Rumors surrounding Dolph Ziggler could explain why he's beginning to forget what victory tastes like.
In terms of storyline, Ziggler may be getting punished for speaking out beyond what Triple H is doling out. Meanwhile, a powerhouse is rumored to turn face, two huge names are reportedly set to make "surprise" returns at the Royal Rumble and two Puerto Rican bullfighters could battle a team that includes a Swiss wrestler claiming to be a "real American."
Watching Ziggler's recent slide down the card forces one to ask: Is the "Show Off" in WWE's doghouse?
According to F4WOnline (h/t WrestlingInc.com), that's exactly why Ziggler has gone from world champ to losing on a regular basis:
It's said within WWE that Dolph Ziggler is being punished for something he said in an interview during SummerSlam week. No word yet on what Ziggler said that has WWE officials upset but it's said he's paying the price for saying the wrong thing.
With Ziggler losing to Ryback last week and then to Bray Wyatt on Monday's Raw, and adding in his absence on the Night of Champions card, it's not hard to imagine that he did anger someone in charge. Just a few months ago he was holding the World Heavyweight Championship, his career trajectory shooting upward, but now he's fodder for Wyatt.
It isn't as if Ziggler hasn't gone on a losing streak like this before, though.
Ziggler's greatest talent is making his opponent look great, which naturally has WWE asking him to lose. If he starts losing to Zack Ryder and Yoshi Tatsu, we can close the case on whether or not he has backstage heat.
The man who once stood in Ziggler's corner is the subject of rumors as well.
In news many expected for some time, "There has been talk of doing a major babyface turn with Big E Langston in the coming weeks," per F4WOnline (h/t WrestlingInc.com).
This is certainly a rumor fans can buy into. Langston''s personality makes him a natural face. He's funny and is a charming goofball.
Langston may not get to show that side of himself onscreen yet, but fans who follow him on Twitter know all about it:
The fact that the big man has been in limited action recently could also point to this turn happening soon. It's likely a sign that WWE officials are working on a storyline for him.
The soon-to-debut Los Matadores may have a storyline in the works as soon as they saunter onto the scene.
Dave Meltzer of F4WOnline (h/t WrestlingInc.com) writes that "Los Matadores are scheduled to feud with Jack Swagger and Antonio Cesaro once they debut."
The Real Americans' position on immigrants makes them ideal foes for Los Matadores in terms of gimmick. Cesaro and Swagger's power should also be a fun contrast with the bullfighters' speed.
Fans who catch wind of this rumor won't get the benefit of surprise should that feud kick off. The same is true for those reading up on what WWE has in store for Sheamus and John Cena when they return from injury.
As reported by F4WOnline (h/t WrestlingInc.com) "the plan is for both John Cena and Sheamus to be surprise returns at the Royal Rumble pay-per-view in January."
Chris Jericho managed to surprise us with his return, but should The Celtic Warrior and the leader of the Cenation come back when this report suggests, it will be hard to keep it a secret. There are just too many eyes on those stars, and the timing would be perfect in terms of their respective recoveries.
Cena and Sheamus returning at the 2014 Royal Rumble is more believable than reports that circulated early this year about John Morrison and Shelton Benjamin making their returns at this year's event.
Rumors surrounding a physical WWE Hall of Fame are in the same category: stuff we hope is true.
WWE officials have denied plans to erect a Hall of Fame, but the rumors persist. Even Mike Mooneyham of The Post and Courier fully believes that a WWE Hall is imminent:
Orlando, Fla., rapidly becoming "#WWE South." New state of the art training center there, physical WWE Hall of Fame soon, and possible WM32.— Mike Mooneyham (@ByMikeMooneyham) September 9, 2013
Earlier this week BestForOrlando.com (h/t ProWrestling.net) wrote that the NBA City venue would be removed "to make way for the WWE Hall of Fame and a possible wrestling themed restaurant." Go to that website and you'll no longer see that claim.
It now offers a statement from a WWE representative that says,"WWE has no plans to open a Hall of Fame at Universal."
One has to go with the official statement over the rumor, of course. Still, the rumors will continue to reverberate until fans are stepping into a WWE Hall of Fame and gawking at the memorabilia of yesteryear.