WWE Rumors Roundup for Week of Aug. 10 Ahead of SummerSlam 2018
The rumor mill is all over the place as WWE charges toward SummerSlam.
Looking like one of biggest shows of the year in terms of length and what's at stake, SummerSlam on August 19 has it all. Brock Lesnar and Roman Reigns are giving it another go, Ronda Rousey has a title shot, an indy classic like A.J. Styles vs. Samoa Joe takes center stage and there is even a Money in the Bank contract up for grabs, which could have an impact on the main event itself.
Naturally, the latest rumblings from the rumor mill deal with these areas, as well as future WWE plans, what superstars outside of WWE are contemplating, a possible major return and a little thing called the NWO.
WWE Targeting Another Top Indy Name?
WWE has recently seen the merit of gobbling up top indy superstars to great success, with no better example lately than A.J. Styles given he is a headline act going into SummerSlam and his forthcoming video game cover.
The next big target for WWE? Shane Strickland, according to the the Wrestling Observer Newsletter (h/t Marc Middleton of Wrestling Inc.).
Per the report, WWE officials will see Strickland "soon" and the company continues to be "very aggressive" in its pursuit of snapping up big indy names.
The MLW world champion, Strickland made his EVOLVE debut in early August, winning the title from Matt Riddle, who is headed to WWE. Based on the Wrestling Observer Newsletter's notes, it's a matter of time before Strickland is on his way to the bigger promotion, provided nothing contractual gets in the way.
CM Punk Back in the News
Fresh on the heels of a court victory against WWE doctor Chris Amann, Punk is now on the receiving end of a lawsuit from his partner in that win, Colt Cabana.
According to Evan F. Moore of the Chicago Sun-Times, Cabana has filed a suit over a breach of contract and fraud because of the legal fees from the first case. Long story short, Cabana alleges a text he received from Punk before the trial promised the former WWE champions would cover the legal fees, only for Punk to allegedly later ask Cabana to pay $513,716 in fees.
Cabana is seeking $1.2 million.
Punk left WWE in 2014 but has remained in the headlines after his failed UFC experiment and the Amann lawsuit.
Chris Jericho and Impact Wrestling Mentioned Together
Speaking of returns, Chris Jericho might continue his world tour as opposed to popping back up in WWE anytime soon.
Jericho is one of those guys fans might expect to show up at an event like SummerSlam given its magnitude, a fair assessment given the lengths WWE goes to in order to make its biggest pay-per-views memorable. He also popped up at Raw 25 and made an appearance at the Greatest Royal Rumble.
Instead, it sounds like Jericho has plans for Impact Wrestling.
According to Dave Meltzer of the Wrestling Observer Newsletter (h/t Tommy Messano of Cageside Seats), "there is a lot of belief within the business than Jericho is destined" to take his talents over there.
Jericho has openly flirted with this idea in the past, though some might have been right to think his only non-WWE events would be the Wrestle Kingdom 12 match against Kenny Omega and his stripping the IWGP intercontinental belt off Tetsuya Naito.
Rather than a return to WWE, it seems Jericho has eyes for other promotions.
Matt Hardy Injury Update
Matt Hardy has taken WWE fans for a ride in recent weeks, hinting at his retirement on Twitter—or at least appearing to do so.
But that's just how it goes in WWE, right?
According to the Wrestling Observer Newsletter (h/t Robert Schillaci of Wrestling News), Hardy is set to start a new bit of rehab. And if it doesn't work, he'll have to take time off.
Not that Hardy's absence would be a surprise. WWE has seemingly started to alter its stance in regard to certain wrestlers working lighter loads, and Hardy would qualify. He's not only older and beloved, but they also have a good thing going after working so hard to get his Woken gimmick to WWE.
Hardy's break could open up some interesting possibilities for Bray Wyatt as well, with the allure of having Hardy shockingly return to throw a wrench into matters consequently looming.
Could the NWO be getting back together again?
Interestingly enough, Hogan, Kevin Nash and Scott Hall filmed something in Florida recently, according to the Wrestling Observer Newsletter (h/t Randall Ortman of Cageside Seats). However, it's an unknown whether it was WWE related.
Granted, Ortman noted Hogan is promoting something for his website in October. But it's still odd that it's SummerSlam season and Hogan is out there shooting something with Hall and Nash, his allies in one of the most important groups in the sport's history.
Maybe it's nothing, but it's something worth keeping in the back of the mind.
Dean Ambrose Return?
It was only a matter of time before Dean Ambrose shook up WWE in a major way.
Could this happen at SummerSlam?
Hard to say, but according to Mike Johnson of PWInsider.com, Ambrose is set to "return to WWE action within the next month" after his lengthy rehab from a triceps injury.
Ambrose's injury derailed the iffy Shield reunion, so it will be interesting to see whether he comes back and plays a role in Reigns' quest against Lesnar or gets involved in Seth Rollins' match with Dolph Ziggler for the Intercontinental Championship.
Keep in mind that this could all be a ruse and that we could get Jason Jordan's return instead. Either way, Ambrose's unpredictable personality back in the main event scene on either brand would be a welcome addition, and the upcoming pay-per-view would be the perfect launching point for something fresh.