Triple H vs. Brock Lesnar at Extreme Rules 2013 inside a steel cage will likely be an excellent match, but one that fans won't care about.
It's not a knock on either man's ability in the ring. It's not the fact that this is the third pay-per-view battle in their feud that will prevent fans from being engaged. What hampers this rubber match is that it has little consequence in WWE's overall narrative.
If Triple H wins or if Lesnar wins, it won't change anything in the WWE world. Both men will go back to hibernating until the next big match they step out of their cave to fight.
By not regularly being on WWE Raw or SmackDown, Triple H and Lesnar exist on the periphery of the WWE. A win won't allow the victor to climb the ranks of the company as both men are on a completely different ladder than the rest of the roster.
Triple H is more executive than wrestler at this point. One can count the number of matches he's had in the last year on one hand. The same is true for Lesnar's recent schedule.
Their WrestleMania 29 match was excellent. It was brutal, compelling and fueled by the personal nature of their rivalry. It's a rivalry, though, that seems to exist on a separate plane than the heart of WWE.
Look at the other scheduled and potential Extreme Rules matches.
If Dolph Ziggler defeats Jack Swagger and Alberto Del Rio, he establishes himself as a more legitimate champion. He begins his reign with a successful title defense, one that will give him momentum going forward.
Any momentum Lesnar and Triple H get will likely sputter out because they aren't going to follow up a victory with anything right away.
If Mark Henry and Sheamus end up fighting at Extreme Rules, it will be about more than their issues with each other. A win makes one of them a contender for a world title. A win marks upward movement toward the top of WWE.
This is what Triple H and Lesnar lacks.
Their bout is like an exhibition game when everyone else is playing in a playoff game. There aren't nearly enough stakes to draw fans in beyond the level of curiosity.
Triple H has shown throughout his career that he can deliver main event matches both memorable and moving. Since his 2012 WWE return, Lesnar has had some boast-worthy performances. There's no reason those two can't deliver a fantastic story in the cage, but it won't be enough to win some fans over.
Some of the excitement of WWE matches come from the questions that the results lead to. If Henry beats Sheamus, does he get a shot at John Cena? If Ziggler successfully defends his title, where does he go from there?
Fans already know the answer to the question of what's next for Lesnar and Triple H. They will step away from the ring again, residing outside of the WWE timeline for the time being. It's that disconnect that will render all the violence and aggression they deliver at Extreme Rules hollow.
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