Summerslam is often seen as the smaller of the Big 4 WWE Pay Per Views - despite being persistently heralded as the biggest party of the summer - and often suffers from a lack of gimmick or big hook. Due to this, there have certainly been some...underwhelming Summerslams in the past.
This year however Summerslam is boasting, it seems, not only one of the longest cards in WWE history, but also one of the most stacked and potential-filled! Looking down the card, it is certainly heavily weighted toward being a RAW dominated show, but the matches certainly speak for themselves in terms of outstanding quality. So with no further ado, it is time to run down our predictions for this year's Summerslam PPV;
Match #1 - The Big Show w/ Enzo Amore vs. Big Cass
There is very little left to care about in this feud between the ex Tag Team favourites. The story-line is dragged out, tired and boring and it's starting to show in the audience's reaction toward them. The best thing for all parties is to allow BIG CASS a victory and for Enzo Amore to turn heel and align with Cass once more, or failing that, merely have this storyline just disappear into the none-too-fond memory.
Match #2 - John Cena vs. Baron Corbin
Anyone who follows us on Facebook will realise just how horrendous I thought the booking of Baron Corbin's cash in on the go home SmackDown Live actually was. The only way I can stomach this atrocious dropping of the ball is to give him some manner of heat back by beating John Cena at Summerslam, and not just a victory, but a dominant battering of the 16 time champion!
Now this probably won't happen as the WWE always enjoys the chance to give John Cena a moment at one of the big 4. However I'm predicting a BARON CORBIN victory!
Match #3 - Finn Balor vs. Bray Wyatt
I don't believe there is a single person who follows wrestling who can honestly say that Bray Wyatt stands a cat in hells chance of winning this. For a start, Balor is coming as the demon, secondly it's almost a year to the day since Balor's Universal Championship win at Summerslam and thirdly, it's Bray Wyatt, he loses at big PPVs, it's kind of this thing! FINN BALOR for the win here!
Match #4 - Randy Orton vs. Rusev
Another bizarrely short build-up on SmackDown. A match simply to give Rusev competition. Now, there is absolutely nothing to gain from Randy Orton walking away from New York as the victor in this. He is in the twilight of his stellar career, and surely he will have no issues putting Rusev over! RUSEV needs to win this, he needs to begin building up credibility once more if he is to challenge for titles once more, which is absolutely what he must do!
Match #5 - The New Day (c) vs. The Usos
This feud has really piqued and reinvigorated my love for The Usos. Their fairly aimless heel turn has been heightened tenfold by feuding with The New Day. And speaking of the current SmackDown Live Tag Champs, they are just fantastic! They have elevated the Tag scene on SmackDown just by being there, and I thoroughly believe that they deserve to remain at the pinnacle of SmackDown's Tag Division, therefore, much as I love the work The Usos have been doing, I'm plumping for THE NEW DAY.
Match #6 - The Bar (c) vs. Seth Rollins & Dean Ambrose
This has been the perfect build in my opinion. How RAW have portrayed Ambrose during this build-up has been excellent and the amount of seeds down in lieu of the Shield (sort of) reforming has made this the most talked about storyline (short of the main event) on the card. I am of course going for THE SHIELD as I think the story will progress so much more with Rollins and Ambrose as unsteady Champions with a split and Ambrose heel turn teased, similar to the Festival of Friendship. It could lead to an outstanding feud between the two, and Lord knows Ambrose has needed a new injection of something recently!
There's still so many matches to go through! GAAHHH!
Match #7 - Alexa Bliss (c) def. Sasha Banks
This one has been thrown together out of necessity in the wake of the Bayley injury, and though this would point some to a Bliss retention, I'm going the other way and saying it will be SASHA BANKS to win it!
What better way to start a feud between Bayley and Banks than with a fight for the title! We have seen them create magic at Takeover Brooklyn II, and this way you could facilitate the Sasha Banks heel turn that everyone wants to see once Bayley takes the title off her!
