Hey, wrestling fans, it’s another month and it’s time for another lot of PPV predictions! This month it’s SummerSlam, and dear god is it a long one – in total, including pre-show, it’s five hours of wrestling, so without any more preamble, here are my predictions for what goes down at SummerSlam 2016 and why.
As of writing, only one match is officially on the pre-show, and it makes me irritated that it has been put down on it, but oh well. (Editor: I’m not sure any have been officially announced, but I’ll give Jordan the benefit of the doubt here!)
MATCH: The Miz (w/ Maryse) vs. Apollo Crews – Intercontinental Championship Match
So look, I don’t like belts being defended on the pre-show. (Editor: Nor do I. Partially because it means I have to watch the damn pre-show.) It devalues the match and the belt, putting the match on before the actual card – especially when this is a belt that has been defended in the main event for this PPV previously. It’s a bit sad, really. Anyway, Crews won a triple threat to become #1 contender, and the WWE seem to still be half pushing him as the face of the new era, while also keeping him down on the pre show and therefore cutting any momentum he can have. Now, I don’t much care for where the match is, but it should still be a good one; Crews is still green, but Miz has made his mark in WWE by putting on good matches and making other people look strong. That being said, it is pre-show, and I don’t think the title will change hands on the pre show.
Prediction: Apollo Crews to win via disqualification, so The Miz to retain the IC title.
EDIT TO ADD: Okay, so WWE like messing with me after I’m finished writing things, adding more matches to what already felt like an over-stocked card for SummerSlam. Rather than what rumour had told me, the IC match will be on the main card, Sheamus and Cesaro are pre-show, and two other matches have been added to the pre-show, so here they are.
MATCH: American Alpha, The Hype Bros & The Usos vs. Breezango, The Vaudevillains & The Ascension
Right, so all SmackDown have contributed to Summerslam is Dean vs. Dolph, the IC title match, Randy Orton – and two matches which are just THROW EVERYONE AT THE RING AND SEE WHAT HAPPENS. There’s no story here, there’s no reason, we’re just gonna throw a bunch of teams in the ring and have American Alpha continue to pick up all the victories.
Prediction: American Alpha, Hype Bros & The Usos to get a meaningless win
MATCH: Neville & Sami Zayn vs. The Dudley Boyz
Again, no story here, just thrown together last minute. At least in this match, all four men are talented enough that the match will be entertaining. I just think it’s really sad that Sami goes from a match that stole the whole show to being on the pre-show at the very next event. I feel WWE really dropped the ball here, but a winner has to be chosen, and I feel its a pretty easy one for Neville and Zayn.
Prediction: Sami Zayn and Neville to take the win
Okay, so I’m also going to make predictions for two other matches being on the pre-show, just for something a bit different.
MATCH: Cesaro vs. Sheamus – opening match of the best of seven series
It seems to me this will be pre-show, just because I don’t think anyone overly cares about it! This honestly feels like a feud to fill time while they figure out what to do with these two talents.
Anyway, these two have been fighting for a few weeks to prove who is more dominant on Raw, with Cesaro having two victories, making this whole best of seven thing a bit of a moot point – but seeing as they keep getting involved in each other’s matches, GM Mick Foley decided this is the best way to solve that. That being said, unless they want to totally take all the wind out of Sheamus’ sails, I say he’s going over this time.
Prediction: Sheamus to win via pinfall
And one last pre-show match – the SmackDown women’s match.
MATCH: Becky Lynch, Naomi & Carmella vs. Natalya, Eva Marie & Alexa Bliss – Six Woman Tag Team
Right, so this one is a bit of a nothing match, really. I mean, it does showcase all the SmackDown women, but it just seems, because this match was made on SmackDown this week, that WWE creative realised they had not really done much of anything with the SmackDown women’s roster in terms of real storylines. The exception has been Eva Marie, but her storyline also involves her literally doing nothing. To solve this, they’ve thrown them all into one big muddle, faces vs heels, and are hoping that will work out. I can’t say I’m excited at all.
Prediction: Team Heel to take the win, with Eva Marie getting the pin.
On to the main card now, and this is actually stacked full of interesting and fun matches that are sure to put on a hell of a show.
MATCH: Enzo Amore & Big Cass vs. Kevin Owens & Chris Jericho
So this one is pretty cool actually; we get a match with some real thought and storyline, and that has had some pretty amusing build up. We started off with an intergender tag team match between Enzo & Sasha Banks, and Charlotte & Chris Jericho, which Charlotte and Jericho won. After the match, Jericho decided that beating up Enzo was fun and kept going, but Big Cass made the save and Jericho went back with his tail between his legs. Later in that same show, we got Jericho complaining that Enzo is only any sort of superstar because Big Cass has his back. After an interview in which Jericho claimed a man by the name of Jimin Marvenluder had his back, Kevin Owens came and saved this embarrassment, saying he has Jericho’s back. A match and a few hilarious interviews later, and we have the tag match between the two pairs set. Honestly, I can’t say this will mean much for either team, and just seems like it is giving them something to do, however me being me, I won’t bet against Owens unless I really feel he stands no chance .
Prediction: Jeri-KO to take the win (Editor: I can’t believe they’re using the ship name.)
Up next we have the tag team championship match, and this I really like, the build has been amazing and both teams look strong going into it.
MATCH: The New Day vs. Gallows & Anderson – Tag Team Championship Match
So this build has been amazingly fun to watch. Big E suffered an injury (probably a real one) to his groin, and the WWE – being classy as ever – has had Gallows and Anderson posing as doctors, prescribing treatments for Ringpostitis. With both teams having got their licks in during the build, and both teams going in looking strong… without Big E as the muscle, I give this one to Gallows & Anderson.
