WWE Night of Champions was one of the better pay-per-view events of the year, featuring all six World Wrestling Entertainment championships on the line, as well as a grudge match between Randy Orton and Dolph Ziggler. The Sept. 16 show from the TD Garden in Boston saw CM Punk controversially retain his WWE Title in a draw with John Cena, Kane and Daniel Bryan crowned the new and unlikely Tag Team Champions, and Ziggler losing his second straight pay-per-view, this time to bird-flipping Randy Orton.
John Cena vs. CM Punk is one of the best rivalries WWE has to offer, regardless of the heat Cena gets from older fans. The squeaky clean babyface persona of the Cenation Leader posed against the grungy and rebellious heel incarnation of the Second City Saint bring an unparalleled psychology to the WWE Championship picture, and last night's draw left things open for yet another bout between the two fighters.
The two had an excellent back-and-forth; with both superstars hitting several finishers and a Yankees pinstripes clad Punk even adopting the Rock Bottom from his rival Dwayne The Rock Johnson. The match ended when 10-time WWE Champion Cena performed a German-Suplex from the top rope and bridged for the pin.
Cena's music hit and his hometown Boston crowd erupted with applause, but the celebration was short lived. The referee called the match a draw because the bridging position that Cena took to pin the self-proclaimed Paul Heyman guy also had Cena's own shoulders to the mat, and a Title is retained by the current champion in a draw.
Now that Punk has Heyman in his corner, the dynamic between the WWE Champion and Cena is polarizing more than ever. The Punk and Cena angle will likely lead to a Hell in a Cell match at WWE's Oct. pay-per-view, a perfect end-of-the-road match for a feud of this caliber.
Sheamus retained his World Championship as well, with SmackDown General Manager Booker T reinstating the Brogue Kick just before the match began. Over the past few weeks, the banning of the Celtic Warrior's signature move was the most interesting aspect of the champion's feud with Alberto Del Rio, and that handicap was taken out of the equation before the two could face off.
Del Rio had found a way to take the most effective maneuver out of Sheamus's arsenal, and that makes a fan wonder what kind of moves he can use to win the match. The World Heavyweight Champion had been using the Texas Cloverleaf submission hold in recent matches, and even made submission specialist Daniel Bryan tap out to the hold.
None of that mattered when it came down to it though. Sheamus hit the Mexican Aristocrat with a now-legal Brogue Kick and won the match.
The new Tag Team Champions Kane and Daniel Bryan are one of the most dysfunctional pairs to ever hold the title belts. The anger management attendees defeated former champions Kofi Kingston and R-Truth after a disorderly match that involved some miscommunication and hugging-it-out.
The Big Red Monster and The Submission Specialist likely won't hold the belts for long and could make way for up and coming tag team The Prime Time Players to take the belts. Kane and Bryan as a team will just be a way for WWE to enhance their feud.
During the match the challengers aggressively tried to assist one another and were getting on each other's nerves. A few light shots were exchanged between the two, and the match was won when Bryan pushed Kane off the tope rope onto Kingston in a pinning position.
It was earlier predicted that Dolph Ziggler would win his match against Randy Orton, but the Viper prevailed, and got hostile with a fan at ringside, reports NoDQ with a photo of the incident. Orton won his match against Mr. Money in the Bank despite that fact that Ziggler is most likely going to win the World Heavyweight Championship in the next year.
The odds of Ziggler losing were small because of his Money in the Bank contract and the fact that Orton will be taking time off to film the sequel to 12 Rounds soon. Similarlly to Ziggler losing to Jericho at SummerSlam before the Ayatollah of Rock 'n' Rolla departed to go on tour with his heavy metal band Fozzy, this may only be temporary downside to the Showoff's rivalry.
After his SummerSlam loss, Ziggler defeated Jericho, subsequently terminating Y2J's contract. Officials could do something similar where Orton is taken out of action in some way by Ziggler.
The Fatal Four Way match for the Intercontinental Championship saw current title holder The Miz prevail against the odds. The Most Must See IC Champion defeated Rey Mysterio, Sin Cara and Cody Rhodes to retain his title.
With both Mysterio and Cara fighting a luchador style, the match had a faster pace than the other Night of Champions fights. The problem with this is that Cara is well known to botch spots during his matches, and Sunday's pay-per-view was no different.
Aside from an abundance of missteps by the International Sensation, the bout was well worked. The Miz's reign as IC Champion has seen him defeated many times, but whenever the belt is being contested, the Awesome One prevails.
United States Champion Antonio Cesaro defeated Zack Ryder to retain his title after the Long Island Ice-Z won the pre-show battle royal to become the no. 1 contender for Cesaro's belt. The rookie champion defeated Ryder with an intense uppercut and his signature move, the Neutralizer after an exciting match.
Layla didn't retain her Divas Championship as predicted last week, but the match had a last minute change. Eve was placed in the title match and won after the no. 1 contender Kaitlyn had a Mysterio storyline injury.
NoDQ has alleged that Kaitlyn becoming no. 1 contender was a mistake. Supposedly there was a botch in the battle royal the rookie diva won, and Eve was supposed to face Layla for the title all along.
In the absence of WWE commentator Jerry Lawler, who suffered a heart-attack on RAW last Monday, former announcer and WWE superstar John Bradshaw Layfield took up King's post. The duo of JBL and Cole had done commentary together on SmackDown in the past, and worked well together throughout the show.
The WWE ring sported an unusual bright pink middle rope between white top and bottom ropes to raise breast cancer awareness. The show also featured breast cancer survivors in the audience who were brought on screen briefly, and WWE announced a partnership with Susan G. Komen for the Cure.
The awareness campaign even features John Cena wearing pink and black t-shirt that WWE.com reports the superstar will wear throughout October.
Breast cancer is a devastating disease, and we're committed to using WWE's global resources to support Komen's fight to end breast cancer forever, Cena said according to WWE.com. I'll be proud to wear pink in the ring to support this great cause.