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WWE’s Extreme Rules pay-per-view is a shared event from both SmackDown Live and Raw. The card includes big championship fights from both brands.  Both WWE mens and woman’s titles will be put up for grabs from both brands. Unfortunately, the Universal Championship will be the only title not put on the line. We have some interesting matches on this card that could mean big changes for the shows in the future. Championships on the line at this event creates for a good card.

PRE-SHOW

Andrade “Cien” Almas vs Sin Cara

This match has come about due to a long-standing history between the two wrestlers. Sin Cara is billed as a long time mentor of Almas, which should create a match filled with both wrestlers knowing one another. Sin Cara being a mentor should boost his match skills and will be a more entertaining match than we are used to from him. WWE is trying to build up Almas, and a strong showing from him could create an avenue to push him into the upper-card mix.

Prediction: Almas wins via Pinfall

Sanity vs The New Day (Tables Match)

A match of new, up-and-comers in Sanity versus a proven group of veterans in The New Day that know how to help push up-and-coming talent. The match came about recently because Sanity feels that they need to put a jolt into SmackDown and they believe New Day is the way to go. Last SmackDown, New Day came to the aid of Team Hell No and was put into a 5-5 tag match against Sanity.  The rivalry with Sanity creates a good opportunity to help push the group.

Prediction: Sanity wins

Main Card

Kevin Owens vs Braun Strowman (Steel Cage Match)

These two have had a comedic rivalry the past month since Strowman won the Money in the Bank match. We have been watching the great skills of Owens as a showman along with the great strength and power of Braun, the latest being Braun literally dragging Owens in a Porta Potty to the RAW stage and pushing it off the edge.  Owens then appeared to hurt his shoulder and was covered with the contents of the Porta Potty.  Should be an interesting match because of the two fighters.

Prediction: Strowman wins via escaping the cage

Finn Balor vs “Constable” Baron Corbin

Corbin being the new enforcer for Raw roster, as appointed by Stephanie McMahon, led to this match happening. Corbin has been meddling with almost everyone in the Raw locker room coming into Extreme Rules, including Finn.  Matches including the two wrestlers, whether it be singles matches or tag team ones, made this rivalry. Corbin should have a good showing, but Finn just is too fast and smart to not win this match.

Prediction: Finn Balor wins via Pinfall

Matt Hardy & Bray Wyatt (C) vs The B Team for the Raw Tag Team Championships

The B Team is on a streak since being left by the Miz during the Superstar Shakeup, earning this match by riding the hot wave of winning they have been on the past two months. Curtis Axel and Bo Dallas will show they are not two “B-list wrestlers” and put up good fight against the Deleter of Worlds. I see their streak coming to an end, though, as Bray and Matt are just too strong and unorthodox for the two.

Prediction: Matt Hardy & Bray Wyatt win via Pinfall

The Bludegeon Brothers (C) vs Team Hell No for the SmackDown Tag Team Championships

A match that came about surprisingly as The Big Red Machine came to the aid of his former tag team partner Daniel Bryan on SmackDown Live three weeks ago. Only this big of a match would bring Kane out to the ring.  Daniel Bryan has left that pursuit of the WWE Championship race for now to focus on the two wrestlers that took him out of the hunt. This match is a nice nostalgia match, but I do not see Team Hell No leaving Extreme Rules as the tag team champions.

Prediction: The Bludgeon Brothers win via Pinfall

Jeff Hardy (C) vs Shinsuke Nakamura for the United States Championship

A interesting match to say the least because of where the two wrestlers are at as it pertains to their careers. Shinsuke is a up-and-comer in WWE looking to get his hands on his first championship while Jeff is a highly decorated future Hall of Famer. This match should have some very good sequences, as the two have great styles in the ring that should mesh well together. I believe that Nakamura finally breaks through and wins his first title.

Prediction: Shinsuke Nakamura wins via Pinfall to win the United States Championship

Dolph Zigler (C) vs Seth Rollins for the Intercontinental Championship (30-minute Ironman Match)

A rivalry that took long enough to happen, this match may live up to the namesake of the event. The 30-minute ironman match should be in line for match of the night. With Dolph having his enforcer, Drew McIntyre, by his side, Seth is in for a tough and hard match. Both wrestlers have great athleticism and flare in the ring which will be on display for 30 minutes. Drew McIntyre should be good to help Dolph get at least one pinfall. There is a certain Shield member who has been on the shelf that might play a role in the result. Dean Ambrose could be making his return, but on which side will The Lunatic Fringe be on?

Prediction: Seth Rollins wins via 5-4 Pins to win the Intercontinental Championship

Carmella (C) vs Asuka for the SmackDown Women’s Championship (James Ellsworth suspended above the ring in a shark cage)

A match that started after James Ellsworth decided to stick his chin in the women’s division again, Ellsworth will be above the ring in a cage so that he would not be able to be a factor in the result. A tough match for Asuka to show that Carmella does have skill in the ring and is at her level. Hard to see James not getting involved in the match one way or another, but Asuka should be able to weather the storm and take the victory.

Prediction: Asuka wins via Submission to win the SmackDown Women’s Championship

Alexa Bliss (C) vs Nia Jax for the Raw Women’s Championship (Extreme Rules Match)

A rivalry that started at WrestleMania adds another chapter at Extreme Rules.  With the distraction of Ronda Rousey in the division, “Little Miss Bliss” is still the champion. Her and Nia, despite the size difference, makes a great matchup here on the card. These two know each other well, which creates a great chemistry for this match. The women’s matches have had lots of interference lately, and I see this one having some shenanigans at the end as well.

Prediction: Alexa Bliss wins via Pinfall

AJ Styles (C) vs Rusev for the WWE Championship

Finally Rusev gets a well-deserved push to the WWE Championship title run.  AJ Styles still sits atop of the show’s ladder as the champion, looking for someone to challenge his reign. Rusev finally gets the stage to show his skills and should put on a show for the fans. The fans, including myself, have been rooting for a Rusev run at the title. Rusev Day gets the stage, but comes up short to the Champ in this match. I hope the two put on a show that would make the fans wanting more and we get a rematch soon.

Prediction: AJ Styles wins via Pinfall

Roman Reigns vs Bobby Lashley

These two have been feuding on Raw for weeks, with the feud culminating with this match at Extreme Rules. The two behemoths will clash in a match that needs to have Extreme Rules to spice it up. The two wrestlers are very big and stiff with a limited move set that creates a match that needs the extra-curricular activity to make it interesting. Roman should connect with a few spears and Lashley should connect a hanging suplex, but that would be about it. A match limited like this most likely ends with a disqualification.

Prediction: Bobby Lashley wins via Disqualification

Conclusion

Extreme Rules is the last event before SummerSlam and is usually not very eventful. I do see that this event will bring us stories to build towards SummerSlam, though. All the titles being put up for grabs should mean at least a couple title changes. SummerSlam being around the corner should give us some surprises to be had as we prepare for the “biggest party of the summer.” Championships are a great way to set up the future stories, and whoever is still holding gold after Extreme Rules most likely will hold it until SummerSlam.

Sports Al Dente 2019

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