Matt O’Brien writes and maintains the Wrestleview poll every two weeks.

WWE’s second biggest pay per view of the year has now passed. Every year things begin to pick up after the WrestleMania lull to prepare for the last big show of the summer. Like WrestleMania, so many great matches have occurred throughout the events history. During the build to the 2011 event, Wrestleview asked its readers what the greatest SummerSlam main event has been in the past five years.

The results are as follows:

What has been the greatest Summerslam main event of the past five years?

Team WWE vs. Nexus 13.41% (452 votes)
CM Punk vs. Jeff Hardy 35.66% (1,202 votes)
Undertaker vs. Edge 35.42% (1,194 votes)
John Cena vs. Randy Orton 9.52% (321 votes)
John Cena vs. Edge 5.99% (202 votes)

Total votes casted: 3,371

Coming in at the bottom of the pack was the oldest of the main events in John Cena vs. Edge from 2006. Cena and Edge had one of the most intense feuds of the year that began in January, and culminated at the September pay per view in a TLC match. WWE took an interesting direction in that they essentially made the main event of SummerSlam a match that had an extensive history, but was not culminating at the show. The encounter itself was not bad, but was outshined by their blow off math the following month.

With a little under ten percent of the votes was the John Cena-Randy Orton match from 2007. It was three years prior when Orton headlined his first SummerSlam and defeated Chris Benoit to become World Champion. In the three years that followed, Orton went from a rising star to a supporting player. It was not until the 2007 event that WWE was ready to once again put Orton back in the main event. His match with Cena launched a feud that would continue over the course of the next two years. Cena and Orton are the top two stars in the company and their rivalry will be one that is remembered for years to come.

Garnering thirteen percent of the votes was the tag team war from last year’s SummerSlam when the Nexus went up against Team WWE. It all started when the cast of the first season of NXT attacked John Cena at the end of an episode of Raw. Over the summer they dismantled and destroyed everything in their path. The Nexus was compared by many t be a second coming of the New World Order. Heavily outnumbered, Cena recruited the best of the Raw roster to face the Nexus at SummerSlam. Fans were shocked at the return of Daniel Bryan, who had released from the company just a few months prior for choking ring announcer Justin Roberts with his tie on live television. The elimination match saw the rookies stand on their own against the veterans. The ending came down to the two team captains – John Cena and Wade Barrett. Cena was victorious in the first of a few pay per view matches they would have together.

Coming in at a very close second place was the epic Hell in a Cell match between Edge and the Undertaker from 2008. The 2008 SS show featured lighter emphasis on the title matches, and more on Edge-Undertaker and the first encounter between John Cena and Batista. Edge first began his feud with the Undertaker in May of 2007 when he cashed in his newly-won Money in the Bank briefcase to take the World Championship from the Dead Man. The two finally clashed one on one at WrestleMania XXIV. It would be the first of several pay per matches they had together in 2008. For their big blow off match at SummerSlam, something big was needed. Hell in a Cell was the perfect setting. Undertaker finally conquered Edge once and for all. The ending of the pay per view saw Edge choke slammed through the ring, simulating him being thrown to hell.

Coming out ahead of the Undertaker-Edge match by just eight votes was the 2009 TLC match between CM Punk and Jeff Hardy. In a year in which Raw’s main event scene was dominated by John Cena, Triple H, and Randy Orton matches, Smackdown offered something new with one of the best feuds of the year. CM Punk turned heel and began to flourish as a character for the first time since coming to WWE. Hardy vs. Punk was a perfect match both in the ring and as characters. A good chunk of fans knew Hardy was on his way out of the company that summer, yet WWE put the title on him during this time and put him in the main event of SummerSlam 2009 with CM Punk. It was one of the better TLC matches WWE has put on yet, and the favorite of the Wrestleview readers.

Thanks to all those who participated and be sure to vote in the current Wrestleview poll asking how ROH deal will affect the company!

Matt O’Brien
Columnist, Wrestleview.com
mattman536@yahoo.com