It’s the biggest party of the summer, as the 30th Summerslam takes place in New York City. Here are our predictions!
The Biggest Party of the Summer comes to Brooklyn, and it is a stacked card. After some underwhelming offerings from both Raw and Smackdown with Great Balls of Fire and Battleground recently, WWE has packed all its stars onto the Summerslam show. Unfortunately, not all of them have most compelling reasons to be there, so I’ve decided to drop the preview part of the article. Most of these matches are just… happening. Also, one huge wildcard was taken away last week:
But there is a lot to get through, so let’s get to it…
Actually, one last thing – my predictions have been terrible! Last night I was joined by “Hollywood” Kev Hearne who went 5 from 5 at TakeOver: Brooklyn III, and tonight, he steps up to the big leagues to give his predictions on Summerslam. Here we go…
Fatal 4-Way for the WWE Universal Championship
BROCK LESNAR (Champion) v BRAUN STROWMAN v ROMAN REIGNS v SAMOA JOE
Predictions: James – Lesnar. I just can’t pick against The Beast Incarnate. Joe has done really well for himself since stepping up, and Strowman is a future main eventer for certain, but I don’t quite think he is there yet. Reigns is probably still the anointed one to defeat Lesnar, but not just yet. I could see Lesnar being booked like New Japan champ Okada. To quickly explain, Okada is the best wrestler in the world, but is getting closer and closer to losing his title because his series of incredible matches are slowly starting to catch up to him. I could see Lesnar being pushed closer and closer to losing over the next few months, but to have a successful defense here.
Kev – Brock Lesnar – I would love to see Strowman win here. And a fatal 4-way is a good way of having Lesnar lose the title without looking weak, but I don’t see that happening. Reigns defeating Lesnar for the title at Mania 34 has been rumoured for quite some time now, and I believe Vince is intent on sticking to it. Lesnar will retain here by pinning Joe, and will keep the belt until April.
JINDER MAHAL (Champion) v SHINSUKE NAKAMURA
Predictions: Kev – SHINSUKE NAKAMURA. If someone told me 6 months ago that one day, Jinder Mahal will defend the WWE Championship at Summerslam… I haven’t watched too much of Smackdown these days, but from what I’ve seen from Mahal, it hasn’t convinced me to tune in more. I’m all for WWE giving chances to new guys, and trying to create new stars, but there are loads more better options on SmackDown, one of them being Shinsuke Nakamura. And he’s not defeating Cena 100% clean, just to go on and lose to Mahal in this match. A new champion will be crowned here, and possibly go on to defend against Cena down the line.
James – NAKAMURA. WWE have done their best to make him seem like just another wrestler, but surely, SURELY, they won’t have him lose to Jinder Mahal. Nakamura beat John Cena clean in the middle of the ring to earn this match, so they are moving in the right direction with him. Have Nakamura kick Mahal’s head off, new champion, and Smackdown can have a superstar champion to match anyone on Raw. Mahal can feud with AJ over the US title, which seems like a better fit for him anyway.
Oh, and I reckon Corbin’s failed cash-in is a case of WWE clearing the decks for Nakamura’s title reign, in the same way they had Damien Sandow cash-in just before unifying the WWE and Heavyweight championships. Jinder Mahal basically lost to John Cena (although I think it went to a no-contest), a week after losing to Randy Orton, so I don’t think it can be seen as building him up. There has been some talk that Mahal had a foot under the rope during the pin, but I think it is time to move on from him as champ. There is a train of thought that goes along the lines that “the fans want to see Nakamura win, so if Mahal denies them that, they will boo him” but like Lance Storm said a few weeks ago on his podcast, you can’t just keep building cheap heat, you have to pay off sometimes. So come on WWE, give us a happy ending for once.
United States Championship
AJ STYLES (Champion) v KEVIN OWENS
Guest Referee: Shane McMahon
Predictions: James – AJ Styles. It seemed like this feud was about to kick into a higher gear, but a weird roll up finish, the one night only return of Chris Jericho, and now inserting Shane McMahon into the feud has over-complicated what should be a straight forward feud between two excellent wrestlers. So I expect Styles to retain and Owens to face McMahon, before maybe one last match between the two.
Kev – AJ STYLES. The title has changed hands too many times recently, and I’d be surprised if it happens again tonight. I think Styles will win with a screwy finish, probably Owens’ foot being on the rope, which will kickstart a Owens-McMahon feud.
