WWE and the Swinging Cesaro Push

October 01, 2014 By: Category: WWE | Pro Wrestling

After watching Friday’s SmackDown, I was left asking myself one question: does the WWE even care anymore?

It’s bad enough that SmackDown has become the clear “B show”, where unimportant things happen and anything of value is saved for Raw, but now it’s including the rushed and nonsensical booking that permeates the flagship show.

It should be no secret to anyone that’s read me that I’m a fan of Cesaro. Why wouldn’t you be? In an industry that loves a good strong man, he’s a real life strong man without having the cartoonish muscles. He deadlifts everyone, tosses them to their doom and uppercuts faces off. He’s the legitimately hard-hitting Superman that everyone should be in love with.

And WWE cannot figure out what the hell to do with him.

Back in April, it seemed pretty clear that Cesaro was getting the push of a lifetime. Separated from his xenophobe tag team partner, Jack Swagger, the Swiss Superman would go on to win the inaugural Andre the Giant Memorial Battle Royal at Wrestlemania 30 in the most impressive way possible: body-slamming a legit Giant, the Big Show, over the top rope. Hulk Hogan has this delusion that his body slamming Andre the Giant at Wrestlemania 3 killed the big man; if he had done what Cesaro did, he’d be claiming to have shifted the tectonic plates. It was that impressive.

The next night on Raw, it only got better for Cesaro: he was the latest Paul Heyman Guy. In the past, this meant automatic respect and a likely ascent to the top of the company. He’d surely become the next big heel with the game’s greatest talker as his mouth piece.

Instead, the WWE did what it usually does: lost patience. Cesaro did nothing of note for a little while, failing to build on the momentum he had coming out of the biggest event of the year. Eventually, Paul Heyman decided that he’d rather spend all of his time with BAAAAROOOOOOCK LEEEEEEESNARRRRR than coach up the Swiss Superman and Cesaro was left flailing.

From there, it only got worse. He would become jobber fodder for his former tag team partner among others, being the guy used to make someone look legitimate. He’d have a highly competitive match with John Cena, then go out and lose on Smackdown.

It’s continued in that way all the way up to now. He’s lost several times to hardly-defending US Champion Sheamus, but got a little momentum with a battle royal win on Friday’s Smackdown to earn himself a shot at Dolph Ziggler’s Intercontinental Championship. Instead of building that win up, making it seem important and huge, as well as saving the championship match for Hell in a Cell to give us a fresh matchup for once, what did the WWE do? Had it later on that night. And Cesaro lost in controversial fashion. If this leads to an awesome feud between two of the best workers in the game, I’m all for it, but forgive me for losing faith in the WWE’s creative process. The next logical step on their white board of doom is to have Cesaro repeat that loss 14 more times, put it on pay-per-view and then do it another 23 times before finally moving on.

The most frustrating part is that Cesaro clearly has support. The fans appreciate him for being the strongest guy ever, deadlifting everything and dropping it to death. There were even rumors that the WWE was confiscating pro-Cesaro signs because they wanted him to be presented as a heel. Here’s a thought: let the fans like who they want and they’ll cheer that guy if he keeps doing whatever he’s doing.

It’s like the WWE doesn’t want to make money anymore, which would be weird considering all the reports about how freaked out the WWE is over the declining ratings. Then again, they pull awful booking decisions like this out and wonder why people are tuning out the product left and right.

I don’t ever expect John Cena to go away, but push Cesaro to something relevant and you’ll keep me happy. Even that seems like a tall task at this point.

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Is Cesaro/Swagger the Rhodes/Sandow WWE feud of 2014?

March 28, 2014 By: Category: WWE | Pro Wrestling

Sometimes, there are comments made by wrestlers that just stick with you as gospel in the business. This spot remains true to that belief.

When the inaugural Bound for Glory Series came down to the Final Four, James Storm, Bobby Rude, Gunner and Bully Ray faced off to win a title shot with Kurt Angle. In the promo work, Bully Ray made the comment that as a tag team partner, you at one point or another, look at the guy next to you and wonder if you have what it takes to beat them.

Of course, that comment – although paraphrased, led to a raging rivalry that helped keep TNA on solid ground. We’ve seen it over the years. Tag team partners, stable mates and even brothers go at it against each other to see which one was the best of the lot. This year, WrestleMania 30 may do the same thing. At some point, the WWE Universe is going to see Antonio Cesaro and Jack Swagger on opposite sides of the ring, and it could happen in the Andre the Giant Battle Royal.

