Views from the Hawke’s Nest: WWE Summerslam 2012
Santino Marella© vs. Antonio Cesaro [United States Championship]
I believe Antonio had defeated Santino twice on Smackdowns before this show.
Antonio was super serial early on. Santino actually had some success as they traded holds. Santino took out the Cobra early, but Antonio knocked him down and sent the Cobra sock to the outside. Antonio started to get the heat. Santino came back with a saito suplex. Santino was crawling towards the Cobra sock, but Antonio caught him with a deadlift gutwrench suplex. Antonio then ripped apart the sock. That enraged Santino. Antonio went for the Neutralizer, but Santino escaped and pulled out another Cobra sock out of his ass. Aksana jumped up on the apron and distracted the sock (yes). That allowed Antonio to hit the Neutralizer: 1…2…3!
Aksana and Antonio made out in the ring in celebration.
This was fine for a pre-show match. Antonio is primed to be a WWE main eventer, and I am certainly glad that the WWE isn’t wasting time by having him job to Santino.
Match Rating: **
Chris Jericho vs. Dolph Ziggler
This was a weird storyline. Ziggler, who has never really won anything in his career (kayfabe wise), was mocking Jericho for never “winning the big one.” Jericho has won a lot of stuff in the WWE.
Vickie Guerrero came out to some mega-heat and introduced Ziggler. Jericho had his ribs taped up. Jericho had assaulted him backstage on the Smackdown before Summerslam. Cole was getting over the fact that Jericho hadn’t won a single PPV match during his third run in the company. Jericho was running through Ziggler in the early goings. Ziggler wasn’t getting any offense in. Ziggler eventually cut Jericho off with a kick to the injured ribs. Ziggler worked over the ribs for a bit, but Jericho managed to back body drop Ziggler to the floor. Jericho went for a Silverking plancha, but Ziggler avoided it and Jericho crashed on the floor. Ziggler got the heat after that. Eventually, Jericho avoided a Stinger Splash, and he then hit a seated dropkick. Ziggler came back with a FameAsser: 1…2…NO! Jericho got a nearfall with an enzuigiri. Ziggler locked in the sleeper, but Jericho Hulked out of it. Jericho then hit a super hurricanrana. Ziggler came back with a big DDT: 1…2…NO! Jericho came back with the running bulldog. Jericho went for the Lionsault, but Ziggler got his knees up. ZIG ZAG: 1…2…NO! Crowd is into this. Jericho hit a Codebreaker out of nowhere. Vickie grabbed Jericho’s leg, which allowed Ziggler to get a small package: 1…2…NO! Jericho then locked in a nasty Walls of Jericho! Ziggler taps out! “Jericho has won the big one,” Michael Cole, without a hint of irony. “This was the biggest match Jericho has had in years,” Jerry Lawler, again, without a hint of irony.
This was a really strong opener, and I enjoyed it a lot. The story that Jericho can’t win the big one was absurd, but oh well. This match should go on the Ziggler DVD that surely has to be coming soon.
Match Rating: ***1/2
Daniel Bryan vs. Kane
Kane hit a scoop slam and a seated dropkick early. Bryan tried to hit some kicks, but Kane just tossed him to the floor. Kane went to the floor, but Bryan got back in the ring and hit a tope suicida. Back in the ring, Kane came back with a lariat. Bryan tried to get the No Lock applied, but Kane avoided it. Bryan took him out with a buzzsaw kick. Bryan went for a diving headbutt, but Kane goozled him and hit a chokeslam. Kane called for the Tombstone. Bryan reversed the attempt into a small package: 1…2…3!
This was a pretty basic match that would have been better off on Smackdown than on PPV. This is the match that would eventually lead to Kane and Bryan becoming the Tag Team Champions.
