In pro wrestling, feuds and matches often come down to one thing — An underdog going up against the odds stacked against him to find a way to win.
Hulk Hogan vs. Andre The Giant
“Stone Cold” Steve Austin vs. Vince McMahon
Rey Mysterio vs. The Undertaker.
All three of those rivalries have stuck to the classic underdog vs. favorite narrative, be it through size such as Mysterio/Taker or Hogan/Andre, or through power like in Austin/McMahon. There may be different ways of going about it, but the moment an underdog finally takes it to his opponent, it’s simply something special for fans, especially when those same fans share a special connection with that underdog.
That exact scenario seems to be playing out right now in the WWE.
The underdog this time around? Former Indy sensation and current wonder boy, Daniel Bryan. Since losing in just 18 seconds at WrestleMania 28, Bryan has been steadily gaining in popularity. Now, he is quite possibly the most over star in all of wrestling, with his “YES YES YES” chants ringing loudly throughout WWE’s broadcasts of Raw and Smackdown, regardless of whether or not D-Bry is there or not.
The favorite? The face of the WWE and the WWE Champion, John Cena. He has sat firmly atop the WWE mountain for over a decade now, defeating the likes of Kurt Angle, CM Punk, and The Rock. Cena is by far the promotions top draw, with fans at a live event even being offered refunds due to him not being able to make it to the show. John is loved and hated perhaps more than anyone else in wrestling history, which puts him into what is truly a league of his own.
This Sunday at SummerSlam, those two forces will meet in a match of the ages, a match that will certainly be the best bout of the night and take home the honor of being crowned Match of the Night.
Cena, while people claim he can’t wrestle, is actually one of the top workers in the WWE, an issue I address here. He’s put on five-star matches with some of the best workers today, most notably CM Punk, and never fails to put on at least a solid contest. Those matches with Punk are universally loved, so there’s no reason to believe he won’t be able to carry his own when he faces off against the American Dragon.
That dragon is, of course, arguably the best worker in not just WWE, but the world these days, as his incredible technical ability combined with the crowd’s love of Bryan create a spectacle whenever he competes. Bryan has faced thousands of competitors in the past and put on great bouts with all of them, so being in the ring with someone as talented as John Cena, well, it could make for something incredibly special.
Of course, there are also the X-Factors in this match, that being the McMahon family. With Triple H refereeing the contest, you can bet there will be some type of underhanded tactics from Vince to sway the odds against Daniel Bryan. As long as those tactics don’t overshadow the match itself between Bryan and Cena, I couldn’t care less, as this match could just blow everything out of the water.
Two of the most talented men in the wacky world of pro wrestling will go at it this Sunday.
The story is there. The talent is there. The Title is there. Everything is in place.
Now, we wait for what will surely be the Match of the Night at SummerSlam. Now, we wait for Daniel Bryan vs. John Cena.