by Amish Patel - August 17, 2013
John: Welcome to our WWE SummerSlam preview. I see a lot of variations of how the name of the event is spelled, but to me it’s always been SummerSlam with the “S” capitalized twice. You can go with Summerslam if you like, but Summer Slam is just wrong. I had to get that out of the way before we started!
I’m not sure if we can classify SummerSlam as the second biggest WWE event in the year other than WrestleMania or if it’s third after the Royal Rumble. Either way, it’s right there with the Rumble as an important event and I think WWE has done a phenomenal job of building a great card this year. I’m genuinely excited about this event.
The show is being carried by the top two matches, which are John Cena vs. Daniel Bryan for the WWE Title and also Brock Lesnar vs. CM Punk. The quality of those matches as well as the booking of those matches will determine if this event has the makings of the WWE pay-per-view of the year like I believe it can be. Maybe those expectations are too high, but I think they are warranted too.
I already did the 20 Questions about SummerSlam last week, so if you read that you know what a lot of my thoughts are. I always like to base predictions on what happened on TV, though, so I’ll make sure to let you know if I was influenced by anything I saw or didn’t see on Raw & SmackDown this past week.
Joining me for the preview are TJRWrestling’s Andrew Johnson (our SmackDown guy) and Christian Michael. Here are some thoughts from Andrew.
Andrew: The theme of this SummerSlam is story.
Okay, realistically every wrestling PPV is about story. This is sports entertainment; you need story to make the whole thing work. You could have the greatest back-and-forth hold-for-hold wrestling extravaganza in history, but at the end of the day if there is no story to support it, than it will be lost forever in the ether. It’s just the way of the beast, and historically speaking, you remember the story way more than you remember the match.
And luckily for us, this SummerSlam is imbued with story. We have the tales of beasts fighting man, scorned lovers, friend versus friend, battles for respect, and even a monster movie in the flesh. We have a villain waiting in the wings to strike with a surefire weapon of destruction in the form of a carrying device for a fatal document. Every moment is part of an elaborate tale (at least in theory) and it’s all coming together in one single night.
Story is important. Story drives the tale and engages the viewer in the events that will transpire. This SummerSlam seems to have all the ingredients to make one of their best stories yet.
Let’s hope they don’t f**k it up.
(Note: All graphics are from WWE.com. The banner is courtesy of our friend Steve Melo.)
United States Championship: Dean Ambrose vs. Rob Van Dam (Kickoff Match)
Christian: Two straight PPVs where The Shield has a match on the preshow. My, how the mighty have fallen. Why? Who knows. Believe the dirt sheets if you want, but obviously something happened. You just don’t reduce the roll of your hottest act for no reason.
As for the match, I think it should be a fun one. The pre-show matches have been getting a good deal of time. It would have been nice for this to get some build instead of just a Battle Royal on RAW and then the following SmackDown. Since the pre-show is an hour, I think Ambrose will retain by DQ and that will lead to either The Shield vs. RVD, The Big Show and Mark Henry being made for the pre-show or maybe just Henry and Show vs. Rollins and Reigns for the Tag Titles.
Prediction- Rob Van Dam wins via Disqualification
Andrew: In regards to story this match has the potential to be the start of one for later in the night. I don’t really expect much in regards to finality or even a clean win, because The Shield is bigger than pre-show and they’ve got the bodies to have a six-man tag, so why waste it? This is a stepping stone to later in the night (hell, it might even be one of those starting the show with action things they do from time to time) to have The Shield take on their newest nemesis Mark Henry and his brother hoss Big Show and Mr “I’m stuck in the 90′s.”
That’s my thought, at least.
Winner: Rob Van Dam by DQ
And in case it happens…
Six Man Tag- Winners: The Shield
John: Like I had written in the Raw Deal, it’s really a shame that they didn’t do a better job of building up this match. It also sucks that it’s not on the main show although the rumor is that this match could break down leading to a six man tag with The Shield going against RVD, Mark Henry and Big Show. The thing is, I just watched Smackdown and they did that six man tag there with the faces winning. Since that match isn’t official, no point in trying to preview it.
There’s no reason to do a title switch here. Since next month’s PPV is Night of Champions, they could continue this feud into that event so that’s why the DQ win by RVD makes sense. What is encouraging is that last month’s Kickoff Match with The Shield against The Usos went about 15 minutes, so these two could go that long. Remember, it’s a one hour Kickoff show. They will have plenty of time. My official pick is that The Shield runs in for the DQ finishing leading to Henry & Show saving RVD and then a six man tag during the actual SummerSlam card.
