Love him or hate him, Baron Corbin had a great year

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Welcome to the second installment of the WrestleMania stock report, our yearly series where we look back at all the players from last year’s WrestleMania card and see how they fared over the year. You can take a look at where people were at this time last year in last year’s final report here.

WrestleMania is the perfect time to see how the stock of a wrestler has moved over 365 days. It serves as a “season finale” to the year of WWE. This is where they pay off their big storylines and where they want to showcase their best. Where someone lands on the Mania card says a lot about what their stock is currently. Given there are so many people vying for spots on the biggest show of the year, it’s a good look at how WWE views certain talent.

We’re going to continue with the second half of the Andre the Giant Memorial Battle Royal (first part can be found here) and then look at the numbers. Once again, this is in rough order of elimination.


The Andre the Giant Memorial Battle Royal (continued)

The Revival

The Revival had a very Revival year.

The failed to defeat the B-Team (The B-Team!) for the Raw tag team championships multiple times. There was the whole Lucha House Party debacle where Scott Dawson and Dash Wilder kept having to deal with their weird House Party rules (and the Revival were the heels throughout this). They also failed to defeat Gable and Roode a multitude of times.

There was a rumor months back that they requested their release. The rumor wasn’t confirmed and if true, the release obviously wasn’t granted.

But soon after that rumor, they finally won the Raw tag titles from Roode and Gable. That didn’t stop them from losing in non-title matches to the teams of #DIY and then Aleister Black & Ricochet though.

It looks like they will be in the Andre this year unless they add a very last minute Raw title match on the kickoff.

Best Moment: The time they won a match and claimed the tag team titles

Worst Moment: All those times they looked like fools against the Lucha House Party

Stock: Slight increase – They’re champions now, sure. But they’re still booked pretty poorly.


Bo Dallas & Curtis Axel

During the Shake-Up, the Miz was drafted to SmackDown but Dallas and Axel (then working as Miz’s Miztourage) were left to fend for themselves on Raw. And fend for themselves they did.

With Miz gone, they refocused as a tag team dubbed “The B Team” (because the “A Team” was taken… and probably a copyright issue). They went on a winning streak and ended up defeating the Deleters of Worlds to win the tag team titles. They also beat the Revival, but let’s be real, who doesn’t?

They lost the titles to Drew McIntyre and Dolph Ziggler and haven’t been seen much since.

Best Moment: Winning the tag team titles

Worst Moment: Losing them and the falling into obscurity

Stock: Dropped – They were doing well for a while, but being sidekicks for the Miz was better for sustained relevance.


Sin Cara

Sin Cara moved to SmackDown during the Shakeup and had a very brief feud with Andrade (then “Cien” Almas). The masked man underwent knee surgery in August and has not wrestled since.

He may or may not have re-signed a WWE contract, but he has a new dog!

Best Moment: When he chopped the hell out of a news anchor

Worst Moment: Getting injured

Stock: Injured


Chad Gable

Chad Gable moved to Raw after ‘Mania, ending his tag team with Shelton Benjamin.

It looked like he could be working singles and had a couple impressive matches early on. (All of his matches are impressive, to be fair.) However that didn’t go far and he wasn’t on TV much until he started teaming with Bobby Roode.

It looked like that could be leading to a break up/feud between the two, but they are still together. The defeated AOP for the tag titles and lost them later to the Revival.

They are still part of the Raw tag scene, which isn’t represented at WrestleMania. And they are back in the Andre.

Best Moment: Getting to work with Kurt Angle during Kurt’s retirement tour

Worst Moment: Getting caught up, even on the periphery, of the Drake Maverick urine storyline

Stock: Unchanged – His team with Roode is about as featured as his one with Shelton (occasionally).


Titus O’Neil

Titus was around this year, but it really was one thing that mattered:

WORLD SLIDE!

His year didn’t feature much otherwise anyway. Titus Worldwide officially ended, and he’s rarely on TV.

Best Moment: World Slide!

Worst Moment: World Slide.

