Summer Slam 2014
Los Angeles, CA
The 2nd biggest event of the wrestling year is here! Summer Slam is a surprisingly hit or miss event; some years produce the best event of the year (1992), but there’s always room for a clunker (1996). Last year’s event had the fans talking, but failed deliver anything remotely entertaining afterwards. (Unless you enjoy sitting through a Triple H/Stephanie McMahon 30 minute promo every week of Raw for a year). This year’s event is overshadowed by a match that feels forced down the collective throats of the fans that I fear a doom & gloom is upon us this Sunday. But there’s some room for optimism. Young stars are getting their first big shot at carrying the load. Guys like Roman Reigns, Seth Rollins, Dean Ambrose, & Bray Wyatt are featured in high profile matches with a chance to shine. Let’s take a look at the card.
Jack Swagger (w/ Zeb Colter) vs. Rusev (w/Lana)
I hate “(Anything) on a Pole” matches. I guess I got burned out on them during the Vince Russo era. The concept doesn’t make sense to me. How can athletic guys not be capable of climbing the top rope and pulling down the flag, but they can still climb to the top rope and perform spectacular maneuvers? (What a maneuver!) Ok. Top rope spectacular maneuvers may not be the order the of the night for this match. This feels like a feel good story at an otherwise doom & gloom event. Swagger hits a Gutwrench Powerbomb on Rusev and pulls down Old Glory to continue his sudden face turn.
Our Pick- Jack Swagger wins.
Dean Ambrose vs. Seth Rollins
It’s great to see Ambrose getting the better of Rollins, but his choice of a Lumberjack match makes him look like the biggest idiot in WWE. If he was given the choice of any stipulation he wanted, why would someone hellbent on destroying their archenemy not choose something like a Street Fight? Or No Holds Barred? Or even a Tables match! Anything else would make sense, but surrounding the ring with superstars so neither can escape? Sounds like a lame cop out. As a result, this match is not going to be as good as they’re future encounters. With the Lumberjacks needing to get their hands on Ambrose & Rollins, the whole purpose of this match (Ambrose wants to destroy Rollins) is going to be lost in the shuffle. I’m not saying this won’t be a good match, but next month’s rematch will be far and away better.
My Pick- Seth Rollins wins.
Victor’s Pick- Dean Ambrose wins.
Bray Wyatt vs. Chris Jericho
The stipulation of Luke Harper & Erick Rowan being banned from ringside is a much needed addition by subtraction scenario. Wyatt needs to prove how good he is without his Family, and doing so against Jericho will be a huge opportunity. Jericho looks better in this run than he did in his last. Jericho looks like a credible threat, and his surprising victory over Wyatt at Battleground means Wyatt has to win this match to set up the rubber match next month. Hopefully, these two can find the chemistry their match last month lacked.
Our Pick- Bray Wyatt wins.
Brie Bella vs. Stephanie McMahon
I have to give credit where it’s due, I have said many times on Twitter how much I did not want to see Stephanie on my tv since she would never take bumps in the ring. I will eat crow this Sunday as Stephanie McMahon will compete in a match for the first time in nearly 10 years. This might be the best divas feud in years, although Brie’s penchant for calling Stephanie “a bitch” is a little tiresome. What I like most about this match is the slow build to the match (in comparison to other feuds, this is a slow burn). It’s clear WWE is desperate to keep Daniel Bryan’s name on the lips of the WWE Universe (even if they are dragging it through the mud with a bogus affair story.) My expectation is Daniel Bryan shows up to cheer on Brie as she locks in the Yes Lock and Stephanie is forced to tap out. Anything less than a Stephanie McMahon loss here is a waste of time.
Our Pick- Brie Bella wins.
Randy Orton vs. Roman Reigns
Reigns cost Orton a WWE World Title shot, so Orton viciously assaulted Reigns and put him through the announce table. Now Reigns wants revenge. Simple formula but when done correctly it can be very effective. Unless you’ve been living under a rock for the last 6 months, you know WWE is pushing Reigns to the moon in preparation for a WWE World Title run. A big, decisive victory over one of WWE’s top stars will help Reigns continue his meteoric rise to the top.
Our Pick- Roman Reigns wins.
AJ Lee (c) vs. Paige
Clearly, fans were not getting behind Paige as a face. But turning on one of the most popular divas in recent history sure made her a villain quick! Paige’s mean streak is proving what fans of NXT already knew, Paige is going to be a star. Both divas are technically sound, and could give the boys a run for their money if given enough time. Expect a physical divas bout with plenty of submission based grappling. I’m literally more interested in this match than the Main Event.
My Pick- AJ Lee retains.
Victor’s Pick- Paige wins.
The Miz (c) vs. Dolph Ziggler
Remember when fans were laughing about the “Battle of Cleveland” on Raw back in January? Well, I’ve got 2 words for ya! … I just hope these two Clevelanders tear the damn house down and make the Main Event look like a pathetic joke. Time to invest in the guys who wrestle 300 days a year, not 30 days a year.
Our Pick- The Miz retains.
WWE World Heavyweight Championship:
John Cena (c) vs. Brock Lesnar (w/ Paul Heyman)
Hey LA. Do us a favor. Start chanting boring and don’t stop until they kick you out. Quite honestly, this match will be boring, uninteresting, and half assed. Or like every match Brock Lesnar has participated in since returning from UFC. I’d rather have Cena as Champion than someone who abandoned the company when they needed him most. Nice job listening to the fans, guys!
Our Pick- Brock Lesnar wins.
I do not recommend that you purchase Summer Slam. Not on PPV. Not on WWE Network. Not for $9.99. Hell I wouldn’t recommend trying to watch it for free. This could be the least excited I’ve ever been for any PPV event. And the reason is simple. Brock Lesnar. Find something else to watch on tv. Stream a movie on Netflix. I really don’t care. But don’t give these morons your money for a half-assed Main Event that sucked 2 years ago. If I wanted to watch MMA, I’d go watch UFC. I hear they deliver on their PPVs, something WWE hasn’t done well this year.
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