Ryback was put in a precarious position Sunday at SummerSlam when he was forced to defend his Intercontinental Championship against both Big Show and The Miz in a Triple Threat match, but The Big Guy still managed to prevail and retain his title.
WWE provided a look at how the match ended:
Ryback hit The Miz with a knockout punch, threw Big Show out of the ring and pinned Miz for the victory.
The WWE Twitter account provided video of some of the highlights:
WWE writer Kevin Sullivan enjoyed the action of all three stars:
Since winning the first championship of his WWE career at Elimination Chamber, Ryback has been involved in a feud with Big Show. The World's Largest Athlete has done his darndest to take the IC title away from Ryback, but The Miz has complicated things by interjecting himself into the rivalry as well.
Miz's addition to the angle created an interesting dynamic that gave Ryback and Big Show something else to worry about. While they were focused on each other for the most part, The A-Lister poked and prodded them on multiple occasions with his loud mouth.
The savvy former WWE champion managed to escape the giants several times, but his luck would soon run out.
As all heels eventually do, Miz received his comeuppance on Raw when both Ryback and Big Show gave him a deserved beatdown, as seen in this video courtesy of WWE Universe:
Despite Miz's obvious physical disadvantage against Ryback and Big Show, he was certainly a threat entering SummerSlam because his sneaky, conniving ways could have helped him steal a victory, but that ultimately wasn't the case.
Instead, Ryback came through with his first major title defense since becoming Intercontinental champion.
The match was originally supposed to happen at Battleground, but it was postponed after Ryback was diagnosed with a staph infection in his knee.
After that, WWE ran an angle that featured Miz lobbying for the IC title to be vacated, as seen in this tweet courtesy of his official Twitter account:
It was unclear if he would be healthy enough to compete at SummerSlam, but he returned in impactful fashion a couple of weeks before the show and managed to put on a solid performance.
Sunday's match was fairly entertaining, but it didn't do much to raise the profile of the IC title. That is in stark contrast to the United States Championship, which has reached new heights over the past few months thanks to John Cena's open challenges.
It would behoove WWE to try something similar with the Intercontinental Championship, although it is unclear if Ryback is the right Superstar to carry the load. The higher-ups are happy with him for the time being, but The Big Guy may not be anything more than a status-quo titleholder.
There is no question Ryback has a fanbase, though, and his popularity makes him a fairly safe choice as Intercontinental champion.
If he can continue to make strides in the ring and refine his character moving forward, then he has a chance to breathe new life into the midcard title scene, but the Intercontinental Championship will continue to lag behind the U.S. Championship until that happens.
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