Some places do power rankings. Here at Cageside, we do a stock report.
In this weekly series, we identify three Superstars (or groups of Superstars) who are on their way up, and three that are moving in the opposite direction. After a busy week that included Sami Zayn being tossed into a dumpster by Braun Strowman, Shane McMahon continuing to get the better of the Miz, and a new Wild Card rule, a lot of fortunes were changed.
With that in mind, let’s see whose stock has decreased the most this week:
Stock Down #3: Zack Ryder & Curt Hawkins
The reigning Raw tag team champions were beaten by the Viking Raiders in a non-title match on this week’s (May 6) Raw. The extreme silence of the crowd was the most remarkable thing about this match, and it’s not that surprising because the tag champs are jobbers and the Viking Raiders have a ridiculous gimmick. It’s hard to believe that Ryder and Hawkins still have the titles one month after WrestleMania 35, but it’s clear that it’s just a matter of time until they drop the straps and fade off television once again.
Stock Down #2: Robert Roode
It looks like Robert Roode’s new name and glorious mustache only bought him a one week push. Two weeks ago, the power of Roode’s mustache helped him become the first person on the main roster to pin Ricochet. However, Roode was completely absent from television one week later, and then this week on Raw he gave Ricochet that win back in a typical case of 50/50 booking that gets nobody over. This isn’t the end of the world for Roode, but it does immediately bring him down from a guy who looked like he would receive a push, to a guy who can go either way now. And considering his past booking on the main roster, it’s probably wiser to bet against a push for him.
Stock Down #1: The Revival
The Ucey Hot segment was one of the most cringe-worthy things on Raw in recent memory. It’s definitely in that “worst segment of the year” territory, and if the Usos didn’t go out and have a killer match with Bryan and Rowan the next night on SmackDown, I’d probably slot them in here along with the Revival. This was the kind of segment where I was grateful to be viewing the show by myself, so I didn’t have to deal with the embarrassment of explaining to a non wrestling fan why I was watching this awful garbage. Segments like this only hurt pro wrestling’s image and reinforce the idea that it is simply low brow entertainment. Maybe as the Revival’s humiliation tour continues I’ll become numb to it and figure their stock can’t actually drop much lower, but at least for this week, it’s hard to avoid putting them on this list yet again.
Now let’s see whose stock has increased the most this week:
Stock Up #3: Baron Corbin
I would argue that the prominence of Baron Corbin on Raw television has strongly coincided with the creative doldrums that Raw has experienced for the last seven or eight months. But Vince McMahon’s opinion is the only one that counts, and he just doesn’t know how to quit this guy. With WWE’s ratings panic at a fever pitch right now and big changes expected (starting with the Wild Card rule), I thought it was pretty funny that the first match on this week’s Raw was actually a Baron Corbin match. The cherry on top is that Corbin pinned the Universal champion (Seth Rollins) in this match, so he could very well be in line for a title shot once Money in the Bank is in the rear-view mirror.
Considering that Corbin has main evented plenty of Raw episodes, sent Hall of Fame legend Kurt Angle into retirement as a loser at WrestleMania 35, and earlier this year became one of the very few men to ever pin Braun Strowman, it looks like McMahon thinks that Corbin is part of the solution, and not part of the problem.
Stock Up #2: Kofi Kingston
Kofi Kingston had a hell of a week, main eventing both Raw and SmackDown with successful defenses of his WWE Championship against the likes of Daniel Bryan, AJ Styles, and Sami Zayn. Kingston has been booked so strong as a babyface champ that it’s pretty difficult to expect Kevin Owens has much of a chance to take him down in their upcoming championship match at Money in the Bank.
Stock Up #1: Daniel Bryan & Rowan
After a month away from television due to injury, Daniel Bryan was cleared and wrestled in the main event of Raw against Kofi Kingston. He then followed that up the next night (May 7) on SmackDown by teaming up with Rowan to defeat the Usos and win the SmackDown tag team championships. Rowan was the key to the end of the match, as he basically manhandled both Usos for the win. This was a great week for the planet’s tag team champions, and this booking decision has restored some luster to Tuesday night’s dull tag team scene.
There you have it, Cagesiders. Whose stock do you think has changed the most this week?