Stock: Slide – And down because he had a better spot with a small stable


Goldust

There’s not really anything of note on screen for Goldie this year.

He underwent knee surgery earlier this year and hasn’t been back since.

He’s also an honorary deputy.

There were very recent reports he was leaving WWE. He disputed those while telling us he hates smart marks. But we’ll see the truth of that soon enough.

Stock: Injured (or waiting out his contract)


Tye Dillinger

Tye Dillinger was on SmackDown this year but not often used.

He had a small skirmish with Samoa Joe for a couple weeks. He had some backstage bits with R-Truth. But Randy Orton then broke his hand because he felt like it, and we never saw Dillinger since.

He asked for his release, which was granted, and he’s a free agent now. Will we see him with his friend Cody in AEW soon?

Best Moment: His backstage bits with R-Truth

Worst Moment: Randy Orton breaking his finger so he can’t do the 10 bit and essentially ending his WWE career

Stock: Released (on his own accord)


Dolph Ziggler

Ziggler has slotted into a part time role, though not the Brock Lesnar kind of part time.

He returned to Raw after the Shake-up with Drew McIntyre alongside him. With the Scottish Pyschopath in his corner, he was able to defeat Seth Rollins and win the Intercontinental championship. He held onto the belt until Rollins recruited Dean Ambrose to neutralize McIntyre.

Drew and Dolph (team name: McZiggler) won the tag team championships together by defeating the B-Team. They’d eventually lose those belts to Rollins and Ambrose.

Eventually Drew McIntyre tired of Zigs (I mean he was doing most of the work) and attacked him. This put Dolph in the babyface position. Dolph won a match against Drew but Drew would get his win back in a steel cage.

He was in the Rumble but hasn’t been around since.

Best Moment: Recruiting Drew McIntyre – it led to winning the Intercontinental title and the Raw tag team titles

Worst Moment: Not carrying enough weight so that Drew finally kicked him to the curb

Stock: Unchanged – We’re pretty much at a spot now where Dolph comes back for a bit, then takes some time off for his other projects, and then comes back when they have something for him.


Kane

For a man who ran for mayor, won, and then took office this year, Kane worked in WWE a decent amount.

He had a reunion with Daniel Bryan for a Team Hell No run that was brief but fun. Unfortunately he injured himself and wasn’t able to do much in their match against the Bludgeon Brothers.

Kane was also part of the Brothers of Destruction vs. DX match at Crown Jewel, which was built at Super Show-Down when he and Undertaker attacked Shawn Michaels and Triple H after the Trips/Taker match.

To be honest, this entire thing was disappointing, including plenty of boiler room/cemetery promos from the DestroBros.

Best Moment: When he saved Daniel Bryan from the Bludgeons and they shared a hug

Worst Moment: Most of that build to the Crown Jewel match

Stock: Mayor – I’m counting this as an unchanged since he’s a special circumstance with his new job


Mojo Rawley

Not much going on for the hype man. He was on Raw this year not doing much. He did answer one of Seth Rollins’ Intercontinental title open challenges. It was probably the worst one of those.

After a whole bunch of nothing, we’ve seen him here and there talking to himself in a mirror.

He hasn’t been announced for the Andre officially, but if he’s anywhere on the card, he’s there.

Best Moment: When Rob Gronkowski retired from the Patriots, opening up the possibility that Mojo will find his way on TV again if Rob ever signs with WWE

Worst Moment: When Rob does sign with WWE but Mojo still finds himself talking to himself in the mirror backstage.

Stock: Unchanged – And certainly not in the good way.


Baron Corbin

Good year for the Lone Wolf.

He spent the year on Raw and was made Stephanie McMahon’s eyes and ears as the Constable of Raw. That got him plenty of time on the flagship show in a prominent position. He eventually undermined Kurt Angle and got him fired, becoming the General Manager Elect and then the actual General Manager. You need that type of cutthroat attitude to advance in this world.

While GM, he had issues with Finn Bálor, who he had trouble beating. (This included a squash at the hands of the demon at SummerSlam.)

