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If you missed the match between Cesaro and John Cena last night on RAW, you missed a very special moment. It should be important to note that this moment has happened numerous times before throughout the company's history. It is the moment when young talent or a superstar lost in the mid card captures the eye of not just the audience in attendance and watching at home, but the eye of the higher powers who run this company. These higher powers are the ones who make the decisions as to what wrestlers belong in the main event scene, and what wrestlers should be on the faces of their collecter cups, advertisements, and all other memorabilia. These higher powers were watching when Stone Cold Steve Austin faught rebelliously against Bret Hart at WrestleMania 13, showing a no-quit attitude that propelled him to the main event scene in the company. The higher powers were watching when Johh Cena accepted a challenge from Kurt Angle on Smackdown, and demonstrated that he would never back down from a fight, leading him to be the face of the company for the past decade. Lastly, they were watching RAW last night, and had to see the beautifully executed performance of Cesaro against John Cena.
When he entered the main roster as "Antonio" Cesaro (which he should still be called), he was a cocky European with an attractive European girlfriend (Aksana) and began an impressive reign as United States Champion. He displayed plenty of strength and in ring charisma during that time, and should have been considered as a future star based off of his solid performances while defending the U.S. Title. However, Cesaro took a step back after dropping the title, losing a decent amount of matches and being buried towards the bottom of the card. But he was given new life as a member of the Real Americans tag team with Jack Swagger and manager Zeb Colter. It was odd to have a Swiss born wrestler as a part of the "Real Americans", despite Zeb Colter's somewhat understandable reasoning as to why Cesaro explempified the characteristics of a "Real American". Regardless, Cesaro continued to remain in mid-card purgatory as he and Swagger jobbed to more superstars than they defeated. Still, Cesaro continued to show the same strength and in ring charisma that he displayed while wrestling as the U.S. Champion. It is just now in the past few weeks that Cesaro has begun to distinguish himself from his tag partner Jack Swagger, and begin what would seem to be a push forward as a singles wrestler again. How far will the push go for Cesaro? Well his clean victory over Randy Orton and his spot in the Elimination Chamber match for the WWE Title are certainly positive steps forward, but it was his performance against John Cena last night on RAW that really raised the ceiling for how far this push can go.
I respect how hard of a worker John Cena is, but he's extremely boring in the ring. For Cesaro to have made that match as entertaining as he did is saying something. Cesaro had a couple of memorable moves that got a Denver crowd as excited as they have been since the Broncos won the AFC Champioship. The first move was when Cesaro lept up to the top turnbuckle to deliver a violent European uppercut to John Cena that sent Cena crashing to the outside mat. The move was very special in that Cesaro literally came out of nowhere as the camera wasn't even focused in on Cesaro as he ran to the top turnbuckle. Then with another big move, Cesaro showed off the strength that has impressed so much of the WWE Universe as he suplexed John Cena back into the ring, with the middle rope as his balancing beam. Cena should be given credit for giving Cesaro enough of a lift to pull the move off, but Cesaro's legs have to be in top notch shape to pull that suplex off. The last amazing move was when Cena had Cesaro set up for an AA and Cesaro lifted himself off of Cena's shoulders, did a semi front flip, and landed on his feet, perfectly.
This match was a demonstration of how entertaining Cesaro can be as a main event wrestler in this company. A man that talented should become the reason fans buy tickets to watch RAW and actually order the non-big 4 Pay Per View events. Based on the other talent currently in the company, I think it is mandatory that Cesaro becomes a top 5 wrestler sometime in the near future as his in ring talent is too good to leave in the mid-card. But what then makes him worthy of being a WWE Champion? First off, his gimmick is something that the company can run with, as long as the gimmick is done right. When Cesaro entered the company as an arrogant show-off-my-girl-and-win-your-country's-title heel, I saw a phenominal amount of potential with that character. Cesaro to me looked like a villian in a James Bond movie. A handsome, confident, intelligent, and conceited European who brings an impressive array of moves and wrestling techniques to the top professional wrestling promotion in the world. Honestly, how is that not gold? He'd be awesome on talk shows and making appearances for the company's promotional events, dripping with European upper class swagger wherever he goes. But the company hasn't taken full advantage of that, at all. It looked promising when he had Aksana wrapped around him in the beginning, but it has been generic ever since. Cesaro should be given luxurious European cars to arrive in to events and have some vignettes of him visitng the top cities in Europe, meeting with soccer stars and celebrtities. So yes, amp up the gimmick and then having the title wrapped around his waist would be ideal. Secondly, he's decent enough on the mic to keep the rivalries intersting. It's hard to cut promos as entertaining as CM Punk, The Rock, and Steve Austin. But if your in ring skills are there, the company has tended to work around average mic skills. Randy Orton being the perfect example. Cesaro was doing decent mic work as the US Champion and was limited with the Real Americans. His Swiss accent adds a little flare to his promos and he's shown a decent amount of creativity to keep things interesting. Third reason is his wrestling. I've discussed this already throughout the blog and am just re-emphasizing it here. He is very entertaining, very strong, and brings a lot of creativity to each match. I'm sure that the other wrestlers love working with him and he could put on some great matches with the other young talent moving up the roster. Fourth and final reason is the WWE Universe will back this decision. The fans are the most vocal they've been in years and to put the title around someone the fans actually want to see be champion would be a great decision. Randy Orton, John Cena, Sheamus, Alberto Del Rio, and Big Show are not engaging the fans anymore the way they used to and that's a signal to give some other talent a shot at holding top titles. Did you see the pop Dolph Ziggler got when he cashed in his MITB? If it makes the fanbase then happy, then it's a good decision.
I know that the way decisions are made with the current WWE product are different from the decisions that were made during the Attitude Era. Without any other wrestling promotion to compete with, the WWE can focus on making more money via sponsorships, ad time, and marketing products as much as possible. However, the foundation of professional wrestling has been overshadowed by this new materialistic and cheesy version of the WWE. Granted, there are still memorable moments on RAW and at PPV's which keep the fanbase entertained enough to stick around. One of those moments was last night with Cesaro's performance against Cena. What hopefully happens is that the market-our-product decision making won't impact Cesaro's future and potential as being a future WWE Champion. Based off the reasons I listed, I don't see how Cesaro is a bad choice for the company as their top title holder. Hopefully the higher powers and I are on the same page.
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