Youtube Preshow: Antonio Cesaro vs Santino Marella (c), United States Championship
Wimner: Antonio Cesaro via pinfall, new United States Champion
After a distraction from Aksana, Cesaro hits the Neutralizer to capture his first WWE gold.
I didn't get to actually watch this match, but aside from the outcome, it wasn't much to miss. As a champion, Cesaro will have to wrestle longer matches than he has since his debut.
Match 1: Chris Jericho vs Dolph Ziggler
Winner: Chris Jericho via submission
Y2J is back in full force in 2012, even down to the tights. Jericho's ribs are taped, continuing to sell the injury from Smackdown and potentially giving him an "out" should Ziggler win. Ziggler being the show opener could indicate a cash-in attempt tonight as well. Jericho kicks out of a Zigzag after Ziggler gets the knees up for the Lionsault. As Ziggler readies the next attack, Jericho hits a surprise Codebreaker, but Ziggler rolls to the floor. Back in, Vickie grabs Jericho's leg and Ziggler hits a small package from the apron, but Jericho out at a very close two, then over into the Walls of Jericho, Liontamer style for the victory.
Jericho wins the big one against Mr. Money in the Bank, who we may very well see later in the night. I expected some kind of beat down or injury to excuse Jericho for the Fozzy tour, but a top notch match, regardless.
Lesnar and Heyman are in the back, to be interviewed. The referee has been asked to use his discretion; this will be a fight to the finish, not a wrestling match. Lesnar says this is a fight HHH cannot win. Heyman says if he's not down with that, they have two words for him: Tap out.
Match 2: Daniel Bryan vs Kane
Winner: Daniel Bryan via pinfall
Bryan has a YES/NO argument with the crowd and is startled by Kane's pyro. Bryan opens with kicks to the leg of Kane, but Kane takes over with power after Bryan backflips over him in the corner. Bryan tries to vault over Kane but gets caught then booted after an okana roll attempt. Off the ropes, Bryan hits a low dropkick and goes to work on the leg of Kane. Kane responds by grabbing Bryan and launching him to the floor. Bryan quickly gets back in and kicks Kane, then lands a suicide dive back to the floor. Bryan climbs to the top as Kane gets back in and lands a missile dropkick for one. Bryan shakes his head as he becomes unhinged from the YES chants, then lays into the chest of Kane with shin kicks. Like I said last night, it's now the standard for Bryan to whiff the headshot and he does, allowing Kane to take back over, bouncing him from corner to corner and hitting a side slam for two. Kane goes to the top rope and dives, hitting a clothesline from the top, then heads to the corner, ready to call for the Chokeslam. Bryan escapes and bails to the apron, then drapes Kane across the top. Back in, Bryan takes a big right hand, but slaps Kane in response. Kane goes ballistic on Bryan in the corner and stops just shy of a DQ. Bryan drop toe holds Kane into the middle turnbuckle and then kicks the rope into his face. Bryan wants the Nolock but Kane resists. Now Bryan hits the headshot kick. Bryan ascends the top rope and wants a diving headbutt but lands in Kane's hands for a Chokeslam which Kane is slow to capitalize on. Kane calls for the Tombstone and wants Bryan to get to his feet. Bryan goes up, but slides down and gets the win with a surprise small package.
Bryan via a clean pin over Kane at Summerlam? WWE is getting concretely behind the smaller guys on the roster, finally. At least Bryan, and they'd be stupid not to. Kane makes a beeline for the back, livid. I don't think we've seen the end of this rivalry as it's Bryan's first win over Kane 1 on 1 and it was a roll up.
Kane is going ballistic in the back and is looking for Bryan. Josh Matthews makes the mistake of asking Kane a question and gets jettisoned for his efforts, after telling Kane Bryan left. Kane knocks more stuff over and leaves. Definitely not the end.
Match 3: Rey Mysterio vs The Miz (c), Intercontinental Championship
Winner: The Miz via pinfall
Mysterio comes out in a Batman styled set of ring gear, complete with cape. Rey Mysterio absolutely does not need an IC title win here tonight, whereas it would do Miz a world of good to beat Rey cleanly tonight. Here's hoping for no shenanigans. Miz gets the PPV blow up lawn ornament AWESOME and his PPV jacket. You can't lose with an inflatable entrance.