Smackdown Women’s Championship
NAOMI (Champion) v NATALYA
Predictions: Kev – Naomi. I’m very confused as to why this has made the main card over the 6-man tag. Thought this division would’ve been built around Charlotte when she was drafted over to the blue brand. I see Naomi retaining her, and go into a feud with Tamina Snuka. Since Corbin cashed in his briefcase a few days ago, I don’t see Carmella doing the same tonight.
James – Naomi. I think Natalya is the best option for Naomi as the best heel wrestler to make Naomi look good, but Naomi’s title reign (which is now 5 months old) is doing nothing for me at all. With Charlotte and Becky Lynch right there, it seems strange that you would decide Naomi is the person to lead this division. A potential Carmella cash-in seems to be the only drama going on right now at the top of the division – but I would love to see Carmella cash in and then Asuka to debut and the main roster and destroy Carmella, setting up a whole bunch of dream matches for the Smackdown women’s division.
RAW Women’s Championship
ALEXA BLISS (Champion) v SASHA BANKS
Predictions: James – ALEXA BLISS. Until Banks turns heel, I don’t think she will be champion again. Bliss is on a good run at the moment, and for me, she retains here. She has made remarkable progress over the last 18 months, and even since moving to RAW has continued to improve.
Kev – SASHA BANKS – I think one women’s title will change hands tonight, so I’ll go with the boss here. Bliss has improved leaps and bounds since being called up to the main roster, but the Banks deserves to have a decent run with the title. And the inevitable heel turn will have to wait until Bayley returns from injury.
RAW Tag Team Championship
CESARO & SHEAMUS (Champions) v DEAN AMBROSE & SETH ROLLINS
Predictions: Kev – DEAN AMBROSE & SETH ROLLINS. Ambrose & Rollins have been one of the highlights of the past few weeks of RAW. They have great chemistry, the crowd have loved it, and I think a Shield win is a must. I’m very excited at the prospect of a Shield vs Revival feud. Or how about the Shield vs Broken Hardyz? Yes please.
James – DEAN AMBROSE & SETH ROLLINS. I would love to see Seth Rollins turn on Ambrose AGAIN, or even the Ambrose turn that we thought was coming during their Shiled days. WWE has been shockingly restrained with not reuniting the Shield (I think there was one triple powerbomb on Randy Orton in a Fatal 4-Way) so putting Ambrose and Rollins back together will result in them winning. It’s is a shame for Cesaro and Sheamus, but they can restart their title run in a few months time when Seth and Dean move on.
RANDY ORTON v RUSEV
Predictions: James – RANDY ORTON. He’s coming off losing a series of matches against Mahal, and WWE has no idea what to do with Rusev now that “evil foreigner” is being done by someone else. If WWE out more thought into the feud, I would put more thought into the prediction.
Kev – RANDY ORTON. I have next to no interest in a Randy Orton match in 2017. Orton hasn’t won a pay-per-view match since Mania, but he will defeat Rusev here. It’s a shame, as I think Rusev is a very talented worker, and is not being used to his full potential.
JOHN CENA v BARON CORBIN
Predictions: KEV – JOHN CENA. What a waste having Corbin win the Money in the Bank briefcase, only to lose his title match so quickly. Not sure where he goes from here. He really needs a convincing win here, but with Cena on a limited schedule these days, I don’t see them letting him lose. I haven’t been overly impressed with Corbin’s work so far, but believe Cena can get a good match out of him.
James – JOHN CENA. Possibly by DQ, similar to the Nakamura-Corbin match, to give Corbin a dangerous edge without, you know, actually giving him some wins. Just last week, Corbin failed with a surprise cash-in on WWE Champion Jinder Mahal after John Cena’s distraction, which makes me think he could get some revenge on the Doctor of Thuganomics. Cena could move on to a rematch with Nakamura in a few months. He came back as a free agent because his time is limited, and he only wants to face the best. Instead, he is facing Corbin, the man who failed to cash-in Money in the Bank. I don’t know what WWE has planned for Corbin going forward, he could be back in pre-show matches beating up cruiserweights if he isn’t careful. He HAS to perform here.
FINN BALOR v BRAY WYATT
Predictions: James – FINN BALOR. Before Wyatt through a bucket of blood over Balor, I was picking him to win. His win over Rollins was a bit of a surprise, and I could see him getting another win here. I saw Wyatt cheating to win here to set up a rematch with Balor bringing the Demon King back to defeat Wyatt. But, instead, they had a match on RAW and so this IS the rematch, and Finn Balor will win, hopefully to move onto something bigger.
