several months, and the hope is that the addition of the title will make his character intriguing.
It didn’t work last time, but that doesn’t mean the WWE won’t try again.
Ziggler is still the promising star out of this mix, and the sooner the company launches him back into the main-event scene, the better it will be for the WWE as a business. While Ziggler isn’t over with the crowd yet, he’s still way more popular than Del Rio.
Hopefully, WWE sees the error of its ways and gives the strap back to Ziggler.
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