Miz, being the bigger man, takes Rey down with an early shoulder block. Rey with a go behind and flipping Miz ass over tea kettle for a quick bridging pin attempt. Miz slides to the floor and then back in. Miz answers with big strikes and a clothesline, but Rey ducks. Rey dodges another clothesline and gets slid out under the ring, but rolls through to avoid getting hurt. Miz gives chase but ends up getting dropkicked. Rey wants a lucha bulldog, but Miz catches him in the wheelbarrow position and puts him in the barricade. Miz tosses him back in the ring and covers for a one count. Miz into a chinlock to slow things down. Rey gets up to his feet and tries to fight out; Miz tries a belly to back suplex, but Rey lands on top and kicks at Miz. Rey rushes Miz, but gets caught in a modified rack and dropped across Miz's shoulders for a backbreaker. Miz jaws at Mysterio and punches him right in the face, then boots him and pins, but only gets a two.
Miz with a cravat now and Rey rights out again, but runs into a clothesline, which Miz capitalizes on for a two count. Miz plays to the crowd as Mysterio recovers in the corner, then readies for his corner clotheslines; he connects. Miz to the top, but Rey crotches him, then heads to the top himself. Rey with a diving senton from the top; Rey follows by rolling up to a hurricanrana position, but Miz hits a sitout powerbomb for two. Rey ducks another boot attempt and rolls Miz up, who kicks out but gets kicked in the head for another two. Miz takes Rey up for a powerslam, but Mysterio spins back down for a DDT, but still only gets a two count. Rey heads to the top again, but Miz meets him with a right hand. Miz follows to the top and wants a superplex, but Rey fights off and puts Miz in place for the 619. Rey up for the splash, but Miz sits up to avoid. Miz with the Skull Crushing Finale attempt, but Rey rolls him up for a very close near fall. Rey tries to follow up but this time gets caught by Skull Crushing Finale for the win.
Clean win over a future hall of famer - Good night for The Miz. He beat him by out maneuvering him and landing his finisher. More matches need to end this way, not just in WWE but around the wrestling world now a days. Miz is still your IC Champion and for good reason. He looks better than ever since returning.
Eve and Teddy Long leave a meeting with AJ and Long things she's doing a great job. Eve sarcastically agrees. CM Punk shows up in front of the GM's door and heads in. Punk questions the look on AJ's face and she ignores him. Punk protests the triple threat as he can lose his title without losing; he suspects this is because he rebuked AJ's proposal. AJ is staring into space and Punk says she's disrespecting him, just like his opponents. Punk says he'll win tonight and he'll get respect tomorrow night. AJ continues staring blankly as he leaves. Weird.
Match 4: Alberto del Rio vs Sheamus (c), World Heavweight Championship
Winner: Sheamus via pinfall
Sheamus goes into this one selling a hurt left arm, which will likely serve to be the focus of Alberto's offense. I still think ADR needs the gold rain pyro on his entrance. After showing up on Smackdown with his elbow taped up heavily, Sheamus enters tonight with no tape at all. Odd choice. Physical tie up into the corner to open but ADR makes some space. Into another corner and Sheamus swings wildly. Both men take a tumble to the floor and this one is going to be a donnybrook. Heading back into the ring, ADR lands kicks to the head of Sheamus and works him in the corner. Sheamus answers with a boot and a swinging neckbreaker then clubs away, but Alberto fights back. ADR wants an early Cross Armbreaker, but Sheamus scoops him up for a rolling fireman's carry. Sheamus wants the Celtic Cross and ADR grabs the top rope to escape, but Sheamus clubs away and puts him in the electric chair. As he's pulled away, he pulls the top turnbuckle off. Before he can get dropped, Alberto gets down and dodges a Brough Kick, leaving Sheamus on the apron. ADR follows with a low dropkick which sends Sheamus to the floor. Del Rio follows to the floor and throws the champ into the steel steps. Alberto heads to the top and hits a flying elbow/forearm to a standing Sheamus for a two count then locks in around the chin of Sheamus. Sheamus fights out and wants another neckbreaker, but ADR avoids and boots Sheamus in the face for two. Alberto with a jumping stomp to the head of Sheamus. Another chinlock keeps Sheamus on the mat, but he begins to fight to his feet again then headbutts his way out. Sheamus suffers a knee and another jumping stomp for two. ADR mocks Sheamus' call for the Brough Kick and heads to the corner - He ends up running into an axe handle, but dodges Sheamus in the corner, sending him into the ringpost. Sheamus fights off and heads to the top, but ADR puts a stop to it, then meets him at the top and hits a top rope version of his double knees to the arm for a close two.