Match Rating: **1/2
The Miz© vs. Rey Mysterio [Intercontinental Championship]
Miz sent Mysterio to the floor early. He then dropped Mysterio on the barricade from the wheelbarrow position. Miz brought Mysterio back into the ring to get the heat. Miz hit an Argentinian backbreaker for a nearfall. Miz went to the top rope, but Mysterio managed to crotch him. Mysterio came back with diving seated senton, but Miz came right back with a rebound Liger Bomb: 1…2…NO! Mysterio came back with a DDT for a nearfall. Mysterio hit a diving hurricanrana and a 619. Mysterio went for the Superfly Splash, but Miz avoided it. Mysterio managed to roll Miz up though: 1…2…NO! Good nearfall. Miz managed to Snake Eyes Mysterio, and he then hit the Skull Crushing Finale: 1…2…3.
This was a pretty good match. It was the typical Mysterio formula match, but that’s not a bad thing and Miz did a good enough job of playing the bigger heel.
Match Rating: **3/4
Sheamus© vs. Alberto Del Rio (w/ Ricard Rodriguez) [World Heavyweight Championship]
They spilled to the floor early. They made their way back into the ring with neither man staying in firm control. Del Rio went for the cross armbreaker, but Sheamus avoided it. Sheamus went for the Brogue Kick, but Del Rio avoided it. Del Rio kicked Sheamus to the floor. Del Rio sent Sheamus into the steel steps. Del Rio then brought the champ back into the ring to get the heat. Del Rio called for a Brogue Kick, but Sheamus blocked it. Del Rio came back with a super armbreaker: 1…2…NO! Del Rio locked in the cross armbreaker. Sheamus just sat in it for a while, until he reversed it into a Rampage Powerbomb. Sheamus then hit White Noise: 1…2…NO! Del Rio came back with his step-up enzuigiri: 1…2…NO! Crowd bought that. Del Rio got really mad and attacked Rodriguez. That distracted the ref. Rodriguez tried to throw Del Rio the shoe, but Sheamus got the shoe. Sheamus used the shoe on Del Rio and then the urinagi backbreaker: 1…2…3. Del Rio got his foot on the ropes, but the referee didn’t see it.
They were building to a really strong match, but the crappy finish kind of ruined that. The finish was kind of a weird way to book a heel and a babyface. Granted, Del Rio was trying to cheat, but then Sheamus cheated and Del Rio got screwed over. The crowd has a mixed reaction to Sheamus after the match.
Match Rating: ***1/4
Kofi Kingston & R-Truth© vs. Prime-Time Players (Darren Young & Titus O’Neil)
The Players isolated Truth early on, but Truth was able to escape and tag out to Kofi. Kofi ran wild on Titus. Kofi and Titus ended up on the floor. The Players used the numbers game to isolate Kofi. They then got the heat on Kofi. Kofi eventually tagged out to Truth. The crowd went mild. Truth did some flippy stuff and a gourd buster to Young. Kofi did a springboard crossbody to Titus to the floor. Truth then hit Young with Paydirt: 1…2…3.
Very lame match. Nobody really cared, and the wrestlers didn’t seem to go out of their way to make them care. Remember when R-Truth was fun as a heel? I liked that. This was meh.
Match Rating: **1/4
CM Punk© vs. John Cena vs. The Big Show [WWE Championship]
Big Show dominated the early action. Punk was actually able to use some strikes on Show. Punk called for the GTS, like an idiot. Obviously, it didn’t work. Cena went for the FU, but Punk broke it up out of spite. Show was back in control after that. Punk went for a springboard lariat, but Show caught him and hit The Final Cut. Show called for the KO Punch, but Cena broke it up. Show gave Cena a spear for his troubles: 1…2…NO! Show continued to dominate the match. Punk tried to hit Show with a tope suicida, but Show blocked it and threw him into the ropes. Cena managed to hit the Protoplex, but Punk blocked the Five Knuckle Shuffle. Punk then hit Show with the diving elbow: 1…2…NO! Punk hit a Buzzsaw kick, and Punk then locked in a Koji Clutch. Show fought out of it though. Cena then locked Show in the STF. Show fought out of it. Punk took Show down with a springboard lariat. Punk hit a trio of running knees. Cena then hit Show with the diving FameAsser. Punk locked Show in the Koji Clutch, and Cena locked Show in the STF. Show tapped out! Punk and Cena celebrated.
