Chris Jericho, left, and CM Punk, right, renew their storied rivalry when Punk returns to WWE action at the United Center in Chicago, Illi., for WWE Payback on Sunday, June 16. (Photo : YouTube)
Sheamus vs. Damien Sandow
After putting up with Sandow's "head games" - including a "Gordian's Knot" and a "The Thimblerig Challenge", Sheamus is still smarting over last Friday Smackdown post-match sneak-attack by "The Intellectual Savior of the Masses" promising revenge. Sheamus hopes to prove to Sandow that brawn can overcome brains.
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Divas Title Match: Kaitlyn (champion) vs. AJ Lee
Kaitlyn, who had been receiving mysterious notes from a secret admirer - which were revealed to be sent by AJ's henchman, Big E. Langston - took her frustration out on Aksana last Friday, attacking her before the start of their non-title Diva's match. AJ, for her part, is hoping that Kaitlyn's emotional breakdown will cost her the Divas's title in their upcoming PPV match, as she tries to capture her first piece of championship gold in the WWE.
Intercontinental Championship Title Match: Wade Barrett (champion) vs. The Miz vs. Curtis Axel
With Fandango scratched from the the Triple Threat Match, Curtis Axel was given the slot to replace him at "Payback". Axel is on roll of late, having defeated Triple H, Chris Jericho, and John Cena (all victories were won in controversial manner). The Miz, who previously won the title after defeating Barrett on the Wrestlemania 29 Pre-Show only to lose it on Raw the next night in re-match, wants the gold back around his waist.
Tag Team Title Match: The Shield (Roman Reigns & Seth Rollins) (champions) vs. Randy Orton & Daniel Bryan
The Shield are proving they are as good as advertised, winning gold at "Extreme Rules" but face a stiff challenge in Orton and Bryan - who is obsessing in trying to prove to Kane that he is not the "weak link" in his regular tag team unit, Team Hell No. The last time Bryan and "The Viper" teamed up, during the June 7th Smackdown telecast, Bryan ended up eating an RKO after inadvertently drop kicking Orton during the match.
United States Title Match: Dean Ambrose of The Shield (champion) vs. Kane
As a result of Raw Managing Supervisor Vickie Guerrero decision to team up Kane's regular Team Hell No tag-team partner with Randy Orton, Guerrero awarded Kane with a shot at Ambrose's US TItle. Ambrose has proven to be just as dangerous as singles wrestler as he is in his "pack attacks" that have become a staple for The Shield. Kane should be weary of the dangers that lurk both inside and outside the ring.
Chris Jericho vs. CM Punk
Jericho has put on classic matches with Punk since returning to the WWE, first at Wrestlemania XXVIII, later at Extreme Rules 2102 (in a "Chicago Street Fight") and has laid the gauntlet down for a third match with the Straight Edge Superstar, in his hometown Chicago. Punk adviser Paul Heyman accepted the match on behalf of the former WWE Champion, but the no one has heard from the man himself since taking a long sabbatical after his defeat at the hands of The Undertaker, being seen hanging out with Rancid frontman Lars Frederiksen and attending hockey games of his beloved hometown Blackhawks during their National Hockey League Stanley Cup run. Questions still remain whether The Second City Saint will step up to Y2J's challenge or stay home on his couch and watch the PPV.
World Title Match: Dolph Ziggler (champion) vs. Alberto Del Rio
The champion returns to the ring after a month off healing from a concussion injury he suffered at the hands of Jack Swagger. Ziggler will have to shake off any lingering ring-rust as quickly as possibly as Del Rio is eager to get his hands on the gold that "The Show-Off" took after cashing in his "Money In The Bank" suitcase the night after Wrestlemania 29. Del Rio must watch out for Big E. Langston and AJ Lee, always lurking at ringside ready and willing to do whatever it takes for Ziggler to keep the title.
Three Stages of Hell WWE Title Match: John Cena (champion) vs. Ryback
A hellacious and physically taxing Last Man Standing was not enough for Cena and Ryback to settle their differences (a match that ended in a no-contest). Ryback, obsessed with not only taking the title from Cena but breaking him in half, originally challenged Cena to an "Ambulance" match but Cena wanted revenge and counter-proposed a "Three Stages of Hell" match: a best-of-three match in which the first match is a Lumberjack match, the second match a Tables match, and and Ambulance Match will be fought to break the tie, if necessary. Cena, who has already been laid out on a stretcher by the challenger, hopes to not only keep his title but not end up in the hospital again.
The Payback Kickoff begins at 7:30 ET/4:30 PT
"Payback" starts at 8 PM ET / 5 PM PT
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