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WWE Stock Report: Damian Priest’s new gimmick isn’t working

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 Shinsuke Nakamura’s return to the ring, Edge & Beth Phoenix crashing Maryse’s birthday party, and Brock Lesnar threatening to get nude for a weigh-in, a lot of fortunes were changed.

With that in mind, let’s see whose stock has increased the most this week:

Stock Up #3: Naomi

Naomi finally got her long-awaited singles match against Sonya Deville and she beat her ass. She desperately needed this measure of payback after nearly half a year of being screwed over by Deville.

Stock Up #2: Chad Gable

Chad Gable has been the best performer on WWE television over the last couple weeks. On this week’s (Jan. 24) Raw he excelled with hilarious banter in a spelling bee segment and then a great match against Randy Orton. Maybe WWE is finally realizing how entertaining Gable can be when he isn’t just a job guy losing in two minute matches.

Stock Up #1: Sasha Banks

Sasha was supposed to miss Royal Rumble due to injury, but she made a shocking return on last night’s (Jan. 28) episode of SmackDown. The women’s Royal Rumble needs some strong contenders to win it all besides Bianca Belair, and Sasha Banks may very well be the favorite now, unless Ronda Rousey happens to show up.

Now let’s see whose stock has decreased the most this week:

Stock Down #3: Ricochet & Cesaro

Ricochet’s job this month has been to make Sheamus look strong for the Royal Rumble match. Cesaro joined along for that task this week in a tag team match on SmackDown, putting over Ridge Holland in his return to the ring.

Stock Down #2: Carmella

The Women’s tag team champions competed in separate matches on Raw this week, and they both took the fall. Queen Zelina Vega lost a singles match against top star Bianca Belair. Carmella’s case was more of a head-scratcher, because she competed in a 6-woman tag. It’s strange that she would compete in a 6-woman tag without her championship partner, but more importantly, Tamina seemed like the obvious wrestler to do the job in the match. This was Carmella’s first match in nearly a month, and it ended with her tapping out.

Stock Down #1: Damian Priest

WWE is really struggling to get babyfaces over in the upper card of the men’s roster, which is why it’s especially baffling that they decided to change Damian Priest’s gimmick a few months ago. With no explanation, he suddenly developed a dark side where certain actions can cause him to snap and lose control. This has led to a bunch of disqualification or count out finishes in his matches. It turns out that fans don’t like it when so many matches end like that. Priest was booed by the fans during his latest disqualification finish this week against Kevin Owens. I’m not really sure what WWE is going for here, but it doesn’t appear to be working.

There you have it, Cagesiders. Whose stock do you think has changed the most this week?

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