Kev – FINN BALOR. WWE have dropped the ball massively with Bray Wyatt. He debuted on RAW with a great look, gimmick, and so much intrigue, but he has lost so many major matches that it’s hard to take him seriously anymore. The Demon King will take the win here.
Singles Match (with Enzo Amore in a Shark Cage)
BIG SHOW v BIG CASS
Predictions: Kev – BIG CASS – It was way too soon to break up the Realest Guys in the Room. I would love to see a Enzo heel turn here, and reuite him with Big Cass. But I suspect Enzo will drop a weapon down from the shark tank, and inadvertently give it to Cass, leading to Big Show heel turn #12352 after the match.
James – BIG CASS. Without a long term plan, Big Show should not be winning matches in 2017, no matter how hard he is training. HOWEVER, if he is retiring soon, I wouldn’t mind one last proper run for Big Show, beating Cass here and going on a tear, winning the Rumble, going challenging for a title at Mania and then retiring the next night. You will notice I didn’t really talk about Cass. I think I like him a lot more than most, but he has got a lot of work to do before he starts to build any real traction.
ON THE PRE-SHOW:
Smackdown Tag Team Championship
THE NEW DAY (Champions) v THE USOS
Predictions: James – THE NEW DAY. I think this has one more chapter, the last match was good (in fact, easily the best thing on Battleground) but both teams have another gear. So, I think the New Day retain, but with some shenanigans like the third man getting involved, leading to a cage match or perhaps Hell in a Cell, especially since it has been moved to the pre-show.
Kev – THE NEW DAY. It’s disappointing to see a show-stealing match being thrown away on the pre-show. They have had some good matches together at Battleground and Money in the Bank. I see another lengthy title run for the New Day, but expect another match or two with the Usos. There are no other credible heel tag teams on the Smackdown roster, Perhaps a call up for Authors of Pain is on the cards.
TOZAWA (Champion) v NEVILLE
Predictions: Kev – AKIRA TOZAWA – Very surprised to see them give away this match a week early on RAW. Neville has been one of the strongest champions in all of WWE recently, and has injected some much needed life into a struggling cruiserweight division. But I don’t think he’s going to regain his championship tonight. I think there is a lot of value in Neville outside the cruiserweight division. I’m hoping Hideo Itami gets called up to Raw. He is just the kind of character 205 Live needs at the minute.
James – TOZAWA. A new champ should retain. I love the guy, but… I wrote a prediction for this when it was originally announced a few weeks ago, picking Neville. It went like this “King Neville is one of the best performers in the company. The day Neville loses the title defines how they view the Cruiserweight division. I hope they have a long term plan for it. Personally, anything less than dropping the belt to Johnny Gargano (in at least 6 months time), to build the whole show around a brutal Gargano-Ciampa feud, will be disappointing. As incredibly talented as Tozawa is, he’s basically a low level comedy act as long as he is associated with Titus O’Neill.”
I genuinely can’t believe that WWE took the title off Neville last week on Raw, I think any chance of the Cruiserweight division being anything more than a low profile side show has gone with his title reign. There will be 6 minute segments on Raw, leading to 205 Live shows in front of emptying arenas, and title matches on the pre-show of the PPV. Hopefully Neville moves back onto the main roster with his new attitude and momentum, rather than hanging around on a dying brand.
6 Man Tag Team Match
The Hary Boyz & Jason Jordan v The Miztourage
Predictions: James – THE HARDY BOYZ & JASON JORDAN. This seems like a perfect kick-off match to warm up the crowd. The Miz’s partners are goofs, just there to protect the Miz from having to take any punishment. This feels like it should be match that happens after a Jordan v Miz match has been ruined by The Miztourage, but Jordan has had some worryingly quiet crowd reactions, so hopefully this team up will give him some upwards momentum.
Kev – THE HARDY BOYZ & JASON JORDAN. Not loving the Jordan/Angle storyline so far. It’s a shame, as WWE had a great tag team in American Alpha, but like so many NXT call-ups, have been so poorly utilised. It’s a good move to team him with he Hardyz here, and they will get a convincing win tonight over the Miztourage
So, that is our prediction for the mammoth Summerslam card! Thanks to Kev for making the hot tag and coming through like a casa en feugo, and to you for reading!
Until next time, stay gold, Ponyboy, stay gold. See you soonish.
Like what you’ve read? Then get following us on social media!
Plus we are finally on Twitter! https://twitter.com/BubblegumOutta