It seems that Sami Zayn is liked by a lot of people in the WWE. Most feel he could be a big star and that he has a lot of ability to become a fan favorite. What it becoming obvious these days is that the fans want to see more from him. They cheer loudly for him in many towns, but not as many know him as WWE would like. His time in NXT put him in front of hardcore WWE fans, and many saw his material on the independent scene as well.
The thought among fans in 2014 was that Zayn could be the next major star because of how massively over he was in NXT. He was the heart of the brand and managed to give us amazing matches and storylines. His pursuit of the NXT Championship was amazing, one that made us want more from him. When he finally beat Neville for the title, the world cheered. WWE was a step ahead and gave us a Kevin Owens/Sami Zayn rivalry immediately after Zayn won the title.
The thought was that this Sami Zayn could be a huge star on the main roster if given a chance to show what he can do like he managed to do in NXT. WWE wanted to capitalize on the love, but Zayn got hurt and missed the rest of 2015. When 2016 hit, he was back at it and gave us a great send-off match with Shinsuke Nakamura in NXT before heading to the main roster officially. Many wondered if WWE would give him a shot.
The Inquisitr reported yesterday that WWE wanted to have Zayn lose in an effort for fans to like him more in the same way they did Daniel Bryan. The Wrestling Observer then expanded on the report but noted that it may be a mistake for the WWE.
“They are booking with the idea that Zayn should lose lots of matches because it will get people mad and behind him more. Zayn has the likable thing going in his promos and is a super worker like [Daniel]Bryan. That did pay off for Bryan, but the same booking cooled far more babyfaces off and kept them stuck at the mid-level and Bryan is the only success with it.”
Basically, the idea the Observer is pushing is that WWE’s attempt to make Sami Zayn into the next Daniel Bryan may not be the best idea. There is also a big difference in Zayn’s career versus Bryan’s. First and foremost, Bryan spent years on the main roster before fans pretty much demanded he get a chance at the World Title. When he finally did get it, WWE took it off of him and angered fans more.
This led to Bryan eventually getting fans behind him to force WWE’s hand. This resulted in Bryan not only having a great match with Triple H to start WrestleMania 30 but also allowed him to have a great triple threat match in the main event. He ended up winning and held the gold, but then he got hurt and was stripped of the WWE World Title. When he came back, he won the WWE Intercontinental Championship only to again give up the title due to injury.
Zayn has only had one major injury in the WWE that sidelined him for the better part of a year. He seemed to have healed up well. However, all of the issues and things that came up with Bryan did not happen to Zayn. On top of that, he has not been given a chance to shine on the main roster for a while like Bryan did.
This means that WWE’s attempt to make Sami Zayn into the next Daniel Bryan this early may result in various problems. Like the Observer mentioned, this kind of booking rarely works out. It did with Bryan because fans already knew him well and knew he deserved more. They then felt WWE wasn’t listening (because they weren’t) and made their opinion known even more. All of this led to the Daniel Bryan love he still has today. Zayn has yet to experience this. Therefore, pushing him the exact way they did with Bryan would not work as well most likely.
[Image via WWE]