MCNEILL'S TAKE McNEILL's Thursday Thoughts: The Case of Dolph Ziggler
Dec 6, 2012 - 3:47:41 PM
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By Pat McNeill, PWTorch columnist
WWE Champion C.M. Punk had surgery on Tuesday to remove cartilage from his knee. Speaking as someone who had a similar injury (under less athletic circumstances), I wish the champ well as he tries to complete knee rehab in time for the Royal Rumble.
Punk's injury and surgery has consequences for WWE as we head into the December 16 "Tables, Ladders & Chairs" pay-per-view in Brooklyn. For one thing, Mr. McMahon had to appear on Raw and, for the second month in a row, change the pay-per-view lineup. This time, it wasn't even Vince's fault. When the Royal Rumble lineup comes out next month, the company will need to send Mr. McMahon out to change the lineup again before fans will believe it's the actual card.
The new main event for "TLC" is John Cena against Dolph Ziggler in a ladder match for Dolph Ziggler's "Money In The Bank" briefcase. WWE probably changed the stipulation in order to add some intrigue to the match. That's necessary, seeing as John Cena has pinned Dolph Ziggler two weeks in a row on Raw. But WWE now has to tip its hand, a month earlier than expected, and chart a course for WrestleMania.
On the Aftershow yesterday, a reader wanted to know why Dolph Ziggler wouldn't go ahead and cash in the Money In The Bank briefcase early, to keep Cena from getting his hands on it. That's a great question. Frankly, John Cena doesn't need the Money in the Bank briefcase, especially if he's going to end up facing The Rock at WrestleMania XXIX. And we've established on Raw that Ziggler really has an issue with Cena. So, here are some other possibilities.
(1) Ziggler tanks, coming out at the start of the pay-per-view, cashing in the briefcase and letting Big Show pin him, just to stick it to Cena.
(2) With Cena and Ziggler probably going on last, Ziggler attacks the winner of the Big Show vs. Sheamus match, cashes in the briefcase and wins the Smackdown title. Then Cena beats Ziggler in the main event, but Ziggler has the title and Cena has reason to pursue Dolph, stretching out the feud.
(3) Ziggler actually wins the match. This is obviously the least likely finish, since WWE might want to have a happy ending after two straight months of screwjob main events. The Shield comes out and beats up Cena, helping Dolph climb the ladder to victory. Heck, you could even have Dolph as the mysterious hand behind The Shield.
There are plenty of options for WWE on the 16th. What matters most is that the promotion stays on course from December through WrestleMania.
Pat McNeill of Richmond, Virginia has been a PWTorch Columnist since 2001.
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