While the SummerSlam hype and promotion may be focused mostly on Brock Lesnar vs. John Cena in the main event, expect several fringe members of the roster to also seize the opportunity and grab the spotlight in Los Angeles.
The first name that springs to mind is Paige, who takes on AJ Lee for the WWE Divas Championship this Sunday. After a mediocre run as a babyface, the British star's fledgling career was saved by a heel turn.
Management should have booked her as a villain right from the beginning. It's a role in which she truly thrives.
Cast as the jealous, mischievous bad girl, Paige has set out to make Lee's life miserable over the past few weeks—and has largely succeeded.
Will she continue her ascension up the card and win the Divas Championship at the pay-per-view? I'd say so. It makes sense to capitalize on her momentum. Besides, Lee is already a big enough star; she doesn't need the belt to get or remain over with the fans. Paige does.
I’d expect the match to be great, too. Both girls are terrific wrestlers and have shown they can deliver in the ring. It will almost certainly be better than Stephanie McMahon vs. Brie Bella.
Some other stars should shine in the Staples Center as well.
Dolph Ziggler has had a rough time of it over the past 18 months. It's hard to believe this guy was once the world heavyweight champion.
Credit should go to Ziggler, though. His in-ring performances have remained as spectacular as ever. No matter how disastrously he has been booked, he hasn't stopped trying. It's deeply admirable.
At SummerSlam, the wrestler has a chance to return to relevance when he takes on The Miz for the Intercontinental Championship. Even if Ziggler doesn't emerge with the belt, expect him to make the most of his in-ring time and deliver a tremendous match.
In fact, The Miz vs. Ziggler feud actually has potential to be a lasting and great midcard feud, assuming people in management want to give it a proper chance.
In other news heading into the event, newly turned babyface Jack Swagger is scheduled to take on Rusev in a Flag match.
Swagger has had a difficult WWE career himself. He had a terrible run with the World Heavyweight Championship in 2010. Then, he entered into a short and unmemorable alliance with heel announcer Michael Cole. His tag team with Cesaro never truly got off the ground either.
Then, there was his deeply embarrassing DUI arrest last year, which garnered the company bad publicity and hit popular Hollywood gossip sites, such as TMZ. Yikes.
The former amateur wrestler obviously has talent—and a terrific manager in Zeb Colter—so his situation isn’t hopeless. His current babyface character has potential. Swagger seems to be pretty over with the crowds these days.
I expect him to wrestle up a storm on Sunday and finally put himself on the map in WWE. He has a lot to prove, and this might be his last big chance at success—something he has to know.
As one of the biggest and most high-profile events of the year, SummerSlam offers a great platform for the underrated wrestlers on the roster to shine.
While many fans and journalists may be talking about Lesnar or Cena in the direct aftermath of the show, don’t be too surprised if the aforementioned wrestlers get a significant amount of attention as well.