Sheamus counters the Cross Armbreaker, but ADR lands and rolls into it in the middle of the ring on the injured arm. Sheamus rolls over and deadlifts ADR for a sideways powerbomb to break it. Back to their feet, Alberto runs into White Noise but kicks out at two. Sheamus heads to a corner and calls for the Brough Kick, but Alberto avoids; he ends up on the apron and takes forearms to the chest. Now up to the corner for punches, but ADR drops Sheamus onto the turnbuckle and hits a running enzuigiri for a very close two. ADR blames Rodriguez and drags him into the ring. Sheamus stirs as Rodriguez tosses a shoe to ADR; Sheamus intercepts and clocks ADR then delivers the Irish Curse. Sheamus gets the win as ADR reaches for the rope with his foot. He makes contact and after the three count, Sheamus knocks his foot off the rope. The good guy stole one, what a hooligan!
Alberto and Rodriguez argue with the ref, so that should continue the program, at least until Smackdown if not beyond. Good back and forth match with some interesting offense and a tainted finish to allow the program to continue in a relatively organic fashion.
Match 5: Primetime Players vs Kofi Kingston and R-truth (c), Tag Team Championship
Winners: Kingston and Truth via pinfall
The tag champs are the third champion(s) to be announced as holding their strap for over 100 days tonight; big change from a year or two ago. Truth pounces right on Young, who takes a big hip toss and Truth's dancing leg drop for an early two count. Young boots his way out and carries Truth to his corner, tagging O'Neal in who boots Truth to the mat for a one count. O'Neal with a front headlock and Truth fights out but gets clubbed for his efforts. Titus hits the ropes but runs into a leg lariat, leaving both men on the mat. Kofi tags in and springboards into Titus, then goes into his usual routine, readying for the Boomdrop and landing it. Off to a neutral corner to call for the Trouble in Paradise; Young runs interference and the fight ends up on the floor with Kofi taking a big Titus clothesline. Truth tries to help, but O'Neal is able to roll Kofi back in for a two count. Titus with a pump handle front slam and another two count. Young tags back in and Titus delivers him onto Kofi via a gourdbuster for two. Young locks in a body scissors but Kofi is able to roll over and fight out. Kofi with a quick two count, but he runs into a powerslam from Young for a pin on his side.
Titus tags back in and locks in an abdominal stretch on Kofi near the PTP corner Titus wants a swinging slam, but Kofi counters into a big DDT, causing a hot tag on both sides. Truth runs wild on Young, hitting the Lie Detector and a sit out front suplex. Titus breaks the pin and tosses Kofi out; he skins the cat and dumps Titus out, then hits a huge springboard cross body to the outside. Young with a rollup on Truth for two then he wants his gut buster; Truth slips out and hits the Little Jimmy for the pin and win.
Good match; I sincerely hope this result isn't some kind of reflection on the AW situation. PTP are primed to be the strong young up and comer champions; not sure why they didn't go that way tonight. Some interesting back and forth, but a "send the kids home happy" type of finish on this one.
Match 6: Big Show vs John Cena vs CM Punk (c), WWE Championship
Winner: CM Punk via pinfall
So after all the rhetoric about Cena always being the main event and the WWE Champion being overshadowed, they both get shoved into the second hour because of HHH and Brock Lesnar? Huge opportunity missed and incredibly obnoxious. I don't care what ludicrous contact they blew on Lesnar - They've screwed up the entire overshadow/disrespect thing just to put Lesnar in the main event spot. The WWE Championship should always headline: Not because CM Punk said so, but because this title should mean more than anything else to keep that facade of realism up. They always say no one man is bigger than the WWE or the Title. Nobody but HHH, apparently. At least Cena didn't enter before the WWE Champion...
Michael Cole mentions that December of last year was the last time CM Punk main evented a PPV. I guess as long as it continues to be part of the storyline, we'll let it go. Show takes over early with tons of power offense. Punk sells like a normal wrestler and Cena looks like he's been in a car wreck already. Basics, seriously. Frying pan chops for both men. Punk and Cena unload on Show with strikes and want a double team suplex, but Show suplexes both men into the corner. Show whips Cena to a corner and hits a running ass, leaving Cena on the floor. Show gives one to Punk as well, but takes a dropkick to the knee off the ropes. Punk kicks away at Show and calls for GTS, but Show chops him away. Cena sneaks up and wants the AA, but Punk shoves Show down, leaving everyone down and winded. Punk covers Cena, but Show shoves him off. Show with body shots on Punk then stands on his back. Now whipped into the corner, the WWE Champion is in trouble; another frying pan chop to Punk's chest and Cena gets shoved off the apron into the barricade. All Big Show so far.
