WWE Top 10 takes you back to this week's SmackDown LIVE to revisit the show's most thrilling, physical and controversial moments.02/21/2018 - 11:30
Will The Showoff’s Hell in a Cell guarantee pay off?
A victory in WWE Hell in a Cell’s scheduled World Heavyweight Title Match does not necessarily assure that Sheamus or No. 1 contender Big Show will leave Atlanta’s Philips Arena with the championship gold.
Casting a long shadow over the much-anticipated clash between super heavyweights is “Mr. Money in the Bank” Dolph Ziggler’s vow to have the World Heavyweight Championship in his possession at the end of the Oct. 28 pay-per-view.
“When the Hell in a Cell pay-per-view comes to a close, I guarantee I will be the World Heavyweight Champion,” the spotlight-stealing Ziggler told The Celtic Warrior while interrupting Sheamus’ guest spot on “Miz TV” two weeks ago on SmackDown. ( WATCH)
But, can The Showoff make good on his promise, and what does his very public declaration mean for the way Sheamus and Big Show prepare for their match at WWE Hell in a Cell?
Though Ziggler directed his comment toward The Great White, asserting that he’d take advantage of whatever battle damage Sheamus may accumulate in his showdown with The World’s Largest Athlete, the boisterous blond’s comments should hold plenty of interest to both competitors — not just The Celtic Warrior.
After all, Big Show already knows the pitfalls of winning a World Title while an unredeemed Money in the Bank contract remains in a challenger’s possession. Just last December, Big Show lost the World Heavyweight Title 45 seconds after winning it from Mark Henry at WWE TLC: Tables, Ladders & Chairs. The giant was so exhausted by the fight with The World’s Strongest Man that he posed little challenge to Daniel Bryan, who carefully chose his spot when cashing in his Money in the Bank contract. ( WATCH)
Some observers have questioned the soundness of Ziggler and Vickie Guerrero’s actual strategy for cashing in his contract, but there is no denying that The Showoff’s timing in issuing his “guarantee” is impeccable.
For one, the tone of Sheamus’ rivalry with Big Show has recently taken a grave shift. The Celtic Warrior — perhaps shaken by his blocked Brogue Kick Monday or the empirical evidence Friday that his Brogue Kick generates less force than his challenger’s KO Punch — appears to be making fewer jokes. While he sharpens his focus on his giant foe, Sheamus risks losing sight of The Showoff, much to Ziggler’s potential benefit.
Alternatively, Ziggler’s threat might be part of a calculated game plan to remove the title from Sheamus’ waist. After having his jaw crushed repeatedly by the Brogue Kick, perhaps The Showoff would prefer to try his luck against another champion, even a giant-sized one. Could Mr. Money in the Bank be using his guaranteed contract as a means to distract Sheamus in the weeks leading up to his encounter with Big Show?
Yet another possibility is that Ziggler’s guarantee is simply a red herring and he has no intention of making a major move Oct. 28. Just because The Showoff said he will cash in his contract at WWE Hell in a Cell does not mean he necessarily will cash in the contract. (Bryan pulled a similar ruse last year, first promising to cash in his contract at WrestleMania, only to pull the trigger at WWE TLC.) Despite his guarantee to take the title Oct. 28, might Ziggler choose to survey the situation in Atlanta before taking any drastic measures?
Regardless, one thing is for certain: WWE Hell in a Cell holds no certainty for Sheamus or Big Show, whereas for Ziggler, it holds nothing but opportunity.