WWE Capitol Punishment 2011 rolls into Washington DC this Sunday night with one of the most intriguing main-events of the year. R-Truth takes a headlining spot opposite of John Cena, while Christian and Randy Orton attempt to steal the show one more time.
The WWE is at a tough spot right now needing to fill two pay per view cards while holding back some big matches for the annual summer blockbuster, SummerSlam. Yet surprisingly they have put together one of the strongest lineups of the year for a show that will probably be forgotten in a couple of months.
R-Truth vs. John Cena for the WWE Championship – R-Truth is without question the hottest heel in pro wrestling right now. For all of the criticism the WWE got for the way they booked The Miz earlier in the year, fans are ecstatic with the current direction of R-Truth. Quite frankly I can’t recall a new WWE heel being this over in a long time.
I mentioned SummerSlam above and herein lies the problem of this entire R-Truth vs. John Cena feud. The WWE has put creative into a bit of bind by planning for a Cena vs. Alberto Del Rio SummerSlam main-event. Del Rio is unquestionably a hot heel and worth the slot at the top of the cards. The only problem with all of this is that by accident or design, the WWE created an even hotter heel in the process with R-Truth.
If the fans on the Internet had their way, R-Truth would be pinning John Cena Sunday night at Capitol Punishment. Sadly those fans don’t do the booking. With Del Rio vs. Cena on the books and RAW ending with Truth laying Cena out, I would be shocked to see anything but John Cena go over in this one. I am not saying that is what I want to see, but the writing on the wall says otherwise.
Christian vs. Randy Orton for the WWE world heavyweight championship – This is a tough match to write about because there may be no match. Randy Orton suffered a concussion last weekend after being knocked out cold in a match in Spain. The concussion makes Orton questionable for the match, although as of press time he is still good to go.
What can I say about these two guys that I haven’t already said for the last six weeks? I think that Orton vs. Christian is the best feud in wrestling and the best rivalry in the WWE since Shawn Michaels vs. Chris Jericho. Like Michaels vs. Jericho, this feud has evolved from simply a rivalry to a feud with a clear cut heel. Christian’s new heel persona puts a new spin on a match the WWE just charged fans to watch a few weeks ago.
For my money, these guys can wrestle on every pay per view for the rest of the year and I wouldn’t get tired of it. Their matches are just that good, well to me anyway. I talked about the chemistry between Truth and Cena, well these guys are at another level. I don’t know what it is, but these two guys just bring the best out of each other. I have said it once and I’ll say it again, I think these are the best matches of Randy Orton’s career and maybe Christian’s as a singles wrestler.
So let’s stick with the preface that they will wrestle and Orton will be cleared. They are already working an angle that Christian gave Orton a concussion due to the belt shot on SmackDown. This makes me think that either during or after the match that Orton will punt Christian to even the score. Even as a babyface, Orton still wrestles with that heel edge to him (which is something I always thought most heels should do after they turn babyface). This is why I think Orton pulls a heelish move and lays out Christian at Capitol Punishment.
As for the match, I expect nothing less than another show stealer from these two. Christian and Orton have had two great matches in a row, the next better than the first. One of the reasons the matches were so good is that neither were playing heel and it had the psychology was more of it just being a pure wrestling match rather than good vs. bad guy. Unfortunately that will change and may take a little shine off of this rematch. Regardless, I think it is a great match and I am going to go with the upset here. I predict another WWE world championship reign for Captain Charisma.
Alex Riley vs. The Miz – I really can’t believe that I am writing about this match. I know a lot of fans feel differently, but I have zero interest in watching this match. It has nothing to do with the booking. The booking for the feud has been great. I just have no interest in seeing either guy wrestle.
I am going to keep this one short. I would be surprised if these two guys didn’t get a long match, which in the end will wind up being too long. I would also be surprised not to see Riley go over. He is being pushed to the moon. The Miz should win to keep the feud going, but it almost appears to me that the WWE has bigger plans for Riley in the near future than The Miz. I’ll go with Riley in this one in a match that most people complain was too long and boring when it’s over.