Show whips Punk to a corner but misses the follow up and Punk tries to springboard into him; Show catches him and delivers the Final Cut which we haven't seen in quite some time. Show wants the WMD but Cena hits the ring on fire, ending up getting speared; Cena kicks out in two. Show piles the opponents in the corner and wants a tandem Vader Bomb; Punk moves, Cena doesn't. Punk breaks up the pin with a springboard double stomp. Show drives Punk over the top by his neck, continuing to stand strong. Show chases after Cena on the floor and delivers a headbutt. Punk tries to fight back now but gets launched into the ropes from the floor, leaving him out of the picture temporarily. Cena strikes at Big Show but runs into a side slam. Show grabs Punk from the floor and ends up neck first across the rope; Cena hits a belly to back on Show and wants the Five Knuckle Shuffle. Punk clotheslines Cena as he hits the ropes and climbs to the top, hitting the Macho elbow for two on Big Show. Punk with a kick to the head and a low reverse STO into the Koji Clutch, but Show fights his way out. Cena hits a shoulder out of nowhere and puts Show in the STF. Show powers out of this as well with Cena on his back then rams him into a corner. Cena hops to the second rope and dives at Show, but gets caught and slammed. Punk with a surprise springboard clothesline to put Show down, then hits the knee in the corner. Punk hits a second running knee. Punk makes it a trio but gets shoved away before he can hit the bulldog. Cena comes off the top and hits the legdrop across the back of the Big Show. Punk locks the Koji Clutch back on and Cena locks in the STF and Big Show taps out. Cole calls the Koji Clutch the Vice, but we don't expect anything
better from him.
The ref is baffled as to what call he's made; AJ skips down to the ring to make a ruling and grabs a mic. AJ takes her time speaking then says to restart the match. Show grabs them both and lands a double Chokeslam. Cena kicks out in two, as does Punk. It makes no sense for Show to still be involved; he lost to both men! Show cocks the WMD and Cena dodges, then hits the Attitude Adjustment. Punk dumps Cena over the top and covers Show to get a singular win.
Fun match with Show being a monster and an interesting pair of finishes. For the end to work, Show had to still be involved but after tapping out to both opponents, he really had no right to still be part of the match, from a logical point of view. CM Punk remains WWE Champion at Summerslam; has he earned the respect he so desperately covets?
Kevin Rudolph performs the theme song of Summerslam - The cameramen fight to find people who are enjoying the performance, but they're few and far between. As it always goes with live music performances, the vast majority of the crowd doesn't care at all. The divas are trotted out to dance along. Know what would be a better use of Natalya, Layla and Beth Phoenix? A friggin match. No crowd reaction. No benefit to the show. No purpose. This is a waste of time and doesn't give anyone any additional reason to buy a future PPV. After Kid Rock was booed out of the arena when he performed, they should have stopped this completely. After he finishes performing, they just play the song again as Cole talks. What's the point?
Match 7: Brock Lesnar vs Triple H
Winner: Brock Lesnar via submission
A recap video! Joy oh joy! If it wasn't for the fact that the WWE production team turns garbage material into absolutely golden video packages, I'd be annoyed. Ever since Miz's "Hate me now" video package, they have gotten better and better at using footage and appropriate music to hype matches and storylines. Triple H elects to come out last on the PPV. I'd sincerely like to know how much of that is his ego and how much of it is proper discussion.
Michael Cole makes a rare mention of UFC by name, saying Lesnar won the heavyweight title there. The lights are dimmed for the ring announcement, to match a "fight" aesthetic, which just makes WWE seem like they're reaching. Triple H told the ref earlier tonight; no DQ, no countout.
