Finn Bálor and Elias collide as Raw's Seven-Man Gauntlet Match rolls on.02/19/2018 - 22:15
Paths of Victory
Victory For Understanding
At the beginning of 2012, Daniel Bryan was a man who had it all. He was World Heavyweight Champion; he’d won the veneration of the WWE Universe; and on his arm hung one of WWE’s sweetest Divas, AJ Lee. In 18 seconds, his entire world was shattered by a Brogue Kick that took it all away. Since that fateful day at WrestleMania XXVIII in Miami, Bryan has been trying to make sense of the world and his place in it. Victory for him means reclaiming some of the glory he enjoyed at the close of last year, and maybe, just maybe, having the word “Yes” signify something more than a catchphrase again.
Victory For Self
This one goes without saying. Say what you will about Dolph Ziggler, the man has been honest about his agenda from the start. Every time he steps upon that ramp, Ziggler is out for one person and one person alone — himself. Winning is academic to Ziggler, and he counts victory in more ways than just pinfalls. Last year, he managed to make an impact as a member of Team Johnny, helping John Laurinaitis score a win at WrestleMania XXVIII and usher in the era of “People Power.” In 2013, he’ll likely be competing on his own, which, with no one else to take up another inch of the spotlight, is precisely how Dolph Ziggler likes it.
John Cena vs. JBL
Judgment Day, May 22, 2005
Facing off against JBL in an “I Quit” Match for the WWE Championship, Cena proved that he wasn’t a flash in the pan keeping the title warm for the next champion. Running a gauntlet of pain and punishment, Cena unleashed his inner animal and became a true contender. Above all, this was the match that created the John Cena we know today.
Victory For Redemption
Wade Barrett came roaring out of the gate back in 2010 as the leader of The Nexus and The Corre, but suffered a setback when he was sidelined with a dislocated elbow. Now, armed with the Intercontinental Title, Barrett’s on a mission to prove he hasn’t lost a step and to pick up the momentum he once had. He may be able to walk out of MetLife Stadium with a successful title defense to his name — one more step on the road back to the top.
Victory For Appetite
Ryback knows no other way but victory — it’s hard-wired into his DNA. When he barks, “Feed Me More!” it’s truth as much as it is bravado. Ryback needs to win the way the rest of us need oxygen. And when it’s denied him, woe to whoever is responsible. For months, victory has been snatched away by underhanded referees and a trio of anarchists. But Ryback is growing hungrier, and he may be about to enjoy his greatest feast yet.
The Rock vs. Stone Cold Steve Austin
WrestleMania XIX, March 30, 2003
It was the last time these two mortal enemies would ever face each other in a WWE ring, and it closed out the trilogy with The People’s Champion on top. A fitting end to one of WWE’s all-time greatest rivalries.
Victory For Country
For all his jingoistic bluster about his native Switzerland, The Swiss Superman brings something wholly unique to WWE — the power of conviction and the will to see it through. Just watch the fire in his eyes as he lifts up Superstars such as The Great Khali for the Neutralizer. He is obviously on a campaign to assert his might, and the might of the nation he represents, and no one can stand in Cesaro’s way or weaken his resolve.
Victory For The Fight
Sheamus is all about being in the thick of it. He is fueled by the thrill of combat, the glory of winning and even the agony of losing. Every thrown punch, every landed blow, increases Sheamus’ desire to step into the ring, ball up his fists and throw down. Last year, he proved his mettle by flattening Daniel Bryan in 18 seconds. We doubt he’ll find himself in such a situation again. But even if he ends up in a full-on Street Fight, he’ll feel right at home.
To read more Superstars’ paths to victory, including CM Punk, John Cena and The Rock, collect all three March covers, or SUBSCRIBE HERE and save 70 percent off newsstand sales price.