World heavyweight champion Alberto Del Rio successfully retained his title against Dolph Ziggler on Sunday at the Money in the Bank pay-per-view from Philadelphia after AJ Lee interfered.
Del Rio beat Ziggler for the championship last month at Payback via constant attacks on the head of the injured superstar. Those attacks started the double turn—Del Rio is becoming a heel and Ziggler is becoming a face—and Sunday’s match furthered that storyline.
While there are plenty of fans that want to see another Ziggler title run that lasts a lot longer this time, the fact that he was unable to capture the title indicates that the company is still trying to draw sympathy for the former champion.
Del Rio has gone all-out with his heel turn and is doing the despicable acts and saying the degrading things that made him an interesting heel when he first entered the WWE. Even without the suspended Ricardo Rodriguez, per WWE.com, the bad-guy persona fits Del Rio perfectly.
The problem with the champion is that while he is interesting when he makes the transition from a face to a heel or vice versa, his character is bland once the crowd becomes accustomed to it.
As much as the Mexican star is shining in his current role, this storyline is focused around Ziggler.
As The Showoff continues to distance himself with AJ Lee and Big E Langston, it will become clear to the casual fans that Ziggler is the good guy that they are supposed to be cheering.
The former world champ is one of the best in-ring workers and great on the mic, and the fans will see that as he continues to make the transition into a fan favorite.
With a raucous crowd in Los Angeles for SummerSlam, allowing Ziggler to challenge Del Rio one more time and recapture the World Heavyweight Championship would be a great finishing touch on his face turn.
Del Rio should enjoy the title now because he is the ultimate paper champion.
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