WWE Bragging Rights is all about which brand is superior, and this match will be no different, as RAW member Daniel Bryan will take on SmackDown’s Dolph Ziggler.
Not only is this an inter-brand match, but it’s also a champion vs. champion bout. RAW’s United States Champion Daniel Bryan goes one-on-one against SmackDown’s Intercontinental Champion Dolph Ziggler.
Bryan has gone through a lot to get where he is today. He made his first steps into the WWE as he appeared on the first and most successful season of NXT; he then began a brief feud with his pro, The Miz.
Bryan was then a part of the NXT invasion of RAW, which led to his controversial release from the WWE. Bryan had choked ring announcer Justin Roberts with his own tie which was deemed too violent for PG television.
Just three months later, Bryan returned to the WWE at SummerSlam, where he became Team WWE’s seventh member and helped them gain victory over the Nexus. He reignited his feud with The Miz and won the United States Championship at Night of Champions. Just two weeks later, he successfully defended his title against John Morrison and The Miz in a triple-threat, submissions count anywhere match at Hell in a Cell.
Bryan has obviously learned from his mistake, and is held in high esteem by WWE management. He is decent on the mic and shows his ROH background in the ring with a well oiled move set, which he executes crisply and without fuss, so it’s no surprise he won his first championship so soon into his WWE tenure.
His opponent this Sunday has had a tougher path in the WWE, one that started back in 2004. Ziggler was part of the Spirit Squad, a group that feuded with D-Generation X for a while in 2006. As their storyline came to an end, Ziggler and the rest of the squad were sent back down to the WWE’s developmental territory, Ohio Valley Wrestling.
In late 2008, Ziggler returned with his latest gimmick, but didn’t have much success and found himself on the wrong side of WWE’s Wellness Program. After his return, Ziggler was drafted from RAW to his current home, Smackdown.
He entered feuds with MVP and The Great Khali, but couldn’t win what he wanted, The Intercontinental Championship. After aligning himself with Maria and more recently Vickie Guerrero, Ziggler enjoyed increased success and finally won the Intercontinental Title after defeating Kofi Kingston on SmackDown.
He has since gone on to defend the title twice against Kingston at SummerSlam and Night of Champions.
Bryan challenged Ziggler to a match at Bragging Rights on RAW, which “The Violator” quickly accepted. Ziggler then said the two men shouldn’t wait until Bragging Rights, but quickly hid behind his girlfriend, Vickie Guerrero.
“The American Dragon” was able to get to Ziggler on the outside and applied the LeBell Lock as the Intercontinental Champion quickly tapped out.
Bryan has the upper hand going into Bragging Rights, but it would be foolish to rule out the crafty Ziggler just yet, especially with Guerrero by his side.
Whoever wins, this should be an interesting contest with both men eager to earn the bragging rights for their respective brand and prove that they’re the better champion.