Just like Money in the Bank did, WWE SummerSlam 2013 on Aug. 18 at the Staples Center in Los Angeles will provide a number of superstars with a golden opportunity to turn their careers around.
Randy Orton took one step closer to doing just that this past Sunday with his Money in the Bank victory, and under the bright lights of SummerSlam, at least another star or two will follow suit.
Because SummerSlam is one of the WWE’s biggest pay-per-views of the year, it provides a huge stage that—although not as big as that of WrestleMania—could still serve as the catalyst for a career resurgence for one lucky superstar.
At the 2011 SummerSlam PPV, Sheamus turned his career around by stepping up to challenge Mark Henry, which led to a face turn that eventually took him to the top of the company. On that very same PPV, Alberto Del Rio won the WWE Championship for the first time after cashing in his Money in the Bank briefcase.
So, who will it be this year? Who will have a breakout moment that revitalizes his career?
Here’s a look at three superstars who are poised to do so.
During the one-year span between Money in the Bank 2012 and Money in the Bank 2013, Ryback literally lost every major match that he participated in.
But at Money in the Bank this past Sunday, he picked up the biggest victory over his career with a win over Chris Jericho.
In true Jericho fashion, he put over Ryback on the PPV stage, and though it was with a roll-up rather than a clean pin, it still looks like the much-needed victory that could get Ryback back on track.
Ryback has been booked horribly over the course of the last year, but a win over Y2J—combined with a likely upcoming partnership with Vickie Guerrero—has him in a great position to turn his fortunes around and make his way into the main-event picture again.
Although some fans aren’t crazy about the prospects of Ryback heading back into the World title picture, his win over Jericho could ignite a career revival that he so desperately needs.
While it remains to be seen just who Ryback may be facing at SummerSlam this year, his win over Jericho is reason enough to be optimistic about his chances of revitalizing his career at the WWE’s summer spectacle.
In surprising fashion, the World Heavyweight Championship Contract Money in the Bank Ladder Match centered largely around Cody Rhodes.
He was the MVP of that match, standing out above all other participants with a show-stealing performance in which he was both the center of its storytelling (because of his beef with Damien Sandow) and the match’s most memorable in-ring performer.
If ever there was a time to capitalize on a serious momentum swing, this is it for Rhodes.
He has spent much of the last year-and-a-half struggling in No Man’s Land. But after delivering an unforgettable performance at Money in the Bank, he has a chance to completely wipe away any wrong that the creative team has done to him in recent years.
A face turn, feud with Sandow and SummerSlam match against him all look likely for Rhodes, and the WWE has a huge opportunity here to transform him from a forgotten midcarder into a bona fide star.
If all goes right, Rhodes will leave SummerSlam just like he left Money in the Bank: as a rising star who is undoubtedly back on his way up.
Dolph Ziggler has had a really rough 2013.
After spending much of the early portion of the year consistently losing and jobbing, it appeared as if he got back on track when he cashed in his Money in the Bank briefcase to become the World Heavyweight champion the night after WrestleMania 29.
Of course, his magical moment was quickly ruined. Ziggler suffered a severe concussion shortly thereafter, missed five weeks of action and then returned to action only to instantly drop the title to Alberto Del Rio.
Now, Ziggler is in the process of turning babyface (he’s almost there), and being screwed out of the World Heavyweight title by his girlfriend AJ Lee at Money in the Bank was the first step that will turn his career around.
After what transpired on this week's Raw, Ziggler is likely going to face Big E Langston at SummerSlam, which is certainly not quite as good as getting another World title shot, depending upon how you look at it.
After all, there's a good story behind that match (AJ screwing Ziggler over), and Ziggler should have a breakthrough babyface moment at SummerSlam when he (probably) defeats Langston.
Ziggler is in his infant stages as a face, so he doesn't want to join the Cena/Sheamus group of hardly ever losing and always being on top. That's why this likely match with Langston could work.
Give him a big "W" over Langston now and let him wait a while before he has a career-defining moment when he wins the World title down the road.
Drake Oz is a WWE Featured Columnist for Bleacher Report. Follow him on Twitter!
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