For once, it seems that the WWE is listening to its fanbase. Much to the delight of pretty much everyone, Daniel Bryan will square off against CM Punk for the WWE Heavyweight Championship at Over the Limit on May 20th.
To earn the right to be the number one contender there was a beat the clock challenge, in which whoever won their match in the shortest time got to face Punk. Not a bad gimmick as long as everyone knows how much time is left. Of course the ref for Jericho/Big Show took too long to count out Show, but declared that Jericho had beaten the previous time anyway. All that was corrected over the break, and I’m sure the ref got reamed out backstage. Either way the whole thing worked well enough, as Bryan came out to face…Jerry Lawler. Yup, somehow the King got a shot to be the number one contender. I get that for the Royal Rumble it’s fun to throw some random people for entertainment, but couldn’t they have put someone on the actual roster against Bryan instead? He couldn’t have beaten Alex Riley quickly? Just makes me wonder what it takes to get a title shot in the WWE. You know, if wrestling was real.
Regardless of how it happened, the match said I could happen yesterday, will happen and I couldn’t be happier. We were teased twice with Punk/Bryan matches and both were outstanding aside from the non-finish. For the first time in who knows how long, the best two actual wrestlers on the roster will actually compete against each for the title. If done right, this could be Savage/Steamboat good. The previous two times they met, Bryan was just starting to turn heel and the two of them had a whole Ring of Honor respect thing going. Now that Bryan is full on heel I’m curious how it will play out. Punk applauded Bryan at the end of the match so maybe it will be all about wrestling. Can’t hype that for three weeks though so I doubt it. The Masked Man brought up the point that if this PPV doesn’t sell, you can bet these two will be blamed. If that’s the case, we better shell out the dough or we won’t see anything like this again for a while.
Instead we’ll get more of the other match that is announced for Over the Limit. It turns out John Cena’s whole “I’ll be gone for while” speech meant he just wouldn’t come out until the end of tonight’s Raw. No tears, no breaks, just a strained arm. Whatever. So now Cena needs an opponent and that man will be…John Laurinaitis? Yup, Johnny Ace is in full Vince McMahon mode, and will strap on the boots against John Cena. It seems that with no more legends to face for a little while it has been decided that they will keep Cena from being booed by having him face the current superheel, in what I’m guessing will be the worst match since Bret Hart vs Vince McMahon. To make it seem like Johnny has a chance, he brought Lord Tensai out and led an all out S&M session on Cena’s injured arm. Even Michael Cole thought it was too much, and when Michael Cole turns against a heel, you know you’re doing something crazy.
Following that same trend, let’s not forget about Brock Lesnar. Triple H came out (suited up) for the first time since WrestleMania to essentially say everything Laurinaitis agreed to give him the week before was not going to happen. Repetitive messages aside, Lesnar proceeded to attack Triple H and break his arm with a kimura, which I guess is now the new ankle lock in terms of damage. So now Triple H has a reason to not be around until the PPV of his choosing, and when he comes back (Summerslam?) you can bet he’ll have a big feud and match with Lesnar waiting for him. If that’s the case then I’m down.
Lesnar is assumed to be fired for attacking the COO, which of course would be the case if this were an actual company with a worthwhile employee handbook. But this is the WWE and Laurinaitis is an over the top heel so Lesnar will be back next week, or whenever he feels like it, to face somebody. I’m going to throw out Randy Orton just because he’s on the cover of the posters and he’s due for something bigger than Kane or Wade Barrett.
Also Kofi and Truth won the tag titles. So I guess they need to pick up matching outfits. And the Bella Twins were fired by Eve in an online exclusive video. From Diva’s champ to goat and fired off-air in just over 24 hours. So long ladies.