WWE Night of Champions 2012 certainly had its talking points.
In a repeat of last year's event, we saw two titles change hands, as well as four successful defenses and a rare draw—the controversy of which will surely result in repercussions for the future. And though the pay-per-view may not have been perfect, there were a number of positives to take from the event.
This article takes a closer look between the lines, discussing the show's highlights and analyzing the long-term impact of these moments.
There were a number of reasons that I felt this was a good match.
Obviously, the quality of the encounter was very high, with some great spots and some brilliant, fast-paced action with which to kick off the PPV.
And having The Miz emerge victorious was a good booking choice from the WWE, as the Intercontinental Championship continues in its gradual return to prominence. The Awesome One is now starting to put together a decent run, and the foundations have been laid for him to have one of the more memorable titles reigns in recent history.
Furthermore, this match led me to the conclusion that The Miz's next opponent should be Cody Rhodes.
The two men have seen their progress stutter over the past year or so, but they remain a pair of fantastic performers, and would be able to put on a great program, which could do wonders for their careers as well as the returning prestige of the IC Title.
The match also made clearer the future of Sin Cara in my eyes.
It's no secret that the human-botch-machine's WWE career is yet to take off as planned. But, having him compete alongside a number of others makes his as-yet unrefined pro wrestling style less obvious than when he is put in the spotlight of one-on-one action.
While he cant be involved in Fatal Four Ways every week, perhaps a move to the tag-team division would be of benefit to the Mexican. This would alleviate the pressure somewhat and allow him further adapt to the American style, providing him with a brilliant learning opportunity if he were partnered with someone like Rey Mysterio.
His high-flying offense would nicely compliment the style of the Primetime Players or even the new Champions Daniel Bryan and Kane, which seems a more logical idea than thrusting him in at the deep end of singles competition each week.
Thus, the luchador does have a future in the WWE, but he should first be allowed to adapt and develop in the tag-team division before returning to regular one-on-one action.
It's good to see the WWE capitalizing on the interest in Daniel Bryan and Kane.
They're giving the fans exactly what they want and ensuring there is a payoff to their popularity, rather than allowing it to go to waste in what they did with the likes of Zach Ryder, for example.
What was once an comical anger management sketch has now become, in many people's eyes, a chance to once again make the tag-team division relevant.
The fans were well behind the two for the entire match, with their dysfunctional antics well-received by the Boston crowd. Though at times they were in danger of overdoing it, I feel the WWE just about struck the right balance between comedy and action before topping off the affair with a satisfying result and another amusing segment between the two.
Hopefully, the WWE doesn't wear the act thin with these two, but the victory will certainly make people care about the division more. Also, it provides the rawer stars like the Usos and Primo and Epico with the opportunity to work with and learn from the technical skills of Bryan and the vast experience of Kane.
On the whole, crowning Daniel Bryan & Kane the new tag-team champions is a move that will prove to be most advantageous to the overall division.
The current state of the WWE Divas division is poor to say the least, and this has been the case for some time now.
But, the title match at Night of Champions was something of an exception to this.
Early in the night, we witnessed Kaitlyn mysteriously injure her ankle backstage, ultimately resulting in Eve being selected to fill her spot in the Divas Championship match. Not only did Eve and Layla then put on a very solid show, but it's hard to remember the last time that any feud of the Divas division had such time and effort put into its storyline.
For once, the division is interesting, but the WWE must capitalize on this.
If Kaitlyn's attacker turns out to be Eve, this would be an interesting, albeit predictable development to the situation involving the three women. The stage is set to further this intriguing rivalry for a number of weeks to come.
Of course, perhaps I'm biased on this matter, as I'm a big fan of Eve and admittedly not too keen on Layla. Despite the latter being a rare British success story in the WWE, I find her rather boring given that her basic move-set is comprised mainly of various roll-up pins.
But it's good to see Eve achieving success, given that she's possibly the only Diva with any real substance to her character in a division overwhelmed with generic personas.
Having JBL return to call the action was a fantastic move by the WWE.
I had initially hoped for either J.R. or William Regal to take the reins, or perhaps The Miz, had he not been otherwise engaged. But nonetheless, the return of JBL was a highly satisfactory turn of events.
And while I wish Jerry “The King” Lawyer a speedy and full recovery, based on this performance, I find a large part of myself hoping that JBL is offered a more permanent position behind the announcers table.
The former WWE Champion showed no deterioration of the mic skills that he exhibited so regularly in his previous years with the company. He was assured, insightful, and perhaps most importantly very logical in his arguments and judgments.
Though admittedly, he continued to refer to John Cena as a 10-time champion despite the fact that he has in fact won 12 World Titles, I’m willing to give him the benefit of the doubt and attribute this to confusion over the fact that 10 of Cena’s 12 titles were in fact WWE Championships.
But I’d like to suggest that it wasn’t just JBL’s presence that made the commentary so good. Employing him as the heel commentator enabled Michael Cole to return to the role of face that he portrayed during his earlier years in the WWE.
This created a new dynamic; a fresh change to the Cole/Lawler partnership that has been a regular fixture for a number of years now.
Furthermore, JBL plays the part of heel just as effectively but in a far less annoying way than Cole. It was an arrangement that I very much preferred and one that the company should certainly look into sustaining, at least for the time being while The King recuperates.
First of all, I must acknowledge the fact that this was simply a brilliant encounter.
This match was the main reason why I watched the PPV, and though I had previously been hoping for a more dramatic revelation involving the CM Punk/Paul Heyman alliance, the sheer excitement of the contest more than atoned for the lack of such developments.
And the end of the match left me well and truly shocked.
I was firstly surprised to see Cena score the pinfall after an unorthodox German Suplex from the top rope. Though I had feared that Punk's dominance was simply a precursor to the predictable "SuperCena" ending, I was not expecting him to seemingly win in the way that he did.
Perhaps it was this unconventional end that distracted me, but I for one did not notice the shoulder position of Cena during the pin. For the referee to then announce the result was a draw left me even more astounded. It was a finale that I most definitely did not see coming.
And while I'm not totally convinced that I want to see this rivalry stretch out, if it culminates in a clash inside Hell in a Cell next month, then I cannot really complain, as it will most likely result in another brilliant match between the two.
Nonetheless, regardless of where this feud is ultimately heading, the sheer shock value of the match's conclusion made it both a memorable and enjoyable finish to the PPV.
While there may have been other noteworthy moments from Night of Champions, I feel that these five were the best from both a short and long-term perspective.
However, the PPV was by no means perfect.
There were a number of less pleasing points to take away from the event, the likes of which are discussed in another of my more recent articles.
Make sure you check out the other side of the story, but beforehand don't forget to comment below with your thoughts on Night of Champions 2012 as well as what you think of my opinions regarding the event.