Winner: Rob Van Dam via DQ (Ambrose keeps US Title)
Dolph Ziggler & Kaitlyn vs. Big E Langston & Divas Champion AJ Lee
Christian: Talking about how the mighty have fallen, what in the world is going on with Dolph Ziggler? I get that the concussion derailed his title reign and that him losing the title was necessary for his turn and Alberto Del Rio’s but my goodness this is awful. He probably wishes he could do four minute jobs to Brodus Clay again.
If this was Ziggler vs. Big E then I’d be ok with it. The whole “teacher vs. student” thing (you guys know what I mean) is a nice step down from the title picture. They added the girls whose feud has gone on way too long. AJ and Big E lose to Natalya and Great Khali and RAW cleanly and Dolph and Kaitlyn and nowhere to be found. The worst part of this whole thing is crazy AJ is a sympathetic character not Kaitlyn and Dolph is just not likable in this feud.
Prediction- Dolph Ziggler and Kaitlyn
Andrew: If you read the Smacking of Smackdown you know how I feel about this story in general. I don’t like it when the heels are more relatable and sympathetic than the faces. But, I can’t disregard the fact that AJ Lee doing her very best River Tam impression is sexy as hell, Dolph Ziggler bumps like a machine, Big E Langston is the most likable WWE Superstar on Twitter and a Hoss supreme in the ring, and Kaitlyn’s thighs make my head spin. So while the overall presentation isn’t something I would enjoy, some of the individual aspects still appeal to me.
I don’t know where this story is headed. I guess that’s kind of a good thing, because once the audience is ahead it kind of loses some of that spark. But, hopefully this is the end game, because good lord is babyface Dolph Ziggler a piece of shit, especially when he’s dealing with his ex-girlfriend and her bodyguard.
Winners: Dolph Ziggler & Kaitlyn
John: It’s time for the babyfaces to get their revenge. Ziggler lost to Langston on Raw a couple of weeks ago. Kaitlyn has been on the losing end of most of her matches with AJ Lee in the last couple of months. By putting them in a tag match, Kaitlyn can get a win back without winning the title because hopefully they go in another direction for a Divas Title feud.
Hopefully Ziggler can get a World Title shot at Night of Champions or soon after. It’s a shame that his career was derailed after his concussion. I thought he deserved a bigger role at WrestleMania (tag title match) and also here at SummerSlam as well. Ziggler’s a top performer in WWE. I hope that in the near future he’s used in a more featured role that truly reflects his talents.
This will probably be an eight minute tag match with the babyfaces getting the win. Kaitlyn hits a Spear on AJ to take her out and Ziggler hits the Zig Zag on Langston to win for his team.
Winners: Dolph Ziggler & Kaitlyn
Natalya vs. Brie Bella
Christian: I get why they’re doing the match. Total Divas has been a smashing success. Then why are they doing Maria Menounos and Natalya vs. Brie Bella and Eva Marie on the Axxess show? That’s got way more pop for the Divas show and the PPV than this match. You want a winner? It’s Brie Bella only because WWE seems to hate Natalya and loves the Bellas.
Prediction- Brie Bella
Andrew: The story of this story, is that this blogger doesn’t give a shit.
For TJR Wrestling, I’m Turd Crapley.
Winner: Brie Bella
John: It’s nice to see Natalya in a PPV match. She’s my favorite diva in WWE by far. I don’t really remember the last time she was in a singles match on PPV, but I’m glad it’s happening. She’s also wrestling as part of the Fan Axxess in Los Angeles earlier on Sunday and she’s booked for the pre-show panel as well, so she will have a busy day for sure. This is basically a feud based off Total Divas, which has been a success for WWE after its first three weeks. Of course on that show Brie comes off as the more nicer Bella Twin, but Nikki’s had a foot injury for a while so Brie gets the match here.
I think Natalya will get the win because they need babyface divas for AJ to go up against in the future because otherwise we’ll just get more AJ vs. Kaitlyn matches. With other Total Divas cast members outside the ring, they will probably brawl outside the ring too. I doubt they get much more than five minutes since it’s a loaded card with other matches that will likely get a lot of time. Hopefully it ends with a Sharpshooter by Natalya.
