Barnett's WWE SummerSlam 2012 Preview and Predictions: Triple H vs. Brock Lesnar, CM Punk vs. John Cena vs. Big Show, Sheamus vs. Alberto del Rio, Daniel Bryan vs. Kane, and more
By Jake Barnett
2012 WWE Summerlam Preview and Predictions
This predictions are made with no advanced knowledge of match outcomes, and are merely my musings based on the direction of television storytelling.
Triple H vs. Brock Lesnar: This story got more convoluted as it went on, but still made for some good television at times. At first this was about revenge for Triple H's broken arm, then suddenly it was about Paul Heyman insulting Triple H's family, and now it's about Triple H extracting revenge for Brock's assault on Shawn Michaels. Despite all the about faces in terms of story, I think that this match will deliver the goods. Triple H is a master craftsman in the ring, and Lesnar looks every bit the bad ass that we all expect him to. My gut feeling is that the logical ending of this story is Triple H avenging his friends and family, but I certainly hope they do what's right here and give Lesnar a big win to carry some momentum into his next big showdown.
Prediction: Triple H defeats Brock Lesnar.
CM Punk vs. John Cena vs. Big Show for the WWE Championship: Punk's recent change of attitude has been intriguing, and I think this show is where we see things with him and Cena reach a boiling point. Big Show seems like he's a part of this match because they need someone in this match to take the loss to further the feud between Punk and Cena, and I think that's exactly what happens here. I see John Cena doing most of the damage to Big Show, sending the message that he's still dominant, but CM Punk will get the last word with some trickery by stealing a pin from Cena on Big Show.
Prediction: CM Punk retains his WWE Championship.
Sheamus vs. Alberto Del Rio for the World Heavyweight Championship: Sheamus and Del Rio took the scenic route to get to their title match at Summerslam, and at the last moment this past Friday on Smackdown, Jericho and Ziggler got intertwined with them a bit. I think it's very interesting that the Sheamus arm injury angle and the Jericho/Ziggler involvement were added into the mix in the final stages of this build, and I don't think it's a coincidence. I see Sheamus retaining his World Heavyweight Title in another hard fought match with Del Rio, but I also think it's a disctict possibility that we see Dolph Ziggler use his briefcase to defeat the tired and injured Champion.
Prediction: Sheamus defeats Alberto Del Rio to retain his World Heavyweight Championship.
Chris Jericho vs. Dolph Ziggler: This has been a great story to follow, as Chris Jericho has made a full return to his Y2J character, and in the process has made Dolph Ziggler look completely ruthless. This is my pick for the match that could steal this show, as I think both wrestlers are super talented, and it's the only match on this card where we could very well see the emergence of a new main event talent. I expect Ziggler to pick up a win here, with Jericho on his way out to resume his music career, and cement himself as a guy who can compete and win convincingly against top level talents.
Prediction: Dolph Ziggler defeats Chris Jericho.
Daniel Bryan vs. Kane: This match is another sleeper on this card. I think Kane is one of the best big man workers ever, and Daniel Bryan is on the short list for best in the world right now. If they can find a way to mesh their styles convincingly, and are given enough time, this could be extremely entertaining. This story leading up the match is getting a little tired, with Bryan and AJ's feud losing a lot of steam with her as GM, and I hope after this match that it gets scaled back significantly. I expect Bryan to pick up a win here, and hopefully move on to a more meaningful feud on his way back to title contention.
Prediction: Daniel Bryan defeats Kane.
The Miz vs. Rey Mysterio for the Intercontinental Championship: This match hasn't had much of a story, but Rey and Miz are both supremely talented and should give us a great match. The Miz has taken some losses as the IC Champ, but I think they can get an extended feud of out he and Mysterio, so I think he retains here. The Miz needs a launching pad to promote his new movie on WWE Television, and a win over Mysterio, even a shady one, would give him some great fodder for some promos.
Prediction: The Miz retains his Intercontinental Title.
Kofi Kingston and R-Truth vs. The Prime Time Players for the WWE Tag Team Championships: The opportunity seems ripe here to move the tag belts onto an actual tag team here, and I expect that is what we will get. The Prime Time Players have improved, especially Darren Young, and I could see them becoming the start of a reinvigorated Tag Team Division. There are some teams in NXT (formerly FCW), and also teams like Primo and Epico and Reks and Hawkins that could make the division a little more interesting. Having two singles stars occupy the Tag Teams Championships hasn't done much for them, or for the division in general. I hope they find more interesting things for Kofi and R-Truth immediately.
Prediction: The Prime Time Players defeat Kofi Kingston and R-Truth to become new champs.
Santino Marella vs. Antonio Cesaro for the United States Championship: Santino has languished with the United States title for months now, being fodder for upper card wrestlers to squash or not even appearing on television a lot of the time. Cesaro is a fresh face with an interesting character that could add a lot to the belt and the middle of the WWE card with a win here. I think both of these wrestlers would be served well by a Santino loss here. Cesaro can restore a bit of legitimacy to the US Title and begin his WWE career in earnest, and Santino can move back to doing what he does best in comedic situations.
Prediction: Antonio Cesaro defeats Santino Marella to capture the United States Championship.
Do you have questions, comments, or concerns? Please e-mail me at firstname.lastname@example.org or reach out on twitter @barnettjake.
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