AJ Lee skipped to the ring. She said, “Restart the match.” Show promptly hit a double chokeslam. Both men kicked out. Cena hit Show with the FU. Punk threw Cena out of the ring and pinned Show: 1…2…3!
While this match wasn’t great, I thought it was laid out in a really interesting way, and I was entertained the entire time. The finish itself was quite lame and was more a TV finish though. At least the finish made sense with Punk’s heel turn though, so things could be worse. Anyway, I liked the story of Show just completely dominating the action to the point that Punk and Cena never really interacted against each other. Again, this type of finish ideally would have been on television and lead to a PPV match between Cena and Punk. However, the state of the WWE right now seemingly doesn’t allow for that. C’est la vie.
Match Rating: ***1/4
Brock Lesnar (w/ Paul Heyman) vs. Triple H
On the pre-show, Triple H told Scott Armstrong to not call for a disqualification.
Brock went for a kimura early, but HHH was able to escape multiple attempts. HHH managed to send Brock to the floor early twice. In other words, this is not Brock vs. Cena. Brock took off his giant gloves. Apparently, THIS IS SERIOUS. Brock returned to the ring and punch HHH in the back of the head. They went to the floor. There was an awesome spot where Brock held HHH’s arm and slammed HHH onto the table arm-first. Awesome. Back in the ring, Brock went after that arm some more. Brock went for a F-5, but HHH escaped only to eat a big release German suplex. HHH came back with some punches and a DDT. Brock went right to HHH’s injured arm. They went back to the floor, and Brock sent HHH to the steel steps injured arm first. Brock jumped off the announce table and hit a single sledge. Brock jumped very high in the air. Back in the ring, Brock got a nearfall with a SMALL PACKAGE OF DOOM AND DESTRUCTION. Shades of The People’s Magistral Cradle. Brock then took HHH down with a lariat. HHH came back with a suplex, but Brock managed to avoid a pedigree and send HHH over the turnbuckle to the floor. HHH sent Brock into the announce table stomach first. Brock was really selling the stomach. Michael Cole brought up Brock’s diverticulitis issues. Paul Heyman look really worried. Back in the ring, HHH went after Brock’s gut. HHH delivered many knees to Brock’s gut. HHH then hit a spinebuster. HHH called for a pedigree, but Brock escaped and went for a F-5. HHH escaped and hit a Pedigree: 1…2…NO! Well, not everyone kicks out of the Pedigree. HHH called for another Pedigree, but Brock uppercutted him in the balls. Scott Armstrong looked like he was ready to call for a DQ, but Heyman was screaming about HHH wanting a fight. Brock then hit a F-5: 1…2…NO! Brock locked in the kimura with a body scissors, but HHH made the ropes. The referee didn’t break the hold, so HHH had to punch his way out of it. HHH hit another pedigree. HHH went for the cover, but Brock caught him with another kimura! HHH tried to punch out of it, but he had to tap out!
I thought this was a good match and a solid main event for Summerslam. They didn’t try to recreate the magic from Extreme Rules with Cena and Brock, but considering the poor build, no one could have expected this match to come close to that match. I feel like this match was designed as if Brock was just another main event heel. While surviving two Pedigrees is certainly not something that every heel does, Brock wasn’t made out to be the dominant athlete in the same way that he was portrayed at Extreme Rules. The lack of heat for this match was probably caused by a combination of a boring build and Brock losing at Extreme Rules. As much as I love that Brock/Cena match, Brock eating the pin was really fucking stupid.
Match Rating: ***1/4
Thanks everybody for reading! You can send feedback to my Twitter or to my email address: [email protected] Also, feel free to check out my own wrestling website, FreeProWrestling.com. Also, check out my Best of Chikara blog and an archive of all my 411 video reviews.
The 411: This was a very easy show to watch, and it was more consistent than most WWE PPVs. However, other than the opener and the fact that Brock Lesnar wrestled on the show, nothing on this show felt special. This isn't a show you absolutely need to go back and see, but it's a pretty entertaining three hours.
|Final Score: 7.0 [ Good ] legend|