Best For Business: Lesnar, Cena, and SummerSlam
Ladies and gentlemen, my name is Adam Frazier and I am here tonight as your new Strange Kids Club contributor. This is Best For Business, a weekly column about professional wrestling that discusses current storylines and events with one foot planted firmly in wrasslin’s illustrious past. I’d like to kick things off by talking a little about John Cena, Brock Lesnar, and their upcoming WWE World Heavyweight Championship match at SummerSlam, which airs live on PPV and the WWE Network this Sunday, August 17.
The Lesnar-Cena build-up has been some of the best of the modern era. Lesnar is being depicted as a paid assassin – a part-timer with a limited passion for the wrestling business but an affinity for hurting people. As for John Cena, he’s the WWE’s White Knight – the dedicated company man who puts every ounce of his blood, sweat, and tears into this business because he loves it.
“This Sunday I fight a beast, and to fight a beast you must become one. So, this Sunday, you get your wish. You see a John Cena that I’m not proud of – a John Cena you have never seen before but a John Cena necessary to keep this [title] out of the hands of Brock Lesnar!”
The motivations behind the characters couldn’t be more clear, and Paul Heyman has done an incredible job of keeping Brock Lesnar’s heat alive after conquering the Undertaker’s streak at WrestleMania XXX.
On Monday Night Raw this week, John Cena delivered one of his best promos in a long, long time. In it he told the WWE universe that they would see a John Cena he’s not proud of – a John Cena we’ve never seen before. On Twitter, WWE Hall of Famer Jim Ross had a pretty brilliant idea:
— Jim Ross (@JRsBBQ) August 12, 2014
I agree. If this is to be a John Cena we’ve never seen before, then it should be a no-nonsense John Cena – an all-business John Cena who comes out to the ring in wrestling gear. No baseball caps, sweat bands, or colorful t-shirts. No cargo shorts or sneakers. Just tights, boots, taped wrists and knee pads. A wrestler.
Will that happen? I highly doubt it – but it would certainly elevate the Lesnar-Cena storyline to a whole new level. Regardless of his ring attire, It seems like a foregone conclusion that Cena will be “victimized” by Lesnar at SummerSlam – a decision I’m 100% behind. The WWE universe could use a break from Cena, and having him get beaten to a pulp by Lesnar is a great way of getting him off television for a while.
While Cena’s absent, Lesnar can defend the WWE World Heavyweight Championship monthly at PPVs against select main event opponents. Speaking of main eventers, what on Earth is WWE doing with Cesaro? Since Money in the Bank (Jun 29th 2014), Cesaro has only won two matches. TWO MATCHES!?
Who would’ve thought two months ago that Jack Swagger would’ve come out on the good end of a Real Americans break-up? It’s disheartening to see such a talented wrestler like Cesaro lose match after match while The Miz defends the WWE Intercontinental Championship at SummerSlam. Before you know it, Cesaro will be back down in NXT wrestling Sami Zayn and Tyson Kidd.
Speaking of NXT, WWE’s signing of international talents like Kenta Kobayashi, Fergal Devitt, and Kevin Steen is fantastic news. Of course, what good are incredible in-ring performers when you can’t figure out how to properly utilize guys like Cesaro on the main roster. It’s only a matter of time until Adrian Neville and Sami Zayn move up to the main roster, so hopefully WWE will pair them up with performers like Cesaro, Seth Rollins, or Dean Ambrose. The last thing I want to see is Sami Zayn jobbing to R. Truth on SmackDown. Ugh.
But back to the 27th annual SummerSlam, which is being held at the Staples Center in Los Angeles, California. While I’m sure the Lesnar-Cena match will be great, the match I’m most looking forward to is Seth Rollins vs. Dean Ambrose. Since The Shield broke up, I’ve been most impressed with these two guys – especially Ambrose, who feels like an amalgam of Terry Funk, Roddy Piper, and Brian Pillman. His “unstable” gimmick is working, but WWE’s stalling at Battleground has cooled this feud down considerably.
Their Lumberjack Match at SummerSlam could go either way, with a rematch at Night of Champions in September where Rollins’ Money in the Bank briefcase is on the line. If Ambrose loses both matches, one has to assume the big blow-off match will be at Hell in the Cell where the two will be locked in a cage with no where to run – and Ambrose will finally get his big victory over his former partner.
Come back next week after SummerSlam for the second installment of Best for Business, where I’ll recap the PPV and look forward at potential angles.