Triple H stood in the center of the ring, soaking in the warmth of the live crowd, and proceeded to talk about Sunday’s SummerSlam main event. Never in the history of the WWE championship has two men held legitimate claims to the WWE title. You have one champion who has created this underground persona as “the voice of the voiceless.” Then there’s the champion who is the “status quo,” the standard-bearer of the WWE.
The decision to schedule both CM Punk and John Cena to a single match: one winner, one undisputed WWE champion, as the main event for SummerSlam was evident. But who’s to say someone doesn’t interfere; or worse, poorly officiates the match?
The WWE Chief Operating Officer raised these questions to the WWE Universe. And his decision? To assign an impartial, unbiased referee that could be trusted to call the match down the middle; someone who was well know, a larger than life superstar; someone who understands the severity of Sunday’s match.
Quickly names like Undertaker, Shawn Michaels, and Diesel came to the forefront of speculation. Yet the individual whose authority would be both respected and absolute was not in regards to Triple H’s past WrestleMania opponent, or either of his D-Generation X comrades. The man who Triple H was talking about was himself. “I’m just about the only guy that I can absolutely trust around here.”
CM Punk credits the announcement as Triple H feeding his insatiable ego. It was bound to happen. Triple H spent his professional wrestling career decimating his opponents, collecting World Championships, and earning several imposing monikers: “The Game,” “The Cerebral Assassin,” and “The King of Kings.” He married the boss’s daughter, and became the new Executive Senior Advisor for Talent Relations. And now he has control over the entire landscape of the WWE? It was only a matter of time before Triple H put himself back in the main event.
Yet he’s also responsible for why WWE has two champions in the first place. He first allowed the WWE title tournament — started by Vince McMahon — to conclude with the advent of the post-McMahon WWE champion Rey Mysterio Jr. followed by ordering a world title bout, which resulted in John Cena as the new champion. Coupled with resigning CM Punk, knowing full well he still had claims to the WWE title as long as he defended it within 30 days, it’s understandable why Triple-H, as the new COO, would do everything in his power to ensure the legitimacy of a single Undisputed champion.
Then again, does Triple-H hold a grudge with either man? Aside from a few “sleeping one’s way to the top,” and “The Chaperon” jabs, CM Punk’s idle speeches haven’t really ravaged the COO. Though the two are alike in having overbearing egos, Triple H isn’t bothered by Punk. However, John Cena is a different story. Cena and Hunter share a history when it comes to the WWE championship. John Cena tapped out Triple H at WrestleMania 22, and Triple H pedigreed Cena at Night of Champions 2008. Triple H is the 13-time WWE World Champion (8 WWE Titles), while Cena, though only 11-time, surpassed “The Game” with 9 WWE championships.
Then at the championships contract signing live on Monday Night Raw, when the table was flipped, Punk knocked out John Laurinaitis, Executive Vice Chairman for Talent Relations, trying to reach John Cena, Cena tackled down Triple H trying to get to Punk. Triple H shed his businessman persona for a brief instant, showing signs of his old “Cerebral Assassin” self, shoving John Cena. The two starred each other down sharing some heated words. Then the two looked at Punk.
Triple H may not like John Cena, but he does respect him in the business sense. Does he respect CM Punk in the business sense? Let’s face it, Punk doesn’t exactly scream lager than life WWE superstar. To Triple-H, CM Punk may always be “The King of the Indies.” So when it comes down to it, will Triple H call it how it is? Or will ego and agenda play a factor?