Holy Crap! Two title changes in one night! Dammit!
Championship hot potato: Legend Killer’s time comes after all
By Bryan Robinson
October 7, 2007
CHICAGO â€“ History was truly made at No Mercy â€“ over and over again. The WWE Title changed hands twice, and when the smoke cleared, Randy Orton was WWE Champion.
It was a roller coaster ride for both Orton and Triple H. Both experienced the ecstasy of holding the WWE Championship and agony of losing the gold. At the beginning of the night, Orton was in his glory when he was awarded the WWE Championship by Mr. McMahon.
It was the crowning moment in the career of the third-generation Superstar. It surpassed his becoming the youngest World Heavyweight Champion in WWE history in 2004. It was the culmination of a five-month campaign where he left the broken bodies of legends such as Shawn Michaels and the â€œAmerican Dreamâ€ Dusty Rhodes in his wake and tortured Cena mentally and physically. He finally had what he wanted, the WWE Championship â€“ and then Triple H ruined it by challenging him and defeating him for the title.
The Game had little time to celebrate his 11th World Championship. A vindictive Mr. McMahon threw challenge after challenge at him. He made his match against Umaga a WWE Championship Match â€“ which he barely won in a grueling battle. The Game was battered, exhausted, and barely able to lift his arm after the brutal battle with the Samoan Bulldozer.
The Chairman and Orton obviously noticed how spent The King of Kings was; the Legend Killer opted to immediately exercise his option as a former champion and have his rematch for the title that night. And Mr. McMahon, in his longtime hatred for Triple H, smiled with delight as he informed his former son-in-law that the rematch would be in a Last Man Standing Match.
As great as Triple H is, even he could not withstand a war with Umaga and two brutal battles with Orton on the same night. The Legend Killer had two hours to rest between his matches with Triple H; The Game had no real time to heal from his wounds and rest.
In many ways, by choosing to exercise his rematch clause at the time he did, Orton showed Triple H that he learned his lessons well when The Game mentored him when they were teammates in Evolution. He saw The Game was weakened and seized his opportunity. In addition, Orton was determined to exorcise the Triple H championship demon once and for all.
Triple H ruined Ortonâ€™s first World Heavyweight Championship in 2004 when he kicked him out of Evolution and defeated him for the title only a month into his reign. The Game struck again tonight when he took the WWE Championship from Orton barely 20 minutes after he was awarded the title. Orton must have thought he was reliving an absolute nightmare, and he desperately wanted to wake up.
The third-generation Superstarâ€™s desperation showed in his Last Man Standing Match. Perspiration poured down his face as he rained blows down on The Game. He capitalized on the injuries Umaga had inflicted earlier that night and opened a gash in The Game’s head.
But Triple H fought valiantly. At times appeared on the verge of a miraculous third victory in one night. But Orton would not be denied in his second match, and outlasted The Game to win the WWE Championship after a thunderous RKO on the announcers’ table.
After the match, Orton made no apologies for capitalizing on Triple’s injuries.
“When you’re in WWE, you’re on another level,” he said. “It doesn’t matter if you wrestled twice in one night, twice in one week or if you rehabbed [your injury] for 10 months. Rules are rules, matches are matches, stipulations are stpulations. Mr. McMahon made the match, and I won.”
Orton breathed a long sigh of relief as he clutched the gold. He outsmarted The Cerebral Assassin, and the WWE Championship was his. Orton said his time has finally come.
“This means that I have finally broken through,” Orton said. “I have always been good, but now I’m at the top, and nothing’s going to stop me.”
The era of the Legend Killer has finally begun â€“ and Orton can finally enjoy it. But perhaps he better keep looking over his shoulder for a vengeful Game.
I have to say, this is going to make things really interesting on Raw tomorrow night…
–Cos AKA Socram