Even though it was far from the greatest Summerslam event ever,
it was still a big success moving forward. It gave the fans enough
content to be satisfied, yet left them wanting more. Ideally, Summerslam should
be a culmination of the feuds from post-Wrestlemania to Summerslam’s go-home
show. But remember: the business model has changed because of the Network. The
PPV was the end of most of the subscriber’s subscriptions. That means Night of
Champions is going to be the “A-PPV”, because they want to get those
subscribers to renew their account.
Most importantly, the show diligently built up three wrestlers for the future. Dean Ambrose came out looking like a crazy phene on a mission; Rusev came out looking like a repulsive and despicable heel; and Lesnar came out looking like an immortal juggernaut.
The main event’s objective of Summerslam was not to be a
5-star classic. Its purpose was to get Brock Lesnar extremely over. Given that
he broke Undertaker’s undefeated streak, they needed to make him come off as larger-than-life
as possible, in order to capitalize off it. And they did just that. One of the main
reasons people were against Lesnar conquering the streak was because he was not
a future star – although a future star conquering Lesnar could have just as much
significance if it is booked properly.
Now, the question is: who is going to conquer Lesnar? It has
been rumored that Vince McMahon wants it to be the Rock, and HHH wants it to be
Roman Reigns. Unless Lesnar is going to keep the title until Wrestlemania 32 –
or some big show after Wrestlemania 31 – the Rock would not be a good idea,
though. Sure, it would grab tons of people’s attention and would probably do an
earthshattering buyrate (especially since people can now pay 12.99 to watch the
network for a month), but it is an idea that would only benefit in a short-term
perspective. Rock beating Lesnar does nothing for the company from a long-term perspective.
For that reason, Roman Reigns winning the title at WM makes
more sense than Rock winning. Nonetheless, he would not be the best choice either
as of right now. Granted, he is more talented than a handful of the wrestlers
WWE pushed down our throats. He is more talented than Batista was in 2005 and
arguably more talented than John Cena was as well. And considering how far Cena and Batista have come since then, it is not that far-fetched to believe he could improve dramatically
given more time to find his strengths. Which means he is not even close to
being a failed commodity just yet. However, jamming a wrestler down our throats
may have worked several years ago, but the more vocal and opinionated crowds
nowadays are not going to accept something they do not want to see (i.e, Dave
Batista’s main event babyface push this year). That is why they should have Reigns work
on his weaknesses and then push him to the moon once he is officially ready.
Even though Daniel Bryan and Brock Lesnar would put on an
unbelievable, possibly five star classic match, it would be a questionable
decision for Bryan to be the one to end Lesnar’s reckoning. Bryan is already an
established main eventer, receiving his iconic moment in the limelight at
Wrestlemania 30. But does Bryan really
need another rub? He seemed to be doing quite well for himself up until his
neck injury. Secondly, it is hard to pencil him in for that big spot. It is risky
to invest into someone who is coming off a serious injury. That does not mean
Lesnar vs. Bryan should never happen, though. It, of course, should happen when
the time is right.
WWE would be silly to not to attempt to capitalize on Dean
Ambrose. Just like Daniel Bryan last year, his popularity cannot and should not
be ignored. He is one of the utmost multilayered and unique personas in WWE’s
history. He is awesome in just about every facet. His deliberate, detailed
promos are fantastic. His facial expressions, mannerisms, and body language
make his intentions and emotions crystal-clear. He is true to his character and
develops it well in the ring. His psychology is extremely realistic, and he can
deliver in the ring with just about anyone. He really could be a perfect foil
for Lesnar. Lesnar loves to dish out pain while Ambrose loves to take pain.
Lesnar laughs at pain while Ambrose loves it. Lesnar is a beast while Ambrose is just flat
out crazy and fearless. It would be a great moment if Ambrose ever walked right
up to Lesnar, who everyone is now afraid of, and brushed him off as if he was
The “Cena never puts anyone over” theory has officially been
put to rest. He did what was best for business by making the Beast in Carnage look
like a billion bucks. This is not going to affect Cena either in the slightest
(which is why it can be so irritating when WWE puts someone over a top-tier
main eventer in an inadequate manner). Cena is practically bulletproof and thus
has enough credibility to overcome this one-sided loss. Sometimes, your
opponent is more dominant than you are on a particular day. That does not mar
Cena’s dominance for the past near decade at all. I mean, Anderson Silva did
not lose his status quo of being the greatest UFC fighter of all time, just
because he could not beat Chris Weidman.
