WWE SummerSlam 2012 is now behind us, but unfortunately, the pay-per-view’s 25th anniversary didn't quite live up to many people’s lofty expectations.
There was no real development regarding CM Punk’s heel turn, and aside from the U.S. title in the pre-show, none of the other four championships that were up for grabs on the main card changed hands. Truth be told, it all gave the evening a rather dull feel.
But the match that everyone really had their eyes on was the main event:
Brock Lesnar vs. Triple H.
And though the contest ended in fairly entertaining fashion, given the massive pre-match hype, it too was something of a disappointment.
More specifically, Brock Lesnar was something of a disappointment.
He was rusty, perhaps slightly out of shape and, frankly, looked very uncomfortable in a WWE ring. The fact is that UFC has completely changed his style, and understandably so, but if he wants his WWE return to be a success, then he needs to start behaving like a professional wrestler, not a fighter.
Don’t get me wrong, I think the brutality that he brings to the table is great, and when he first came back to the company, I felt it was a great move. He was dangerous, intimidating and helped create a much edgier product that was a throwback to more exciting days gone by.
But at SummerSlam in particular, Lesnar was trying too hard to assert himself as the dominant “human wrecking machine” that he has been dubbed.
His moveset has been reduced to a combination of shoulder thrusts and the Kimura Lock, which, in all honesty, makes for boring viewing. Perhaps the company is trying to lure in more fans from a UFC background, but either way, Lesnar’s current persona seems out of place in a WWE ring.
He did nail a textbook German Suplex, which proves he is capable of wrestling the way he did in his first stint with the company. But apart from that, a couple of UFC moves and his patented F-5, his only other notable offense was an untidy Double Axe Handle from off the announcer’s table, to which he botched the landing and slipped to the floor.
It’s as though Lesnar does not know his own strength, and his over-exuberance sees him lose control.
The whole incident was reminiscent of the botched clothesline on John Cena at Extreme Rules that could have seen him sustain a serious injury, though he is rumored to have blamed his opponent for the incident.
Nonetheless, his technique remains sloppy; it’s as though he hasn’t trained or prepared for a return to the world of WWE at all.
Another noticeable feature was his inability to sell. He seems to have forgotten how to correctly take a bump and in immediately putting Triple H in the Kimura Lock after receiving two Pedigrees, Lesnar seriously undermined The Game’s stature.
I appreciate that it was a part of the plan to make Lesnar look unstoppable, but one of the most basic rules of pro wrestling is that you sell your opponent's finisher.
Considering the Pedigree has been enough to put away greats like The Rock and Stone Cold Steve Austin in the past, what does it say about such legends of the business when Lesnar doesn’t appear to be affected by the move at all?
It completely kills the aura of pro wrestling; and if guys were to no-sell like Lesnar on a regular basis, what would be the point in watching anymore?
Though the victory was the right choice in the long run, as it somewhat atones for Lesnar’s loss of credibility at Extreme Rules, the former UFC champion will need to polish up his approach if he wishes to deliver in his future matches with the WWE.
Throughout the night, Michael Cole was eager to remind us of the punishment that Triple H was suffering at the hands of Lesnar. But frankly, the only time I feel that Lesnar’s opponents are taking a beating is when he botches a move.
If he could refine his style slightly, and remember the approach that saw him become so dominant during the Ruthless Aggression era, Lesnar can certainly salvage something from what has so far been a below-par return to the company.
The UFC angle seemed to be a good idea at first, but it has grown stale and doesn't produce the kind of matches that wrestling fans desire.
Besides, if I wanted to see a UFC fight, I wouldn’t be watching WWE, would I?
Kudos to Triple H, by the way, for putting Lesnar over despite the fact that many people felt he was too selfish and egotistical to do so.
I guess he means it when he says he only wants what’s “best for business.”
But all in all, did you enjoy the PPV? And what did you think of Lesnar’s performance? Comment below with your thoughts and feelings on this matter.