WWE TLC 2012: Is Alberto Del Rio Ready to Be a Top Babyface in the WWE?

Luis CamposAnalyst IDecember 17, 2012

DURBAN, SOUTH AFRICA - JULY 08:  Alberto Del Rio is introduced during the WWE Smackdown Live Tour at Westridge Park Tennis Stadium on July 08, 2011 in Durban, South Africa.  (Photo by Steve Haag/Gallo Images/Getty Images)
Gallo Images/Getty Images

Let's face it, Alberto Del Rio's character has been stale. Following his debut, the Mexican superstar was one of the hottest assets to the WWE, but now almost two years later, Del Rio's presence in the ring has been  taken for granted. 

There is no doubt that the "Mexican Aristocrat" is one of the most legitimately tough guys in the company—as JBL often points out, Del Rio was a former MMA fighter and a would-be member of Mexico's Olympic wrestling team—but despite his in-ring skills, his shortened charisma partnered with his overly repeated "Destiny" gimmick killed much of the momentum that Del Rio should still have. 

But could there be upcoming changes to Alberto Del Rio's character? 

Sunday night at the Tables, Ladders, and Chairs pay-per-view, the WWE Universe saw what could be a new chapter in Del Rio's WWE career. After his sometimes partner and ring announcer Ricardo Rodriguez was attacked by Heath Slater's 3MB, Del Rio acted upon instinct and protected Rodriguez in a move that some are calling Del Rio's face turn. 

Alberto Del Rio as a babyface could be an interesting move for his career, unfortunately the circumstances under which this turn was set up seemed forced—much like the Miz's face turn earlier this year. 

In order to take Del Rio as a committed babyface, his actions Sunday night imply that he is now Ricardo Rodriguez's protector. Does this mean that for the next weeks we will see Rodriguez getting attacked only so that Del Rio can protect him? As the natural continuation of the storyline set up at TLC, this seems like a waste of talent, both Rodriguez's and Del Rio's. 

A face turn for Del Rio seems like a wonderful idea—on paper—but the product that was presented last night does not seem to have any strong footing. It is easy to get fans to boo, being a crowd favorite on the other hand is tough. 

It remains to be seen what the WWE's creative team has at hand for Del Rio, hopefully for the sake of both Del Rio's career and the fans it's something worth watching. 

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