This is one confrontation that gets hot, then cold, then hot again. The WWE needs to decide what to do with these superstars, who have not held tag team gold and appear to be in purgatory of late within Zeb Colter’s stable.

Plus, after the company ruined a good thing with Damien Sandow and Cody Rhodes last year, this is a battle that could make magic in the ring. We can only hope the WWE does not do its best impersonation of Lucy and Charlie Brown and this potential program falls flat on its backside.

It would appear the WWE really has no idea what to do with either of these WWE superstars, hence the union with Colter and the collaboration of a good, powerful tag team that has not achieved complete success. Cesaro looked like he would be pushed as a singles competitor after his performance in the Elimination Chamber pay-per-view. But, as we all saw, the company again has done its own 180 and is pushing other superstars like Dolph Ziggler gain.

Swagger has the potential to be the next Kurt Angle or Jack Brisco – but he is toiling in misery. Cesaro is the best pure athlete the WWE has today. It’s a perfect union that cannot go anywhere because of the ladder of wrestlers currently on the WWE roster and the fact the company will not work with its current talent and is reaching for veterans to come back and “save” the company.

Professional wrestling has had the chance to see the Hardy’s feud, The Dudley’s have thrown down as well. Edge and Christian have had their battles. We never really had a chance to see Ric Flair and Arn Anderson get into it, but the drama leading up to it was great theater. And in this case, Cesaro and Swagger could be as well. If the WWE needed some of its old school roots to shine, this was certainly the time to show it with these two competitors.

Now it remains to be seen if the company will follow through. If it does, there is a good chance this could be a feud we talk about for some time to come.

Disclaimer: For the next 30 days, this will be an ongoing series of stories as we move down the Road to WrestleMania. Follow Camel Clutch Blog writer/blogger David M. Levin as he talks about the history, the pageantry and the success and failures of the past when it comes to wrestling’s biggest events. The views of the writer are not necessarily the views of Camel Clutch Blog, and this series is intended to ramp up the excitement that is associated with WrestleMania XXX and the Crescent City of New Orleans. Please enjoy this new feature and any comments are most welcome.

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Don’t Forget About Antonio Cesaro in the WWE Elimination Chamber

February 07, 2014 By: Category: WWE | Pro Wrestling

Dory Funk, Jr. did not win the NWA World Title from Gene Kiniski by flying off a top roe or using some form of an Attitude Adjustment to secure the win.

Ox Baker did not terrorize wrestlers in the Portland and San Antonio promotions with a leg sweep or a Superman punch.

Cowboy Bill Watts used to just beat the hell out of his opponents and the Minnesota Wrecking Crew (Ole and Gene Anderson) used to punish their opponents by taking a body part and wearing it down and forcing the wrestler into submission. Those were the days of true professional wrestling – the days when the Iron Claw and the Texas Cloverleaf and the Thesz Press actually hurt and caused an opponent to fall to their feet. The days when wrestlers used the ropes to abuse their opponents and Buddy Rogers used a figure-four leg lock like it was supposed to be used.

The world of professional wrestling is so removed form that, it is hard to imagine that Ric Flair has not held a world title of any kind in over a decade and the last time we saw a Von Erich in the ring is almost 15 years ago.

The times have changed, our wrestling sensibilities have changed and our feelings toward the “business” and not the “sport” have grown weary that the product we see on a nightly basis. To make matters worse, the idea of a “true” wrestler in the WWE is about a possible right now as someone like Kurt Angle returning to the company that helped make him famous. Brock Lesnar does nothing to make this company think it is a true wrestling outfit.

The closest thing to a “true” professional is Antonio Cesaro and his mat skills – which make him the best the company has to offer as a wrestler. Hopefully, the company will see to it that the Swiss star can improve his positioning in the Elimination Chamber match later this month with five other wrestlers in the match.

Cesaro is the best overall talent in the company today, and in my opinion, that is not a stretch. His make skills, his Cloverleaf hold and his overall size and power brings to mind an Ole Anderson or a Jos LeDuc or even the Vachons from way back in the AWA and WWWF. If he were about 20 pounds heavier, the comparisons to Mad Dog Vachon would be undeniable.

