Dolph Ziggler lost another match on SmackDown Live this week, this time dropping a 2-out-of-3 Falls match against Bobby Roode where the winner would be added to the men’s Survivor Series team. The loss pushed Ziggler straight into an existential crisis:
"Like I always do. As much as I don't care what other people think and I go out of my way to let everyone know that I see a lot of their favorite Superstars as frauds and smoke and mirrors, I tend to lose every time I step foot in the ring. So as prepared as I was, as on top of my game as I was, as excited as I was -- even though I don't show it in the hallway -- to represent Team SmackDown at Survivor Series, I wanted to prove a point that I belong here. I didn't do that.
"No matter how much I stepped up my game, it wasn't enough. It's not that I didn't have it, I had it tonight. But Bobby Roode is as good as he says he is. I say he's a catchphrase, I say he's an entrance, I say he's a new kid and as much as it used to mean a lot more beating me in the middle of that ring... WWE Universe doesn't back me anymore, people behind-the-scenes never did to begin with, this has always been about me and I couldn't deliver tonight. I went toe-to-toe with this kid, who is going to go places, and he wasn't just an entrance he was better than me.
"Clearly I need to rethink this career, I think."
He put Roode over big there — even if he’s calling him “kid” when Roode is three years older — and it sure seems like that’s all that is left for Ziggler in WWE. He exists to put over whoever the company decides may have a future higher up on the card. It’s become clear enough that Dolph is no longer that guy, if he ever was before.