At AEW’s Double or Nothing, one of the company’s longest-running storylines came to an end as Wardlow freed himself from MJFs control, becoming an official AEW roster member in the process. Following Wardlow’s dominant victory and ten-powerbomb symphony we ask the question, does AEW have a Wardlow problem?
Does AEW Have a Wardlow Problem?
The big issue with Wardlow in AEW is we don’t really know what’s next. This guy just destroyed one of your top talents without breaking a sweat, he should be going for championships and winning them. But, AEW has just crowned CM Punk as their new world champion. AEW’s world title is around the waist of one of the biggest names in recent U.S. wrestling history and while Wardlow vs CM Punk is a mouth-watering match, neither man should really lose any time soon.
If Wardlow isn’t vying for the world championship then maybe he takes a step into the TNT Championship division, something that would revitalise that belt. But with this, you’d run into a ceiling eventually. It’d be very similar to Goldberg being WCW US champion while being one of the most over guys on the roster. As much as AEW might try there’s no way to position the TNT title as an equal to the world title, which means they’d eventually run into a wall with Wardlow as TNT Champion.
If he isn’t vying for titles then there’s no clear next direction for Wardlow coming out of the PPV. Yes, he has made enemies over his tenure in AEW but he’s vanquished most, if not all of them already.
Can They Wait?
The Wardlow problem really sticks out because we’re not sure AEW can afford to wait around here. Fans have already been waiting for years to finally cheer Wardlow and see him get pushed, now that he’s free it’s going to be difficult to bottle that up and put him on the backburner. Wardlow taking the AEW title from CM Punk down the line is no doubt a great decision but will Wardlow’s current momentum continue for that long? Can AEW keep him interesting and unbeatable for 9+ months while they flesh out Punk’s reign? Countering that, if they DO have Wardlow end Punk’s reign at All Out will fans turn on the big man?
Has He Peaked
It’s not entirely out of the question that Wardlow has peaked already. This MJF feud has been done to perfection, so much so that it’s hard to imagine the big man ever getting such ferocious reactions again. It’s not at all egregious to say that Batista (who Wardlow is compared to a lot) peaked when he turned on Triple H and subsequently beat him for the title. While Batista slot nicely into the 1B role for years afterwards he was never able to capture the hearts of fans the same way again. Wardlow may run into a similar issue without an antagonist as amazing as MJF to work off.
There are a lot of what if’s coming out of Double or Nothing and the biggest one to us is whether or not AEW can fully capitalise on what they have in Wardlow. One thing is for sure, we’re glad we don’t have Tony Khan’s job.
Do you think AEW has a Wardlow problem?
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