Yes, he is that good. And yes, as a wrestling purest, it is good to see someone with that kind of talent prove he can survive with the “finishers” in the company of today.

Cesaro’s alliance with Jack Swagger and Zeb Coulter has been a brilliant move by the WWE – where to good talents have come together in a situation that allows them to remain relevant and has also made him a household name. Ever since he won the United States Title from Santino Marella, I personally have been waiting for him to do more.

His feud with Ryback as the “Big Hungry” was developing was probably the biggest and best test for him and made both he and Ryback relevant. Now that he has won a position in the six-man Elimination Chamber match, it remains to be seen if he can stand toe to toe with five other WWE superstars who have claimed WWE Gold.

Personally, I think we will really see what a special talent he is. Does he claim the match and the WWE World Title – probably not. He and Christian are the long shots in this contest. But there is enough opportunities to show he was worthy of this match and could put him in a position to make a case for a future run for the WWE World Title.

Follow David on Twitter @davidlevin71

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WWE Wrestler of the Week: October 4th – 10th, 2013

October 11, 2013 By: Category: WWE | Pro Wrestling

We The WWE Wrestlers of the Week. Despite the start of winning streaks for Dolph Ziggler and CM Punk, The Real Americans are walking away the winners this week. Ziggler had two wins over Sir Money in the Bank Damien Sandow, while Punk has two wins over the Paul Heyman Guys recently. Regardless, it is Antonio Cesaro’s strength and impressive move set that has people talking.

On WWE Friday night SmackDown, Cesaro delivered a giant swing to Titus O’Neil to give himself and Jack Swagger a win. The Prime Time Players, like many tag teams in the division, have been inconsistent in their wins. They were number one contenders for the tag team titles for a very short time. Still, once the gold leaves the hands of the Shield, the Prime Time Players could be in line for a run.

At WWE Battleground, The Real Americans got another victory. This time it was against the duo of Santino Marella and the Great Khali. The match was a late addition and didn’t serve much purpose. However, WWE clearly is showing off Cesaro’s moves. He delivered the giant swing to the giant. Apparently, that is enough to make one dizzy enough to not kick out of three. Either that or Khali is just unable to kick out.

On Raw, The Real Americans had a rematch against Santino and Khali with the same exact result. There were a number of rematches from Battleground on Raw. Personally, I really dislike when WWE does this. There are plenty of superstars on the roster that WWE doesn’t need to have so many rematches. Nonetheless, the purpose was once again to show Cesaro delivering the giant swing to Khali.

There have been reports of a possible face turn for Cesaro based on WWE believing the giant swing move to better off for a babyface. I don’t see Cesaro as a babyface. I think he and Swagger are finally doing well as a tag team. In fact, I think they should get a tag title run before any sort of babyface turn for Cesaro.

The Shield’s Roman Reigns and Seth Rollins do not need the tag titles to be effective characters on WWE programming. WWE’s tag team division is finally deep enough that one team doesn’t need to have such a lengthy reign. The Real Americans join Prime Time Players, Los Matadores, The Wyatt Family and The Usos towards the top. Then you have the jobber teams in 3MB and Tons of Funk. Don’t forget that the Rhodes Brothers could join the division formerly soon.

Whether WWE turns Cesaro babyface or makes some changes to the tag team division, they seem to be into the idea of pushing Cesaro again. There is no harm in having a mouthpiece with Cesaro. He serves as a much more effective superstar to Zeb Colter than Swagger does. Swagger just stands behind Colter without delivering any emotion. At least Cesaro acts threatening. The addition of a manager turned out to be just what Cesaro needed. Even if he turns face, WWE could look for a babyface manager to help him out once again.

Who do you think deserves WWE Wrestler of the Week this week? How should WWE book Antonio Cesaro going forward? Please share your thoughts in the comment section below.

Seth Guttenplan is the owner of GuTTWrenchPowerBlog. When Seth is not writing about wrestling, he is a Special Education teacher in New Jersey. To read more from Seth, follow him on twitter ( @sethgutt ) and visit

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Antonio Cesaro and Zeb Colter will Make an Interesting Pair in WWE

June 20, 2013 By: Category: WWE | Pro Wrestling

Zeb Colter introduced an unlikely ally on the June 17 edition of WWE Raw when Antonio Cesaro stood by his side with the world watching. Cesaro is of course the second Superstar along with Jack Swagger, to follow Zeb as Colter’s Militia now includes two men who are apparently falling right in line with his ideology.

