The Heel Report: 02.14.13: The Greatest ‘IT’ Factors
This is the Heel Report. A weekly chart spanning from Tuesday’s NXT to the Raw Super Show, ranking the heels in professional wrestling based on their actions, wins and losses.
Each Week there are ten places, with points out of ten awarded based on these positions. These points are then added to a rolling chart that will continue each week to show who is wrestling’s overall top heel.
This is a place where the heels of wrestling can be praised for all the hard work they do trying to get us all to hate them, so without further ado let’s get on with the report…
Weekly Top Ten
1st Place: Aries & Roode
Ladies and Gentlemen, your new TNA tag team champions! It has been quite a fast rise for the newly formed team, but then again since there are barely any tag teams in TNA right now it would have been hard for Aries and Roode to prove themselves against other teams in a long journey to earn a shot. I think everyone is looking forward to their run as tag team champions, although after they are done with Chavo and Hernandez, TNA are going to have to come up with some more tag teams for the two heels to face before they inevitably turn face with their cheeky tag team antics.
2nd Place: Mark Henry
“That’s What I Do!” Mark Henry is back with a vengeance, kickin’ ass and taking names. Henry smashed the Great Khali twice in one week, destroyed Hornswaggle and pinned Randy Orton clean to earn a spot in the Elimination Chamber, compare that dominance to the return of a guy like Wade Barrett, or even Jack Swagger’s return and you can see just how dominant the World’s Strongest Man is as a returning star. Do I think he will be in the World title match at Wrestlemania? No. But I think he will be having a great match against someone like Ryback or Sheamus at the event.
3rd Place: C.M. Punk
The former WWE champion took back what was rightfully his and took care of some housekeeping as he convinced Paul Heyman to stay by his side and then ended up taking out the Rock with a GTS and walking off with the WWE title at the end of Raw. Sure there is almost no way that Punk is walking off with the title at the Elimination Chamber, unless of course it is going to be a triple threat match at Wrestlemania, but it was still nice to see that no one, least of all Punk, is presuming that it is a foregone conclusion.
4th Place: The Shield
This group are dicing with death right now as they came out this week and directly set their sights on John Cena, which never ends well for a heel group. Still their promo was pretty convincing as they basically became the voice of IWC, or at least as it is perceived, and denounced the evil force that is John Cena. Of course then the lights went out and they had a little of their own medicine in a three-man attack from Cena, Sheamus and Ryback, but once again the team escaped without taking any real damage, setting up for a payoff in their match on Sunday, win or lose.
5th Place: Big Show
The former world champion is fuming mad to the point where he couldn’t even speak on Monday Night Raw when given the chance and instead simply responded in violence. It’s kind of strange that the last two title matches that the men had were Last Man Standing matches and yet in their third encounter it is a normal match, it’s not the worst thing that could happen but it is a little bit different and I’m not sure if that is a good thing. Personally I can’t see either man taking the title to Wrestlemania and instead I’m banking on Ziggler vs. Jericho for the title after Ziggler cashes in on Sunday. Certainly anything could happen at the Elimination Chamber, but if either Del Rio or Big Show are in the title match at Wrestlemania I’ll be pretty disappointed.
6th Place: Cody Rhodes
All of Rhodes’ protests seem to have fallen on deaf ears as he is definitely not in the Elimination Chamber match on Sunday, however his protest on Main Event definitely got him noticed by me and the Heel Report. Rhodes took the spotlight on the show and despite losing consistently this week to the point where I worry about his new singles push, at least I know that he is doing pretty well with his mic work now and maybe 2013 post-Wrestlmania will be a better time for the son of the American Dream.
7th Place: Antonio Cesaro
The US champion showed another great feat of strength this week as he swung the Miz around repeatedly, smashing him into the barricade with every turn. It seems clear that Cesaro will be going up against Miz for the title at the Elimination Chamber, but after Miz’s fumble with Punk at a recent house show I am even less convinced that Miz will actually be allowed to beat Cesaro for the belt. I’m still gunning for the Cesaro-Ryback feud that I predicted months ago, but Ryback-Henry would be good too so whatever at this point, either one is good by me.
8th Place: Jack Swagger
The Real American once again took out a couple of Jobbers, but this time on Raw he had some backup on the mic in the form of Zeb Coulter. Now I’m still not completely clear on who this guy is but certainly Swagger getting some help on the mic is no bad thing. It didn’t work so good with Vicky Guerrero but this guy seems to be a lot more cogent, being able to extend a promo beyond simply repeating the same word over and over and getting booed out of the building. Will it lead him onto bigger and better things? I’m not so sure, but at least he now has some help in the one area where he is still clearly pretty weak.
9th Place: Damien Sandow
I am slightly worried about our Intellectual Saviour as after his amicable breakup with his former tag team partner Cody Rhodes he hasn’t exactly seemed all that strong as a singles competitor, not getting the usual amount of time in the ring against main event level talent as he would before his Rhodes Scholars days. Still he did manage to defeat Daniel Bryan on Main Event, although there was no mention of him being considered for the Elimination Chamber despite taking out a participant in the match. I guess that former champion stipulation really stuck huh, although it was completely arbitrary and made everything confusing as you had to be a former champion to even get into the running to be considered for the match, but ah well. Let’s just hope that like Cody Rhodes, Damien Sandow’s momentum can pick up after Wrestlemania is over and all the temp guys depart and we are left with our current performers once again and several gaps in the main event to fill.