Kane vs. Bray Wyatt (Ring of Fire Match)
Christian: My only true interest in this match is how you win. I’m guessing you don’t have to light your opponent on fire like an Inferno Match because that’s not very PG. Since Kane is leaving to film See No Evil 2 wouldn’t lighting him on fire be a great way to write him off TV?
I expect a short match that despite the fire, The Wyatt Family helps Bray win. Kane’s leaving and The Wyatt’s are a Triple H project so this one is pretty simple.
Prediction- Bray Wyatt
Andrew: Look, I have a lot to say about these two but I’m going to save it for my Smacking of Smackdown review. Since I don’t like repeating myself, here’s what I wrote last week:
“Here’s something I find concerning about the Bray Wyatt character—I don’t know how deep the rabbit hole goes.
Characters like Undertaker and Kane are cool but they’ve never really frightened me, at least not in the dream invading way. Taker’s pyro is the closest I’ve ever come to feeling fear in his presence, and that’s because I thought I was going to catch on fire. They’re ominous and gothic, but at the end of the day they’re just goofy comic book characters brought into the real world. Their dangers come from perceived magical abilities like controlling fire and summoning lightning. It’s cool, but at the end of the day you know that there is just some pyro guy sitting backstage hitting buttons on cue. It’s not cake, its icing.
Bray Wyatt doesn’t really have tricks. He’s all cake, and he’s delicious. He relies solely on his ability to spin his yarn or words and make his comments—outrageous as they might seem—truth. He doesn’t rise from coffins or make ring posts shoot fire; he just has his mind and his ability to get into yours. That’s real evil. There are men and women in this actual world we live in that can hypnotize a whole room, and that’s what Bray Wyatt is channeling. What’s scary about Wyatt isn’t that he thinks he can rise from the grave; it’s that he thinks he’s already dead. He sees through the bullshit that is the icing, and he’s here to show us that real evil exists, even in our escapism.
If Kane is the King of supernatural wrestling-scary, and Undertaker is the God, what is a God to a none-believer? Nothing. And that’s what’s truly scary.
That and the creepy lamb mask.”
Winner: Bray Wyatt
John: The “Ring of Fire” stipulation is different from what we usually see in WWE (especially in the PG era), so I welcome it. I don’t know if it’s exactly like an Inferno Match, but the idea is that it will surround the ring to keep both men inside the ring to see who comes out victorious. It’s a way to keep Wyatt’s family members Luke Harper and Erick Rowan from interfering.
It makes sense for Wyatt to get the win since he’s the younger of the two competitors and the Wyatt Family is an ascending group while Kane is a veteran who can lose without hurting his character at all. Plus, as we all know he has to go film See No Evil 2 in the near future, so they will likely be writing him out soon. I think Wyatt will win relatively clean in about ten minutes. I think a Wyatt Family attack post match is likely too.
Winner: Bray Wyatt
Cody Rhodes vs. Damien Sandow
Christian: Team Rhodes Scholars EXPLODE! What? It worked for the Mega-Powers. I just haven’t been into this feud as much as I thought I’d be. It’s not for a lack of trying. They did give them two main event segments on SmackDown. My problems are their segment on RAW bombed badly and these two lose. All the time. Has Sandow even won a match since winning Money in the Bank? We’ve seen Cody beat some jobbers, but anyone of substance he faces he loses to. It’s like the battle of the losers instead of two guys being groomed for future World Title runs.
The thing that does intrigue me about this match is will it be for the World Heavyweight Championship? WWE has teased that the World Heavyweight Championship Match could go on before this and then Sandow cashes in and then this match will be for the title. It would be a fun scenario. It would be the first time that has ever happened and I like firsts in wrestling since they’re so hard to come up with.
Prediction- Damien Sandow retains the World Heavyweight Championship (see what I did there?)
Andrew: TEAM RHODES SCHOLARS EXPLODE!
Team Rhodes Scholars will always have a special place in my heart, but here’s the thing; they’re break-up was necessary for both characters’ survival.
It’s true. A few months ago this team split but it didn’t last because A) The writers had nothing better for them and B) In kayfabe, they always had a safety net. They broke them up but not really, and because of that they were stunted. Now they’re at each other’s throats, and while it’s kind of confusing on who the real heel is, it’s awesome because it’s engaging.
