WWE SummerSlam 2011 Preview & Predictions By: Chris Cash for WrestleZone.com
Nick Paglino and I discussed on our Voice of Wrestling radio show last Monday the promotion (or lack thereof) WWE has put into this year’s SummerSlam. Aside from the main events (namely one), there is very little to get excited about going into this pay per view. Correct me if I’m wrong, but I still thought this was meant to be one of the three big pay per views of the year.
SHEAMUS vs MARK HENRY
Sheamus would be one of my big regrets if I were Vince McMahon. He’s great. Unique look, an accent that compliments a typical heel persona, commendable in-ring ability, HEAT – why he is where he is, or better yet, why he isn’t where he should be is beyond me. He “needs” to win this match…and the next 50 for that matter. Please though, give me bad Sheamus back.
I would have never put these two together this early. One won’t be helped in the end and Smackdown desperately needs both to be.
Prediction: Mark Henry
Who I think should win: Sheamus
WADE BARRETT vs DANIEL BRYAN
A last-minute addition, this match further proves my original point of this editorial. These two should have been advertised weeks ago. It’s hard to care when you don’t have time to get at least slightly emotionally invested. I digress.
I’m afraid Daniel Bryan’s “time” may never come in WWE. Whether it should or not is debatable – and those that know me know what side of the equation I would argue – but I think Wade Barrett had it from the beginning. Unfortunately, he’s a victim of circumstance. By not leaving him in charge of Nexus and carrying that all the way, by putting him in The Corre at all – Barrett has been fighting an uphill battle for a while now.
The move to Smackdown was still the right move for him at the time and still could (and should) be the best place to get him to the next level.
Prediction: Wade Barrett
Who I think should win: Wade Barrett
KELLY KELLY (c) vs BETH PHOENIX
WWE Diva’s Championship
I’m a Kelly Kelly fan and respect her growth as a performer in the ring, but there is absolutely no way she should win this match. Where the new, old Beth Phoenix came from is a mystery to me, but I’m happy she’s back. She is the best woman on the roster, in my opinion, and it’s great to see her back to doing the stuff she does best. Kelly Kelly can go back to her public profile gimmick and Beth can carry the women’s division until Kharma returns.
Prediction: Beth Phoenix
Who I think should win: Beth Phoenix
CHRISTIAN (c) vs RANDY ORTON
World Heavyweight Championship
For those that cried outrage when Christian lost the title days after winning it, you should be happy right now because I think he’ll hold on to it another day, at least. Smackdown is in the position where they have to cling to their top stars. Even when their top stars aren’t true top stars as is the case with Christian. Personally, I like Christian and think he’s great in a lot of ways. But is he WWE Champion material? I don’t see it.
Christian’s winning was a feel good moment and his time in the business justifiably earned a Championship win, but more for honorary reasons (ALA Eddie Guerrero) than deservedness.
Who I think should win: Randy Orton
CM PUNK vs JOHN CENA
WWE Championship Unification
First, let me say that this match should have never touched this card. While Punk is still more over than he was pre-shoot and is definitely deserving of the main event level, there were 1000 ways they could have gone with his story. They picked #1001 on my list. The past two Raws since he “re-signed” have felt like “business as usual” to me. Unfortunately, Punk’s character is supposed to be completely opposite that.
His winning the title and “leaving WWE” had the whole world buzzing. That momentum came to a screeching halt when he returned to TV just two weeks removed from the pay per view. Wrestling fans still care, but the rest of the world doesn’t. Why wouldn’t WWE want mainstream media covering their product for as long as they can swing it?
Some have argued that CM Punk being off WWE television would develop an “out of sight, out of mind” situation and in a lot of cases, I would agree with that sentiment. But he was the WWE Champion! I’m pretty sure fans would have stayed 100% invested in Punk if he was off TV pulling stunts like Comic Con, showing up on talk shows with the WWE title, standing outside WWE live events with his megaphone. WWE would “have” to acknowledge it, right? He’s pretending to be their Champion, for Heaven’s sake! This enables them to air that footage as a way to cover their asses, defend their company and “new” Champion, etc.
Either way, Punk should and will win the match tonight. John Cena will definitely be the Champion again by the time he stands opposite the Rock at ‘Mania, but there is still plenty of time for that to happen. Punk is a breath of fresh air. Anti-authority. An outlaw. A degenerate. Give him the ball and let him run with it. He won’t drop it.
Here’s to hoping WWE doesn’t drop it for him.
Prediction: CM Punk
Who I think should win: CM Punk
Follow Chris Cash on Twitter @RealityofChris. He’ll be tweeting during the pay per view tonight and will be back tomorrow with his review of WWE SummerSlam, exclusively here on WrestleZone.com.
You can email Chris at firstname.lastname@example.org.