by Daniel Johnson
Alberto Del Rio was fired from WWE on August 7 and since then the smoke has started to clear. Although what has come out is that Alberto Del Rio has allegedly been fired for a heinous reason, his termination may end up being a positive for Del Rio.
Alberto Del Rio only debuted in 2010, but since he became a big deal, fairly quick it seems like he has been around for much longer. When Del Rio first moved onto the WWE’s main roster after a stint in developmental he was immediately put into a program with the massively over Rey Mysterio.
Just check out that footage! Del Rio is in a worthwhile program and the commentators, and more importantly the fans care about him. Flash forward to 2014 and we have Del Rio’s last match with the company.
Showing someone’s first televised match with a company followed by their last match with the same promotion can be jarring, but with Del Rio it just says so much about him. The second clip starts with Del Rio being launched out of the ring, because of course it does. The man launching him, Jack Swagger also has a very good chance of being fed to “The Ravishing Russian” Lana and her monster heel straight out of 1985, Rusev. This in turn means that Swagger doesn’t even have to look that good going into his WWE SummerSlam 2014 midcard match. Nevertheless, Del Rio, a man the WWE machine was once fully behind ends up tapping out in his last match like so many past WWE performers on their way out the door.
Now, how fans react to Del Rio these days is worth considering. Many would say that fans don’t react to Del Rio at all and in fact the last time Del Rio had anything to do with Swagger they didn’t care either. Be honest, did you even remember this feud happened? If you did, is there anyone out there who actually has fond memories of it? In any case, looking closer at that last Del Rio match something can be summed up about Del Rio that has been true for sometime. As mentioned Del Rio gets dramatically thrown out of the ring at one point in that match. Later on he gets pushed (rather lazily) into the barricade surrounding the ring. The former doesn’t look like a move done by someone who has stopped caring enough to want to impress a crowd. Likewise, following the latter attack, Del Rio might have just been shoved down halfheartedly, but witness the great job the cameraman does of capturing Del Rio’s selling. That staffer couldn’t have done that good of a job if he didn’t have something worth recording.
In truth, while crowds may have weakened and some would say died for Del Rio, the man never stopped caring. His matches on television and pay-per-view are rarely if ever match of the night (nor have they ever regularly been), but they are never the worst match either. Even in a match designed to make the barely pushed other guy look good, Del Rio puts in a sound performance.
Perhaps the biggest trouble Del Rio has is in the promo department. Del Rio is naturally charismatic to the point where as a heel he gave the impression of being someone fans could get behind. WWE brass then made the incredibly ill thought out decision to turn him heel. In actuality, Del Rio can generate hate, but getting love from WWE’s diverse audience is a much bigger task. Going someplace where the crowd is less diverse or promos are less emphasized could help Del Rio substantially.
Del Rio makes his first appearance for a Mexican company since 2009 this Sunday opposite SummerSlam at AAA Triplemania XXII. After that Del Rio has a whole world to explore with the clout of being a very recent WWE main eventer. I would most like to see him take on the stars of NJPW including Kazuchika Okada, Hiroshi Tanahashi and AJ Styles. These performers have proven that they can put on a great match with anyone who cares. Del Rio cares.
Categories: Smooth Runs