That’s right, folks. Antonio Cesaro is now drinking the Kool-Aid.

If I told you that I did not see this coming, I would be lying. The fact is that nearly a month ago I wrote a column regarding the possibility of Colter and Cesaro joining forces in Vince McMahon’s company. My reasoning was that Colter would respect Cesaro for entering the country the right way and in essence for being an honorable man.

By the way, I was burned pretty hard on that one.

But the truth is that everyone is a critic and WWE fans can be a very tough crowd to impress at times so I took it on the chin and moved on to the next column. The fact is I really didn’t lose a lot of sleep over it.

Of course we’re now faced with the angle that began on Raw and those same fans that enjoyed ripping me apart are left scratching their heads. Not at my powers of prognostication, but the fact that on the surface the alliance between Zeb and Antonio does not seem to make all that much sense.

But I for one believe that it’s the ideal pairing. Why?

Because first and foremost, Antonio is going nowhere fast. Though many fans consider him to be one of WWE’s best talents, an established worker who deserves a fair shake, the truth is that he’s just not getting one.

His United States Championship run was good, it wasn’t great. The feuds he has been involved in have been okay, they have not been career defining.

To put it another way, the guy isn’t doing much of anything anyway.

While that is not much of a reason to just put him with Colter, the point is that he is now back on the fans’ radar. If Zeb can help get him over on TV then that could open doors for Cesaro that may be closed right now. I’m not suggesting that it would help elevate him to WWE or World title status but it would add another layer to his character and perhaps give him more opportunities somewhere down the line.

Then there’s the fact that Colter is very entertaining on the mic and needs more of the controversial spotlight he had when Jack Swagger was himself a World title contender. Colter excels at his role as the outspoken extremist, the proud American who has taken his personal patriotism a bit too far.

He gets a reaction out of the crowd whenever he speaks and gets heat just by showing up on the ramp. He is a throwback to the old school WWE manager and along with Paul Heyman, is bringing back some of that element to the current product.

But the main reason why the partnership between Colter and Cesaro makes sense? Because they’re heels. That’s it.

A heel does not have to explain anything to anyone. His logic only has to make sense to himself. Despite how warped or how insane his approach may be, the fact is that he’s right and everyone else is wrong.

Fans may not understand why heels sometimes do the things they do in WWE, but from a storyline perspective, these characters all inhabit the same universe and have to interact with each other from time to time. Rivalries begin, alliances are formed and whether we can see the reasoning behind it all or not, the fact is that when WWE creative is at its best, they are capable of great things.

And they are also capable of massive train wrecks.

So which will it be in this instance? Are we looking at an angle that will be highly successful for both men? Will Cesaro become a strong mid-card performer once again, perhaps even going higher in WWE? Or will this union be the last act of a misguided company and Antonio will eventually see his WWE career fizzle out and fade away?

I believe that Zeb Colter and Antonio Cesaro will make for a very interesting duo on WWE programming. Each man has proved how talented he is at his respective job and at the end of the day; the best always rise to the top. If the commitment from the company is there and the fans respond accordingly, then Colter’s Militia could become one of WWE’s most powerful factions.

We the people.

Follow Tom on Twitter @tomclarkbr

Tom Clark is a WWE Featured Columnist and Consultant for Bleacher Report and a Contributor for JBL’s Layfield Report

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WWE Main Events waiting to happen: Inside The Wheelhouse

June 13, 2013 By: Category: WWE | Pro Wrestling

This week marks my 4 year anniversary with Camel Clutch Blog and for those of you who have been at the site for know by now what my annual blog tends to be. The last three years I have looked back at my very first blog where I deemed John Morrison was “a main event waiting to happen.” Well, John Morrison isn’t in wrestling at the moment and I couldn’t have been more far off then stealing that line from the legendary Jim Ross on an episode of SmackDown.

I’m going to instead take my anniversary blog with the CCB and turn into “Main Events waiting to happen” in all of professional wrestling.

Who are the future top stars in wrestling? Who has the potential of main eventing a WrestleMania at some point in their career?

