Fearless Nikki offers a first-look at her custom kicks for The Ultimate Thrill Ride.03/22/2017 - 01:00
Things turn volatile between Shane-O-Mac and "The Face That Runs the Place" en route to their clash at The Ultimate Thrill Ride.03/21/2017 - 23:00
Jimmy and Jey Uso make it clear that they've told everyone they were the best tag team from day one, and against American Alpha, they proved it.03/21/2017 - 22:45
The A-Lister and his bride claim to have unearthed supposed never-before-seen footage of Total Bellas.03/21/2017 - 22:45
With his girlfriend and WrestleMania partner Nikki Bella in his corner, The Leader of The Cenation takes on one half of Breezango.03/21/2017 - 22:45
Intercontinental Champion Dean Ambrose sticks a fork(lift) into The Lone Wolf's first-ever match against The Viper.03/21/2017 - 22:00
Armed with new power from Sister Abigail, The New Face of Fear and his followers trap The Viper.03/21/2017 - 22:00
Following The Usos' non-title victory one week ago, Chad Gable & Jason Jordan go to war with their longstanding rivals for the SmackDown Tag Team Titles.03/21/2017 - 21:30
The A-Lister and his bride claim to have unearthed supposed never-before-seen footage of Total Bellas.03/21/2017 - 21:30
The "Face That Runs the Place" plans to run through Shane McMahon at The Ultimate Thrill Ride.03/21/2017 - 21:00
WWE Top 10 takes you back to this week's SmackDown LIVE to revisit the show's most thrilling, physical and controversial moments.03/15/2017 - 13:15
Refusing to give in following AJ Styles' vicious attack, Shane McMahon announces a startling match for The Ultimate Thrill Ride.03/14/2017 - 22:30
Weeks after The Viper burned down the Wyatt Family Compound, The New Fear of Fear returns more powerful than ever.03/14/2017 - 22:15
Is Curtis Axel better than 'Perfect'?
The meteoric rise of Curtis Axel reached a major milestone at WWE Payback, when the up-and-coming Superstar captured the Intercontinental Championship in a whirlwind Triple Threat Match. The emotional moment was also a significant one, particularly because it happened on Father’s Day. Axel won the same title that his WWE Hall of Fame father, “Mr. Perfect,” once held in his grasp, marking the first time that has ever happened in WWE history.
But could Axel actually be better than his legendary dad? A rare opportunity to compare the time surrounding the two Superstars’ first Intercontinental Title victories may, show that the answer is, in fact, yes.
Since joining forces with Paul Heyman and rechristening himself with a variation of his father’s and grandfather’s names (“Mr. Perfect” Curt Hennig and Larry “The Axe” Hennig), Curtis Axel his quickly established himself with victories over the likes of current WWE Champion John Cena, 13-time World Champion Triple H and 6-time World Champion Chris Jericho.
While Axel’s father, “Mr. Perfect,” would go on to have an awe-inspiring career after capturing that same Intercontinental Championship, before that night, things were not as perfect as people have come to believe. Like his son, the ambitious Curt Henning rechristened himself, reemerging in WWE with the new moniker “Mr. Perfect.” While he managed to maintain a perfect record for over a year, he only once defeated a World Champion during that time - a count-out victory over then-WWE Champion Hulk Hogan. While it is worth noting that “Mr. Perfect” also defeated future champion Bret Hart, his monumental return showdown against The Hulkster on “Saturday Night’s Main Event” resulted in a disappointing loss by pinfall for the surging Superstar.
One can also look at the way the Intercontinental Title was first captured by both father and son. Axel defeated two Superstars at the same time – the entering titleholder, Wade Barrett, and the highly decorated former WWE Champion, The Miz. Though “Mr. Perfect” defeated two-time Intercontinental Champion Tito Santana, the title was officially vacant at the time, which means he never had to battle a reigning champion to claim the illustrious title.
There’s also the question of management. No one can argue with the wisdom of “Mr. Perfect” aligning himself with future WWE Hall of Fame manager, Bobby “The Brain” Heenan. While that no doubt gave “Mr. Perfect” additional prestige, even fewer fans could deny that the Superstar already knew how to win prior to their alliance.
On the other hand, when Curtis Axel became Paul Heyman’s client, his performance in the ring instantly improved. This is evident by looking at two matches against Sin Cara in close proximity to each other. The week before aligning with Heyman, then-Michael Mcgillicutty lost to the highflier on “WWE Superstars.” But, once he gained Heyman’s guidance and refocused himself as Curtis Axel, the third-generation Superstar defeated the gravity-defying competitor on SmackDown in short order and set out to take WWE by storm.
Now, Curtis Axel has the potential to become greater than his legendary father, “Mr. Perfect.” And with his momentum showing no sign of slowing down anytime soon, Axel’s journey to immortality could prove flawless as well.