|Photo courtesy: WWE.com
It appears The Miz is going to shift his focus from regaining the WWE title to try and beat some respect into Alex Riley. While I think this feud could produce some good matches and will help elevate A-RI, I have some issues with the way the feud is progressing.
Disclaimer. I have not watched Raw for the past four weeks with the exception of the CM Punk/Rey Mysterio match and Kharma explanation from the May 30 episode. All I know about the Miz/Riley feud is from reading recaps of the show. I’ve told Kevin to read this and make sure it was accurate. So if you’re reading this, then I should have all the details at least 95% correct.
My first point of contention with the feud is how the Raw GM hired Alex Riley back to Raw after The Miz fired him from being his personal assistant. To me this shows there was no forethought on the part of the WWE creative department when planning out the Draft picks. Either the firing of Alex Riley wasn’t something on the drawing board four weeks ago, or the brand extension isn’t even worth pretending it matters. When Alex was drafted to Smackdown, did he not sign a contract to be on a property of the show? If so, then how could the Raw GM sign him away without giving someone to Smackdown in return? Then again, how many times did Alex Riley ever show up on Smackdown since the Draft? Maybe he never signed his Smackdown contract because he had the contract with The Miz. Not that I expect WWE to ever acknowledge this little detail.
|Miz and A-Ri during more awesome times...
The other point of contention is how ever since he was fired, A-RI has gotten the upper hand on The Miz every time they’ve thrown down. This is the same Alex Riley who for the past nine months was always getting beat like a rag doll at the hands of John Cena. Now all of a sudden he can get the better of The Miz, a former WWE champion. Someone will probably defend it as The Miz being the cowardly heel and Riley is now the plucky baby face who has been abused. He’s the Virgil to Miz’s Million Dollar Man. That may hold some weight, but it still doesn’t seem right. There needs to be a growth period. You can’t take a guy from step 1 to step 5 and simply bypassing 2, 3 and 4.
I think Alex Riley has a future in the business and is someone to keep an eye on, but I think he’s being rushed into a position he isn’t ready for at the moment. To go back to the analogy, look at how fast Virgil fell after winning the Million Dollar Championship. If WWE creative aren’t careful, the same trajectory could await A-RI. Of course that also depends on if management sees dollar signs when they look at Riley or not.
What are your thoughts? Is Alex Riley going to be a player in the years to come, or will he be traded to Superstars before the end of the year?