Reaction Zone - A last chance for relevancy

Heath Slater has been on the main WWE roster for 6 1/2 years now, having first been called up when NXT was a pseudo-reality show in 2010. Three tag team titles came his way with Justin Gabriel (now PJ Black) as his partner between 2010-11, but none since, despite a diverse lineup of partners that included Titus O'Neil, Drew McIntyre (Galloway), and Curtis Axel, to name a few. However, Slater Gator, 3MB, and the Social Outcasts were never considered players for the tag titles. Slater, then, was considered to be just a rung or two above enhancement talent.

So when the brand extension draft came on July 19, Slater was not picked by either Raw or Smackdown, touching off his current storyline, one that has him trying to provide for his family. Considering that Universal champ Kevin Owens openly talked about providing for his family any way he could, this sounds to me like Uncreative decided to rib Owens, and use Slater, reduced to virtually the company court jester since 2012, to do a parody. That would explain an actress hired a week ago to be Slater's on-camera wife, and having 7 kids at ringside on Smackdown.

Sorry, but the narrative is all wrong. Again.

In teaming with Rhyno, a recent tormentor, Slater is reaching for a 4th tag team title, his first since 2011, at Backlash. It is also his last chance to be a relevant player in WWE.

Think about it. As a member of Nexus and The Corre, Slater was given a chance to main event Raw and/or Smackdown. Ever since the latter stable broke up, Slater has been at the bottom of the card. Remember when he was being fed to a series of "legends" in 2012, culminating in losing to Lita in a No-DQ match on Raw's 1000th episode? That was the last time Slater actually had a storyline worth watching, even if we all knew he would lose virtually every match (only Doink put him over).

In other words, Uncreative is doing Heath a disservice. Will he & Rhyno win the tag titles at Backlash, ensuring a contract for Slater? Right now, I'm leaning toward yes, although the Usos might have something to say about that, based on what we saw on Smackdown. What they should've been doing was putting the focus on what Heath hadn't accomplished the last 5 years, and that he's "at the end of his rope", not because of a prefabricated "family", but because he knows his WWE career could end at any time once Uncreative runs out of ideas for him. Rhyno is running for public office in his home state of Michigan, so a tag title run could be a short one, anyway.

At Backlash on September 11, people will be cheering for Heath Slater to finally get back to the top of the tag team division. It may be his last chance.

comments powered by Disqus