Well, let’s kick it into gear with my list of up and coming stars:

Dean Ambrose – No shock here that this guy is at the top of my “main events waiting to happen” list. Prior to joining the WWE we had heard that Ambrose (then Jon Moxley) had the “it factor” that not many wrestlers have. He had the “independent wrestling buzz” that we haven’t seen since the days of CM Punk, Bryan Danielson (Daniel Bryan) and Samoa Joe.

Ambrose has the ability to talk extremely well on the mic and be just as good inside the squared circle. While he’s with one of the best acts in wrestling right now, “The Shield,” the “cream will eventually rise to the top” and we will see him reach his full potential in the near-to-soon future. Dean Ambrose has the ability to be one of the best heels to come into professional wrestling for quite sometime.

Antonio Cesaro – The former “Claudio Castagnoli” on the independent scene has an extreme amount of potential and “it factor” that I cannot believe the WWE has tapped into yet. Like Ambrose, I can foresee Cesaro being a huge heel in the WWE for years to come. He’s a rising star that has the look, in-ring ability and underrated promos to be a top star in this company.

To be honest I’m quite surprised the WWE hasn’t given him the ball to run with. I could really see Cesaro as a heel battling it out with John Cena over the WWE Championship and him defeating Cena wouldn’t be something “shocking” based off of his look. It’s been great to see him rise in the WWE and I think it’s only a matter of time before he’s holding some sort of World Championship.

Seth Rollins & Roman Reigns – It’s very rare that there are multiple stars within a faction or stable but “The Shield” has the ability to “break the mold” when it comes to those theories. I still believe Dean Ambrose will surpass his two other Shield members eventually and be the big star first but Rollins & Reigns won’t be that far behind. We may look back at “The Shield” days as one of the most impactful groups/factions/stables in the history of professional wrestling based on what each star did post-group.

Rollins is a great in-ring worker who lacked promo ability with ROH in my opinion. Well he’s still a great in-ring worker and he has vastly improved in his promos with the WWE. The former “Tyler Black” is a guy who may take some time to grow but will be a major player in my opinion. I would not be shocked to see an Ambrose/Rollins feud somewhere in the near future, should that happen it will be a great thing for wrestling fans.

When it comes to Roman Reigns it has taken a while for him to grow on me but he is starting to reflect a wrestler who has a lot of “it” potential as well. I didn’t know as much about Roman Reigns as I did Dean Ambrose or Seth Rollins but I have been pleasantly surprised with what I have seen from him. The WWE has been missing that “Batista-like” wrestler (sorry Ryback) that can be a “monster” or “Animal” (pun intended) since Batista left and I think Roman Reigns could fill that role as well.

I would not be surprised if all three members of “The Shield” have some sort of World Championship reigns at some point’s in their career.

Brodus Clay – This is my wildcard pick for “main events waiting to happen.” I can foresee Clay being a force in the WWE frankly because The Big Show and Mark Henry can’t be those typical “monsters” in the company forever. Both stars are getting older and Brodus Clay has the legit ability to fulfill their roles.

Clay is very much underrated with his in-ring ability, we already know he can cut a good promo and he has a ton of charisma. Whether the WWE decided to keep him as this loveable “monster” face that he is right now or turn him heel I still think he could get the job done as a top star in the company. The WWE loves marketable stars and Brodus Clay can be a guy who can sell a lot of merchandise for years to come.

For more on this topic join us for the Thursday June 13th edition of “The Still Real to Us Show” and download the show or

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Antonio Cesaro has Daniel Bryan syndrome: Inside The Wheelhouse

May 30, 2013 By: Category: WWE | Pro Wrestling

Let me preface the title by saying that Antonio Cesaro and Daniel Bryan are two of my favorite wrestlers today. Calm down internet world.

Reports are indicating lately that the WWE believes Antonio Cesaro is a “boring” wrestler. I could not disagree more with those reports because Cesaro has “the look” the WWE wants and the charisma of what I believe to be is an “old school ethnic heel.” What I mean by that is you dislike him because he cuts a promo denouncing the United States and when he enters the squared circle you believe he can easily beat anyone in the ring based off of his size/look.

Despite what is being said on “dirtsheets” lately I believe that Antonio Cesaro is a future World Champion in the making. He has that “it factor” that appeals to the masses and connects with the “hardcore” fanbase due to his popularity on the independent circuit. Now doesn’t that belief remind you of Daniel Bryan a couple years ago?

