Manolo Has Pizzazz
In case you were in hibernation last week and missed the big news in AEW, Sting! The Icon is All Elite after his debut appearance on Dynamite. That leads to the question of where he fits in the world of AEW during his multi-year deal. Before Sting speaks on Wednesday night, let’s look at the potential scenarios for his future path.
Sting is 61 years old with rumors of cervical spinal stenosis. The potential physical limitations may mean he isn’t in AEW to wrestle. However, if Sting does choose to enter the squared circle again, he’ll certainly have my attention.
Sting is obviously not returning for weekly bouts against the likes of Joey Janela and Peter Avalon. He is here to bring in viewers for the money matches with top guys. In my view, four men fit that bill: Cody Rhodes, Kenny Omega, Jon Moxley, and Chris Jericho.
Cody is the most likely choice. Arn Anderson is already planting the seeds for that fight. Cody can work a low-impact style filled with flash and pizzazz in storytelling to make Sting shine.
Passing the torch
A legend like Sting may consider it his duty to set up the next generation for success by giving the rub to a younger star. The three names that would be most intriguing are Darby Allin, Hangman Page, and MJF.
Allin is the most obvious choice given that both can be face-painting loners at times. It would be amusing to see Allin do Sting’s career in reverse and have a late stage Surfer Allin. Hangman could use a win over Sting as a springboard of confidence toward the AEW World Championship. MJF can never have enough hall of fame scalps.
Of course, new names could emerge by the time Sting is ready for that phase in his AEW career. He might be just what the doctor ordered for wrestlers like Jungle Boy, Sammy Guevara, or Ricky Starks to be pushed into main event status.
One of the easiest ways to cover Sting’s weaknesses is tag team action. Why stop at one partner when he can have two. Tony Khan has mentioned the possibility of trios titles being introduced in 2021. Having Sting as an inaugural trios champ would add instant credibility to the new belts. There is already a PPV matchup in play with Sting, Allin, and Cody against Brian Cage, Ricky Starks, and Will Hobbs. If that story with Team Taz plays to completion before trios titles hit the scene, then a pairing with the Young Bucks would be a nifty dream team.
If returning to the ring isn’t in the cards for Sting, he could find his calling as manager/coach/mentor. Allin would fit the bill in that regard, even though, the timing is a little off since Allin already achieved glory by winning the TNT strap on his own.
As a neat wrinkle, I’d like to see Sting pick up someone in the women’s division as well. There is a certain lady to make it a face-paint party. The idea of seeing Thunder Rosa backed by Sting sounds awesome in my mind.
Sting better act quick before Dr. Britt Baker DMD becomes his best friend to make things awkward.
AEW will always have that odd balance between wrestler and executive vice president for Cody, Omega, and the Young Bucks. One way to eliminate it would be to have Sting in a commissioner role.
I’m not saying Sting should channel Teddy Long and become a matchmaker playa on the spot each week. I’m envisioning a role more in tune with Jack Tunney. When things get out of control, it is time for the Stinger to lay down the law. Next time the Young Bucks throw a superkick party on an innocent bystander, Sting can cane their backsides with his baseball bat as punishment.
What role would you like for Sting in AEW? Which matches would you love to see?