SmackDown LIVE Commissioner Shane McMahon was willing to do whatever it took to make sure the WWE World Cup came home to the blue brand — even if it meant taking matters into his own hands.
In a bizarre and controversial turn of events at WWE Crown Jewel on November 2, McMahon took the place of an injured Miz and pinned Dolph Ziggler to win the WWE World Cup Tournament and earn the distinction of being the best in the world.
The Miz was not really hurt and the way things went down is how WWE creative planned it. There were subtle signs of a heel turn on SmackDown LIVE the week before when he told tournament competitors in a backstage segment that they would be fired if they lost to a Raw Superstar in the World Cup Finals.
“The idea is that Shane is going heel,” Dave Meltzer said after Crown Jewel on Wrestling Observer Radio. “Miz wasn’t hurt. This was all booked to be exactly what it is — the beginning of a Shane McMahon heel turn.”
Meltzer added, “When this tournament was first put together, this was always the finish. It was always going to be the finish that Shane was going to turn heel when this thing ends.”
It seemed as though the storyline was quickly dropped as McMahon immediately turned his focus to Survivor Series. However, according to a report by Dave Meltzer in the Wrestling Observer Newsletter, WWE plans on following up on it early next year.
“The storylines to follow-up Shane winning the World Cup are still scheduled but now for the first quarter of the year. I presume it’s made for a WrestleMania set up,” Meltzer wrote.
While recapping Survivor Series, Meltzer mentioned that McMahon is getting a new character early next year.
He wrote, “In the Raw vs. Smackdown feud, it was pretty clear throughout the show that the advanced sellout crowd of 14,000 fans were a pro-Smackdown crowd. But if Smackdown is the babyface promotion, why does Raw always outdraw Smackdown and draw higher ratings than Smackdown? And given that Smackdown is behind, why would they be booked to lose every important match? Well, actually that probably is part of the new Shane McMahon character scheduled for quarter one.”
Meltzer didn’t say what exactly his new character will be like. We heard after Crown Jewel that WWE creative discussed making Shane a heel authority figure, but it’s an idea they keep going back and forth on.