Once again, the story is what sells this. Sandow and Cody are both money in the ring, but I didn’t ever want to see them fight until now. One could make the argument that Sandow hasn’t done anything particularly dastardly to Rhodes; he just did what anyone else would have done in his position, Rhodes included. Hell, the announce team pointed it out to him and he agreed. But that makes the whole thing more interesting to me: Who is the villain? Are the fans the misguided ones? Do they only side with Cody because Sandow’s smugness?
That’s the difference between Cody Rhodes and the other faces that act like heels; he was never a good guy in the first place.
Winner: Damien Sandow
John: I really loved the story they told at Money in the Bank with these two as Sandow took advantage of a situation, shoved his buddy Rhodes off the ladder and earned the briefcase. In the past month, WWE has done their best to add to their story by having Rhodes toss Sandow’s briefcase into the Gulf of Mexico. That was a good segment. Not all of them were. It’s been hit and miss partly because Rhodes has been a heel for several years now, so fans are still get used to the idea of cheering the guy with the thin mustache.
The match is big for both guys because neither one has truly had a breakout singles feud. Rhodes has had a lot of midcard feuds that sometimes centered around the IC Title, but really he hasn’t had that one memorable rivalry. This could be that rivalry for him because of the obvious history they have that will hopefully lead to great chemistry for them. Sandow’s been a fun character to watch, but he needs a strong feud with his former best friend to really solidify his spot as a guy that could be a main event level player in the near future. Hopefully the crowd gets behind Rhodes and they get 10-15 minutes. If it’s too short it’s going to hurt them more than it helps.
I’m going with Rhodes. Sandow already has the briefcase and when somebody has the briefcase, WWE tends to book them to lose a lot of the matches. The idea is he can lose (in this case Sandow) while holding the briefcase. If he becomes World Champion via cash-in he could face the guy that beat him already (in this case Rhodes) in title matches that would mean something because of the history they have. Simple booking that works. No matter who wins, I don’t think the feud is over. They should be able to get a couple of PPV matches out of this rivalry.
Winner: Cody Rhodes
World Heavyweight Championship: Alberto Del Rio vs. Christian
Christian: Something’s going on in this match. WWE gave this match away for free on SmackDown a couple of weeks ago. Why? Something’s up, that’s why. I think this match will go on before the Rhodes/Sandow match. This is just pure wild speculation on my part, basically because I can’t figure out why WWE did this match on SmackDown.
Here’s how I think it will go down: The match goes maybe ten minutes. Christian catches Del Rio by surprise with a roll up. We’ve got a new champion! Del Rio goes nuts that Christian beat him. He annihilates Christian. Here comes Damien Sandow and now we’ve got another new World Heavyweight Champion.
Prediction- Christian wins the World Heavyweight Championship and then Damien Sandow Cashes in Money in the Bank to become the NEW World Heavyweight Champion.
Andrew: Oh God, this match is going to break my heart.
Regular readers know of my unfailing love of Christian. He’s been “my guy” ever since he grabbed Edge’s King of the Ring trophy (remember that? That was weird) and started carrying it over his head like it was his own accomplishment. I’ve always had a soft spot for the “lesser” half of tag teams; the Marty Jannetty’s if you will. But the difference between Christian and those other guys is that Christian was better. Legit better, both in the ring and on the mic. He was just unrecognized because of size or politics or several other reasons that are always heartbreaking and terrible.
The sad thing is that nothing gold can stay, and Christian is in the twilight of his career; his Brett Farve in New York era if you will. He’s been given his due, but never to the extent that he’s deserved, and he’s not at the end but he’s getting there. Christian has never been the healthiest Superstar, but over the past few years his body has been breaking down more and more, and I honestly don’t know how much he has left in the tank. Del Rio on the other hand is a machine that still has a massive upside that needs to have a good solid match with a reliable hand. The writing is on the wall.
I love Christian. He’s been my guy for over a decade. He wanted one more match, but he’s not going to win this and he’s probably shouldn’t. And that makes my heart cry a bit.
Winner: Alberto Del Rio
John: This has been a tough feud to pick a winner, but after the booking the last couple of weeks I’m leaning towards Del Rio retaining. On Smackdown a couple weeks ago they had a long singles match that Christian won clean. Why would they do that and then put him over at SummerSlam too? Seems unlikely to me. I think that win was done to give Christian some momentum, make him look like a worthy challenger and show people that he could get the win.
