Unites States Championship
Dean Ambrose (c) vs. Kane
The Devil's Favorite Demon may have graduated from anger management, but the United States champion has beaten and bloodied not only Kane, but his brother and tag team partner as well. Whose rage will carry them to a victory on pay-per-view (PPV)?
The Road to Payback
Kane and Dean Ambrose have been waging war on one another since the end of 2012. But one-on-one encounters have been rare. Thanks to Raw General Manager Vickie Guerrero, their latest bout will have Ambrose's US title on the line.
The Shield's first match, first match on PPV and first victory all were against Kane at TLC. Since then, the group has always been one step ahead of him, Team Hell No partner Daniel Bryan and whomever they were allied. This included Kofi Kingston, who lost the US strap to Ambrose on the same Extreme Rules show where Hell No lost the tag titles to his mates, Seth Rollins and Roman Reigns.
In between, the hounds of justice were also responsible for putting the Big Red Monster's brother, the Undertaker, out of action when they assaulted him following what was supposed to be a one-on-one contest against Ambrose.
So while Kane has seemingly mellowed in the last couple of years - he even hugged Guerrero when she booked this Sunday's match - Ambrose is fueled by a righteous fury. While his group's plans for justice have never been laid out in full, destroying legends is surely part of it, as he and his partners have never hesitated to take out any accomplished WWE veteran with whom they cross paths.
And even though his Shield-mates will be otherwise occupied during the PPV dealing with Kane's usual partner and his latest unlikely ally, the faction have never left a member of their group alone when they were in need. In Kane's first solo PPV outing in quite some time, will the numbers get the best of him? Or will he be able to channel his former rage and lay waste to the wily upstart who has tormented him for almost a year?
What's at stake?
The United States championship is the only WWE title that Kane hasn't held. A victory over Ambrose not only completes his collection of major titles, but also earns him some revenge over the man and team that have done damage to him and those close to him.
The newcomer may not have an equal list of accomplishments, but he has collected endorsements from several superstars, alumni and company executives. Ambrose seems destined for much greater things than the US title, but he also certainly doesn't want to lose it after only just having won it last month.
The Shield's flawless record as a three-man unit came to end on Friday night's Smackdown. Can a group accustomed to getting their hand raised ensure that that was a blip on the radar and not the start of a new trend?
Dean Ambrose will get the chance to start to start a new winning streak when he defends against Kane on June 16th.
History will be made either way, and Cageside Seats will bring you all the details as out Payback coverage rolls on!