Dolph Ziggler was bested by Otis in their feud that also involved Mandy Rose and Sonya Deville, but a trade to Raw has given him new life. Ziggler was thrust into the WWE Title picture on Raw, walking into the red brand and immediately getting a WWE Title shot thanks to his history with Drew McIntyre.
Speaking to Sports Illustrated, Ziggler discussed his story with Otis and move to Raw.
"I didn’t pitch this, but I feel like [the program between] myself and Otis had kind of run its course. I really liked working with Otis, Mandy and Sonya. If this were the old days and we were going five days a week and doing live events, we would have had even more chemistry and a really special thing. In this day and age, where it’s just a TV show in a closed studio, as young superstars, they came along very quickly. But I don’t know where else we could go with that, so I completely understand the move to Raw," he said.
Ziggler said he believes he and Drew can make something special happen if they're given 30-40 minutes to work, saying how they have similar mindsets when it comes to wrestling.
WrestleMania 36 marked Ziggler's first singles match during his career at WrestleMania. Though he was on the wrong side in the record books, Ziggler was proud of what they accomplished leading into the bout.
"I mean this in the best possible way—I’m not a mark for the WrestleMania match. I am a mark for the time put into the story that allows you to get paid, WrestleMania-style. More importantly, I didn’t care what the match was as long as there was a real story to it. Not something like, "You’ve been here 15 years, let’s put you in a match." Sometimes things are cold, sometimes you’re in a battle royal, but we had a really cool story. Even if that’s not WrestleMania, make it a SmackDown with a live crowd where Otis gets his comeuppance, I get punched in the balls by Mandy, they embrace, that would have blown the roof off.
"That was a really special thing and it and was paid off perfectly. The only thing missing were 85,000 people erupting when it happened. I really wish that could have happened, but if we keep up the hard work and keep busting our butts, we can reenact some other story or some different level of it next year."
Otis and Mandy remain on WWE SmackDown with Otis currently holding the Money in the Bank briefcase. Ziggler will face McIntyre at WWE Extreme Rules: The Horror Show.
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