CM Punk, Countdown To Wrestlemania, John Cena, Main Event Madness, Road To WrestleMania Tournament, Rob Van Dam, The Big Show, Triple H, WrestleMania 22, WrestleMania 33, Wrestling, WWE, WWE Network, WWE WrestleMania 22, WWE WrestleMania 33
Whether you love him or you chant that he sucks every single time he comes out to the ring, there is no denying that the hardest working man in the WWE is none other than John Cena. He has been the face that runs the place for a very long time and you can’t have a countdown without him as well as his opponent at WrestleMania 22 than the cerebral assassin, The Game, Triple H. After he failed to win the Royal Rumble that year, Triple took part in the road to WrestleMania tournament which was put on to determine a number one contender for the then WWE Champion John Cena. After going through both the Big Show and Rob Van Dam in the finals, Triple H was poised and ready to take on John Cena. The match featured some cool entrances in the beginning with Triple H coming out as Conan The Destroyer and John Cena having gangsters in prohibition style suits and Tommy-guns (CM Punk is one of the guys in a suit). When the match first started, they both tested each other in mat wrestling skills and Triple H got the better of the exchange with a slap to the back of the head to Cena.
Triple H continued to school Cena with a simple wrist lock right into a hammer lock and a push off with his boot to Cena’s butt. The challenger was riding the momentum and the roar of the crowd as he continued to embarrass Cena with a big right hand to the jaw that was a reversal out of the AA. Then on the collar and elbow tie up, he kneed Cena in the stomach and just threw him out of the ring. What was going through the mind of the champion who was being embarrassed by the cerebral assassin? Well, Cena had had enough, he stormed back into the ring and began throwing rights and lefts at the challenger stunning him. Then Cena began to follow that up with a backbody drop and a fisherman’s suplex, but on the ensuing pinfall cover, Triple H would kick out. We finally had a fight on our hands with the unorthodox Cena and the old school Triple H. Cena continued working on Triple H with a sleeper hold, but as soon as Triple H tried to fight back, John was right on top of it by delivering an Irish whip to the corner that sent Triple H out of the ring.
Triple H tried to change the momentum with a thumb to the eye and a pedigree on the steel entrance ramp, but was backbody dropped on it instead. A Harley Race like high knee to the head was all Triple H needed to swing the momentum his way as he began just hammering away at Cena and then he threw Cena right into the steel ring steps on the outside. Triple H was just taking it to Cena, not allowing him to have any offense and if he did, he got a facebuster and a lariat for his troubles from Triple H. After a while, both men began to just exchange rights and lefts with each other and unfortunately for the Game, Cena got the best of the exchange ending it with a big powerslam. After a modified powerbomb from Cena, he would attempt the five knuckle shuffle, but he took too long and Triple H countered with a spinebuster. All of a sudden out of nowhere, Cena powered up and hit Triple H with two shoulder blocks, a modified side suplex (because Triple H had him in a sleeper hold), and the five knuckle shuffle.
Super Cena was born and he was pumped up and ready to rock. After pumping his Reebok pumps, he executed a drop toe hold and put Triple H right into his STFU submission. Would Triple H tap out or would he reach the ropes. It looked grim for a minute, but then Triple H willed himself over to the ropes breaking the hold. After John tried to deliver an AA to Triple H, but Triple H countered by slamming him into the corner against the referee and then he conveniently delivered a low blow that also struck the referee. Triple H then proceeded to exit the ring to grab what JR called the “difference maker” being the sledgehammer and brought it into the ring. As soon as he brought in, Cena tried to block with a kick to the midsection, but as soon as he hit the ropes, he returned to receive the sledgehammer shot to the head. Triple H covered him, but Cena kicked out at two. Then out of nowhere, Cena hit Triple H with the AA (It was called an FU at the time), but Triple H kicked out at two on the ensuing cover. Cena then uncharacteristically went to the top to attempt a cross body that completely missed, but it didn’t matter because when Triple H tried for the pedigree, Cena countered it into an STFU. Then much to the dismay of the crowd, Triple H tapped out.