Throughout this time, he would usually have a couple heels he’d fight alongside during many six person tags.

Unfortunately, issues with Braun Strowman, which stemmed from Corbin costing Braun the title at Crown Jewel, ended up biting him in the arse. After his run as general manager became the kayfabe explanation for a shoot crappy product, he lost to Braun at TLC (with the help of many babyfaces who he screwed over on the roster) and lost his GM job.

Because of his feud with Angle, Corbin will be Kurt’s final opponent at WrestleMania this year.

All in all, a good year.

Best Moment: Shaving his head (which I believe was the catalyst for everything)

Worst Moment: A SummerSlam squash from the Demon (followed by his TLC beat down and then having to do again it the night after)

Stock: Big increase – He was a featured member of Raw most of the year and will be having a singles match with Kurt Angle at WrestleMania in Kurt’s retirement match. That’s pretty damn good.


Matt Hardy

Matt Hardy, fully WOKEN, won the Andre Battle Royal with the help of a Bray Wyatt who had been cleansed of Sister Abigail after a dip in the Lake of Reincarnation.

The duo would team up as the Deleters of Worlds and go on to defeat the Bar at the Greatest Royal Rumble for the vacant Raw tag team championships. They eventually lost them to the B-Team, which elicited a heel turn for Hardy and Wyatt.

The Deleters of Worlds would soon disband because of Matt Hardy’s injuries, which had people actually thinking he retired. However, he recently returned looking leaner and meaner on SmackDown to team with his brother.

Best Moment: The surprise return from healing up to team with Jeff

Worst Moment: Losing the tag titles to the B-Team.

Stock: Unchanged – His tag team act is still in the Andre this year.


Bray Wyatt

Bray Wyatt technically wasn’t in a match at WrestleMania, but he did help Matt win the Andre Battle Royal. This was the start of a new tag team, and his trajectory was shared with Matt above.

Unfortunately, for Bray, when Matt left to deal with lingering injuries, he was left with nothing. Bray has not been on TV.

He’s currently expecting a child with JoJo Offerman. They named it Knash, but not after Kevin Nash. It’s just a cool name, man.

Best Moment: Winning the tag titles with Matt Hardy

Worst Moment: Matt taking time off, leaving Bray with no direction

Stock: Down – At least last year he was still in part of a story


Now let’s break down the Andre numbers, which is something I like to do because the Andre is its own beast. All in all, it’s not good to be in the Andre. They have so many matches on the card that it’s not a good sign if they can’t find you one. So how did last year’s crew fair?

  • We looked at a total of 31 superstars, including Wyatt, who wasn’t technically in the match but involved in the angle. Members of tag teams were counted separately.
  • Of those 31, only 5 have increased stocks. A whopping 16%.
  • 10/31 have decreased stock (32%).
  • 12/31 have unchanged stock (39%). It’s not great to have unchanged stock in the Andre.
  • One has been released (Tye Dillinger) on his own accord.
  • Three haven’t wrestled since their injury (Goldust, Sin Cara, Fandango). You can probably assume if they were healthy and on the card, it’d be in this match.
  • Only one (ONE) has an advertised match outside the Andre and that’s Corbin.

Woof. Not a good year for the Andre. If you look at last year’s stock report, I felt more than half of the participants had increased stock. This year the number was 16%. And while that’s subjective, the fact that all but one as of writing this are either not on the card or back in the Andre is telling. It shows that when you’re this low on the card, it’s tough to move up.

For certain guys on that list, it’s not a big deal. The vets like R-Truth who are in the latter years of their career likely understand that this is their spot now. Someone like Dolph has been semi-retired for a while. But the guys like Mojo, Breeze, or Aiden English aren’t in that boat and this really sucks for them. The fact they have so much time to fill each week and this many guys in the battle royal has to be a tough pill to swallow.

The fact that so many tag teams keep finding themselves in this match is another example of how WWE looks at tag team wrestling.

Well, at least Corbin is doing well!


You can catch up on the rest of this series below:

Part I: The Andre (part 1)




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