Wednesday, 21 March 2012

The Next Shelton Benjamin

Gold Standard? Will Dolph ever make it to the top?

Shelton Benjamin was an extraordinary wrestler, with some of his in-ring abilities matched by no man. However, one thing eluded ‘The Gold Standard’ throughout his time in the WWE: winning the big one.
Multiple Money in the Bank participations; Intercontinental, United States and Tag Team title reigns, but never did Benjamin make the step to the top of the proverbial ladder.

A man who many believed would achieve great things in the WWE went on to achieve mediocrity, and now in 2012, are we seeing another Shelton Benjamin occurring before our eyes?

Dolph Ziggler is another superstar who has managed to make a name for himself, rising up the rankings in the WWE, and gaining the adulation of sections of the WWE Universe along the way. But can he actually go all the way in the WWE; or will he fall away like Benjamin before him.

Ziggler, like Benjamin, has won a number of titles during his time in the business, has received a brash nickname (i.e. Show-Off in comparison to Gold Standard) and is too often touted as ‘the next big thing.’

After being involved in the WWE Championship match at Royal Rumble this past January, it seemed like only a matter of time until the ‘ZigZag Era’ was to be upon us.

Fast forward two months and what do we now see? A superstar whose involvement at WrestleMania XXVIII is to back up John Lauranitis, and probably be overshadowed by Santino Marella.

From main-eventing one of the major Pay-per-views of the year, to now having to follow David Otunga down to the ring whilst wearing a pink ‘Bum-Cape’, oh how a major title shot seems so far away.

But why have the WWE decided to reel Ziggler back in; just as he seemed to be nearing the dizzying heights of the business?

He can take a hit fantastically. He has an arsenal of moves on his side. His personality is… average.

Personally I am a big fan of Ziggler, but one thing he has always seemed to lack is his own persona. The pairing with Vickie Guerrero, the pairing with Jack Swagger, the pink shirts, short brown hair, longer blonde hair, the title of ‘Show-Off’: all attempts at trying to establish a character for Dolph, but that missing spark never seems to be found.

If Ziggler is ever to become ‘The Main Man’ on the show, it is essential that his character finally gets the attention that it needs. Stone Cold. The Rock. The Undertaker. Shawn Michaels. The list goes on and on of superstars who have made it to the top, and have all had the personality to back it up.

So come the end of 2012, what will we see? Dolph Ziggler, the WWE Champion whose brash persona is both loved and loathed by the whole WWE Universe; or just another so called ‘Gold Standard’ that actually never seems to make it past silver.


  1. I actually think his personality is ok. Shawn Michaels got over a cocky, egotistical show-off. I think that when he drops Vickie & Swagger he could just be just fine.

    However, i think the comparisons to Benjamin are fair. Ziggler seems right on the cusp of a main event push but that spot just never seems to open up. If anything it moves further away. He has recently been working match after match with top guys but it seems his role is to put them all over, make them look good. Its something he might do better than anyone else right now.

    You do wonder whether the spotlight is ever gonna be on him though.

    1. As i said, i do like Dolph, and i do believe that eventually he will be given the 'big chance' so to speak.

      However, at the moment he doesn't seem to be progressing to that top level and as you say, when he faces the top opponents, he is only there to make them look good. My fingers are crossed WWE will help him establish himself as a top superstar but i guess only time will tell!