On December 19th, Dolph Ziggler walked to the ring hoisting the United States Championship on his shoulder. The Showoff took a prideful stroll to the ring, and would take the WWE Universe down memory lane. The US champion, after rubbing his victory in the faces of the fans, decided to show the world all of his accomplishments while working with the WWE (not including the Spirit Squad work). Ziggler showed footage of his first United States title win, choking out Kofi Kingston at Capital Punishment in 2011.
Afterwards, he would show footage recapping the five times he put the Intercontinental Title around his waist, beginning in a victory over Kofi Kingston in 2010, and ending with his match against The Miz last year, where he put his career on the line against Miz’s gold. Ziggler would finish off his self tribute by showing his career defining achievement, capturing the World Heavyweight Championship from Del Rio by cashing in his MITB contract. However, this is when Ziggler’s expression would change.
Ziggler would continue his promo, looking down on the fans for not supporting him enough, and wondering what he could do to make them care about him. The US champion looked at his newly acquired gold, and placed it in the middle of the ring before walking back up the ramp.
It’s no secret that Ziggler has been unhappy with his placement in the company over the past few years. The Showoff, for years, was known as the next Shawn Michaels, the man who could steal the show every night. His all out style and unique selling made him stand out among the rest of the WWE roster. However, no matter how much the fans got behind Ziggler, the WWE never felt safe enough to push Ziggler to the top of the card, completely halting his progress a handful of times when he was about to bust through the glass ceiling.
Ziggler recently appeared on the Edge & Christian Podcast to talk about his place on SD Live as the gatekeeper, giving NXT callups a rub upon their debut. However, he felt that his job became difficult due to the lack of credibility he has as a performer.
“Now, my job of making somebody that should be ready for a world title picture becomes harder and it’s not as much of a shove and if you see the last six months, a year of TV, basically, I’m a gatekeeper to the guys from NXT coming up that they have expectations for. But if I lose eight consecutive months before they show up, they are no longer getting that pat on the back to go up a notch, so I almost feel like it’s taking back from my role.”
It’s possible that the WWE, and Ziggler, are working the WWE Universe again. However, given his outspoken nature, it wouldn’t be too shocking to see Ziggler leave at this point. Ziggler is at a point in his career where he’s basically stuck in the lower mid card. He’s not a young guy anymore, getting closer to 40 every day. Maybe he’s deciding that, when it comes to making a somewhat controversial move, it’s now or never.
For more news on Dolph Ziggler’s possible departure, stay tuned to Wrestling-Edge.