August 17, 2014 by Joey Keogh
Following a rather good go-home show, the biggest event of the summer is finally upon us. Tonight, in spite of the rapidly-cooling weather, Summerslam will hit our screens and change…some things, at least. We all have our favourites, and our own allegiances, be they rational or otherwise, so my predictions are just that – predictions. No offence is intended to John Cena‘s mother or the man/woman/evil genius who creates Rob Van Dam‘s hideous singlets. So, in no particular order:
Pre-show match: Rob Van Dam -v- Cesaro
This one was announced pretty late in the game, so most of us haven’t really had time to adjust to the idea of these two being bumped to the pre-show. I mean, we were expecting Fandango or Adam Rose or someone, but both Cesaro and RVD deserve to appear in the PPV. Regardless, someone had to be bumped and sadly these two are taking the hit. On the bright side, unlike most pre-show matches, this should be pretty good as both men can hold their own in the ring, they’ll get a nice rhythm going and Cesaro, in particular, is hungry for it. Hopefully they’ll be given a decent amount of time to show off what they can do, instead of Alex Riley being allowed to prattle on about nothing for twenty minutes instead.
Predicted winner: Cesaro (he deserves it and it’d put him over even more)
Bray Wyatt -v- Chris Jericho
I’ve made it clear on several occasions that I don’t think this feud was built up properly, that it wasn’t given enough time to grow organically and that last week’s promo, in particular, was totally mishandled. Regardless, here we are, and in spite of how they’ve kind of been short-changed, Jericho and Wyatt should have a great match tonight and, even though it doesn’t really matter that Harper and Rowan are “banned” from ringside, it should be unpredictable too. This is one of those weird matches where I wouldn’t mind if either of them won, but since Jericho is really only being drafted in to push Wyatt over, I hope he gets the win. It seems like, lately, WWE aren’t really sure what to do with Wyatt, which sucks because he is so great both on the mic and in the ring and his stable with the other two is really strong, too. Hopefully after he wins tonight he’ll get a chance in the spotlight again.
Predicted winner: Bray Wyatt (there’s no reason for Jericho to win, and it’d only push Wyatt further into the background if he does)
Jack Swagger -v- Rusev
This is being billed as a “flag match”, whatever the hell that means. I like Swagger a lot, and he’s more interesting now than he really ever has been before, but this angle is really stale and its incredibly racist undertones – on both sides – are really starting to irk. It’s great that Colter is being given an audience to preach to, but it’s nothing we haven’t heard before and even Lana is starting to lose her sparkle since she’s been repeating the same shit week after week. Rusev, on the other hand, has yet to really prove himself thanks to months of squash matches, so now that’s he up against someone of a similar build, he may come into his own. All things considered, though, this is the “meh” match of the card and I hope it’s over with early in the night.
Predicted winner: Jack Swagger (the Americans have to get it)
The Miz -v- Dolph Ziggler
As much as I wish Miz would die in a fire, he’s working his (very easy) gimmick quite well and anything that brings Ziggler to the PPV is fine with me. Ziggler has to win this, he’s ridiculously over and he’s been absolutely killing it lately, even when he’s relegated to bullshit comedy matches, in which lesser wrestlers would just phone it in. He’s probably going to carry Miz tonight, but if it allows him some space to show off what he can do, then so be it. Hopefully winning the Intercontinental championship will be the beginning of Ziggler’s next, and very well-deserved, upward spiral.
Predicted winner: Dolph Ziggler (if Miz wins at another PPV, we riot)
Randy Orton -v- Roman Reigns
As much as this match-up makes me shrug, at least it’s Orton facing Reigns tonight and not Corporate Kane (snore). These two have been sparring for weeks, and although it usually takes the addition of a third party – Trips, Rollins – to really set things off, they should bounce off each other well in the ring – not least because Reigns is fighting to finally be a champion, while Orton feels as though he’s robbed him of his shot. There’s been some decent build-up for this match, and Reigns and Orton work well together in the ring so, although it probably won’t be the best of the night, it should be a highlight.
Predicted winner: Roman Reigns (first step on the road to being champ)
Divas Match: Brie Bella -v- Stephanie Mc Mahon
I’ll admit, when it seemed like this match was being bumped to last week’s Raw, I got a little worried. Who would’ve thought we’d get so excited to see Brie face off against Steph? What is the world coming to? This feud has been built insanely well, and even though it doesn’t really make sense for Steph to wrestle tonight, it’ll be fun to watch her kick Brie’s butt. As long as nobody gives Mrs. Daniel Bryan the mic, this should be a fun, kind of meaningless match.
Predicted winner: Stephanie Mc Mahon (it could go either way, but the boss will probably win it somehow)
Dean Ambrose -v- Seth Rollins
This was my most-anticipated match of the night bar none until they effectively ruined it by turning it into, of all things, a goddamn lumberjack match. Seriously, who thinks that Rollins and Ambrose, after all of the amazing work they’ve done since The Shield broke up, aren’t capable of holding their own in the ring without some stupid stipulation keeping things “interesting”!? It’s infuriating, because this would’ve been the match of the night otherwise, but now it’ll probably be a mess, which does a disservice to both men, either of whom could walk away with a win and own it.
Predicted winner: Seth Rollins (Ambrose should win, but all signs point to Rollins as it’s “best for business” after all)
Divas Match: AJ Lee -v- Paige
The second Divas match is for the championship, and it promises to be totally rad thanks to the fact it features the best two chicks on the current roster. My only fear with this match is that it’ll be a five minute deal, and neither of them will get a chance to show off what they’ve got as a result, which would suck considering their feud has been built so well and, let’s face it, it’s the only interesting thing the Divas are doing right now (no, Total Divas doesn’t count). Hopefully they’ll get the time they deserve, because this should be a great match.
Predicted winner: Paige (she’s a great heel, and she would really run with it if she won)
John Cena -v- Brock Lesnar
Finally, we come to the Main Event, which a lot of fans are pretty pissed about because it features Cena, instead of, say, Reigns, for instance. If you believe the rumours, it’s Vince who’s holding back on Reigns, thinking it’s a safer bet to push “known” guys for the PPV Main Events, but even with that in mind there’s not a whole lot more they can do with this angle. To their credit, Cena and Lesnar – or, rather, his manager Paul Heyman – have been doing their best to make this feud seem new and exciting and the promos have been great, even if one did feature Lesnar crashing Hogan’s birthday party (never forget). This is the Main Event, so it has to outdo everything that’s come before it and, given how strong both Cena and Lesnar are as competitors, it has the potential to be great. I want to see blood, sweat and tears from these two because if it’s another Cena win, I don’t know how we’re going to come back from it.
Predicted winner: Brock Lesnar (it has to be)
Trips reckons this is the strongest Summerslam card in years. It isn’t, but it’s pretty good. They’ve really dropped the ball by turning the Rollins/Ambrose match into a lumberjack, and there are certain people who reckon Reigns should be in the Main Event instead of Cena but there are some great match-ups in there and, even though it’s unlikely all the titles will change hands tonight, it’d be fun to see at least one new champ crowned.
Check back tomorrow for the Gorilla Press recap of Summerslam 2014
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