If they get 15 minutes or more it will be an excellent. I think a match around 12 minutes is likely. One of the reasons why I thought Christian might win is because Ricardo Rodriguez could show up looking for revenge on Alberto Del Rio and cost his former boss the World Title. It makes sense in terms of the story. I just think they might save that for a post-match deal after Del Rio finds a way to cheat to the victory.
There are a number of people that could challenge Del Rio in the future, so I think he’ll retain here and then at Night of Champions they could do a Fatal Fourway as a way to give title shots to guys like Ziggler, RVD and possibly Christian again. For now, I think Del Rio finds a way to get the win or possibly keeps the title with a DQ type of finish.
Winner: Alberto Del Rio
CM Punk vs. Brock Lesnar
Christian: The Beast vs. The Best. Hell of a tag line, WWE. The promo work has been sensational as to be expected when Paul Heyman and CM Punk are involved. I’m a little shocked that there’s no stipulation attached to the match since all of Lesnar’s matches since his return haven’t been a traditional one on one match.
You’ve all heard of the “lose on TV, win on PPV” philosophy. I firmly believe in that which is why I’m so torn on this match. Punk has had his ass handed to him by Lesnar the whole way through the feud. Then on RAW, Punk gets the upper hand and leaves Lesnar laying to end RAW.
On one hand, Lesnar should win. He’s THE BEAST!! But how much of a beast is he if he has a losing record? He’ll be 2-3 in WWE since his return if he loses to Punk. That’s hardly beast-like. To get continued value out of him as this unstoppable monster he needs to win some matches. He should have never lost to John Cena or Triple H. Those two hardly need to be put over. If Lesnar was undefeated and beat the great Cena and Triple H then it would really mean something when he lost. That’s why he should win and really reestablish being The Beast.
On the other hand, Punk should win. He’s the full-time guy and most likely Lesnar won’t be around until WrestleMania so, it’s not like Punk can get a win against Lesnar next month. Plus he’s the fighting babyface against the big bully. That’s a story that turns out well for the babyface in Hollywood.
The thing about Punk is what he does after SummerSlam. It doesn’t look like he’ll be in the WWE Title picture because Cena/Orton/Bryan will have that locked down for the next couple of PPVs. If that’s the case a loss here won’t kill him. He can gain his revenge on Heyman by beating up Curtis Axel and then he’ll have plenty of time to beat top names in late 2013 to reestablish himself as a title contender since he probably won’t be around the title until early 2014 anyway.
Slice this pie any way you want; it should be a hell of a match.
Prediction- Brock Lesnar
Andrew: I don’t know what to say about this match that hasn’t already been said by better writers. I can say I’m excited, mainly because the story is so damn strong. I love a good revenge story. Most people do. It’s the reason why “Taken” was such a goddamn hit. The thing is I don’t really want to see the story end, because it’s really just begun.
CM Punk should not win this match. Hell, he shouldn’t even come close. I don’t want him to get run over, but I want to see a Punk so obsessed with his final objective– the murder of Paul Heyman– that he forgets about the monster in front of him. I want to see Bork Laser destroy Punk in a way that puts Punk out of action, and not because he lost his smile or whatever. I want Punk decimated, like Batman after he tangled with the leader of the Mutants. Punk needs to try to match Brock’s savagery, and lose trying.
I want this because I see this as the second chapter of a four-part story. That way Punk can lick his wounds, come back in Part 3 and absolutely roll Brock by fighting smart. Use his brain, and take Brock out for good. That leads us right into the final chapter where Punk finally gets his hands on Heyman, and the story comes to a close with revenge being taken.
I know WWE doesn’t think like I do, that’s clear. They have quotas to meet. But every once in a while, can’t story be the real victor here?
Winner: Brock Lesnar
John: I have very high expectations for this match because I think the build for it has been excellent. Punk has done an awesome job of playing the heroic babyface who is trying to get revenge on his best friend Paul Heyman for turning on him and proclaiming that Lesnar is better than Punk. Lesnar has attacked Punk multiple times and he’s won the battle every time except last week on Raw when Punk used a camera to even the odds. I went into this feud thinking Punk had to go over because Lesnar’s likely not working another match until WrestleMania in eight months (only three PPVs per yearly contract cycle), so why put over the guy that is just going away again? It’s putting the “lose the match or fight on TV, win on PPV” theory to the test.
