A lot of this is due to hindsight, and it can still be proven to be untrue, but everything is lining up to make the Dolph Ziggler-Miz feud into an all-time great rivalry. The fact that we found out on Tuesday that Ziggler’s career will be on the line certainly helps in this. It also allows us to look back at the storytelling aspect of this entire feud, which is culminating in the title versus career match, and realize how special it has been.
This has a lot to do with both wrestlers doing some of the best work in their careers in performing within their characters. Interestingly enough, it isn’t just how the two have been doing that while interacting together, but it goes outside their bubble. Part of “their story” mirrors ones told before.
For The Miz, it started on “Talking Smack,” when he did a work-shoot on Daniel Bryan. It was probably the best promo of his career. He wasn’t even lying while rebelling against being called a coward during it, and it made him credible as a legitimate heel in a matter of a few minutes.
Few words are available to properly describe how great The Miz has been over the last few months. He went from somewhat random Intercontinental Champion to a man who has very much made the belt meaningful again.
There’s more to The Miz aspect of his, especially heading into what is presumably his final match against Ziggler.
He has been dealing with being called a coward. While it stems from his discussion with Daniel Bryan on “Talking Smack,” in which he correctly pointed out that he wrestles intelligently and that it shouldn’t be confused with cowardice, this little running insult has resulted in a much more vicious Miz in the ring.
All in all, this is the very best The Miz has ever been. It leads me to believe that he drops the belt to Ziggler, but only because he has been so special that the WWE is going to elevate him back to the main event scene as a reward.
As for Ziggler, man, he has always been special in the ring. One would be hard-pressed to find more than two matches in the guy’s entire career that were not fun.
However, he has been lost in creative hell for roughly two years now. He gets small pushes here and there, but by and large he’s in the company to job. Or, at least that has been the case.
While this angle dates back to feuding with Dean Ambrose, Ziggler’s “loser” gimmick is actually working. This was highlighted on Tuesday when he was in tears talking about wanting to make it all work, and how he can’t stop until he does. He — in character — was so upset and wanted one more chance to take the title off The Miz, he put his career on the line for that last opportunity.
We also have the few matches the two have already had against each other as parts of this feud. They were good matches, too. Oddly enough, I would argue that those — while still noteworthy — were the least important aspect of making this feud into an all-timer.
That, instead, it has been both guys’ character development, which has not only elevated how much we care (or hate) each guy, but the Intercontinental Championship itself. When is the last time we were able to say that the IC strap didn’t need elevating?
Good friends in real life, the chemistry that makes a great rivalry has been there from Day 1, and we are about to witness this angle come to its conclusion. Here is to hoping to one last epic match between these two wrestlers who have been doing some of the best work of their career.
I am going to miss this feud when its over.