In his main-roster debut match, Fandango defeated former undisputed champion, Chris Jericho.
His win at WrestleMania 29 has shown the WWE Universe that he is going to do everything he can to make sure its latest dancing character doesn't fail.
With other similar gimmicks going nowhere, Fandango has been given a chance to jump up the roster and perhaps win gold.
Fandango, also known as Johnny Curtis before being called up to WWE, hadn't set foot in a WWE ring before WrestleMania. He wasn't inexperienced, of course. Curtis wrestled in different independent organizations, captured titles and won the fourth season of NXT.
It’s a good thing he can hold his own in the ring. When it comes to dancing wrestlers, the gimmick is hit or miss. It can make a wrestler just as easily as it can destroy one.
For every Honky Tonk Man there's an Alex Wright, Disco Inferno or Brodus Clay. The Fabulous Freebirds made dancing look cool, but WCW team 3-Count showed how quickly it could sideline a career.
Akeem and Dusty Rhodes were both saddled with dancing gimmicks, but legends like Hillbilly Jim and Jimmy Valiant did just fine with it.
But WWE has purposely stepped up to make Fandango work. Weeks of teases and false starts all led to his WrestleMania debut against Jericho.
The bout didn't disappoint, even if Jericho did carry the newcomer a bit.
Fandango started things off with some dancing before being taken down by Jericho. The former world champion took control early in the bout, even rocking Fandango with a slap to the face.
After a bulldog, Thesz Press and Enziguri, Fandango delivered several kicks and a leg drop. Jericho missed with the Walls of Jericho and a few moves later, Fandango scored the pin.
If WWE is wise about this, the momentum from his win over the former world champion could be used to push Fandango through the midcard. The guy may be slightly green, but he can obviously wrestle. Instead of going back to the teases, Fandango should be in the ring every week now.
Pinning the fan-favorite Jericho gets the WWE Universe talking. It goes beyond what WWE did for Clay and his months of promised debuts. Such a huge victory—no matter how much a thinly veiled move to get him over—positions Fandango for a big push.
Otherwise, what's the point? He has a charisma about him that lifts Fandango, the wrestler, above Fandango, the gimmick. It’s something all the best wrestlers are able to do.
A run with the United States or Intercontinental titles is more realistic now. A feud with The Miz over his newly won title would allow Fandango to grow more as a performer and score yet another victory over a former WWE champion.
With this single win, Fandango is on the road to greatness.
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