Forged in the fires of a brutal past rivalry comes a SummerSlam WWE Title showdown of destiny between WWE Champion Kofi Kingston and Randy Orton.

Since winning the WWE Championship at WrestleMania, Kingston has had a target on his back with Superstars like Kevin Owens, Dolph Ziggler and Samoa Joe all looking to bring a swift and decisive end to his reign. But when Orton pinned the titleholder during a Six-Man Tag Team Match on the July 16 edition of SmackDown LIVE, it was instantly clear to Kofi that his SummerSlam opponent must be The Viper. Rather than wait for The Apex Predator to get to him, however, the fighting titleholder called him out and looked Orton dead in the eye.

Kingston knows the remorseless Orton like few others, having experienced his sadistic nature several times over the years. Though Orton is a Superstar with no conscience, the 13-time World Champion boasts a resume that speaks for itself, and Kofi is well aware of the dangers of stepping into the squared circle with such a deadly competitor.

Orton is still the same dangerous Superstar he was when they first collided, and spelled out that he holds no respect for the WWE Champion. In fact, Orton said he used his influence to hold Kingston down over the past decade. The Viper believes that Kofi is undeserving of the title, and is only holding the WWE Championship because Orton hasn't decided to take it from him ... yet.

Kofi has proven to be a far more compassionate and crowd-pleasing WWE Champion than his menacing SummerSlam challenger, and his title victory at The Show of the Shows did nothing to change his approach. He still bounds to the ring with the same youthful exuberance that he exhibited 11 years ago, he still doles out pancakes to his adoring fans and he’s still good for a quick-witted one-liner when he’s palling around with The New Day. Come bell time, however, Kingston puts on his game face and overwhelms foes with his incredible speed, deceptively stiff kicks and an eagerness to take to the skies when necessary. And just when you think his Cinderella story is coming to an end, the never-say-die Superstar kicks out of a potential reign-ending pinfall at the last possible millisecond.

Perhaps the only similarity between champion and challenger? Each man possesses a devastating finishing maneuver that can be executed in the blink of an eye and is almost always followed by a three-count: Orton’s RKO has resulted in his opponents laying eerily motionless on the canvas, while Kofi’s swift Trouble in Paradise kick has left many of his foes staring at the lights faster than they can say “New Day.” The Viper felt that on the July 23 edition of SmackDown LIVE, when Kingston dropped him with the devastating kick.

Which Superstar will land that decisive blow and emerge victorious? Don’t miss SummerSlam, streaming live Sunday, Aug. 11, at 7 ET/4 PT on the award-winning WWE Network. 
 

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Forged in the fires of a brutal past rivalry comes a SummerSlam WWE Title showdown of destiny between WWE Champion Kofi Kingston and Randy Orton.

Since winning the WWE Championship at WrestleMania, Kingston has had a target on his back with Superstars like Kevin Owens, Dolph Ziggler and Samoa Joe all looking to bring a swift and decisive end to his reign. But when Orton pinned the titleholder during a Six-Man Tag Team Match on the July 16 edition of SmackDown LIVE, it was instantly clear to Kofi that his SummerSlam opponent must be The Viper. Rather than wait for The Apex Predator to get to him, however, the fighting titleholder called him out and looked Orton dead in the eye.

Kingston knows the remorseless Orton like few others, having experienced his sadistic nature several times over the years. Though Orton is a Superstar with no conscience, the 13-time World Champion boasts a resume that speaks for itself, and Kofi is well aware of the dangers of stepping into the squared circle with such a deadly competitor.

Orton is still the same dangerous Superstar he was when they first collided, and spelled out that he holds no respect for the WWE Champion. In fact, Orton said he used his influence to hold Kingston down over the past decade. The Viper believes that Kofi is undeserving of the title, and is only holding the WWE Championship because Orton hasn't decided to take it from him ... yet.

Kofi has proven to be a far more compassionate and crowd-pleasing WWE Champion than his menacing SummerSlam challenger, and his title victory at The Show of the Shows did nothing to change his approach. He still bounds to the ring with the same youthful exuberance that he exhibited 11 years ago, he still doles out pancakes to his adoring fans and he’s still good for a quick-witted one-liner when he’s palling around with The New Day. Come bell time, however, Kingston puts on his game face and overwhelms foes with his incredible speed, deceptively stiff kicks and an eagerness to take to the skies when necessary. And just when you think his Cinderella story is coming to an end, the never-say-die Superstar kicks out of a potential reign-ending pinfall at the last possible millisecond.

Perhaps the only similarity between champion and challenger? Each man possesses a devastating finishing maneuver that can be executed in the blink of an eye and is almost always followed by a three-count: Orton’s RKO has resulted in his opponents laying eerily motionless on the canvas, while Kofi’s swift Trouble in Paradise kick has left many of his foes staring at the lights faster than they can say “New Day.” The Viper felt that on the July 23 edition of SmackDown LIVE, when Kingston dropped him with the devastating kick.

Which Superstar will land that decisive blow and emerge victorious? Don’t miss SummerSlam, streaming live Sunday, Aug. 11, at 7 ET/4 PT on the award-winning WWE Network.