Credit: Jason Powell and Prowrestling.net
The press conference kicked off nearly ten minutes late with Brodus Clay, Sweet T, Cameron, and Naomi doing their entrance route. Once they finished, it sounded like three or four people were excited about this.
Michael Cole came out to serve as the host of the press conference. He said the one-hour SummerSlam Kickoff show will begin at 6:00 CT and will feature a panel with Shawn Michaels, Booker T, and Natalya. Cole introduced “Paul ‘Triple H’ Levesque.”
Triple H asked the crowd if they were ready. Seemingly the same people who were excited about Tons of Funk responded. He asked again and got a better response. Hunter spoke about giving back to the host city via their various events leading up to SummerSlam, and hyped SummerSlam Axxess.
Triple H noted that it was the fifth year in a row that SummerSlam will be held at Staples Center. He said he had his own SummerSlam memories, but he can’t wait to see the matches on Sunday. He ran through some of the matches on the card and gave extra emphasis to the big two matches. “I can guarantee you this Sunday that SummerSlam will be an epic event,” Hunter said. He plugged the pay-per-view and exited the stage.
Cole returned and aired a video for Total Divas. Cole said JoJo will be performing the national anthem prior to SummerSlam. He hyped Brie Bella vs. Natalya and said Nikki Bella and Eva will be with Brie, while Natalya will have Cameron and Naomi in her corner. Cole introduced Nikki and Brie Bella, Eva Marie, Cameron, Naomi, JoJo, “and the talented Natalya.”
Nikki Bella spoke about how honored she is to be on Total Divas. Nikki stepped up and spoke about the show and having their WrestleMania match cut. Eva stepped up and said viewers see the newbies good days and bad days. She said she’s learned a few lessons so far, but questioned whether they really thought she should go blonde. Eva said she posed for Maxim and the issue hits the newsstands today.
Naomi took her turn at the podium and said the Total Divas show gives viewers a chance to see what they go through to be Divas. Cameron stepped up and said being a Diva is the best job in the world. She spoke about WWE’s charitable work. JoJo stepped up and the mic blocked her face as she spoke about singing the national anthem at SummerSlam.
Finally, Natalya took her turn and spoke about being proud of JoJo. Natalya took offense to Brie referring to herself as a veteran during her speech. She said she and the Funkadactyls will prove who the real veteran of the Diva division is. She also plugged Total Divas.
Cole returned after the Divas made their exit. Cole set up the Alberto Del Rio vs. Christian match and then introduced Del Rio. Alberto said SummerSlam is his favorite event of the year. He recalled becoming World Champion in Los Angeles for the first time and said he would remain the champion on Sunday.
Del Rio said he expects his Hispanic fans to show up to watch him on Sunday, but he does it all himself. Del Rio spoke briefly in Spanish for the Latin media and viewers and then left the stage.
Cole turned the focus to the Brock Lesnar vs. C.M. Punk match. Cole introduced Punk with a plug for his 434-day WWE Championship reign and spoke about how close he came to beating Undertaker at WrestleMania 29.
Punk came out and asked how everyone was doing. He said it sounds a little dead. He said he was sitting backstage and wondered if anyone was out there. Punk thanked Paul Heyman for putting 13 staples in his head and Brock Lesnar for making the challenge of getting his hands around Heyman’s throat that much more difficult. Punk said fighting Lesnar won’t be easy, but his goal is to return the favor by putting staples in Heyman’s head.
Punk recalled getting stitches because of Lesnar attacking him. Punk said Lesnar seems to think size matters. He said he doesn’t know whether the ladies in attendance would agree with that. Punk said that just because Lesnar is big doesn’t mean he’s afraid of him and won’t take the fight to him. Punk left the stage.
Daniel Bryan was introduced by Cole. Bryan walked out dressed in a suit with a big smile on his face. He said he would do the Yes! thing but he’s afraid he would tear his suit. He said this is the first time WWE has actually invited him to a press conference. He said he feels very uncomfortable in his suit and at the podium. He said he would rather be in spandex in a ring because that’s what he does.
Bryan recalled sleeping in his car for a tryout match that ended up landing him a gig in Japan. He spoke about going from that moment to facing the biggest WWE star over the last ten years. He said it doesn’t seem like his life. He said Cena is a certain type of performer who is very good at what he does. Bryan said he is a very different type of performer and the type that WWE needs for change.
Bryan encouraged viewers to watch SummerSlam to see the change from superstars and entertainers to wrestlers. “I am going to prove that I belong in the WWE and that I belong in the WWE Championship mix and I belong at being the face of WWE,” Bryan said. He concluded with the Yes! routine and didn’t appear to rip his suit. The media members didn’t Yes! along with him.
Cole introduced Stephanie McMahon, who thanked various groups in Los Angeles, including AEG, which runs Staples Center. She gave the smiles on people’s faces line and ran through various factoids about WWE’s worldwide exposure. She also plugged celebrity involvement and some of their charitable events for SummerSlam week. She praised John Cena for his Make-A-Wish work.
John Cena was introduced by Cole. Cena wore a suit and brought the WWE Championship with him and gave the photographers a chance to get shots of it before he set it on the podium. He congratulated the cast of Total Divas on the early success of the show.
Cena welcomed everyone to the official kickoff of SummerSlam. He said the WWE Universe are at the edges of their seat for Sunday. He held up the title and said that it’s not a belt. As Vince McMahon says, a belt holds your pants up, whereas the title is an achievement.
Cena said he and Bryan aren’t all that different. Cena said he was passed over time and time again too. He said Bryan has a chance to define his legacy and his future. Cena said he’s been in WWE for 12 years and has held the title 11 times. He said he knows what it means and what his obligations are when he holds it.
Cena said Bryan is so excited about the match that he referred to the title by the wrong name (World Heavyweight Championship). He said normally the main events feature a giant superstar facing a giant superstar. He said the WWE Championship is reserved for giant moments like Cena vs. The Rock. He questioned whether Bryan will define himself as the next Rock or Cena or the first Daniel Bryan. He asked whether The Beard is good enough to beat The Champ. He said that’s why they play the game.
Cole called for Bryan and Triple H to join Cena on the stage for photos. They posed together, then Triple H stepped aside so that Cena and Bryan could pose. Triple H returned and raised both of their hands to wrap up the press conference.