When Bryan first came to the WWE there was a belief that he was “boring.” Hell, Michael Cole would bash him about it on his commentary throughout most of Bryan’s matches, promo’s or segments. That didn’t sit well with the “hardcore” fanbase because Daniel Bryan (Bryan Danielson) was a “cult-like hero” on the independent wrestling circuit for the last decade putting on matches that people would either trade or discuss via word-of-mouth.

Most wrestling fans knew Daniel Bryan had the potential to be a World Champion and one day even main event a WrestleMania. When it came to Daniel Bryan the WWE either didn’t believe that could ever be, didn’t want it to ever happen or just tried to fool all of us with what we perceived to be their “belief” of Bryan.

Now it seems like Cesaro is dealing with the same fate as he is a wrestler that is being described as “boring” but that many fans believe is a future World Champion/Main Eventer in the making. I basically have called this now, with all due respect of course, the “Daniel Bryan syndrome.”

What do I mean by that?

“Daniel Bryan syndrome” can be defined as an Independent wrestling star not getting his or her due respect in the WWE but many “hardcore” fans realizing he or she has a world of talent and potential. That can be due to the star’s background in Independent wrestling and not being a “homegrown” WWE talent or because the WWE wants this Independent wrestling star to pay their dues on the “WWE level” despite paying dues for most of their professional wrestling careers. Most of the time when a star is dealing with said syndrome, the popularity of said star forces the WWE to realize that they have a star in the making…just like Daniel Bryan.

Antonio Cesaro is far from boring in my opinion. Anyone who has had watched the former Claudio Castagnoli the last decade on the independent wrestling circuit has come to realize he has in-fact came a long way in his promo ability and in-ring work. There is a reason why Cesaro was in developmental for a short period of time and it’s because he has that “it factor.”

He went from headlining ROH matches to being in the WWE one year later. It’s very rare that you see that happen and it’s because the WWE knew of the talent they have on their hands, which makes me really confused on why they aren’t capitalizing on his star potential right now.

I really believed and still believe that Cesaro would be the breakout star in the WWE in 2013. So far that prediction hasn’t come to fruition and I blame that solely on the WWE not being in “flavor” with the former WWE United States Champion. He’s proven to be a great in-ring worker and they haven’t even touched the potential he can be as a major heel player in the WWE.

It’ll take some time but I fully expect Antonio Cesaro to go through the same path as Daniel Bryan and be able to conquer this “Daniel Bryan syndrome” in the soon-to-near future. He is too good not to be featured in a more prominent role on WWE television.

For more on this topic join us for the Thursday May 30th edition of “The Still Real to Us Show” and download the show at or

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Antonio Cesaro Is Anything But Boring

May 16, 2013 By: Category: WWE | Pro Wrestling

Antonio Cesaro has turned into the new Dolph Ziggler among pro wrestling fans in the social networking community. Recent squashes and reports reveal that WWE Creative find him boring which is ironic because I could say the same thing about WWE Creative.

The crusade for Antonio Cesaro has replaced the “push Dolph Ziggler” campaign and its predecessor “push Daniel Bryan” campaigns among vocal fans on the Internet. A growing community fans have become outraged and disappointed with Cesaro’s push in the WWE. I am one of them. A new report sheds some light on it and also reveals a situation that is much more disappointing than Cesaro’s run.

Dave Meltzer on recent podcasts and his Wrestling Observer newsletter revealed that WWE Creative isn’t pushing Cesaro for a reason. They find him boring. Meltzer reports that while Cesaro has plenty of support inside the locker room, the team with the pencils is not enamored with his solid ring work.

There are those who think he should be in the top mix right now but there are others who find him boring, including some of the most important people, and that’s why he’s in the position he’s in even with his size and in-ring.

I thought I was being ribbed by Meltzer when I first read that on his site. How can anyone find Cesaro boring? In my opinion, Cesaro is one of the top five workers in the ring today and probably for the last few years. The real issue to worry about here is that you have a team of writers led by Vince McMahon who are not only unable to see talent, but they find it boring. That is scary to me.

I have been a fan personally and professionally of Cesaro’s for years. I first met Cesaro as an announcer for Combat Zone Wrestling. Chris Hero mentored him and brought him into CZW once Cesaro, then Claudio Castagnoli came to the United States. I was immediately enamored by Claudio and always looked forward to calling his matches. Immediately I saw a guy that should be headlining shows in the WWE.

