Wednesday night the WWE touted a "great" 10-man battle royal to determine who would face Wade Barrett for the Intercontinental Title.
What we got was Barrett taking on his old Nexus colleague Justin Gabriel.
While admittedly I think Gabriel is a wrestler who is misused in the WWE, having someone like Barrett face him and not a more suitable contender is beyond my comprehension.
What in the name of Bo Dallas is going on here? Barrett was once considered a World Heavyweight Title contender. He was on the fast track to being a dominant heel in the WWE and especially on SmackDown. While an arm injury almost put him out of action for the entire 2012 year, Barrett appeared to be the "it" guy in the WWE.
Funny how things happen in one year. Barrett is the Intercontinental Champion, which is a great thing for him, but it does not change the fact that he deserves a lot more than he is getting from the company that has made him famous.
Back in the day, the Intercontinental Title meant something. Tito Santana. Randy Savage. Ricky Steamboat. The Honky Tonk Man. Now, it appears to be a joke. And Barrett is being painted as the clown holding the belt. Even a 24-hour reign by The Miz shows the WWE is not showcasing the belt correctly.
It did the same when Cody Rhodes held it for more than 250 days last year. And come to think of it, Antonio Cesaro was left dangling as the United States champion for more than 200 days until he lost to Kofi Kingston this week.
Barrett is an old-fashioned brawler in the mold of Harley Race, Bruiser Brody and Dick the Bruiser, and in their time and era, Barrett would have dominated.
Not so much now.
The WWE has always prided itself on big brooding men in the form of Triple H, Hercules, Ted DiBiase and Don Muraco who beat on their opponents to the point they did not get up. Barrett is also in that mold.
Gabriel gave Barrett a great match, one much better than I could have hoped for. The battle royal and the title match took up almost all of the show, which is a tribute to Barrett and his performance. In the end, the champion retained the title.
For everything he is, Barrett, right now, is one of the most misused wrestlers in the company. And unless he is mentioned in the mix for the World Title like Jack Swagger, Alberto Del Rio and maybe Chris Jericho, there is no fairness in the WWE right now.
And Barrett still toils in the midcard.
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