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Hungry for respect
JACKSONVILLE, Fla. — One Night Stand's Lumberjack Match could prove to be the most barbaric hand-to-hand combat match on the Extreme Rules card. With Mark Henry and Kane, two of WWE's most powerful and volatile Superstars looking to establish dominance in the SmackDown kingdom, both men realize exactly what is at stake -- respect.
"Being who I am, I'm always a target anyway," said Kane. "Anyone who wants to make a name for themselves are usually going to go after me. But, I've got to tell you, Mark, you have no idea what you're getting into."
But the World's Strongest Man claims he knows exactly what he's doing. His unexpected return to SmackDown when he pummeled Undertaker after The Deadman's bloody, grueling Steel Cage Match with Batista, made it abundantly clear that he was back. And according to the former Olympian, the Big Red Monster is the first in line of many beatings to come.
"The reality is that Kane follows behind me, just like everyone else around here does," growled Henry. "There is nothing that is going to keep me from winning this Lumberjack Match at One Night Stand. I'm the man in WWE, and everything and everyone else follows suit."
The Big Red Monster remembers what Henry did to Undertaker at WrestleMania 22, when he took his brother to the physical limit in their Casket Match. Now, after the callous ambush on SmackDown, he plans to rely on strategy instead of brute strength as his tactic for revenge.
"I'm sure I'll have a few tricks up my sleeve," said Kane with a devious smile. "I'm not going to be able to overpower him like I can most people, but I don't think anyone can."
As much punishment that will occur in the ring when these two goliaths lock horns, getting pushed outside the ring could subject them to even more brutality. Avoiding being blasted by the Lumberjacks that line the outside of the ring is crucial to sustaining the amount energy it will take to win the match.
The Lumberjacks ensure that neither Superstar will have a place to run beyond the four corners of the ring. Does that give either man an advantage in the match?
"It all evens out," said Kane. "Just like I won't have anywhere to run, neither will he. As I said, he doesn't know what he's getting into. I think he bit off more than he can chew this time."
With his reemergence from injury, and the subsequent need to prove those wrong who have claimed Mark Henry has been a colossal underachiever, the World's Strongest Man has a goal to achieve, and going through the Big Red Monster is a bona fide route to achieving it.
On Sunday at One Night Stand, only one Superstar in this battle of the titans can emerge victorious. Will Kane avenge his brother's beating, or will Henry keep the pendulum of momentum swinging in his favor?