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WITH ALBERTO OUT, WHO SHOULD SHEAMUS FACE AT SUMMERSLAM? HERE'S 16 POSSIBILITIES

By Mike Johnson on 2012-08-13 16:00:00
Last night's Smackdown featured an angle where Alberto Del Rio destroyed World champion Sheamus at the end before a match they were scheduled for. In the aftermath, Booker T announced that their Summerslam match was off.

Now, this could all be reversed come Monday's Raw taping in Dallas, but what if it wasn't? Who should Sheamus face then?

Eliminating other current champions and those publicly announced for matches already, here's 16 possibilities.

Randy Orton - Orton has just returned to the company, wiping out foes with RKOs every week. While he's claimed on Twitter he wasn't booked to wrestle, it seems odd WWE wouldn't place him on one of the biggest PPVs of the year. It could be that he's still in the doghouse for being suspended, but if he's not, what better way to pop some last minute interest than having Orton vs. Sheamus?

Antonio Cesaro - Cesaro has had a slow but steady rise thus far in the company, mostly winning bouts on a smaller scale with Superstars appearances and bouts against Santino Marella. This is a dark horse idea, but a great performance against Sheamus would go a long way towards elevating a hell of a talent during a time where WWE needs talents elevated to the next level desperately.

Brodus Clay - Probably a little too soon for this given the angle they just shot with Damien Sandow, but the power vs. power allure of two big bruisers is something WWE relishes. Not likely but intriguing.

Christian - Old reliable. If he ends up in the spot, it won't mean much for drawing power (of course, the Del Rio storyline didn't either!) but a solid to great match is assured. He remains one of the smoother performers in the company and a heel turn certainly wouldn't hurt him.

Cody Rhodes - Rhodes needs something to help him get back up to the levels of near-stardom he's almost hit a few times. A great bout against Sheamus would be a help although his window is closing given how long he's been patterned as a mid-carder.

*Damien Sandow - In a year or so, I won't be shocked to see him as a top WWE titleholder. Triple H is said to be very hands on with him and he's a well traveled veteran who can, work and talk and has great size in an era where that's bigger premium than ever before. It may not be this PPV but he certainly will end up in the World title picture at some point. Could WWE fast-track him to a top bout that quick or would they create a backlash amongst fans with too much, too soon.

David Otunga - Not the best idea for a strong match but in WWE, that's not the priority. He's about to return after taking time off for his movie role in "The Hive" and the trial his fiance's family had to undergo, so why not shoot a quick angle to give Sheamus someone to beat at the PPV?

The Rock - Obviously this would be the biggest opponent for Sheamus, given it's well, the Rock. I fully expect Rock to pop up at the PPV since it's in his home base of Los Angeles, but after he just announced he's getting a WWE title shot, this isn't a very likely scenario. Still, if he has a window in his Fast 5 shooting schedule, it would be cool and a nice way to give Sheamus the rub, by having Rock say that he respect him as a man and wants to see what he's really made of.

Mark Henry - Henry should be cleared to return anytime, so why not have him beat the piss out of Sheamus this week to set up a big return PPV. Henry hasn't been the same since he was hurt and before that, he was the baddest World champion on Smackdown in well, forever. Every good hero needs a villain to overcome. Henry vs. Sheamus fits that bill perfectly in the WWE world.

Rey Mysterio - It would certainly give the kids watching an interesting underdog dynamic to enjoy but I think the days of Mysterio on that level are waning. He's older, he's put on weight and he's likely not going to get pushed at that level after being suspended WHILE being out injured.

Sin Cara - He gets a nice pop but rarely, if ever, looks strong in the ring as he's never fully been able to grasp the WWE style. He's a shadow of what he was in Mexico as Mistico and the idea of him being put into a World title shot doesn't seem like a viable idea.

Tensai - He's a monster and Sheamus needs viable dragons to slay. He also wouldn't lose any momentum taking the Brogue Kick given how he's been booked.

Undertaker - Would be an awesome match on paper in terms of a "dream bout scenario" of an older generation vs. today but Taker is best served to be teased and delivered on Wrestlemania and Mania only. Still, fans would dig this. Something they should consider for a March PPV as a way to elevate Sheamus towards that "immortal territory" one day.

Wade Barrett - Barrett just returned to the ring, so a strong angle where he KO's Sheamus to set up a PPV bout could work.

William Regal - No chance of this happening, although Regal would be able to deliver a strong match.

Zack Ryder - Not unless it's booked for Youtube. Anyone else remember this guy?

There are your primary choices (and well, with Ryder, the bottom choice), so who would you want to see Sheamus face?  One of these names?  A returning legend?  Someone else?  PWInsider.com wants to know who you would book into the scenario!

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Mike Johnson can be reached at Mike@PWInsider.com. He suggests "From Prison to Promise" by Booker T for your reading pleasure.

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