The world is buzzing over Brad Maddox.
He first introduced himself to the WWE Universe with a bad call during the main event of Monday Night Raw on September 17. During the tag team match between Sheamus and John Cena taking on WWE Champion CM Punk and Alberto Del Rio, Maddox missed Punk's foot on the bottom rope and counted the pin, giving Cena and Sheamus the victory.
The next week, he was admonished in front of the whole world by Paul Heyman and CM Punk, calling for his resignation. Former WWE Raw GM AJ Lee wasn't having that, but she did tell Maddox that she put her neck on the line for him and he'd be fired if that happened again.
Video footage of that confrontation right here to refresh your memories (the first half of the footage from the NFL Referee angle earlier this season, second half covering Heyman's proposal to AJ Lee when she defends Maddox's hiring):
Of course, it happened again last night, but it was a whole different kind of screwjob. Ryback had CM Punk hoisted on his shoulders and was about to plant Punk with a Shell Shocked. Maddox stepped in front of Ryback, waved his hands, and dropped down on one knee to deliver a low blow that Ric Flair would even call dirty.
Brad Maddox is back in a big way.
Animated-gif via 25.media.tumblr.com
But what most don't know is
that he has always been there.
Made his debut on April 2, 2008 in Ohio Valley Wrestling, under the alias Brent Wellington. This former WWE developmental territory had just cut ties with the WWE a few months prior. Maddox didn't find any success inside the ring until October 1 of that year, winning an eight-man tag match in his first victory. The stable that Wellington ran with was known as Theta Lambda Psi.
Soon after, on December 24, he faced Aaron "The Idol" Stevens for the promotion's world championship. Stevens, who would later become Damien Sandow, was able to best Wellington.
Early next year, Maddox was saddled with a gimmick where he became Brent "Beef" Wellington, playing the role of a necrophiliac. Wellington's Theta Lambda Psi stable broke up that April, but he was able to capture the OVW Television Championship near the end of July 2009. Karma came back on Wellington as former stablemate Moose defeated him for the strap that September.
In February of 2010, Wellington was able to win the OVW Heavyweight Championship in a battle royal. He held onto the strap until the end of May, dropping it to Mike Mondo.
Soon after, none other than WWE came calling.
Maddox signed a developmental deal under his real name. He reported to former WWE developmental territory Florida Championship Wrestling and had his first match at the end of August, 2010, falling to recently-departed WWE star Tyler Reks.
Maddox first appeared on television on November 4th, 2011, losing to Tito Colon, mostly known as Epico of Primo & Epico. Maddox then dropped a match to Briley Pierce, the brother of Dolph Ziggler. The two then paired up and eventually captured the FCW Tag Team Championships. They held onto the belts until February of next year, with Pierce succumbing to injury.
With the organization soon closing up shop as a developmental territory, Maddox gained the FCW 15 Championship (a title defended in 15-minute iron man matches) by defeating Richie Steamboat. He then captured tag team gold again, this time with Rick Victory. The organization was rebranded under the WWE NXT name very shortly thereafter.
Maddox was the referee of the infamous Divas Battle Royal that saw Kaitlyn win off of an Eve fall from the apron, an unplanned botch that caused a sudden push of Kaitlyn.
And soon after, the recent chain of events that lead to last night's screwjob came full-circle.
Maddox hasn't seen a notable match that hasn't been marred in controversy, having been a part of the Divas battle royal, the tag team match with Punk's foot on the rope, and last night's diabolical scheme against Ryback.
Is Maddox a "Paul Heyman Guy" now, like all the evidence suggests? If so, what is his standing? Could he be the Nick Patrick of the group formed in the name of Heyman Hustle?
Tonight's episode of Monday Night Raw will surely provide us with some more answers on Maddox's background and future.