Cesaro traveled a long road since then and after solidifying himself as one of the premiere talents in the sport in ROH, finally landed a WWE deal. I was excited and expected him to climb the ranks quickly. How could he not? The second he steps into the ring he is one of the best in the company. Yet here we are and he is not much further ahead today than he was when he first signed.

I honestly don’t get it. A lot of fans were upset when he was not booked on WrestleMania 29. Even CM Punk wore a Cesaro shirt to a Mania presser as what appeared to be a sign of support. I wasn’t as angry as those fans. I saw it as the company keeping Cesaro off of WrestleMania to preserve him before a headlining run post-Mania. As a matter of a fact I probably would have argued with you at the time that he was gearing up as Cena’s first challenger to headline shows coming out of Mania. I mean that would be the only reason you’d keep him off right? Boy was I wrong.

Cesaro was not only kept off of Mania, but he wasn’t booked consistently at all. Finally he was given time on WWE Main Event and had a fantastic match against Kofi Kingston. The match reportedly opened up some eyes in the WWE. How could they not see the talent in this guy after such a great match? Go ahead and ask them because two weeks later he is getting squashed on RAW.

Look I understand that there will be times that I become a fan of someone who just doesn’t fit the headlining mold in the WWE. But come on! Cesaro is boring and yet I still see guys like The Miz getting booked in bigger spots than Cesaro. Quite frankly I’d say about half of the roster are boring these days. The company’s perception of boring is troubling if they can completely miss the boat on someone as talented as Cesaro.

At the end of the day Cesaro is still employed by the WWE and making a good wage. For that, I am not outraged or sympathetic to him. I just wonder if the right people are writing these shows when they label someone as talented as Cesaro, boring. That to me is the biggest problem here.

What is WWE Creative’s job anyway? Aren’t they supposed to oh I don’t know…create! If Cesaro is as boring as they think he is, whose fault is that? You have a guy with a good look, charisma, and outstanding ring work who you perceive the fans are finding boring and you blame him? What am I missing here because I have to be missing something?

Is there still time for Cesaro? Of course. He can shoot back to the top with a Money in the Bank win, a reunion with Chris Hero, or maybe something hot with John Cena. We have seen the WWE go hot and cold numerous times on guys for years before they finally give them the confidence they need for a big run. Unfortunately I have less faith in that happening now than ever before.

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WWE Wrestler of the Week: May 3rd-9th, 2013

May 10, 2013 By: Category: Videos, WWE | Pro Wrestling

Welcome to another edition of WWE Wrestler of the Week! This week, the winner went 3-0 this week with victories on Smackdown, Raw and Main Event. However, two of those victories were over the same superstar. This shouldn’t come as a surprise due to WWE’s recent booking of repeated matches each week, but it is still a bit disappointing. This week’s winner is “The Viper” Randy Orton.

On the May 3rd edition of SmackDown, Orton squared off against the Intellectual Savior of the Masses, Damien Sandow. Last week, Orton was facing Sandow’s partner and best friend in Cody Rhodes. Logic would say that Orton and some partner were feuding with Team Rhodes Scholars. However, Rhodes was nowhere to be seen as Orton defeated Sandow in typical fashion.

Orton and Sandow didn’t stop on Friday night. The two squared off again on the May 6th edition of Raw. The outcome was not any different on Monday night, but there was a high point in this match. Or before the match I should say. In one of the most uneventful episodes of Raw in history, one of the best segments of the night came from Damien Sandow. Prior to his match with Orton, Sandow sang his own rendition of Orton’s theme song.

Sandow’s song made fun of a lot of the criticisms behind Randy Orton and his character. Perhaps this will be the start of a change to Orton. Many believed he was going to turn heel at WrestleMania and even possibly join The Shield. I was not one of those people. Orton is too popular among the younger audience for the WWE to turn him heel. Plus, CM Punk was the same kind of heel Orton would have been at the time.

In any case, Orton’s victorious week did not end with Monday night Raw. Orton was successful on the May 8th edition of Main Event against former United States Champion Antonio Cesaro. Orton did not need to win this match as much as Cesaro did. Cesaro’s WWE career has been interesting to say the least. He was built up as the most legitimate United States Champion in years until he lost the belt to midcard mainstay Kofi Kingston.

