WWE Hell in a Cell 2011: The Top 8 Challengers for Del Rio's WWE Title
With Hell in a Cell over, it's time to look to Vengeance and who could challenge Alberto Del Rio for his new WWE championship.
The pay-per-view itself was fairly good, with all-around great booking decisions and some decent wrestling.
Following the same suit as Night of Champions, the triple-threat Hell in a Cell match was riddled with logical overbooking. It combined the conspiracy storyline with the WWE Championship and is sure to make tonight's RAW a must-watch.
The conclusion to the main event has left us all confused, so honestly I have no idea who's the favourite to challenge for the title. But I can list off the main candidates.
Without further delay, here are the top-eight challengers for Del Rio's WWE championship following Hell in a Cell.
Where else to begin but the now-former WWE champion: John Cena.
If the progression of this storyline were to be predictable, I'd guess that Cena earns a rematch. Why? Well with Del Rio locking him outside of the cell, it could be considered a cheap victory, as Cena was unable to enter the ring.
With Survivor Series the PPV after Vengeance, I assume they will build towards a huge tag match at Vengeance. I'd be okay with Cena getting a rematch, but I'd riot if he won the championship again.
At this point, it is blatant padding of his stats.
If not Cena, then CM Punk is second on the list.
With the conspiracy storyline consuming many of RAW's superstars, only a few are clearly involved with the WWE Championship. Right now, that's Cena and Punk. However after last night I don't really know.
CM Punk is over with much of the crowd, and a match for the WWE Championship at Vengeance with Cena involved (first time since... Elimination Chamber?) would be a refreshing step forward, and may even garner more buys.
Punk could challenge for the WWE title. However he has been torn between two storylines for months now. I believe he still has a role to play in the conspiracy, especially against or with Triple H.
After his interference in the main event last night, it's safe to say The Miz is back on RAW. Yes, he is heavily involved in the conspiracy storyline; however, so was CM Punk when he was granted a title match.
It's been too long since we witnessed The Miz in the main event, and after his work with R-Truth over the last month or two he deserves a championship match.
A heel-versus-heel match may not work, but I guess a triple threat or fatal four-way is not out of the question. I for one would love to see Miz in the main event again.
Like The Miz, R-Truth is probably back on RAW. He has impressed everyone with his resurgence this year. Truth took the conspiracy gimmick and ran with it, effectively responsible for the conspiracy storyline today.
I don't believe he was given enough of a chance at the main event, as he is clearly entertaining and may be hitting his peak as a character.
One match against Cena doesn't constitute a chance, and once again, if there were a multi-man match for the WWE title at Vengeance, R-Truth should be involved.
Triple H showed two weeks ago that he is still able to perform at main-event level, so from a pure wrestling perspective he could benefit the main event.
We know The Game, and possibly Del Rio, is against the conspiracy, so if the events of RAW make it logical for his involvement in the championship match, I wouldn't completely rule it out.
Of course, if that were to happen the Internet would explode with comments about Triple H booking himself into dominant positions. Maybe this one is best left alone.
Beyond the current main-event storylines are a number of superstars ready to make the jump to the main event.
Dolph Ziggler is certainly on that list. He has dominated the mid-card championships for over a year now, and has shown growth in the ring and as a character despite having Vickie Guerrero as his manager.
He showed earlier in the year against Edge that he can compete at main-event calibre. In fact, he sells like a champion.
I'm hoping to see Ziggler step up sometime in the next six months, although he may be lost in the shuffle with the conspiracy storyline and The Rock's imminent return.
I know, we've heard far too much over the last year about the pushes Kofi should be receiving; nevertheless, it is all true.
Kingston is getting increased exposure in the tag-team division at the moment, and could slowly transition into some high-profile singles' matches.
He undoubtedly has the in-ring tools to achieve success as a main eventer. However, his problems have always arisen from his lack of character or gimmick. That can easily be fixed by actually giving Kofi a chance to talk on the mic.
Have him establish himself on the mic for a few weeks. Kofi Kingston isn't that far from the main event, yet he seems to be struggling to make the last transition up the ladder.
You didn't think I'd forget about Oz, did you?
While he has not been seen in weeks, make no mistake: Kevin Nash is still a part of this storyline.
For weeks it has been speculated that he would return leading a revolution of sorts. We could possibly see that tonight on RAW.
Nash would be out to hurt everyone, and possibly with the assistance of John Laurinaitis could be granted a WWE Championship match on RAW. I wouldn't want to see that at Vengeance.
The events of Hell in a Cell have made it almost impossible to predict what will happen next.
Although this list narrows down the top challengers for Del Rio's championship, I would be surprised if it were anyone else.
While this was speculation, we require tonight's RAW to fully understand where the WWE will go with this.
Did I leave anyone off this list? I tried to keep it RAW exclusive and realistic. So don't give me Ryder or Jericho. You know who you are.