Match #8 - Naomi (c) vs. Natalya
Unfortunately, and this is no disrespect to the competitors, I just don't care about this match. SmackDown have done a great job of making Naomi a viable Champion but I think NATALYA will take this and then Carmella will cash in, whether it be at the PPV or in the coming weeks, to start a feud between the old Welcoming Comittee team mates. Plus, Natalya deserves her big moment as she has been booked terribly during her career and it seems that finally the WWE are actually throwing something behind her.
Match #9 - Jinder Mahal (c) vs. Shinsuke Nakamura
It really does say something about my opinion of SmackDown recently when the match for the WWE Championship isn't even the one I'm most looking forward to from the blue brand. In fact, it's not even the second. It's a sad state of affairs and again, it's nothing against Jinder, in my opinion he has surpassed everything I thought he could do with the belt, but ultimately he's just not a big enough name to hold the title. Shinsuke has been booked awfully, but he has at least been booked strong, and he could do with this title win to inject some much needed adrenaline into his own booking and the WWE title in general. Therefore I'm going for SHINSUKE to take the title from Jinder, allowing us to dream of that dream match of Nakamura vs. Styles at WrestleMania 34! Speaking of AJ Styles...
Match #10 - AJ Styles (c) vs. Kevin Owens w/ Shane McMahon as Special Guest Referee
This match could be a match of the year.
Yes I know they've faced each other multiple times in the past months, including at Battleground, but this is Summerslam, and everyone pulls it out of the bag at Summerslam! With an enduring rumour doing the rounds on the internet of a Team Shane vs. Team Owens Survivor Series match, the only logical choice for this match is for AJ STYLES to win it, with Owens blaming Shane. Hopefully, Shane doesn't get too involved as I feel this could take away from the match somewhat, but I still think this will be SmackDown's match of the night!
Match #11 - Brock Lesnar (c) vs. Samoa Joe vs. Roman Reigns vs. Braun Strowman
This will be match of the night, mark my words.
I genuinely cannot wait for this as the potential really is there to have a match of the year here. 4 people have asked me for a prediction on this match and I have given 3 different answers, and that really adds to the beauty of this match, it's not obvious who is walking away from this match the Universal Champion.
Yes, I know a lot of the outcome of this match depends on whether Brock is leaving for the UFC any time soon - if he isn't, his odds of walking away champ are significantly enhanced - but suppose he is leaving, who will fill his shoes? The answer? ROMAN REIGNS I'd love to see Braun as champion, as I would Samoa Joe, but WWE love the Big Dog and I just see that as the way this match ends. I don't think Brock will be pinned, I think it will be Joe who is pinned, as this leave Braun and Brock looking strong which is what is needed in the feud going forward!
So there it is, all 11 matches on the main card for Summerslam 2017, and looking at it, it's going to be one hell of a show! Yes it is a very RAW dominated show (Sami Zayn, Charlotte and Becky Lynch are not even featured on the card), but that shouldn't take away from just how stacked this card is!
I'm aware that there are pre-show matches and I think JORDAN & THE HARDY BOYZ will go over the Miztourage and that AKIRA TOZAWA will go over Neville to retain, as they have telegraphed it by putting it on the pre-show! A real shame for Neville in my opinion (see Facebook page for the rant itself!)
In conclusion, a recap of my predictions to win; AKIRA TOZAWA, JASON JORDAN & THE HARDY BOYZ, BIG CASS, BARON CORBIN, FINN BALOR, RUSEV, THE SHIELD, THE NEW DAY, SASHA BANKS, NATALYA, SHINSUKE NAKAMURA, AJ STYLES and ROMAN REIGNS
Even looking at it now, I have no idea if I've made he right decision with my prediction for the main event, but I like that! It keeps it unpredictable. With the exception of NXT Takeovers, this is the most excited I've been for a PPV since Survivor Series in 2016. It's got a lot of promise, don't mess this up WWE!