If Cena lost to every up-and-comer, or to someone that could
use the rub, it would diminish its significance. Besides, someone can still get
over from facing Cena even if it is in a losing effort. Bray Wyatt did not get
more over, due to how ineffectively he was booked. But, on the other hand,
Cesaro looked better than before when he went to-toe-to with him. Cena has
become a great measuring stick, to see if someone is ready to be propelled into
the main event scene. When CM Punk pinned him, it put Punk on a different
level. When Daniel Bryan beat him clean in the middle of the ring, it made
people recognize that Bryan was a big deal. And when Lesnar to
threw him around as if he was a rag doll and completely dominated him, it made people realize that Lesnar is one dangerous
Cena needs to be established as a top gun for it to mean something
when he loses. All of those matches where he overcomes the “massive odds” that
we laugh at by saying “LOL CENA WINS” sometimes pay off down the road, just like
it did last night. His resilience and heroisms are his two strong
characteristics – as he can absorb an enormous beating and then make a gallant
comeback effort. Which means, Lesnar did something no one has done before: he completely
took away Cena’s fortes away from him.
In sum, Lesnar conquered the invincible mythical god and
then kryptonited Superman with his bare hands. If booked correctly, they can
manufacture a pristine hero from taking down this indestructible bully.
Some Thoughts On Raw:
Dean Ambrose and Seth Rollins have rejuvenated their feud. Because
of the bait-and-switch and the announcement of a Lumberjack match, the feud
lost some of its edge. Over the last two nights, though, the feud has become
can’t-miss content. In a backstage segment, Ambrose dumped a bucket of ice on Rollins.
Rollins sold it well and then Ambrose nonchalantly said, “It is for charity”,
then threw the bucket at him, and then proceeded to beat him up. This segment
could have easily came off hokey if it was not for the participants being so
good in their roles. Ambrose is so cool and natural at everything he does. The
segment set up a fabulous main event match that was even better than their
Summerslam one. It was a wild, brutal, and vicious brawl – and Ambrose ran
around like a train wreck on legs. It was also an effective way to write
Ambrose off TV to make his movie, as well as to make his pursuit of giving
Rollins his comeuppance even more intrigue. The pay-off has to be at HITC PPV,
where Ambrose viciously rips Rollins apart in the barbaric cage.
The WWE needs to come up with something more creative than
distraction finishes. They have been overused, and they make those who fall for
them look like idiots. Plus, they make no realistic sense. When someone does a
run-in, they are supposed to do it without anyone noticing backstage. Why would
anyone allow someone to ruin a match by playing his or her entrance music?
Also, they need to develop better feuds for the secondary titles. They keep
jobbing out their champions on free TV to set up a PPV match. It is clichéd and
makes the champions look weak. They need to start getting creative in that
sense. They have 5 hours of TV a week to come up with some intriguing stories
for the midcarders. There are no excuses
of why they are booking it so lazily.
Rusev feuding with Mark Henry makes perfect sense. To help
promote their match, Henry cut one of his best babyface promos of his career. Rusev
has a promising career, but he should cut down on the selling. He is doing it a
bit too much for a monster heel. That is just a nit-pick, though.
Heyman continues to bring the goods. Due to his timing and delivery
on the microphone, he makes everyone hang on every word he says. Now, people
are going to have to take his words more seriously. After all, he did not just
spew hyperbole by saying Lesnar would beat Taker or that he would give Cena the
beating of his lifetime. His character precisely forecasted both of those
things. Tonight, he did a fine job putting it in perspective just how momentous
The Beast’s walloping on Cena was. He managed to put Cena over by giving him praise
for hanging in against Brock and not quitting, and yet was still getting Lesnar over at the same time. He emphasized that Lesnar’s beatdown on Cena was no easy task.
Heyman is such a unique heel: He does not exaggerate
the facts; he just shoves the facts down the entire
audience’s throat. And he brings it to another level from accentuating them in
a flamboyant and passionate manner.
Even though Raw was far from perfect, the WWE built momentum
heading towards the very important Night of Champions show. They created some
new storylines and moved the continuing ones in the right direction. Hopefully,
they can keep this momentum going all the way to Wrestlemania 31.