WWE’s Smackdown Live doesn’t lack talented superstars. One they’ve not yet let reach his full potential is Baron Corbin. It’s a shame too because he could be one of the best heels in the company.
There is something about Corbin that screams superstar. While he will never be as big as John Cena or A.J. Styles, he’s the perfect wrestler to step into the top-tier heel role. Smackdown Live has a lot of tweeners playing the bad guys (Wyatt Family, A.J. Styles ), but, aside from The Miz, there isn’t that one true elite wrestler that draws heat.
WWE has pushed Corbin since his call-up to the main roster. He won the Andre the Giant Memorial Battle Royal at this year’s Wrestlemania, a night which also happened to be his debut on WWE television. It appeared that the creative team had something big planned for Corbin, but since his Wrestlemania debut, he’s been in only two mid-card feuds with Dolph Ziggler and Kalisto.
Corbin has been given somewhat of a push lately. He’s the sole reason why Kalisto lost a cruiserweight match at Survivor Series, preventing Smackdown from obtaining the cruiserweight on its show. The creative team also had Corbin placed on the Smackdown Survivor Series team before Shane McMahon replaced him. A move was made to get Shane on the card, rather than to bury or punish Corbin.
What can the Smackdown Live creative team do to continue pushing Baron Corbin?
To make him a viable heel, he’s going to need to have a big time feud with a top babyface. The best option for that would be a feud with John Cena, who has shown in the last year and a half that he’s willing to put over talent, something he hasn’t been so eager to do over his career.
The feud between Corbin and Cena would be good for both parties. Cena gets put into a fresh, new, and exciting program with a new superstar, similar to his clashes with Kevin Owens. Corbin gets the opportunity to look sharp against the WWE’s top star and can showcase his heat-drawing abilities to the younger audience that adores Cena.
Like Cena, Corbin was groomed and developed under the WWE’s watchful eye. After Corbin was released by the NFL’s Arizona Cardinals, he signed with the WWE developmental in 2012 to further his wrestling career. Football and his time as an amateur boxer helped Corbin developed that tough guy look and bad boy persona, and its helped him very well thus far with the company.
Let’s face it. Everyone loves a good, bad guy. If WWE is looking for that next legitimate bad ass, they should look no further than Corbin. He’s one of the only WWE talents that can draw heat, and given a bigger role. His stock can only go up. It doesn’t hurt that he’s a guy WWE has developed from the start of his career.
Let’s hope we see a lot more of Baron Corbin in the future.
Follow Daniel James Gentile on Twitter @dgentleman9288