10th Place: Dolph Ziggler
After being suspiciously absent from both Raw and Smackdown last week the ZIg Zag man returned to Raw and demanded a spot in the Elimination Chamber after hearing that Jericho would be involved, a spot he failed to obtain. Honestly I don’t think Ziggler will have a match on the card and he appears to be floundering at this point, and you know what that means! That’s right; he’s going to win the World title! In the tradition of MitB cash ins the WWE doesn’t give a crap whether Ziggler wins or loses or even competes in matches because they clearly have him scheduled to cash in the case and win the belt and apparently that is supposed to get him instantly over. Luckily just like Daniel Bryan last year, Ziggler is already insanely over and whether it is on the Big Show or Del Rio I would imagine that he will succeed as champion and if we are going to get a Jericho heel turn as promised I would love to see a Jericho-Ziggler match at Mania where the roles are reversed as it should make for an interesting dynamic, but we’ll just have to wait and see what happens on Sunday first.
1. Robert Roode (285)
2. Alberto Del Rio (281)
3. Dolph Ziggler (276)
4. Daniel Bryan (274)
5. Cody Rhodes (267)
6. The Big Show (252)
7. C.M. Punk (229)
8. Mark Henry (192)
9. The Miz (188)
10. Bully Ray (170)
The Wright View:
The Stipulation Segment
First of all I have no idea why this stipulation in the WWE title match is important, or where it came from, but perhaps that is the point. But apart from that the whole thing just sounded so contrived, McMahon’s voice was clearly a recording and was even more painful to watch than those ‘Live Via Satellite’ promos that often take place. I just think the whole thing could have been done a whole lot better, hell even them just announcing it at some point on Raw would have been good enough, and why not just have Vicky Guerrero make the stipulation what with McMahon out of action? Just because Heyman himself pointed it out doesn’t make it any more of a likely occurrence to happen. I would also like to point out that the Rock’s promo on Raw was comparable to Cena’s promo before the Rumble where he rambled on for a while about some disconnected things and then said he will win on Sunday, the only reason it hasn’t been as universally condemned is because the Rock actually has the charisma to make it sound like he is being entertaining, whereas Cena at this point simply dies a slow death, thinking that if you just smile through it everything will be alright.
Now some might say that Jericho coming back simply means that he is denying some other guy from a spot in the chamber and on the Wrestlemania card itself, and while that is true to some extent I would rather have the guaranteed quality that Chris Jericho brings rather than take the chance on that entrant in the chamber being the Great Khali over Cody Rhodes, which could have easily happened had Jericho not come in and taken one of the final places. Jericho is already back to doing what he does best; having great matches with current superstars, making them look even more awesome than usual, and taking way more losses than wins in the process. Although as previously stated I am hoping that this time he bucks the trend and actually wins the match so that he can face Ziggler at Mania for the belt, letting Ziggler get the win and be off to a great start as the new World champion.
I’m not sure exactly where this is going, some people seem to think that Punk is going to turn on Heyman, which would possibly lead to a Punk-Lesnar match at Wrestlemania, but whatever the case the opening segment on Raw, despite possibly being a bit long, was a great way to deepen the relationship between the former champion and his ‘mentor’. The team of Punk and Heyman works well and the more personal it gets the more interested I become, and the better the eventual betrayal by either party will be when it finally happens.
The Tag Team Division
Harsh to say but it is clear that the rejuvenated tag team division has already faded back into obscurity, at least outside of NXT anyway. The Usos, Primo & Epico and The Prime Time Players, they all barely appear on Raw or Smackdown anymore, and when they do they are little more than just jobbers to teams of single stars put together to keep their momentum going from week to week. There is no real team that you could say are in contention for the tag titles at the moment, and the champions themselves are clearly close to imploding and therefore they will probably drop the belts to the next two guys thrown together in a team for some arbitrary reason. Perhaps the Rock and John Cena before Wrestlemania, you know to break that whole ‘Never Before, Never Again’ thing they had at Survivor Series 2011. At least that way the tag titles might get another revamp so they look better, that could possibly help the division more than anything else at this point.
Tazz on Impact – Despite getting some hate from some people I personally have been digging Tazz as a heel pro-Aces & 8s commentator on Impact and I thought his line of: “No room for short guys in wrestling” after Robbie E called Rockstar Spud a midget was great. The irony of course being that Tazz himself is a famously short wrestler, a great piece of self-deprecation there.
That’s all for this week, with Elimination Chamber next week, the Road to Wrestlemania continuing and TNA now only really having four major PPVs in the year it might be some time before we get another TNA dominated week on the chart. However what with Robert Roode finally claiming the top spot on the Rolling Chart by some way I’m guessing that nothing short of a Dolph Ziggler world title win will dethrone the Impact Wrestling star for some time to come, whether that is a good thing or not is up to you. For now though this is James Wright signing off.