WWE SummerSlam 2011: Thoughts and Predictions on This Sunday's PPV
*WARNING: CONTAINS SMACKDOWN SPOILERS*
So here we are at the second biggest PPV of the year and once again WWE has done well at building up the main attractions but has failed to deliver on their undercard for the night.
Little work could have been done to sell the WWE and World Heavyweight Championship matches because they had prior build up.
We also seem to have a quite a light schedule going into the show which surely means many more unscheduled matches. I remember a time when WWE could run these things near perfectly. All the matches announced were seen and they took up as much time as needed to get the best results. But that's another story for a different article.
Last years SummerSlam card looked like this:
Intercontinental Championship: Dolph Ziggler(c) and Kofi Kingston Fought to a No Contest
Diva's Championship: Melina Def. Alicia Fox(c) By Pinfall
Big Show Def. The Straight Edge Society By Pinfall
WWE Championship: Randy Orton Def. Sheamus(c) By DQ
World Heavyweight Championship: Kane(c) Def. Rey Mysterio By Pinfall
Team WWE Def. The Nexus in an 7-on-7 Elimination Match
I always seem to get caught out by matches that don't get announced by the time I post these articles so I am just going to give quick predictions to matches that could happen at the PPV but have not been confirmed.
Intercontinental Championship: Cody Rhodes(c) Vs. Ezekiel Jackson
Considering Rhodes only just won the title I would have to say that he is going to keep it. However, a second consecutive victory over Jackson would damage the former champ's credibility as a dominant performer. A DQ win for Jackson is most likely.
United States Championship: Dolph Ziggler(c) Vs. Alex Riley
Alex Riley has been getting quite some mid-card push recently. In months he has changed from lacky to The Miz to perfect undercard foil. He got a DQ win over the champ last Monday but I think Ziggler will pick up a cheap win before Riley captures the title in the next match.
R-Truth vs. John Morrison
Can anyone remember a comeback as lousy as John Morrison's? Two matches back and he got pinned in both. It's like he is being punished for something... So if another match does happen don't expect a happy outcome with Truth picking up another win.
Wade Barrett Vs. Daniel Bryan
The two former Nexus members could clash considering Barrett's allegations that Bryan's Money in the Bank victory was a fluke. Since Bryan lost to Del Rio on SmackDown I would have to say he needs the win here and Barrett is still in midcard hell. Bryan will get the win but only by a whisker.
Sheamus vs. Mark Henry
I find it funny that a match that used to be aired on Raw to put over Sheamus as a credible heel is now being shown at a PPV to make Sheamus look like a credible face.
Henry's demolition of Big Show has rebuild his reputation to the level where he can one again appear on PPVs and not job to every upcoming star in the company. But lets not kid ourselves, he is going to be doing the job tonight to help get Sheamus over.
SmackDown has a lack of faces to challenge at the top and since the company has dragged out Orton vs. Christian as far as it can go this match could have been made a No. 1 contender's match. These two are in line for a shot considering their actions in the past few weeks.
Still as you can tell I've got Sheamus down for the win and he will have a tough contest with The World's Strongest Man.
Diva's Championship: Kelly Kelly(c) vs. Beth Phoenix
Many will see this as the possible turning point for the Diva's division. If Beth Phoenix walks away as the champion then it could possibly open up the return to more serious female wrestling. Considering out of the last three champions to hold the belt, Eve Torres is considered the most credible, I think we can all agree the division has hit an all-tine low.
Still while I can only see Beth dominating this match, WWE has put a lot of effort into making Kelly the champion. Although I find Jerry Lawler's comments that Kelly is a credible champion because she has defeat all-comers as laughable since she has only defended the title against both Bellas.
Beth is not exactly a heel in this contest and, much like CM Punk, is a refreshing take on what is perceived as a stale product. So its not an easy choice to make. It will either be a roll-up win for Kelly, letting her keep the title but not making Beth look weak, or The Glamazon will outright win the match. Considering they have Natalya involved in this match I foresee that she will get involved at some point so I am going for the roll up.
Winner and Still Champion: Kelly Kelly
World Heavyweight Championship: Christian(c) vs. Randy Orton (No Holds Barred)
So this is like the fourth Championship match in a row these guys have faced off in right? The match is getting to that point the 2009 Orton\Cena feud got to where you could just see the match playout before it happened. You can call the moves, the reversals and finishers before the commentary team.
Being that this is SummerSlam one hopes this will end the feud. No better place unless this carries on until the Rumble... Anyway I don't want to talk to much about this match because there is little I can add to what has been previously said.
Although Christian pinned Orton on SmackDown a couple of weeks ago, Christian will get the win. After their post-Extreme Rule; Capitol Punishment and Money in the Bank contests, unless Christian wins then he will get a rematch clause for Night of Champions. The No Holds Barred stipulation will allow for an interference and someone will cost Orton the match.
Winner and Still Champion: Christian
WWE Championship Unification: CM Punk vs. John Cena (Special Referee Triple H)
There has not been someone in the WWE like CM Punk for quite sometime. He is the full package when it comes to Sports Entertainment, and whilst I know he would hate me for saying this, its true. He is 100% entertaining in and out of the ring, yet has the athletic ability to actually make me believe the match is going to be decent. He is fast become one of the guys you feud with when you need someone to make you look good.
Cena on the other hand has stepped up his game. His promo work, while not being better than Punk's, has not been so monotonous and predictable. He doesn't feel the need to shout at the end of every sentence and has even begun to take a more realistic approach to his threats. His Money in the Bank contest with Punk showed he is also willing to put in the extra work and make a decent match for someone other than himself.
Unlike Christian/Orton this match is likely going to end at the second encounter as it looks as if WWE is developing other matches on the horizon. Triple H is likely to play a controversial factor in this and will build up to a major confrontation with either man down the road.
I want to believe that Punk will walk out as Champion from this encounter because it would be nice to see if he can carry the same momentum when he is not facing a challenger that is so representative of the stale state of today's WWE. Unfortunately with Cena's match with The Rock coming up at WrestleMania XXVIII one does have to wonder if that will be the match that ultimately chooses this great feud's destiny.
I personally against all better judgement will say Punk walks out as Champion and Cena/Rock will be a title-less encounter because it doesn't need the belt. If anything it can add to The Rock's insult about how Cena is a phony.
Winner and Undisputed Champion: CM Punk