Shinsuke Nakamura defeated John Cena in what was one of his biggest matches as a member of the SmackDown Live roster last week.
The match itself was one of the better main events in recent memory, although one move almost spoiled the match. Nakamura slammed Cena on his head during a reverse suplex shortly before earning the pinfall.
Fortunately, Cena avoided any serious injury from the accident.
Although the victory did put Nakamura in line for a WWE Championship match against Jinder Mahal at SummerSlam, he wasn’t able to escape the wrath of Vince McMahon, according to Sports Illustrated.
SI reported that McMahon was furious, but still “has not lost faith” in the Japanese superstar. However, according to those close to the company, the chairman’s opinion could be swayed negatively if Nakamura makes another mistake.
After the match, Nakamura was captured apologizing to Cena, who responded by saying “don’t be” then raising his arm to exclaim him as the “next champion.”
Nakamura signed with WWE in January 2016 and made his official debut in NXT in April of that same year after a decorated career as one of the top stars of NJPW. He carried the NXT brand as a multi-time NXT Champion before debuting on SmackDown Live in April.
Nakamura has been booked as one of the show’s top superstars since his debut and will have the opportunity to redeem himself for his botched move during his first WWE Championship match at SummerSlam.