When Brock Lesnar lost to John Cena at Extreme Rules, many fans were worried about what that might mean for Lesnar's long-term viability. After his decisive, submission victory over Triple H at SummerSlam, however, it's safe to say that Lesnar's image has officially been redeemed.
Lesnar returned to the WWE with a ton of momentum the night after WrestleMania, and many fans hoped that he would bulldoze through Cena. Since Lesnar needed to take some time off in order to save the limited amount of dates in his contract, though, Cena beat Lesnar and ultimately halted his momentum.
Whatever Lesnar lost after that match, however, was won back on Sunday night. Lesnar and Triple H engaged in an intense, physical encounter at SummerSlam as they traded blow after blow. Lesnar was in control for much of the match, but a worked flare up of his diverticulitis allowed Triple H to gain the upper hand momentarily.
Lesnar kicked out of one Pedigree, and then after Triple H hit him with another and looked as though he might pull off the win, Lesnar recovered quickly and put Triple H in the Kimura Lock that had previously broken his and Shawn Michaels' arms, respectively. Lesnar then did what few others can claim, as he forced a face, Triple H, to tap out.
The amount of times that face Triple H has tapped out over the course of his career can probably be counted on one hand, so what Lesnar accomplished was no small feat. There was concern among many fans that Triple H's supposed ego would get in the way of putting Lesnar over, but he put Brock over better than perhaps any opponent in his entire career.
Right now, the popular thought is that Lesnar's next feud will be with either The Undertaker or The Rock and it will culminate with a match at WrestleMania. That obviously has yet to be confirmed and a lot could change between now and then, but Lesnar couldn't possibly enter a program with a wrestling legend like Taker or Rock having lost his first two matches since returning.
Some of the more serious fans aren't going to forget the loss to Cena and may maintain that it ruined Lesnar, but the win over Triple H erases any memory of a Cena loss for most. It would have been nice to see Lesnar beat Cena, too, but defeating a guy like Triple H in dominant fashion should be plenty to make him look like a threat moving forward.
Some probably got a little worried when the writers had Lesnar pretend like his past stomach issues were flaring up, but I believe that ultimately made him look even stronger. Not only did Lesnar beat one of the toughest guys to ever grace a WWE ring, but he did it while experiencing stomach pains, and after taking two Pedigrees to boot.
It's very obvious that the WWE wanted to do everything it could in order to build Lesnar back up to the level where he resided when he first came back. Maybe the aftermath of the match wasn't the greatest in terms of Triple H acting like he was going to retire, but if Triple H does announce his retirement on Monday, real or not, it will be another feather in Lesnar's cap.
Lesnar desperately needed that win and Triple H didn't because of all that he has accomplished in wrestling. With that in mind, having Lesnar go over might have seemed like the obvious choice, but the obvious thing doesn't always happen in wrestling. This situation called for it, though, and the WWE definitely hit the mark.