WWE SummerSlam 2014: Full Card Predictions After Battleground
WWE SummerSlam 2014 promises to be a more satisfying follow-up to Battleground.
The upcoming pay-per-view follows an event that hobbled along. Battleground simply didn't offer many climaxes. Instead, Chris Jericho vs. Bray Wyatt, Seth Rollins vs. Dean Ambrose and AJ Lee vs. Paige all felt like appetizers.
The entrees won't come until SummerSlam.
Fans should expect a slew of rematches when WWE travels to Los Angeles in August. That show will feel a lot like Battleground but with Brock Lesnar and Triple H stepping on stage this time around.
The Usos vs. Goldust and Stardust (Tag Team Championship)
There is nothing left for The Wyatt Family and The Usos to accomplish as rivals.
After an outstanding match at Money in the Bank, those four men surpassed it with a show-stealing performance at Battleground. Rather than have this feud continue past what appears to be its peak, expect WWE to showcase another team.
WWE has regularly highlighted Goldust and Stardust in backstage segments during the last few weeks, including one at Battleground itself.
According to F4WOnline (via WrestleZone) WWE plans to give the face-painted duo a title shot if the Stardust character gets over with the audience. He is on the path to winning over the crowd with memorable performances each time out. Cody Rhodes' energy and exuberance in playing that role are making it one of the most intriguing elements of WWE TV right now.
That success will slide Stardust and Goldust to the top of the list of tag team title contenders—not that accomplishing that will be hard with how thin the division is.
The Usos could use a fresh set of opponents, and the bizarre brothers can provide that.
AJ Lee vs. Paige (Divas Championship)
AJ Lee retained the Divas Championship at Battleground thanks to a Shining Wizard to Paige's temple.
The match felt like an early chapter, not the climax. Paige hesitated throughout the action, seemingly torn about having to battle her friend.
She never unraveled but seemed close to doing so at times.
Expect this rivalry to continue and for these two women's relationship to become more contentious. The ideal story is that Paige becomes nastier toward AJ, giving WWE a chance to increase these women's animosity before their second pay-per-view battle.
There aren't many viable challengers beyond Paige anyway. Cameron vs. AJ doesn't have nearly the same potential as WWE building on what it started with Paige and AJ.
Seth Rollins vs. Dean Ambrose
The highly anticipated match between former comrades never happened. Triple H tossed Dean Ambrose out of the arena when he attacked Seth Rollins backstage.
Rollins later looked to celebrate his forfeit victory, but Ambrose leaped out of the crowd, pouncing on him like a crazed animal.
Security dragged Ambrose out of the building, The Lunatic Fringe breaking away to attack Rollins several times. Ambrose later popped out of the trunk of Rollins' car to deliver a beatdown in the parking lot.
Fans will have to wait until SummerSlam to see a more official clash. WWE only teased the audience with Rollins vs. Ambrose at Battleground.
That's a risky move in that it leaves Battleground stinking from the stench of disappointment, but it assures fans that the match will happen at SummerSlam.
The Miz vs. Sheamus (Championship Unification Match)
The Miz did two things several times on his way to winning the Battleground Battle Royal—lying in wait outside the ring and attempting to toss Sheamus over the top rope.
The latter signaled that the tension between him and Sheamus that's been building as of late is something WWE wants to keep in the spotlight. According to the Wrestling Observer Newsletter (via WrestleZone), the plan is for the Sheamus vs. The Miz feud to be long term.
That's likely to happen with the two champions meeting at SummerSlam.
Sheamus teased the possibility of unifying the United States and WWE Intercontinental Championships on Twitter. In hindsight, that now feels like foreshadowing of a unification match, putting the idea of the titles merging in the audience's head.
Chris Jericho vs. Bray Wyatt
Chris Jericho and Bray Wyatt's match was too short and too anticlimactic to be the last one between them.
Jericho and Wyatt's clash had some entertainingly violent moments but was far more awkward and disappointing than fans would have hoped. Luckily, both men are certain to get a crack at surpassing that effort.
It makes little sense to have Jericho knock off Wyatt without giving The Eater of Worlds a chance to redeem himself. This feud can elevate Wyatt, but not if it ends like this.
To have this story continue and for WWE to use Jericho's star power to boost Wyatt's career, a rematch is required. SummerSlam offers Wyatt a bigger stage to score his victory over Jericho.
Having only a three-week gap between Money in the Bank and Battleground gave WWE little room to build this feud. It looks as if this first meeting will just be a warm-up as the company turns up the hype for Wyatt vs. Jericho on the way to SummerSlam.
Roman Reigns vs. Triple H
Despite losing at Battleground, Roman Reigns came out of the Tampa Bay Times Forum more of a star.
It was his signature moves that most inspired the crowd to roar. He smashed into the opposition and looked to be on the verge of victory several times.
John Cena pinning Kane and not Reigns is one of many signs that WWE is high on the rising star and wants to keep him moving upward.
His next stop will be the authority figure who has made his life hellish as of late—Triple H.
That's a surefire way for Reigns to continue his momentum. He gets to collide with an established headliner on one of WWE's biggest shows of the year and have the most significant singles match of his career.
He'll eventually go back on the hunt for the WWE title, but the No. 1 contender spot is set to go to the man who ended Undertaker's undefeated streak at WrestleMania.
John Cena vs. Brock Lesnar (WWE World Heavyweight Championship)
Thanks to video advertising a SummerSlam bout between them, many fans have expected John Cena and Brock Lesnar to be the next pay-per-view's main event.
Cena retained the world title at Battleground, outlasting Randy Orton, Roman Reigns and Kane.
It now seems inevitable that Lesnar will challenge him for the belt. That scenario is likely to happen right away, as the Wrestling Observer Newsletter (via WrestlingInc) reported that Lesnar is scheduled to appear on the post-Battleground Raw.
That sets up a huge match brimming with star power for WWE to use to try to convince would-be subscribers of the WWE Network.
Paul Heyman had previously mentioned a "plan C" to Triple H regarding getting the title away from Cena and Roman Reigns. Count on that being an allusion to Lesnar's return.
It's the match the audience saw coming, but one that is worthy of being on SummerSlam's marquee.