Prediction: Gallows & Anderson to win, and take the Tag Team Titles
MATCH: Sasha Banks vs. Charlotte – WWE Women’s Championship Match
This match is one of the ones I am looking forward to the most. Since Sasha won the belt on the Raw after BattleGround, she has taken the women’s belt to new heights and any match featuring these two is going to be a classic worth watching over and over again. Sasha has made Charlotte tap out to the Bank Statement in almost every match they’ve had, and with the help of Dana, Charlotte has beaten Sasha down – with this possibly being the last time they will meet for some time, I just hope that they can put on a truly wondrous match. Dana Brooke is banned from ringside, so Charlotte will need to back her talk up herself.
Prediction: Sasha to retain, via submission
MATCH: John Cena vs. AJ Styles
Well, I struggle to say anything about this match that I have not said before the last two times. With Cena being the best mic man WWE have, and Styles being able to wrestle circles around most people on the roster, the build for this has been amazingly well done, with some points being scored on both sides. One promo sticks out though, where Cena says he does this because he loves it, and is in the WWE because he loves this place, while AJ just wants to be the best wrestler. I draw issue with this, because why is wanting to be the best a bad thing? Cena is a man who came from OVW, a promotion that was a developmental camp for future WWE stars, and within two years was one of the top babyfaces the company had. WWE is the highest paying company in the business, so of course Cena has always been here – WWE have looked after him well. AJ, on the other hand, has fought to be recognized as the best wherever he has gone, and has gone where he can make the money to best support his family. This whole promo basically ruined the idea of the feud between them, as nothing about it rings true. That being said, the match itself will be fantastic, as their first two were, and I do honestly hope AJ goes over clean.
Prediction: AJ Styles to beat up John Cena
MATCH: Rusev vs. Roman Reigns – United States Championship Match
So, this match I also have an issue with. Basically, Rusev is somehow the heel – he wants to be respected as champion, and given how dominant a champ he has been, this is something he deserves. Alongside this, he wants people to respect and be nice to his wife; the response the WWE universe gives this is to boo him and to insult Lana. Roman, on the other hand is still boring, and still all the things most of us have not liked him for, but it’s ok because he is at least American, and that makes whatever he says or does to Rusev and Lana acceptable. So yeah, can’t say I really even want to watch this one, but seeing as it’s my job to predict the winners….
Prediction: Your winner and new US champion, Roman Reigns
MATCH: Randy Orton vs. Brock Lesnar
Now, I know this is probably the main event – I just don’t want it to be. I want it to be midcard, because frankly the WWE Championship should be the main event, with the secondary main event being the new WWE Universal Championship. That all being said, thanks to Randy being somewhat charismatic, and Paul Heyman being an absolute hype genius, this match will be exciting, with only one RKO needed to take us to Viperville, and with Suplex City as real a threat as ever. Plus, there’s been some amazing mic work from Lesnar himself. This is sure to be a hard hitting match, though I feel it’s somewhat fast. WWE have really done a good job selling this as something we have wanted for 14 years, rather than something that I, at least, didn’t realise hadn’t happened before. However, when it is all said and done, I feel that Brock will kick out of the first RKO but a second will actually put him away. Given his scandal in the UFC with performance enhancing drugs I feel putting him over will be bad PR for WWE.
Prediction: Randy Orton to win via pinfall
MATCH: Seth Rollins vs. Finn Balor – WWE Universal Championship Match
With Balor having had maybe three total televised main roster matches, it is amazing to see him in this position. It’s created a nice back and forth with him and Rollins, with the argument being that Balor earnt his spot,and Rollins has had it all handed to him by the powers that be. Both men have had not an awful lot to do with each other in ring (what with the Australia tour taking them both from live TV for a week) and this ended up with Finn showing up his Demon King persona this week on Raw, and beating Seth down, with Rollins unable to mount any real offence. Both men look amazing going in, with Balor playing the perfect face to Rollins’ heel, and with the talent of both men, this match will – for my money – probably end up stealing the show. However, when all is said and done, I feel WWE will take the safe option, and give the belt to Rollins over Balor.
Prediction: Seth Rollins to be your first ever WWE Universal Champion
(or at least what It should be given the title’s history)
MATCH: Dean Ambrose vs. Dolph Ziggler – WWE Championship
This build has been absolutely perfect, with Dean basically pointing out that, as good as Dolph is, and while he is good enough to steal the show and put on an amazing match, that at the end of the day, he just won’t win. And Dolph saying that no matter what, he needs and wants this more then Dean, and that he cannot lose, will not lose, and will give Dean the match of his life. Typically when you have a face vs. face match, it can come off as boring for its build, because both men just try and show that they are shinier than the other one is. This time,however, it has been passionate and brutal from both sides, both men trying to one up the other. Both men’s promos have been the highlight of SmackDown, and their matches with The Wyatts have been worth tuning into wrestling as a whole just to see them. I cannot wait for this one, and I hate that I have to pick a winner – frankly I wish there was a way both could win and both be champion. But I do have to pick, and on a coin flip I say Dean Ambrose.
Prediction: Dean Ambrose to win via pinfall, and retain the WWE Championship
So, in a nutshell, that’s SummerSlam, and I will see you all next month – what seems like twice; for Backlash and No Mercy. Have fun with SummerSlam this weekend, and I hope you all enjoy!