The Curtis Axel-Big E Langston Intercontinental title match that was scheduled for the Hell in a Cell pre-show has been called off. An injury to Axel has left Big E. Langston without an opponent and without direction only a week or so into his push as a babyface.
WWE's official Twitter account tweeted the news, and Big E. was none too pleased (in his best kayfabe voice).
Putting the Intercontinental strap on Big E's waist would have been solid validation for him, but now things are up in the air. He doesn't seem to have an inroad into a match or angle at Hell in a Cell without Axel.
The pre-show replacement match doesn't even involve Langston. Instead of finding another opponent for him, the WWE chose to put Damien Sandow and Kofi Kingston in a match to fill the time slot.
It is possible Langston could go from starting the pay-per-view with a bang to missing it altogether.
Worst of all for Langston, you have to wonder, if Axel is on the shelf for an extended period, where does that leave the promising powerhouse? A run at the United States title seems possible, but is the WWE ready to let Dean Ambrose drop the gold?
Moreover, would he actually lose the title to Langston?
If Langston doesn't perform in the pay-per-view at all, I'd expect to see some angle develop with him on Monday Night Raw. If the WWE has decided the time is now for Langston's push, it'll find a way to get him on the air in a live, prime-time spot.
The only question is, can he get over with the fans without wearing a title belt? Langston has the skills and build to be a major part of the WWE scene for years to come, but before that can happen, he needs to wear a few belts to establish himself as a major player.
The injury to Curtis Axel, and subsequent cancellation of the Intercontinental title match, has at the very least delayed the process.
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