One of the biggest non-surprises in WWE history occurred on Sunday night when Paul Heyman’s newest talent was revealed to be Ryback. Just when it looked like it was curtains for Heyman, Ryback came out to make the save, driving CM Punk through a table and bringing another leg to this intriguing feud. But what next for Ryback? What next for CM Punk? Is this a wise move on WWE’s part, or just another catastrophic mistake? I delve into what I think of the future of this feud and Ryback’s involvement.
Before I start, I want to make it clear that this is not meant to come across as a total Ryback bashing. It’s no secret that I am not a fan of his work, I feel the man is wooden in the ring, has no personality, and his feed me more chants from his first run were always more over than he ever has been. However, I would like to think somehow there is some glimmer of hope that there is a positive in all this. That glimmer of hope is the fact Ryback may be made more relevant just simply for working with Paul Heyman. Is that enough to save his so far dyer run as a main event talent? Probably not, but it may buy Ryback more time to establish himself and save himself from becoming just another failed statistic.
With Heyman on the mic on Raw I hoped there may be potential for explaining why Ryback became a Paul Heyman guy. It’s no secret Curtis Axel has not quite lived up to expectation, although on Sunday he showed he is capable of more and showed promise. What I saw on Raw pretty much allowed me to see what I can only describe as a car hurtling towards a disaster crash. Not even Heyman could stop the Goldberg chants from happening, and then to see Heyman lower himself to the level of kissing Ryback filled me with dread and fear. I see no logic why Heyman would pick up a guy like Ryback to be his next big thing.
What does all this mean for CM Punk? After all, we have already seen Ryback face Punk previously during the historic 434 day WWE Championship reign of CM Punk, and the matches did not set the world on fire in terms of Ryback’s work. Ryback is a sloppy worker in the ring, he has been careless in the past, and couldn’t even have a good match with the top 2 workers this year in Chris Jericho and Daniel Bryan. Luckily for Ryback, he will be working with CM Punk, a man who will not hold back on voicing his opinion should Ryback blow a spot or not pull his weight during this feud. The thought of these two having to face off again doesn’t excite me much, having already seen this happen around 12 months ago.
The one good thing to come out of Sunday was we did not see Punk on Raw the following night, which sold the injuries received from being put through the table by Ryback. It allows WWE to plant the seed for Punk to come back and either attack Ryback or interrupt him and Heyman during a promo. But what of Curtis Axel? Will he fit somewhere into the equation on this? I expect we may see him involved as part of a tag team with Ryback for the next few weeks, which allows for a build toward Survivor Series. I anticipate a traditional style match being made between Team Heyman of Heyman, Axel, Ryback, and maybe Lesnar facing Team Punk, which I imagine will consist of CM Punk, Kofi Kingston, and two other stars with history with either Heyman or one of the other members of his team.
All this is of course a build up toward a potential feud going forward between Brock Lesnar and Ryback. I expect to see this match go down at Wrestlemania with the seeds being planted at the Royal Rumble and growing from there. Sadly this is not really a match I want to see, but equally it may benefit Ryback more given the fact it is likely to be a fight more than a wrestling match. I hope Lesnar learnt something from his feud with CM Punk and will start to have wrestling matches going forward, but if he faces Ryback I would rather see a fight. I expect a feud between the two men sees Ryback as the face, because Vince probably hopes it will somehow get Ryback over with the crowd, which I somehow see as unlikely.
I quite honestly don’t really see how Ryback is going to benefit this feud. I would have preferred to see someone new get a shot like Kassius Ohno or Corey Graves, who could easily have great matches with Punk, and bring a different dimension to the feud. Ryback unfortunately just does nothing for me and I fear this may well be Heyman’s first failure in a long time. I hope I am wrong but I honestly don’t hold out much hope for the future of this feud given Ryback’s involvement.
What are your thoughts on Ryback becoming the new Paul Heyman guy? Is this a bright move on WWE’s part? Or is it in fact just another example of Vince being out of touch with what his audience wants? As always, I look forward to seeing your thoughts on the future of this feud. Over the weekend I will be delving into the current WWE Championship situation and giving my thoughts on whether or not this is ruining the hard work that went into making it so relevant again.