Cesaro is a curious character. Despite being almost universally loved by wrestling fans, he continues to toil in the midcard. Cesaro is obviously one of the best wrestlers in the company, but to this point, he hasn’t sniffed a World Championship. Why is that?
The Mystery of Cesaro’s Push
On paper, Cesaro fills out all the boxes. He’s in great shape, he’s an amazing worker, and he has an infectious charisma. Everywhere the WWE goes, he gets a huge reaction from the crowd. He might be the WWE’s strongest man, and everyone from Sami Zayn to John Cena has been highly complimentary of the Swiss Superman. So why hasn’t he gotten a chance to prove himself as a main event talent?
Anyone who watches WWE television knows that Vince McMahon is a little xenophobic. If you’re not American, you often get straddled with some strange gimmick, and are often vilified. If you need an example, just look at the way he has booked [Handsome] Rusev.
Rusev has been involved in two major feuds recently, one against Roman Reigns and another against Enzo Amore and Big Cass. Why was he feuding with these men? Because they disrespected his wife. Reigns crashed his wedding celebration, beating him up and embarrassing his bride. And Enzo tried to sleep with his wife, but Rusev is the bad guy. Why? Because he’s foreign.
Now fortunately, Vince hasn’t slapped a cheesy gimmick on Cesaro, but the fact that English isn’t his first language definitely doesn’t help. During his United States Championship run, Cesaro used the fact that he could speak five languages… to get heat. That’s right, the fact that he can speak multiple languages was used as a way to get booed. Of course, it was more the condescending way he did that offended people, but still. Cesaro’s Swiss origins haven’t helped him in Vince McMahon’s eyes.
The E Is for Entertainment
This is the saddest truth about the WWE. While we all know Cesaro is fantastic, there’s one man who doesn’t necessarily agree. And unfortunately, the’s the one man whose opinion really matters when it comes to WWE.
Vince McMahon reportedly thinks that Cesaro is boring. Maybe it’s the language barrier, maybe it’s the indy equity, and maybe it’s the fact that he’s bald. But for some reason, Vince McMahon doesn’t want to pull the trigger with the Swiss Superman.
It’s worth noting that WWE is not a pro wrestling promotion. Michael Cole has spent over a decade informing us that we’re watching “sports entertainment”. It’s less of a wrestling TV show and more of a TV show that happens to feature wrestling. Someone who is marketable or conventionally attractive is more likely to get a push because, in Vince McMahon’s eyes, they’re better for business.
This isn’t a secret though. There are wrestlers that are far more conventionally marketable than Cesaro that have been robbed of big pushes in favor of guys like Roman Reigns. It’s always been this way, and it likely always will be this way as long as VKM is in charge. However, there’s one more thing to think about.
Before wrestling for WWE, Cesaro wrestled all over the world as Claudio Castagnoli. He wrestled everywhere from Europe to Japan to all of the best independent promotions in North America. As Claudio Castagnoli, he established himself as one of the best wrestlers in the world.
However, despite being an exceptional talent, it might surprise you to know that Cesaro was similarly booked in the independents. He was a largely popular tag-team wrestler, winning tag belts in eight different promotions, mostly with Chris Hero. As much as Cesaro deserves a World Championship push, it’s not like he was challenging Samoa Joe‘s record in Ring of Honor.
Cesaro is being booked about as well as he had been on the independent circuit. He’s a brilliant technician, as well as an amazing tag team performer, and that’s how WWE has used him. Hopefully his partnership with Sheamus has an expiration date, and we’ll see the two face off at WrestleMania. Until then, all we in the Cesaro Section can do is keep cheering and hope that Vince McMahon changes his mind.