Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Big Heat's Hot Takes: Cesaro Needs Heyman

Cesaro needs Heyman to win in WWE. NEEDS HIM I SAY!
Photo Credit:
For nearly 30 years, Paul Heyman has been massively successful in everything he has attempted. Well, maybe not accounting, but everything else. Photography, promoting (again, except the whole money thing), announcing, acting, and, perhaps most impressively, managing superstars - Heyman has done it all.

Take a look at his managerial record. In WCW, Heyman led The Dangerous Alliance. Under Heyman's tutelage, various Alliance members won Championships: Rick Rude the United States Championship, Steve Austin the Television Title, and Arn Anderson and Bobby Eaton the Tag Team Championships. In ECW, Heyman led Sabu to both the Television Title and the ECW World Championship. In WWE, Heyman became the advocate for Brock Lesnar, who would go on to become the youngest WWE Champion in history to that point. He also managed each of the next two WWE Champions - Big Show and Kurt Angle - becoming the first and only man to manage three consecutive world champions. Years later, Heyman would not only second CM Punk during his 434-day reign as WWE Champion, but would also become the One Behind The One in 21-1 when Lesnar broke The Undertaker's undefeated streak at WrestleMania. You may have heard about it once or twice.

(Oh, and Heyman led Curtis Axel to the Intercontinental Championship, as well. Just saying.)

When Heyman announced that Cesaro had become the latest Paul Heyman Guy following WrestleMania XXX, everyone assumed big things for the Swiss Superman. But to date, Cesaro's momentum has stalled, and this past Monday on Raw, he came out without his advocate.

Big mistake.

Cesaro is immensely talented, there's no question about it. Look at his body of work in the indies, NXT, WWE - he's damn good. But over his career, the majority of Cesaro's successes have come when he is part of a team - whether he is one member in a stable, or half of a tag team, or he is accompanied by a manager. Don't believe me? Let's go through the high points of the former Claudio Castagnoli's career:

  • Castagnoli teamed with Ares in Europe, leading to their first trip to America to wrestle in Chikara; when Ares returned to Europe, Castagnoli was part of Larry Sweeney's Sweet 'n' Sour stable, then in a tag team with Arik Cannon.
  • Castagnoli and Chris Hero joined forces as The Kings of Wrestling, becoming the first Campeones de Parejas in Chikara, as well as ROH Tag Champions and CZW Tag Champions.
  • From roughly 2007-09, Castagnoli went solo for the most part, and although he won a handful of matches was never able to capture a singles title.
  • In 2009, Castagnoli re-teamed with Hero in ROH, where they would eventually regain the Tag Championships and hold the titles for 363 days. At roughly the same time, Castagnoli won his first major singles title in the US when he captured the PWG World Championship - while carrying his alliance with Hero into PWG.
  • Meanwhile, in Chikara, Castagnoli was a member of the BDK stable, and he teamed up with Ares to win the Campeones de Parejas for the second time - the first two-time champion.
  • Coming to WWE as Antonio Cesaro, it wasn't long before there was gold around the Swiss Superman's waist - but of course, he won the United States Championship while being managed by Aksana.
  • After breaking ties with Aksana and losing the US Title, Cesaro would flounder until joining up with Jack Swagger and Zeb Colter as The Real Americans. From then on, Cesaro would have his most notable moments in WWE and NXT, including several classic bouts in NXT with Sami Zayn.
  • Cesaro won the Andre the Giant Memorial Battle Royal at WrestleMania XXX while still technically under the direction of Colter.
Although his time with Heyman has been relatively uneventful, Cesaro is yet to prove that he can hack it on his own. He's always been at his best in a team situation, which is fine. Tag team wrestling is nothing to sneeze at, and stables have a long history in pro wrestling. And despite his ability to speak in five languages, Cesaro could greatly benefit from the mic skills of a guy like Heyman.

Right now, it doesn't make sense for Cesaro to be alone. He needs Heyman until he makes that final leap to either super-upper-midcarder or main event player. Heyman's track record speaks for itself - he makes champions, and he makes stars. Cesaro is ohsoclose to being a megastar, and a few more weeks with Heyman can get him there.

I mean, if standing next to a guy who's supposed to be talking you up while he instead rants about one match that happened three months ago that a different client of his won while never once talking about you can't get you over, what will?