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 Elimination Chamber 2021 and all of its fallout, a lot of fortunes were changed.
With that in mind, let’s see whose stock has decreased the most this week:
Stock Down #3: Randy Orton
Randy Orton’s smack talk about turning the other five men in the Elimination Chamber match into his victims looked quite silly when he became the first man eliminated in the match. The next night (Feb. 22) on Raw, Orton blamed his early chamber exit on being distracted by Alexa Bliss, even though she was nowhere near the chamber match. Then he vomited some black fluid. This was very dumb.
Stock Down #2: Kevin Owens
Kevin Owens’ time in the main event spotlight on SmackDown has seemingly come to an end. After months of feuding with Roman Reigns, Owens was quickly put down by Jey Uso inside the Elimination Chamber match, and his chase for the Universal championship went out with a whimper. With Daniel Bryan and Edge now looking like the best bets to challenge Reigns at Fastlane and WrestleMania, respectively, it’s not clear what lies ahead for Owens at the biggest event of the year.
Owens doesn’t match up well with Seth Rollins, considering they fought last year at WrestleMania 36 using the same Messiah storyline, and Rollins currently has his hands full with Cesaro. The next tier of male heels on SmackDown includes Apollo Crews, Jey Uso, Sami Zayn, King Corbin, Otis, and Dolph Ziggler. It’s not clear that a one-on-one match between Owens and any of these wrestlers is a big enough attraction to be booked for WrestleMania. That means there is a good amount of uncertainty right now about Owens’ spot on the WrestleMania card as he drops out of the main event scene.
Stock Down #1: Riott Squad
Tamina pinned Ruby Riott one week ago, and this week (Feb. 26) it was Liv Morgan’s turn to do the job. Billie Kay wasn’t even around this time to provide a distraction excuse for the loss. Tamina winning matches is a thing that WWE creative is actually doing on the road to WrestleMania in the year 2021, and it’s coming at the expense of the Riott Squad.
Now let’s see whose stock has increased the most this week:
Stock Up #3: Alpha Academy
Chad Gable’s Alpha Academy is finally showing positive results for Otis. The big man is being guided by Gable’s teachings, and it helped them pick up a tag team victory over the Mysterios on SmackDown. The pairing of Gable and Otis looks like a win-win situation. Gable gets to show off his personality and charm, while Otis gets to squash Rey Mysterio with splashes from the middle rope. Maybe Tucker should consider enrolling in Alpha Academy next.
Stock Up #2: Apollo Crews
Apollo’s heel turn also comes with a gimmick change. Crews has embraced his Nigerian royalty heritage and now exemplifies wealth, dominance, and power. He defeated Shinsuke Nakamura on SmackDown and has his sights set on Big E’s Intercontinental championship.
Stock Up #1: The Miz & Bobby Lashley
The Miz and Bobby Lashley successfully conspired together to get the WWE championship off of Drew McIntyre at Elimination Chamber 2021. Miz is now the champ, and Lashley is getting a title shot on next week’s (Mar. 1) episode of Raw.
This angle looks like it’s designed to push Bobby Lashley into the WWE championship match at WrestleMania 37. Lashley even joined the list of the very few men who have ever pinned Braun Strowman, when he took out the Monster Among Men in the main event of Raw.
There you have it, Cagesiders. Whose stock do you think has changed the most this week?