WWE WrestleMania 32: Intercontinental Championship Ladder Match is Pointless


Why the Wrestlemania 32 Intercontinental Championship Ladder match is a waste of time and talent.

When Sami Zayn returned to RAW on Mar. 7 and rekindled his feud with Kevin Owens, Wrestlemania 32’s Intercontinental title match seemed set.  It had the perfect narrative with former best friends turned enemies began their feud back in Dec. 2014 when Owens attacked Zayn following his NXT Championship win at NXT TakeOver: R Evolution.  The feud culminated when Owens stopped Zayn’s reign short at 62 days, beating him almost into unconsciousness at NXT TakeOver: Rival in Feb.  Shortly after that match, Zayn suffered a shoulder injury in a U.S. Championship match against John Cena on RAW.  10 months later, Zayn returned to the main roster at the 2016 Royal Rumble and eliminated Owens from the Rumble match.

So there it was, a perfect set up for an Intercontinental title grudge match for Wrestlemania 32 between two guys who have the potential to tear the proverbial house down.  However, it began to get convoluted.

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Dolph Ziggler and The Miz traded wins against each other and that somehow put them right into the title picture.  On last Monday’s RAW, Owens, in trying to avoid a difficult match up, devised a Triple Threat match to determine the No. 1 Contender to the title.  The match pitted Sin Cara vs Stardust vs Zack Ryder in what was a lovely piece of comedy by KO.  But then what started as a joke became reality.

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Now this is where we are—a 7-man Intercontinental title Ladder match involving all the above-mentioned men.  The case for Zayn and Owens is obvious, and you can always make a case for Ziggler.  What about the other four, though?

In 2016, The Miz, Sin Cara, Zack Ryder, and Stardust have a combined record of 45-92-2 (Cage Match).  Hardly a record that deserves any type of title shot, not to mention one at Wrestlemania.

In yet another mind-boggling maneuver by WWE creative, they instead went with a singles match for the United States title between two Superstars with zero momentum right now, Ryback and Kalisto.  There’s nothing wrong with this match or either guy for that matter, but at Wrestlemania?  This does nothing for the fans because it’s a complete filler match that lowers the prestige of the belt.

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The scenario that makes sense is to swap the extra five guys from the Intercontinental title match and put them into the U.S. title match while leaving Zayn and Owens to tangle in a singles match.  The history alone in that match will carry the emotion needed for a big time Wrestlemania match while you can leave the other seven to shine in more of a gimmick match.  The ladder bout would showcase the two luchadors’ high flying ability, Ziggler, Miz, and Stardust’s ladder match experience, and it can hide Ryback’s shortcomings by using his power to elevate the smaller guys.

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With only one RAW left before Wrestlemania would WWE dare flip the script and make this change?  The answer is most likely no.  One thing is for sure—making this change would turn two sub-par match pairings into two potential classics.