WWE WrestleMania XXIX logoWWE WrestleMania XXIX

WWE: 7 Potential Opponents for Brock Lesnar at WrestleMania XXIX

Jamie WestAnalyst IIIOctober 18, 2012

WWE: 7 Potential Opponents for Brock Lesnar at WrestleMania XXIX

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    According to WWE.com; Lesnar capped his career in the squared circle and said, “I’m leaving WWE and I’m never coming back," following his emphatic victory over Triple H on August 19 at SummerSlam.

    As fans of professional wrestling have come to realise, this is almost certainly a work on the part of the WWE in a feeble attempt to eventually recreate the element of surprise that shook the WWE Universe on April 2. It was the night after WrestleMania XXVIII, when he made his re-debut, delivering a devastating F-5 to John Cena.

    While it is clear that Lesnar will be back in the squared circle sooner rather than later, his WrestleMania opponent for this coming April still is very much up in the air. Nevertheless, there are a number of candidates who fit the bill for what could perhaps be a once in a lifetime encounter with the original "Next Big Thing" this spring.

Triple H

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    Triple H certainly has to be considered a likely opponent for Brock Lesnar’s first WrestleMania since 2004.

    The match and story already has a degree of build after Lesnar effectively forced Triple H into an obscure state of apparent retirement. The main issue with these two facing each other once more is it prevents Lesnar, who is currently only signed through WrestleMania, from entering programs with other superstars who we are all curious to see.

    Furthermore, from a business point of view, if this is to happen at ‘Mania, it would mean two part-time performers getting a lot of build, hype and likely a position higher up the card.

    While this could be a quick fix in terms of increasing WrestleMania buy rates, both wrestlers becoming inactive again following the biggest pay per view of the year does not help the company moving forward. Ultimately, using Triple H in this role in April would work, but it would also probably be the laziest option on the part of the creative department when there are much more intriguing opponents waiting behind the curtain.

Sheamus

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    Sheamus is a potential opponent who could arguably put on an entertaining feud with the three-time WWE champion.

    For starters, Lesnar has never held the World Heavyweight Championship, one of the few major accomplishments in professional wrestling that eludes him. A plausible scenario to begin this feud would be to have Lesnar win the Royal Rumble, challenging the champion Sheamus.

    How WrestleMania plays out could depend on whether or not the former re-signs for another year. We could see him take the title after a year-long reign from the dominant Sheamus and become a full-time performer again for a while. Alternatively, if no contract extension is agreed upon, Sheamus could go over the former UFC heavyweight champion, which would arguably shoot his momentum and popularity through the roof, not to mention the mainstream media attention that the victory would attract.

Ryback

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    Much like the Celtic Warrior, Ryback could go over Brock Lesnar on the grandest stage of them all in order to elevate him to a full-fledged main eventer.

    While it is still early for the man formally known as Skip Sheffield, it would appear from his placement in the main event of WWE Hell in a Cell 2012 that WWE creative, or perhaps Vince, is very much behind him.

    While few expect him to capture the title on October 28, it would be surprising to see him return solely to squash matches following a championship match. As far as a potential feud with Lesnar, I see it coming earlier than WrestleMania, especially given Ryback's involvement with CM Punk.

    Would anyone be truly surprised if Ryback was attacked by Brock Lesnar at the upcoming Hell In A Cell event? Besides, April 7 could conceivably be Lesnar's final match inside a WWE ring, so look for his opponent to be a big name.

The Rock

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    The Rock vs. Brock Lesnar at WrestleMania 29 is potentially a huge match that many professional wrestling fans want to see. More than 10 years ago at SummerSlam 2002, Brock Lesnar, with Paul Heyman at his side, defeated The Great One to capture his first WWE Championship.

    In the minds of some wrestling fans, a rematch this spring, perhaps even with the title on the line, would be an absolutely unmissable showdown. Personally, I would like to see this match, but only if the WWE title is not involved.

    Two part-time, arguably past their prime, performers competing for wrestling's most prestigious prize would do absolutely nothing for the future of the company and would be merely a short-term gain, unless one or both of them stay around for a few months on a full-time basis.  

    Like The Rock besting John Cena last year, this is a big enough match without the title having to be thrust upon one of them going into the event. 

CM Punk

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    Now, this is a matchup that could potentially have a solid, logical and unforced build. The premise would likely be Paul Heyman screwing one of his guys in a match, aligning only with the other. It would perhaps work best with Heyman siding with Lesnar for one reason or another, so that he can be used as his mouthpiece.

    While this feud could be epic, it simply does not make a lot of sense right now. With Punk's recent heel turn and the impending return of The Anomaly, creative would have to come up with a huge twist in order to make it work. Perhaps this could be a feud we see this time next year, as I expect Punk and Lesnar to be on the same page under Heyman for the foreseeable future.

John Cena

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    While I concede that this is certainly not one of the most likely Lesnar feuds heading into WrestleMania, it would seem only fitting that these two forces collide again at some point, be it on April 7 or another time. Their match at Extreme Rules was well received by fans and critics, with Rob McNichol of The Sun describing it as a "a peculiar — but effective — hybrid of MMA and pro wrestling."

    However, Cena has lost his last two WrestleMania matches, and all else aside, this is why he probably will not be facing Lesnar this year. Can you see The Beast going 0-2 against the Leader of the Cenation?

    Furthermore, if Lesnar is to lose at WrestleMania, it should be to an up-and-comer who will benefit heavily from it—given that the spotlight will once again be shining unwaveringly on part-time stars such as The Undertaker, Triple H, Chris Jericho and The Rock.

The Undertaker

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    Arguably the most anticipated aspect of the modern day WrestleMania is the streak match.

    Brock Lesnar is certainly a credible opponent for The Undertaker in what has become his annual professional wrestling match. The feud has its foundations tentatively laid: 'Taker appeared at UFC 121 and confronted Brock Lesnar back in October 2010.

    The Streak is perhaps the biggest accomplishment in sports entertainment, and therefore, needs a big-time challenger. Look no further this year than Brock Lesnar, who can, if he does not renew his contract, bow out of the WWE having made history, by becoming No. 21.

Conclusion

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    It is apparent that there are multiple legitimate options for Brock Lesnar this coming WrestleMania, but ultimately this aging businessman will have the final say in who we, the fans, get to see him square off against this April.

    In my mind, regardless of who he faces, Lesnar can be used to either put somebody over big time and have them pushed to the moon following 'Mania. It would be an excellent opportunity for someone like Ryback. In all likelihood though, we will be seeing a clash of the titans type match.

    My money's on The Rock or The Undertaker.

    What about yours?

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