Alberto Del Rio vs. the Big Show – Here we have a classic grudge match with no titles at stake or stipulations of note between a villain and a hero. Big Show goes for revenge on Del Rio after being run over by Del Rio a few weeks ago on RAW. The giant will be hunting Mexican on Sunday night!
If the WWE still plans to go with Del Rio vs. Cena in August, he needs to go over in this one. Del Rio has been to watch, but the WWE have not booked him many wins in the last few months. As a matter of a fact, Del Rio is 0-2 in his last two pay per view matches and has only had one win on pay per view in 2011, that being the Royal Rumble. This is The Miz all over again! The reason that fans didn’t take The Miz seriously as champion is because he had been jobbed for the months leading to his win. The WWE is making the same mistakes with Del Rio but I digress.
I expect Del Rio to go over in this match. Let me rephrase that, Alberto Del Rio better go over the Big Show if the WWE still plans to put him in the top slot at SummerSlam. My guess is that we see a typical Big Show match with Show overpowering Del Rio for most of the match, yet Alberto pulls one out in the end due with a cheap win. Anything less will make Del Rio D.O.A. for the Cena program.
Kofi Kingston vs. Dolph Ziggler for the U.S. championship – How many times have we seen this match on SmackDown? If you don’t think that the WWE is running out of ideas, just look at the bottom of this card. Dolph-Kofi and Rey-Punk are matches we have already seen numerous times. At least the U.S. title puts a new spin on this one.
These guys never had any real bad matches so I’d expect a nice match out of these two. RAW has two babyface champions with Kofi and Cena, which is one babyface champion too much. So, that leads me to believe that Dolph Ziggler is going over in this one. Hey, the guy is unstoppable now that he got his blonde hair back right? I predict a Ziggler win and a new champion at Capitol Combat. Appropriate that the U.S. title would change hands at Capitol Combat wouldn’t you say?
Wade Barrett vs. Ezekiel Jackson for the WWE intercontinental title – It is kind of interesting that both SmackDown main-events are rematches from the previous month wouldn’t you say? These guys match up once again coming off of an okay match at Over the Limit. My bold prediction here is that it will be the last match of the series we see on pay per view.
Didn’t it seem like yesterday that Wade Barrett was the top heel in the WWE? Well those days are long gone for the former bare knuckle champion fighter. These days Barrett is a bit player on SmackDown and looks more like a transitional champion than a guy ready to move up and challenge for the WWE world heavyweight championship.
They had a nice short match at Over the Limit which saw Ezekiel pick up Barrett for a number of bodyslams in what I thought was actually a pretty cool spot. Barrett wound up sneaking out of the match with the title, losing on a disqualification. As much as I have no interest in seeing Jackson as the champion, I think the WWE has bigger plans for him than Barrett. I am going with Jackson and a new intercontinental champion in this one.
Rey Mysterio vs. CM Punk – So let me get this right. Fans are being asked to pay to watch a match they have seen numerous times last year on free and pay television? As much as I enjoyed their matches, this one just seems odd to me.
It is a tricky match to predict because on the one hand you have CM Punk who is riding high on momentum right now coming off of a win over John Cena on All Star Night RAW and on the other hand you have Rey Mysterio who is coming off a clean loss to R-Truth on the last pay per view. A win for either guy makes just as much sense as arguing against a loss. With that said, I am going to predict a win for the 619. Let’s face it, the WWE isn’t going to let Punk get any momentum and they’ll make sure nobody remembers his win over Cena by July 1.
Full WWE 2011 Capitol Punishment card…
John Cena vs. R-Truth for the WWE championship
Randy Orton vs. Christian for the WWE world heavyweight championship
The Miz vs. Alex Riley
Big Show vs. Alberto Del Rio
Wade Barrett vs. Ezekiel Jackson for the WWE intercontinental championship
Kofi Kingston vs. Dolph Ziggler for the U.S. championship
Rey Mysterio vs. CM Punk
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