One of the big stories going into this match is whether or not Punk will get his hands on Heyman. When he does, what happens? If Punk hits Heyman with the Go To Sleep the crowd will explode, but I’m not sure if that means Punk is going to win the match. They could do a spot where Lesnar is out, Punk gets Heyman, he hits him with the GTS and then Lesnar comes back to drop Punk with a F5 to win the match. The story would be that Punk was too focused in getting revenge on Heyman that he lost the match.
The question about whether Lesnar should lose is one that has its pros and cons. The pro is if he really is going away until WrestleMania season then it’s smarter to put over the guy that’s there every week (that would be Punk). The con to that is that Lesnar looks like a loser considering he’s 2-2 since returning to WWE in the spring of 2012. The assumption is that Lesnar will wrestle a huge name like The Rock or Undertaker at WrestleMania, so do you want to give him a loss before a match like that? To me, it’s okay if he loses because that match is so far down the road that most fans will forget about this loss.
It will be interesting to see if a stipulation is added late to the match because most of Lesnar’s matches have that in order to showcase his brawling skills. I think it would be smart because then it would differentiate the match from the Cena/Bryan match, which is likely to be a regular wrestling match. Stipulations help sometimes. No matter what kind of match it is, I expect them to get about 20 minutes and it should be an outstanding matchup. Lesnar will be better against a smaller opponent like Punk rather than Triple H, who is a much slower guy. Punk can have great matches with anybody.
I’m picking Lesnar to win largely because of how Raw ended with Punk triumphant in their most recent battle. I think they can milk the Punk/Heyman story for a couple of months using Curtis Axel as a potential opponent (Punk should not go for the IC Title) and perhaps somebody else as a “Heyman Guy” since Lesnar is going away for a while. As I said, if Punk drops Heyman with the GTS that will be the biggest moment of the match. It could happen after the match too.
From the moment they had their first brawl with Lesnar destroying Punk I thought this was a money feud. A month later it still is. I’m really looking forward to this one. I think it’s going to be great.
Winner: Brock Lesnar
WWE Championship: John Cena vs. Daniel Bryan (Triple H is Special Ref)
Christian: Is anyone else just a little surprised that WWE didn’t involve the Bellas in this feud in some capacity?
For the first time in a really long time WWE has the babyface trying to climb the mountain against the undisputed king of that mountain. John Cena vs. Daniel Bryan. What WWE wants vs. what the fans want. This is pure gold. The promos have been pretty good. I liked the one they did this past RAW. While I liked their promos it has seemed like there’s been something held back especially on Bryan’s part.
That match is going to tell an interesting story. Did Cena pick Bryan because he thinks Bryan deserves the match or did he pick him because he thinks Bryan will be an easy out? Cena will likely become increasingly frustrated as the match goes on that he can’t put away Bryan and that’s when Bryan will strike.
The underdog fighter doesn’t fit Cena. He’s a big dude that’s had lots of success. For this match to really work he needs to play the heel and be the aggressor. Bryan is the one that needs to come out of this match looking like the conquering underdog that defies the odds. It’s a more believable story than if it were to be Cena.
Of course this couldn’t just be a match about Daniel Bryan trying to capture his first WWE Championship. Triple H is the special referee. The last time he refereed a WWE Championship Match at SummerSlam we saw Kevin Nash appear out of nowhere, Jackknife CM Punk and Alberto Del Rio cash in his Money in the Bank. I’m sure some expect a similar scenario where maybe Triple H attacks the winner and Randy Orton cashes in his MITB.
I just can’t see Triple H being out there and not doing something to alter the course of WWE history. That said my dream scenario would be for Bryan to win the title from Cena and then eat a Pedigree from Hunter and then thwart Orton’s attempt at a cash in by beating him in the cash in match. How awesome would that be and how huge would that put Bryan over?
I think either way you look at it Cena with his elbow surgery coming after SummerSlam, isn’t walking out the Champion. It’s down to whether you think WWE is going to give Daniel Bryan his moment or Orton is cashing in. There will probably never be another chance as golden as this one to let Daniel Bryan be the man in WWE. One way or another all I can see is Daniel Bryan screaming “YES!!” atop the ramp with the WWE Championship in his hands as SummerSlam fades to black. Ladies and gentlemen, the Beard is here.
Prediction- Daniel Bryan becomes the NEW WWE Champion
Andrew: This was me when John Cena picked Daniel Bryan as his opponent for SummerSlam:
This was me after Triple H announced himself as the special guest referee, and got his GAME JUICE all over my awesome main-event:
And this is me after realizing Daniel Bryan is in the main-event of the second biggest PPV of the year, and is probably going to win:
But still, f**k you Triple H. F**k you so hard.
