WWE SummerSlam 2012 closed with Brock Lesnar handily defeating Triple H in the main event. In its final seconds on Sunday night in Los Angeles, HHH looked at the WWE universe and delivered two sobering words: “I’m sorry.”
My question is a simple one. What is HHH sorry for?
The sad scene in the ring was nothing more than a storyline…a way to write HHH out of the picture for a while and make Brock Lesnar look indestructible. The truth of the matter, though, is that HHH really should have been apologizing for the poorly laid-out match and predictable outcome.
Lesnar had to win this match. After losing to John Cena earlier in the year, Lesnar needed the reputation-saving victory, and HHH was more than happy to oblige. In professional wrestling, sometimes the ending is not “up for grabs,” but merely inevitable.
We all know how an Undertaker match at WrestleMania is going to end…but his true skill is in giving us the fleeting seconds of doubt. Will this finally be the year that the streak ends? Of course, the answer is always no.
If you replay the match, the crowd was dead from the start. This is the main event of WWE SummerSlam—the crowd should be on its feet and invested from start to finish.
In the squared circle, love and admiration draw cheers. Hatred draws boos. But it is indifference that is feared the most, because it only draws silence.
The crowd cannot be blamed. The fans were loud and active at different points in the night, most notably the show’s opening match, which featured Chris Jericho defeating Dolph Ziggler.
So what did Jericho and Ziggler have that Lesnar and HHH didn’t?
For one thing, the outcome was a toss-up. Storyline-wise, either man could have won. But more importantly, Ziggler is an up-and-coming star and the WWE universe is excited to see what he will do next. He’s fresh, talented and unpredictable. Jericho was the perfect foil for that since he can deliver a main-event-quality match with ease and precision.
WWE fans are smart. They know Lesnar is only wrestling for the money and HHH is only wrestling because Lesnar needed to defeat a “name.” Why invest emotion in that when you can save it for the Dolph Zigglers of the world?
WWE has a new tagline it's eager to flash before each and every broadcast: “Then. Now. Forever.”
Tonight, the fans spoke loudly. They choose “now” over “then.” The question is…is anybody listening?