Alberto Del Rio is likely out of Sunday’s No Way Out Pay-Per-View, as he suffered a legitimate concussion at this past week’s Smackdown tapings.
Del Rio was booked to compete for the World Heavyweight Championship, which poses WWE with yet another depth related problem. While Del Rio was not expected to win the title (as Sheamus is reportedly scheduled for a lengthy title run), WWE is now hard pressed to find a suitable replacement for a main event caliber match.
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If the Mexican superstar is indeed unable to perform for any length of time, the WWE will have lost its two top heels in under a month. Chris Jericho (playing a heel role despite being very much over with the fans) is still suspended due to his incident in Brazil. Randy Orton, though currently a face, is also serving a suspension and his return to the company has been debated over the past week.
So who can WWE use to battle Sheamus? The most obvious choice at this point in time would appear to be Dolph Ziggler. Ziggler has been on the cusp of a consistent main event push for the past year and after his recent break from Jack Swagger, it may finally be time to elevate him to consistent title matches. Arguably the top mid card heel, Ziggler’s only true competition at this point is the Miz.
A former WWE Champion, Miz went from the top of the mountain to nearly the bottom after surrendering his title. He barely made the Wrestlemania card despite closing the show a year earlier. While he has the in-ring skills, Miz’s work ethic has been called into question and it doesn’t seem likely that he’ll receive a quick push to the top by this Sunday.
Wade Barrett is still recovering from a pre- WrestleMania injury, Big Show is involved with John Cena, Lord Tensai’s character is supposedly not receiving the anticipated push, and Cody Rhodes is feuding with Christian.
Whoever is chosen to take on Sheamus, it is likely to be decided this week on Smackdown.