Lesnar opens strong in the corner and HHH tries to back him up, but Lesnar has the strength advantage. Lesnar tries a standing Kimura but HHH fights out. Lesnar tries another Kimura and wraps his legs around HHH but he fights out. Hunter clothelsines Lesnar over the top to the floor. Lesnar is livid and hits the ring again, ramming Triple H over and over into the corner. HHH hits the high knee and clotheslines Lesnar to the floor again. Lesnar is less than pleased and Heyman calms him, trying to make him mentally regroup. Lesnar circles the ring and reenters via the steps. Lesnar pulls his gloves off and hits a double leg takedown then punches HHH right in the back of the head. Hunter bails to the floor to make some space. Lesnar gives chase and they go back and forth again. Lesnar with a hammerlock front slam on the announce table, leaving HHH in pain outside.
Lesnar waits patiently in the ring and then drags HHH in under the bottom rope. Triple H fights back with punches, but Lesnar keeps control with a hammerlock scoop slam this time. Lesnar with a standing Kimura again and now wrapping his arm around the rope and pulling. Lesnar stomps away at HHH's arm. HHH tries to fight back and ends up in the Kimura once again; would it kill Lesnar to try a fujiwara or any other arm bar or lock to 'wear him down'? HHH is thrown to the cornre and Lesnar stalks his prey. Lesnar wants the F5 but HHH drops down, only to take a release German suplex. Lesnar is bleeding from the nose. Lesnar stands on the hand of Triple H and stomps at the elbow joint. HHH out to the apron and drapes Lesnar across the top rope. HHH follows with right hands and a DDT. Both men to their feet and the Kimura is locked in once more. Another hammerlock slam to keep the arm in jeopardy. Now knees delivered to the midsection of the WWE's CCO. Back to the floor, Triple H is throw into the steel steps. Triple H is drive back first into the Spanish announce table and one of the commentators hops the barricade to escape. Lesnar up ends the table and stands atop it, then jumps off to drop a right hand across HHH's head.
Lesnar rolls HHH in and follows. Lesnar rolls HHH up with a small package for some reason, forcing him to kick out. HHH takes a big clothesline to the face off the ropes and Lesnar looks like he's enjoying himself. HHH blocks a suplex attempt and hits one of his own. Lesnar rushes him in the corner but misses. HHH wants the Pedigree, but Lesnar sends him to the corner and clear over the top rope to the floor once more. Lesnar slowly gives chase, but HHH sends him gut first into the corner of the announce table which winds him. Lesnar sells this like a gunshot wound; possibly an internal injury angle. Lesnar audibly says "Oh my stomach" repeated by Cole; definitely the route they're taking. HHH follows Lesnar into the ring and ends up in the Kimura; he's able to knee his way out. Triple H hits a running knee to the gut and continues to focus on the now injured midsection of Lesnar. Repeated knees puts Lesnar on the mat and a spinebuster keeps him there. HHH wants the Pedigree again; Lesnar counters into an F5 attempt, which HHH counters into a Pedigree for a near fall. Heyman screams at Brock from ringside and Lesnar hits a blatant low blow. Lesnar stalks HHH and hits the F5 but Triple H kicks out at the last moment.
Another Kimura but HHH tries to fight out. This time Lesnar hits the mat and scissors around the body for a full Kimura. HHH grabs the ropes, but as per himself, there are no rope breaks. HHH hammers away at the midsection of Lesnar to break out. HHH wants the Pedigree again and hits it. Lesnar wakes up quick and locks in the Kimura on the mat. Triple H taps out as Lesnar may have broken his arm again. As Triple H lays on the mat, the arm seems to be hanging limp next to him. HHH waves the doctors off and wants to leave on his own power. A "you tapped out" chant starts up as he gets to his feet. A very mixed reaction from the crowd as HHH surveys the WWE Universe and says "I'm sorry". The selling point is if this will "be the end" of Triple H - Smart money is not until he gets his win back. Even in loss and having his arm broken, he makes himself the star of the show.
All in all, a solid show. Not spectacular, but if you paid your money, not a disappointment. The right people won the right matches (with the exception of the Tag Titles, but that's just my opinion). CM Punk can continue his quest for respect, since he was slotted once again outside of the main event. In fact, Punk could point out that the boss booked himself above the WWE Champion. The Lesnar/HHH match wasn't as brutal as the Lesnar/Cena match - Far too many attempts at the Kimura makes Brock look like a goofy fighter. Why not try one of the many other arm bars you know? Brock's surprise wake up from the second Pedigree to finish up the match was a welcome surprise. As an aside, tonight's endings were bookmarked by submission finishes; bet that hasn't happened in a long time.