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Carmella & Ellsworth: Why It’s Great

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James Ellsworth went from working at the San Diego Zoo (according to JBL), to the WWE Championship picture. He tangled with AJ Styles, Dean Ambrose and technically shared a ring with The Undertaker. It was fun while it lasted, but he vanished from the main event quicker than he appeared in it. Where does a jobber turned main eventer go after such a quick rise? Smackdown Live may have found the answer, as James Ellsworth’s next place in WWE appears to be around the arm of Carmella.

After a quick hitting backstage segment showed Carmella displaying sympathy for a beaten Ellsworth, he accompanied the Princess of Staten Island to the ring for her match this week on Smackdown Live. He cheered from ringside as they both wore Ellsworth shirts, and raised her arm after her victory (upon her request: a brilliant detail by Carmella). It is quite possible that James Ellsworth has gone from jobber, to main eventer, to valet. It looks humorous on paper, but this is a strong move from the SDLive creative team.

The opportunity for a female wrestler to have a male valet in WWE has been there for years. There have been a few here and there (Charlotte/Ric Flair most recently), but WWE is still a company where Lana accompanies Rusev, Alicia Fox chases after Cedric Alexander and Maryse completes The Miz’s character. The WWE Universe is told almost weekly that history is being made in the Women’s division, yet the manager/wrestler, or husband/wife relationship rarely occurs in reverse of the gender order that we’re used to. At the time of Daniel Bryan’s apex, Brie Bella was also highly prominent in her division as a wrestler, and was often portrayed as Bryan’s wife; a true fact, obviously, but far from equal on each side. She adopted the Yes Kicks, but we never saw Daniel Bryan yell Brie Mode. It is an extreme example, but a reason why CarmEllsworth has a chance to be a refreshing departure from what we’re used to.

Ellsworth has the chops to be a slimy manager that can take a bump, and Carmella is the perfect match. Her conniving character will likely take advantage of her new lackey, which is a great opportunity to get a villainous edge. It’s great for the two superstars, but also great for the company’s apparent desire to hurdle gender barriers. Imagine a match graphic with Ellsworth behind Carmella, or James Ellsworth knocking out a referee and influencing a Smackdown Women’s Championship change. This new union, while lurking below championship belts and returning superstars, has a chance to go places.

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