Wade Barrett def. Daniel Bryan

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August 12, 2011

LOS ANGELES – At SummerSlam – as the WWE Universe packed the STAPLES Center to the rafters – the nefarious Wade Barrett triumphed over Daniel Bryan in a personal clash more than one year in the making.(Match photos)

In a back-and-forth onslaught that pitted the tenacious fast-paced style of Daniel Bryan against the sheer unbridled force of Wade Barrett, the WWE Universe was on the edge of its seats from beginning to end. And in the crucial final moments, when it looked as if Barrett may be forced to tap to the LeBell Lock, he somehow harnessed enough presence of mind to reach the ropes and survive. The fearless Bryan then opted to risk it all, pursuing his opponent to the top rope. But, the struggle that ensued caused him to fall onto the ropes, opening the door for Barrett to deliver an absolutely crushing clothesline. This set up Wasteland and a huge victory for the English Superstar. 

Watch a WWE.com Exclusive with Wade Barrett after the match

Barrett and Daniel Bryan already shared a tumultuous history before coming to SmackDown, competing against each other on WWE NXT season one, joining forces to invade Monday Night Raw in The Nexus and battle against each other in a 7-on-7 Tag Team Elimination Match in the main event at last year’s SummerSlam.

But a renewed animosity rose to the surface after Bryan announced that he will cash in his SmackDown Money in the Bank contract at WrestleMania XXVIII in Miami (Watch). In response, on the July 29 edition of SmackDown, Barrett made it clear that he should have been the one in possession of the Money in the Bank title opportunity, belittling his fellow former WWE NXT season one competitor. When the angry English Superstar struck Bryan, his resilient adversary turned the tables, cinching in the LeBell Lock. (Watch) Revenge came swiftly on the Aug. 12 edition of SmackDown, when the devious Barrett took out Bryan with Wasteland following his war-torn foe’s loss to fellow Money in the Bank briefcase holder Alberto Del Rio (Watch).

Although Barrett has made it clear that Bryan has no business playing at his level, both Superstars have accomplished a tremendous amount since their days as NXT Rookies. Barrett has come into prominence as Intercontinental Champion and changed the very landscape of WWE with both The Nexus and The Corre. Bryan has held the United States Championship and captured the coveted Money in the Bank briefcase – a distinct advantage toward greatness since every Superstar who has cashed in that particular opportunity has walked away with a World Title. But, for all the ways they have evolved, the disdain they feel for each other has remained.

In a WWE.com exclusive discussion with Daniel Bryan earlier in the week (Story), Bryan indicated that since making his announcement about cashing in his Money in the Bank at SummerSlam, he has become “… a target to Barrett and others.” He explained that “there will always be people who are bitter and jealous.” However, although the determined Superstar does, in fact, have a date with destiny on The Grandest Stage of Them All, the calculating Barrett proved to be the better man at The Biggest Event of the Summer.

Watch a WWE.com Exclusive with Wade Barrett after the match

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