Despite not receiving a main event push, Orton continues to win matches. In the past, he has lost number one contender matches cleanly to Alberto Del Rio and the Big Show. Nowadays, he is winning matches, but in less important situations.

With Dolph Ziggler as the new World Heavyweight Champion, a feud with Randy Orton is very possible. The two had a brief feud last year and provided fans with some very entertaining matches. A future Word Heavyweight title feud between the two will also depend on Ziggler’s status. The Champion recently suffered a concussion and his status for Extreme Rules is uncertain.

Who do you think deserves the WWE Wrester of the Week this time? What does the future hold for Randy Orton? Please share your thoughts in the comment section below.

And be sure to check out Camel Clutch Blog each and every Friday for a new WWE Wrestler of the Week!

Seth M. Guttenplan is a WWE Featured Columnist for Bleacher Report. To read more from Seth follow him on twitter (@sethgutt) and check out You can also like GWP on Facebook here.

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5 Potential Challengers For John Cena At WWE Extreme Rules 2013

April 08, 2013 By: Category: WWE | Pro Wrestling

John Cena won the WWE championship at WrestleMania 29 and that means new challengers are gearing up for the champ. Who is ready, who will draw best with Cena, and who logically deserves a shot at Extreme Rules 2013? Here are five RAW superstars that I think could be in play for that spot.

John Cena is a new WWE champion but he isn’t really new. Cena hasn’t had the title for awhile but not a lot has changed since his last reign. Cena will now be put in the position of having to draw as WWE champion without any real credible challengers that make any sense. WWE Creative has a tall order to fill when it comes to championship challengers for Extreme Rules 2013.

It says something about the WWE and its booking when Cena hasn’t been champion since the summer of 2011 yet there are no real appealing fresh matchups on the horizon. Quite frankly it is unacceptable when you look at the totality of that statement. Yet not all is lost as here are five guys that make sense in the meantime, while the company gets the big guns ready for SummerSlam.

CM Punk – Logically CM Punk makes zero sense to challenge Cena. He has gone 0-3 on pay per views and just recently lost a big RAW match to Cena with a title shot on the line. At the same time of everyone, Punk is the safest opponent for Cena. These two could easily make sense of an illogical situation and I don’t think anyone would have a problem with seeing Punk in another main-event. The problem is that this one is overkill and it never drew that well in the first place. The downside here is do you really want Punk going 0-5 in big matches? Punk is also reportedly off of Extreme Rules but that could always change. Yet of everyone available Punk is the safest while the company grooms someone else for the big spot in the summer.

Antonio Cesaro – Call me crazy but I have a strong feeling that Cesaro is up for this spot. Being off WrestleMania isn’t always a bad thing. If the end result is Cesaro losing on Mania, he was better off staying home. Quite honestly being off of Mania could actually play into this storyline. You want someone new, someone fresh, and a unique matchup for Cena, it doesn’t get much better to me than Antonio Cesaro.

Mark Henry – Henry and Cena haven’t had a feud in awhile and of every heel on WrestleMania 29, Henry came out of it with a boost. He beat Ryback who was at one time the top contender for the title. Other than Ryback turning heel, the only other reason to put Henry over would be to get him ready for Cena. It’s a somewhat new match, although they have wrestled dozens of times. I could easily see them doing some angles with Henry laying Cena out, Cena acting scared, and creating some buzz around a potential Extreme Rules match. It isn’t the best answer but of everyone available I think he makes the most sense.

Fandango –
Do I think the kid is ready? He isn’t ready but he did get a win over a former champion at WrestleMania, and JBL played it off like it was the biggest upset of all time. Vince McMahon reportedly loves Fandango and his character so it wouldn’t surprise me at all to see him get the spot. WWE Creative love to shake things up post-WrestleMania and while I have no interest in seeing the match, a Cena vs. Fandango program would be one of the fresher choices they could go with.

Batista – Batista? What am I talking about? There were several reports recently that the WWE are interested in bringing back Big Dave. Could they do the same thing they did last year and shoot him immediately into an angle with Cena like they did with Brock Lesnar after WrestleMania 28? Logically, it would make sense to have these two pick up right where they left off a few years back. I think the odds of this are very slim but I thought I’d throw it out there since his name has been mentioned quite a bit in the rumor mill lately.

Update: Looks like Ryback will get the shot.

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