Monday, September 26, 2016

I'm CRUSHED that Rusev lost

The new champ
Courtesy: WWE
By Kevin Hunsperger
@kevinhunsperger & @my123cents on Twitter
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Clash of Champions has come and gone and my predictions were mostly spot on. I picked Rusev to retain the U.S Championship against Roman Reigns, however, I knew in my heart that it was not meant to be. Years ago I learned don't bet against John Cena or Randy Orton. Now I think we can add Reigns to that class.

I'm extremely disappointed in this loss for Rusev, even more so than when Cena first beat the Bulgarian Brute for the title in 2015. Don't get me wrong, I have nothing against Roman Reigns, but it feels like WWE is still trying to cram him down the throats of fans, whether we want to accept him or not. His World Title runs were less than stellar and then being suspended right after losing the belt didn't help endear him to the fans.

Rusev crush!
Courtesy: WWE
But rather than run down on Reigns, I'm going to build up Rusev. When he invaded the main roster in 2014 with Lana, I had high hopes for the duo. I was not disappointed as Rusev ran through the competition before finally capturing his first U.S. Title reign later that year. He seemed unstoppable until he met John Cena.

After spending some time rebuilding from his WrestleMania 31 loss to Cena, Rusev finally got back on track and started a second reign as U.S. champ. WWE is currently lacking a full-time dominate bad guy. Rusev was the perfect monster to fill that role. However, the crowd was clearly behind him in this battle against Reigns. I loved the reaction when Lana pulled the referee out before the three-count after the Spear. 

Courtesy: WWE
The loss to Reigns will hurt, but only time will tell how much. So before I completely dismiss the decision to take the gold off Rusev, I'll wait and see what's going to happen in the interim. The company may have bigger and better things on the horizon for Rusev. He simply can't be lost in the shuffle. He's too talented to have that happen.

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