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Survivor Series Aftermath: The Authority Rules

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Survivor Series is over and The Authority has spoken. Dreams of Daniel Bryan winning the WWE championship are officially dead. Gone are the hopes that CM Punk will get back into the title mix after his feud with Paul Heyman. Instead, we are on a path to a Champion vs. Champion match at TLC, when John Cena and Randy Orton put their titles on the line in a bout to crown a single face of the WWE. The match itself might prove to be entertaining, but the Cena/Orton feud comes at the expense of more deserving talent. The Triple H and Stephanie McMahon led WWE has made it very clear they don’t care much about whose name we chant, whose moves are best, or what we think is best for business; they have their own ideas.

We’re just weeks removed from anticipating a Damien Sandow World Heavyweight Championship run and chanting “YES” behind future WWE Champion Daniel Bryan. But in the blink of an eye, John Cena returned from injury and snatched up the WHC in his first match in months. Big Show then returned right into the middle of the main event picture, a story we’ve unfortunately been told several times before. Show’s return and Cena bringing some intrigue into the World Heavyweight Championship scene aren’t the worst things in the world, but burying stars like Sandow is an unfortunate outcome. Sandow has since been relegated to prop matches against fellow booking castoff Dolph Ziggler, a reality that stinks of wasted potential. Meanwhile, at the top of the card, Cena has met up with Orton, a WWE Champion with a shelf life smaller than a carton of eggs. WWE creative has a very short leash with Orton as champ, unless he’s headed for a feud with someone like CM Punk (perhaps at ‘Mania), with enough charisma for both parties. Nevertheless, this is our reality for the next few weeks and it could end with Cena or Orton holding two belts.

Even in the wake of this dust cloud of boredom, WWE does have some promising things cooking on the back burner. To avoid complete negativity, here they are:

Roman Reigns is legit: If they sold Roman Reigns stock, I’d buy a lot. After a dominating performance at Survivor Series, Reigns shined again in a match on Monday Night RAW, building up the anticipation for his run in singles action. The Shield has to break up at some point, and Reigns seems like the type of guy WWE will get behind.

Big E Langston as Intercontinental Champion: “Three ain’t enough man, I need five!” Rumors have been floating for months that Langston was in for a major push, and we’re finally seeing it. If you follow Langston on Twitter, you know he has charisma and a stellar sense of humor to couple with his in-ring talent. Comical tweets aside, the IC title scene had gone stale with Curtis Axel, so it’s great to have some new blood. There are plenty of possible feuds for Big E, so we should be in for a good run. Hopefully, Cena doesn’t somehow get in the mix. Three titles? It could happen…

The Miz as a heel: He’s just much better as a heel, pure and simple. WWE can put him in as many family holiday movies as they want, he’s still easier to hate. Incidentally, Heel Miz might be the only thing capable of making Miz TV interesting.

Kane in a suit: I’m in the minority here, but how else can Kane’s character evolve in today’s WWE? This actually is good for business.

Mark Henry is back: His new look is awesome, and he’s more over than ever with the WWE Universe. There has to be some concern about where Henry fits on the card, as a face. We could be headed for a feud with The Miz, Damien Sandow, or another mid-level heel until they can find room for Henry toward the top. I don’t know about you, but I’d love to see Henry vs. Cena, part 2. Bottom line: it’s great to have him back.

As we march into the TLC PPV, the direction is clouded and uncertain. I suppose we’re in line for the sequel to CM Punk and Daniel Bryan vs. The Wyatt Family, which is decent, but it’s the lone bright light in an otherwise dark tunnel. The Survivor Series results and this week’s RAW did not leave much to the imagination, so it’s tough to speculate on what lies ahead. Things should iron out in the next week or two, but until then, be prepared for a lot of staring contests between Randy Orton and John Cena.

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