Bryan v Kane should be the match that headlines Extreme Rules, but firstly we need to examine why the others contenders shouldn't.
Bryan v HHH
- The babyface has already got his big win at the landmark PPV. Trips has got his hands full with The Shield and is apparently also working injured. Supposing, Hunter were to win the title, this would result in him wrestling a full-time schedule, which he clearly has no desire for given the much more backstage role he's undertaken in the last few years. Another Bryan win would do him little/no benefit, given how he's already been strongly booked by defeating HHH, Orton, Batista and Cena in the last 9 months. It would just diminish Helmsley's stock, meaning the next wrestler he were to put over wouldn't look as strong.
Bryan v Orton
- The traditional view would see the former champion get a title shot at the next PPV. However, the fans have tired of seeing these two compete against one another. Wrestled numerous times against each other at the start of last year, and several times at the end of it. Mostly infamous for the terrible screwy finishes and abhorrent PPV buys. Orton is also currently heavily involved with the reunion of Evolution, so there'd be little need for yet another match with Bryan, as closure has already been reached.
Shield v Evolution
- Have a gander at this. http://m.youtube.com/watch?v=A0b-mZTbv30
Road Warriors pop there......
No, wait it's as loud as Anne Frank's annex. Reaction isn't everything, but if you can't get people who paid
for tickets to care about your ten-year reunion, can you realistically expect to entice thousands of casual and lapsed fans around the world to purchase a PPV you're headlining?
Secondly, looking at it from a more kayfabe perspective, the PPV's should be built around the biggest star, and part of being a star revolves around booking, as Daniel Bryan defeated all three members of Evolution the previous month and in kayfabe is the number one, surely he's the star who should be headlining the show.
Multi-man tag matches are dying down, in the States at least. Looking at the relative apathy towards Survivor Series from Vince & co suggests that it's not a very profitable venture, given the way the McMahon family seem to chase anything that can gain revenue. Also worth noting is that it's buy rates have been on a huge downward spiral over the last decade, which furthermore highlights the lack of interest from fans in multi-man tag matches.
Now, let's move on to why Bryan v Kane is the correct match to headline Extreme Rules
. Kane and Bryan already have a long history, both with Hell No and Kane screwing DB at Elimination Chamber, despite this, it's a match we've only seen on Raw or PPV five times, which is half the amount of times we've seen Orton and Bryan clash in either. Another benefit of them being former tag team partners is that they'll be more familiar with each other's styles, meaning that they'll be more likely to give us a decent match.
Bryan has gone on a long chase and taken the fans on a roller-coaster of emotions along the way, so fans just want a bullshit free title defence, which I believe Kane would be most suited taking the fall for, as he can take a clean loss without a significant loss in credibility, as he's been an upper-midcarder who's always had the fortune of decent booking for close to 20 years.
Overall, Bryan v Kane would be the most logical match to headline the PPV, especially as we are still in the honeymoon period of Bryan's historic title win. Bryan has deserved the title for the past year and it would be a kick in the teeth for him not to headline. Look where the last ROH champion who didn't get to main-event PPV's on a regular basis as champion is..... Oh wait, we don't have a fucking clue as he left due to discontent with the WWE.
Bryan v Kane gets a "YES!" "YES!" "YES!" to headline Extreme Rules from me.