Winner: Daniel Bryan
CASH IN BITCHES!
John: Here we are. Daniel Bryan challenging John Cena for the WWE Title. Huge match. The build to it has been very good. The outcome of the match is in doubt even though it’s likely that Cena is going for elbow surgery days after this match, which means The Champ is probably losing the match.
The reason there is doubt? Randy Orton, who is not booked at SummerSlam, lurking in the background with a Money in the Bank briefcase in his possession. When will the Viper strike? We don’t know although WWE has made it clear that Orton intends to do something big on Sunday night.
What I want is for Daniel Bryan to leave SummerSlam as the WWE Champion after defeating John Cena (via tapout) and then he beats Randy Orton with a small packagae when he tries to cash in the briefcase. It would be nice if SummerSlam ended with Daniel Bryan walking out as WWE Champion as the crowd chanted “yes” to end the show. Do I think it will happen? No. I don’t. As soon as they added Triple H as the special referee it let me know that something different was going to happen.
I think what will happen is Bryan will defeat Cena after a grueling 25 minute match, Triple H will hand him the WWE Title and then Triple H will drop Bryan with a Pedigree. Orton will come out, cash in the briefcase, hit the RKO and become WWE Champion. Triple H will hug him. Vince McMahon will come out. The three of them will hug. Remember that McMahon stated he didn’t want Cena or Bryan to be WWE Champion. That’s why Orton is there. Is it obvious? Yes, in some ways. That doesn’t make it bad, though.
The WWE roster is full of talented people, but if you look at it right now the babyface side is loaded: Cena, Bryan, Punk, Orton, Ziggler, Sheamus (injured for now), Christian, RVD, Henry, Show, Kane and so on. The heel side is lacking big names after Del Rio, who really isn’t as big of a name as WWE wants him to be. There’s a huge void there. If they turn Triple H heel along with Randy Orton, you have two major names shifting to the other side. Hunter can work a match or two if needed, but for the most part would be a heel executive siding with Vince McMahon. Then later in the year or early in the next year, Vince ends up a babyface, picks whoever to go up against at Hunter at WrestleMania 30 and then it’s just a matter of getting to that point. Do I really want to see McMahonaMania? Not really. Who’s going to tell them no? Nobody. That’s why I think a major heel turn is likely here with so many people interested in what might happen.
If you’re at the show or watching at home I think this match is something you won’t forget. It has the makings of a classic. Cena may not be the best wrestler, but Bryan is (in my opinion) and I think Cena’s shown throughout his career that he’s very capable when he’s in there with an elite performer. I’m expecting a match that gets about 20 minutes with many great nearfalls and hopefully the LA crowd is ready to make a lot of noise.
I think what makes this match so compelling is there are so many different scenarios. As I’ve written in the past couple of weeks, I’ve read and seen so many different scenarios that make a lot of sense if they happened. That’s the appeal of this match on top of the likelihood that it will be an excellent matchup. I’m very excited to see what happens. I just hope it makes sense.
Winner: Daniel Bryan – New WWE Champion
Celebrate! New WWE Champion! Not for long. Pedigree by Triple H. Here comes Orton. RKO. New WWE Champion.
Winner: Randy Orton – New WWE Champion
Christian: I am really looking forward to SummerSlam. This show has the freshness to it in the main events that you hoped WrestleMania would have. I expect it to deliver on a lot of levels. It’s going to be a busy night for me Sunday as I have to find a way to juggle this, the Yankee game (yes, I’m still holding out hope) and Breaking Bad. No matter when I actually see it, this should be a hell of a show. Enjoy and be sure to tread lightly. Sorry, I had to throw that in.
John: I think it’s going to be awesome. I enjoyed Money in the Bank and Payback a lot. I think they were the two best PPVs this year. I think SummerSlam will top both of them. WWE is in a very good spot right now. I hope it continues. I also have a feeling that at the end of Sunday night something major is going to happen. Perhaps it is something I mentioned up above or I could be way off. I’m not sure. As long as it entertains us that’s all that really matters.
That’s all for us. My plan is to write about WWE SummerSlam live on Sunday night on TJRWrestling.com and then I’ll post it on other sites on Monday.
On behalf of Andrew and Christian, thanks for reading.
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