Last summer, the WWE Universe witnessed one of the greatest matches in history.
At Money In The Bank on July 17, 2011, CM Punk faced John Cena for the WWE Title in an instant classic that many fans considered to be match of the year.
Going into the match, CM Punk generated an enormous amount of momentum with a shocking June 27, 2011 promo in which he audaciously voiced his frustrations with the WWE brass and landscape.
Not only was Punk's promo shocking, but during the promo, Punk declared that he would leave WWE (when his contract expired on July 18) with the Title.
Mr. McMahon suspended Punk for his promo and cancelled the match. John Cena then begged Mr. McMahon to reinstate Punk (and the match) by putting his career on the line. If Cena lost to Punk, he would be fired.
By the time July 17 arrived, the anticipation for the match was astronomical. Thankfully, the match lived up to the hype.
This summer, WWE fans might not witness a match as intriguing as the Punk vs. Cena match at last year's Money In The Bank, but they can expect to see some great matches, nonetheless.
With that said, let's take a look at 5 potentially great matches WWE could offer fans this summer.
On the night after Brock Lesnar destroyed John Cena at Extreme Rules, Brock Lesnar brutally attacked Triple H and broke Triple H's arm.
Triple H later claimed that the brutal attack wasn't as big a deal to him as Brock Lesnar's "legitimacy" talk was. Triple H claimed that Brock Lesnar offends him as a pro wrestling fan. Regarding Brock Lesnar's claims of bringing "legitimacy" back to the WWE, Triple H said the following:
The day before he (Brock Lesnar) came back here, I was standing in the center of a ring in front of 78,000 people at the most-watched WrestleMania (XXVIII) in history, going toe-to-toe with The Undertaker, and the whole time all I could think to myself is, 'Geez, I wish someone could come along and make this legitimate.
Ultimately, If Triple H were to fight Brock Lesnar, he would not only be fighting to redeem himself from the lopsided beating he took from Brock, but he would also be fighting for his love of the wrestling business and for everything in it (from the wrestlers to the fans).
If this match happens, how do you see it going down?
Back on the February 20, 2012 episode of Monday Night Raw, Wade Barrett dislocated his elbow in a 10-man battle royal to determine the No. 1 contender for the WWE Title.
According to several reports, before Barrett got injured, he was scheduled to win Money In The Bank at WrestleMania XXVIII and challenge CM Punk for the WWE Title. The Money In The Bank match was scrapped after Barrett's injury.
As for Wade Barrett's return date, reports claim that Barrett is looking to return by SummerSlam in August.
Considering Barrett was reportedly scheduled to win Money In The Bank at WrestleMania XXVIII, he will likely get a strong push towards one of the major Titles once he returns.
In my opinion, Wade Barrett will return to SmackDown, not Raw. I also believe that Sheamus will still be the World Heavyweight Champion by the time Barrett returns. For those reasons, I believe a World Title match between Sheamus and Barrett will happen at SummerSlam.
What do you think of this? Should Wade Barrett go after Sheamus?
At No Way Out on June 17, CM Punk will defend the WWE Title in a triple threat match against Kane and Daniel Bryan.
Regardless of who wins, CM Punk and Daniel Bryan should go one-on-one at Money In The Bank (on July 15) in a ladder match for either the WWE Title or the No. 1 contendership.
Both wrestlers' careers skyrocketed after they won Money In The Bank ladder matches.
CM Punk has won two Money In The Bank ladder matches—once at WrestleMania XXIV and once at WrestleMania XXV. He then went on to win the World Heavyweight Championship on two separate occasions after cashing in his briefcases against Edge on a June 30, 2008 episode of Raw and against Jeff Hardy at Extreme Rules 2009.
At last year's Money In The Bank PPV, Daniel Bryan won the SmackDown Money In The Bank ladder match. Bryan later beat Big Show at TLC for the World Heavyweight Championship after cashing in his briefcase.
Like I wrote in a previous article, "what better way to add variety to the CM Punk vs. Daniel Bryan feud than to have them face each other in the match type that elevated their careers? Also, what better way to illustrate the importance of the Money In The Bank ladder match than to showcase (at Money In The Bank) how far two of its winners have come since winning the match?"
Considering Raw and SmackDown aren't really separate brands anymore (many wrestlers from each show wrestle on both shows) and that having three ladder matches would be overkill, perhaps one of the customary eight-man ladder matches should be replaced with a ladder match between CM Punk and Daniel Bryan.
What do you think? Do you want to see a ladder match between these two wrestlers? Is it a good idea to get rid of one of the customary eight-man ladder matches?
As I wrote on the previous slide, considering Raw and SmackDown are no longer truly separate brands (many wrestlers from each show wrestle on both shows), perhaps one of the customary eight-man ladder matches should be replaced with a ladder match between CM Punk and Daniel Bryan.
That leaves us with an inter-promotional eight-man ladder match.
The question is, who should participate?
Some wrestlers I'd like to see in the match include Dolph Ziggler, Sin Cara, Hunico, Chris Jericho (whose 30-day suspension would be up by this time), Miz, R-Truth, Kofi Kingston and Zack Ryder.
Regardless of who participates in the match, there should be up-and-comers, veterans and high-flyers who would offer great spots.
Who would you like to see in the match? Also, is it a good idea to have an inter-promotional ladder match?
To follow up a potentially great ladder match at Money In The Bank, perhaps CM Punk and Daniel Bryan should face each other in a 60-minute Iron Man match at SummerSlam.
Ideally, an Iron Man match would happen at the grandest stage of them all—WrestleMania, but judging from this past WrestleMania (where Flo Rida and MGK got more air time than Daniel Bryan and Sheamus), WWE would probably rather give fans a 60-minute Lady Gaga and Lil Wayne concert than a 60-minute wrestling clinic.
Regardless of where the Iron Man match should take place, many fans want to see it, including Hall of Fame announcer Jim Ross.
In his blog, Jim Ross said the following:
Punk and Bryan certainly are not '8X10 guys' but are two superbly conditioned, highly skilled, physically and mentally tough athletes who have sprinkled in just enough 'show biz' to make each man a uniquely marketable package.
Hopefully we will be treated to more of these two men in the future. This rivalry has unlilmited potential including the opportunity for an Ironman Match, 30 or 60 minutes, among many other show stealers.
Someone else who is interested in seeing an Iron Man match between Punk and Bryan is former ECW and WWE announcer, Joey Styles—who tweeted the following after an Over The Limit rematch between the two wrestlers on Raw:
The question remains, are today's WWE fans patient enough to sit through a 60-minute Iron Man match between CM Punk and Daniel Bryan? Also, does WWE have enough faith in Punk and Bryan to let them have an Iron Man match at SummerSlam?
Thanks for reading! Share your thoughts! Did I miss any PPV matches you'd like to see this summer? If so, what are they?