Dolph Ziggler is a former World Champion, he had one of the best Money in the Bank cash in’s in history the night after WrestleMania 29 back in 2013 and was then forced to drop the World title because of a concussion issue.
Since then it seems that WWE is reluctant to push Dolph Ziggler towards the top level of the company, even though he had continued to prove that he is good enough.
Dolph Ziggler won the Intercontinental Championship back at No Mercy when he put his career on the line in a match against The Miz. Many of the WWE Universe actually believed that Ziggler was going to lose the match and leave the company, but shockingly he was given the chance to lift SmackDown’s only solo mid-card title.
This was a fantastic opportunity for Dolph after The Miz had held the title since the night after WrestleMania 32, but instead of giving The Showoff the lengthy title reign he deserved, WWE decided to hand the title back to The Miz less than four weeks later.
Dolph Ziggler had already stated that he was issuing an open challenge at Survivor Series and Sami Zayn has now been named as his opponent, which means that The Miz will step into that match on Sunday night instead.
Whilst it now makes sense as to why it was Sami Zayn who was given the chance to fight for the opposing brand’s title, it also leaves Dolph Ziggler without a match at Survivor Series and if The Miz loses, it also takes away his rematch clause.
SmackDown’s 900th episode needed something big to happen, but it shouldn’t have been a title change. Dolph put his entire career on the line to take that title from The Miz and now WWE have decided to give it back, there is no way Dolph can up the stakes.
It is hard to see where this leaves Dolph now, is he exactly in the same position he was in before? Where the company refuses to push him into the main event level picture or even give him the main title, but there is nothing really for him to do on the mid-card anymore.
The Spirit Squad’s return has added an edge to Dolph’s story on the SmackDown brand, but it’s not going to be a lengthy story, it’s obvious that the former Tag Team Champions are not going to be staying around for long.
In true Miz style, he defeated Dolph with an assist from his wife Maryse as she helped push Miz on top of Dolph for the pin. But not only does this leave Dolph in a strange position, but it leaves SmackDown in one an odd one as well.
It is highly unlikely that The Miz will drop the Championship just days after reclaiming it, which means that SmackDown could end up with both the Cruiserweight Championship and the Intercontinental Championship after Sunday night.
This would then allow Daniel Bryan to trade The Miz to Raw anyway in return for someone like Sami Zayn or even Cesaro. Whilst The Miz is one of the best talkers on SmackDown at the moment, it has been made obvious that Daniel Bryan will not be stepping back in the ring with him, so the only thing he can do is trade him out of the brand.
If SmackDown retains the Intercontinental title and claims the Cruiserweight at Survivor Series then Bryan could make the decision to send Miz over to Raw anyway or Miz could just decide to leave.
Either way, it leaves Dolph in a position where he doesn’t have a rivalry if Miz loses his title and he doesn’t have a title to claim a rematch for.
It’s shocking to watch the decline of Dolph, especially since he has recently exclaimed that he never he wants to retire. It is unclear where this leaves him going forward or what SmackDown can now do to rectify the situation, but it will be interesting to see where he ends up leading into 2017.
Could a Royal Rumble appearance and possible win be the thing to reincarnate Dolph’s career? Or has he reached a point now where he has no one to challenge and no storyline to step into for the first time? All will become clear heading into next month’s TLC event.