Originally written July 09, 2013 on Wrestling Truth:
Here we go again, fun times on the report, especially with all these new shades of grey we are getting where the line between heel and face is changing slightly to become more about personal beefs than an overall sense of right and wrong. It perhaps becomes harder to score those who have become part of this trend but for the most part there are still enough heel actions going down to keep this thing ticking over. Speaking of which, let’s get on with it shall we…   Weekly Top Ten: 1st Place: Alberto Del Rio (10/10) The Mexican Aristocrat steals the top spot of the chart this week after having two high profile matches on Raw and Smackdown. I’m not sure why Del Rio got to be in the main event of both shows but I suppose it is a good thing as he is supposed to be the World Champion. I’m not sure this will actually do anything for the title though as each time he was made to look like the lesser man in the ring overall, which to be fair he kind of is when compared to the presence of John Cena and the prowess of C.M. Punk. I’m just waiting for the moment when this new heel Del Rio ends up joining up with Coulter and his crew, this is the WWE, it will happen! 2nd Place: Antonio Cesaro (9/10) Someone who has benefitted from the shades of grey situation at the moment is Antonio Cesaro, since it has meant that he can go face to face with guys who aren’t jobbers or Sheamus, Orton or Cena who have to win on almost every occasion. Instead this week he took on and beat Cody Rhodes in a great, fast-paced match, and also had a great match for the NXT title against Bo Dallas, where admittedly he lost, but he represented himself more than well and looks to be on the way up again after a slight spell of stagnation. Could he be taking home the MitB briefcase this year? Maybe not, but it seems at least a bit more likely than it did before. 3rd Place: Fandango (8/10) The prancing man is back and this time…he’s pretty much the same as he used to be actually. I highly doubt that Fandango will be getting the MitB briefcase so early on but who knows, certainly stranger things have happened. There was some fear on Monday when his first opponent back was the Great White Sheamus, although he wasn’t completely fed to him and ended up walking out rather than taking a Brogue Kick like pretty much anyone else, including a former world champion who just suffered the same ailment as Fandango himself has just returned from. 4th Place: AJ (7/10) Shades of grey don’t just relate to heels going against heels and faces acting more like their dastardly counterparts, it also relates to heels being aligned with faces. We can see it in Punk’s relationship with Paul Heyman and in Dolph Ziggler’s continued relationship with AJ Lee. Now in this case it is true that the two have been somewhat distanced from each other, but it is telling that the WWE hasn’t yet completely dissolved the relationship. AJ continues to torment Kaitlyn despite Ziggler’s subtle protests, and she did it slightly better this week, so she gets fourth place. 5th Place: Austin Aries (6/10) Ah the old swerve, Aries was just a red herring, as I had speculated on after the events. However I do think that this move has backfired on TNA since it seems like they were trying to add some credibility to Sabin as a challenger, to get everyone to say “well he beat Aries so he must be worthy of a shot”. Whereas instead the move had most people saying “Well this makes no sense but Aries is much more credible than Sabin so in the end it’s better” which basically destroyed whatever credibility Sabin had in the first place. 6th Place: Bo Dallas (5/10) The NXT champion is a very interesting case in the current trend of ‘shades of grey’ since it is hard to tell whether or not he is a face like John Cena, splitting the crowd down the middle, or if he is a heel who simply acts like a face. I myself believe he is the latter since his negative reactions only came after a very suspicious promo he gave just before the Battle Royal to decide the number one contender for the title. Still since that time he has been nothing but genuine, but the crowd have decided they don’t like him so now everything he says is seen as a falsehood. I refuse to believe that Bo has ‘X-Pac heat’ since before this he has been a legitimate crowd favourite and it was only after the promo that people started to boo him, so I’m guessing it is on purpose, but who knows. 7th Place: Curtis Axel (4/10) The son of Mr Perfect got a win on Raw against an opponent who was not Sin Cara, which is nice for him. He also did so at the expense of C.M. Punk, his tag team partner. Will the two face-off soon? Perhaps, and will Heyman have to decide between the two? Probably and that will most likely be the tipping point in the Lesnar-Punk feud with Heyman fully supporting his monster over his best friend. 8th Place: Mickie James (3/10) The Knockouts champion used a ladder in the ring to prove her point this week, I’d like to climb her ladder, that is all. 9th Place: Mark Henry (2/10) The World’s Strongest Man gave a more honest promo than John Cena has given in years and again going with the ‘shades of grey’ theme, if he had given this promo at any other time there might be some speculation over whether or not he was becoming face. As it was it just made him sound sincere and makes him an even more credible contender for the title going into the PPV. 10th Place: Dean Ambrose (1/10) He got his win back over Christian and will most likely triumph against him at the PPV.   2013-2014 Season Top Ten: 1st Place: Bully Ray (59) 2nd Place: Mark Henry (56) 3rd Place: Dean Ambrose (54) 4th Place: The Ryback (52) 5th Place: Seth Rollins (52) 6th Place: Johnny Curtis (50) 7th Place: Roman Reigns (41) 8th Place: Damien Sandow (33) 9th Place: Antonio Cesaro (32) 10th Place: Austin Aries (30)   (Heel Hall of Fame) **Heel Report 2010-2011 Winner: The Miz** **Heel Report 2011-2012 Winner: Cody Rhodes** **Heel Report 2012-2013 Winner: C.M. Punk**   That’s all for this week, Money in the Bank looks to be shaping up pretty nicely, I especially like the potential of the all-face and all-heel matches going into the event. The Destination X special of Impact might also be decent, although I just can’t see Sabin winning the belt and aside from that match I have absolutely no idea what else will be taking place on the episode so you have to wonder what TNA have planned, if anything at all. For now, this is James Wright signing off.
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