Examining Bo Dallas' Strengths, Weaknesses and Long-Term Potential

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Examining Bo Dallas' Strengths, Weaknesses and Long-Term Potential
Credit: WWE.com

After transforming the audience's antagonism from burden to asset, Bo Dallas is ready to make the leap from NXT to WWE

The NXT champ will be a fantastic heel on Raw and SmackDown. The overconfident, belittling role he has taken on has led to memorable segments, including a banner-raising ceremony and a homecoming complete with slideshow.

Moments like those will translate to the bigger stage, even if the main event is not in Dallas' future.

His brother Bray Wyatt is closing in on facing John Cena at WrestleMania and a chance to become a bona fide headliner. Dallas will be a valuable contributor to the company, but his ceiling isn't as high as Wyatt's.

While Wyatt is a freakish athlete with elite acting skills, Dallas is a very good wrestler with a viable shtick.

 

Strengths

Dallas doesn't excel at one particular thing in the ring, but he will provide a wealth of great matches.

His speed and athleticism are both solid. He's smooth in the ring, a good seller and a better-than-average mat wrestler. That combination of skills has made him a reliable ring worker for NXT.

Against Sami Zayn, he had a fantastic performance, composing a work of drama with his foe.

Watch how fluid the action is, how dramatic his body language is as Zayn attacks him and the intensity of his own offense. Dallas has been doing that on a regular basis against men like Adrian Neville and Cesaro.

Outside of the ring, Dallas has gone from faceless athlete to unforgettable villain.

His still-improving mic work is fast becoming one of his biggest strengths. WWE wisely turned the fans' dislike of Dallas into the inspiration for his new, overconfident, grating character.

That character shined when Dallas evaluated NXT's rising stars for WWE.com. He compared Tyler Breeze's ring wear to his dog and said he'd like Aiden English more if he sang songs from The Lion King.

His act is hilarious, unique and makes it easy to hate him.

Even in something as brief as the following Tout, Dallas' character grab's one attention. How can one not want to punch a face like that?

This gimmick is guaranteed to garner a passionate reaction from fans. Disdain and arrogance are WWE traditions for its bad guys, but Dallas' version elevates those traits.

It will be oh-so satisfying for Superstars to smack him around after he's allowed to patronize everyone to the point of rage.

 

Weaknesses

At 6'1'' and 234 pounds, Dallas is just a hair bigger than Kofi Kingston. Kingston's dazzling offense doesn't require him to be any bigger, but Dallas is a completely different kind of wrestler.

The NXT champ is not nearly as athletic as men like Kingston and Zayn. He's not believable as a brawler, either. His size and skill set put him in a category WWE may struggle to utilize.

Dallas' game is highly dependent on classic wrestling and technical skill. That means he will appeal more to a fan of the throwback wrestler.

As seen in his match from early 2013 against Wade Barrett, few things in his arsenal will wow fans, even if they are a part of a well-told story in the ring. 

He has also yet to find a standout finisher. Dallas has used the spear and a side belly-to-belly suplex as his signature moves so far.

His spear is among the least impressive WWE fans have ever seen. It has nowhere near the impact that Roman Reigns' rib-rattling version does, largely due to Dallas' size.

The belly-to-belly suplex is not dramatic enough for a finisher. WWE needs to find a memorable new weapon for him once he heads to the main roster.

Even with a thrilling new match-ender, Dallas is going to deal with the same criticism that Alberto Del Rio bears—that he's boring.

His ring style doesn't pop on the screen and even with his new condescending persona, he's a distant second to his brother in terms of charisma.

WWE did him no favors in calling him up too early without a gimmick. He now has to battle through the perception that his brief WWE run created. Fans are going to direct tweets like this one at Dallas until he manages to win them over.

The way he's managed to thrive in his newest role gives him a great opportunity to do that.

 

Long-Term Potential

When Dallas eventually gets called up again, he'll stay for much longer. Being a better talker and having a more unique character will allow him to get over more than Del Rio despite not being as good in the ring as ADR.

Don't count on him winning the Royal Rumble or world title like Del Rio, though.

As entertaining as his act is, he will struggle to make to the company's top rungs. WWE won't believe in his ring work or his build enough to have him ascend to the main event.

His ceiling is more in the Intercontinental Championship range.

In that spot, he has the potential to keep the title for a record amount of time, being this generation's Honky Tonk Man. Like Honky Tonk, he can churn up the audience's anger and maintain interest through his character.

Bo Dallas addresses Sami Zayn.

Expect Dallas to sit on the card somewhere above where Fandango and Damien Sandow are now and below the top stars, his brother included.

Even so, he is certain to turn a significant portion of his critics into "Bo-lievers" on his way to becoming one of the more memorable characters in recent memory.

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