But to be fair, this show looks pretty strong. It doesn't have that one must-see match like AJ Styles vs. John Cena from last year, but there's plenty of intriguing bouts lined up. So let's make with the predicting....
***Dave is in the lead with 15/21 (71%), I'm in second with 38/55 (69%), Landon's third with 28/43 (65%), and Dan's still in the basement with 30/55 (55%)***
Pre-Show: Cruiserweight Championship: Akira Tozawa vs. Neville
Yeah, so this is one of TWO SummerSlam matches WWE gave away the Monday before SummerSlam, for free. Makes sense. And this one even had a title change. Tozawa is the new Cruiserweight Champion. So goddamn stupid. Wouldn't wanna put this match on the actual PPV and have the title switch then, would we? Fuck's sake. Anyway, this should be decent but the crowd will not care, because the company clearly doesn't.
Justin: Tozawa retains, and we'll probably see this match again on Monday
Dan: Tozawa. No clue why you change the belt on free TV. No clue.
Landon: This Pre-Show pick is sponsored in part by Red Stripe, The official beer of Jamaica.
Dave: Towza I guess
Pre-Show: Smackdown Tag Team Championship: The New Day vs. The Usos
Ya know, I'm not even mad this got bumped to the pre-show. Their match at Battleground was really good, but we've seen this pairing enough I think. Smackdown desperately needs some new viable teams. Maybe splitting up American Alpha wasn't the best idea, hmm? Dopes.
Justin: New Day retains
Dan: I'm pretty sure these are the only two teams on Smackdown. Cereal boys win.
Landon: New Day retains
Dave: New Day, but come on, let's see something new.
The Big Show vs. Big Cass
On second thought, here's one they could've bumped instead. Does anyone care about this feud? Cass has potential but I'm not at all invested in this heel turn. They really should've turned Cass and Enzo both heel and made Enzo the manager. This match won't be good.
Landon: Cass, or this thing dies in the water.
Dave: Boring. Cass.
Randy Orton vs. Rusev
Poor Ru'. Remember two years ago when he was a threat? Guy's a total afterthought now. When they paired Rusev and Jinder as a team, did ANYONE think Jinder would be first to the WWE Title? If you answered yes, you're a goddamn liar. This feud is what's known as a placeholder to build Orton back up after losing three straight to Jinder. I'm not expecting much of a match here.
Landon: Orton wins, because of fucking course he does.
Dave: Orton needs to win.
Smackdown Women's Championship: Naomi vs. Natalya
This could be good. Both of these women can go, and it's nice to see Nattie finally getting another crack at a title. She's been one of the best in the women's division for years and hasn't held gold since like 2010. Insane. Anyway I think it's time for her to get a new run with the strap, plus that will allow Naomi to chase her for a while.
Justin: Nattie wins
Landon: My man on the inside, Tommy Gunn, says that Naomi is going to be holding the belt until 2018. So Naomi retains here.
RAW Women's Championship: Alexa Bliss vs. Sasha Banks
I really liked their match at Great Balls of Fire, so hopefully Alexa and Sasha can build on that here. This should be some fine stuff. It seems clear Asuka is being called up soon from NXT, so it may make sense to keep both women's titles on heels, leaving the options open as far as which brand Asuka should debut for. Then again, this was originally supposed to be Bayley challenging Alexa, and WWE loves to have the substitute win the match for some reason.
Justin: I guess Sasha wins
Landon: Alexa retains
Dave: No idea. Bliss.
John Cena vs. Baron Corbin
Welp, Corbin's Money in the Bank win was pointless. The guy cashed in this week and couldn't beat Jinder Mahal. I'm not complaining though; Corbin's nowhere near ready to be WWE Champion. Also that takes off the table my prediction about Corbin cashing in on Nakamura later in the show. So I'm happy about that. John Cena just did a clean job for Nak a couple weeks ago so I don't think he's losing here too. And apparently Corbin's in the WWE doghouse right now.
Justin: Cena wins
Dan: Come on.
Landon: Cena wins, moving on...
Dave: Corbin sucks. Waste of a MITB.
Bray Wyatt vs. Finn Balor
Here's the other match they just gave away on RAW. The whole point of that was so Finn could get mad and come back as The Demon at SummerSlam. Hey guys, whatever happened to "angles?" Like where the heel attacks the babyface and he comes back at the PPV looking for blood? Wouldn't that have achieved the same result without giving the match away six days ahead of time? Do they just not understand Wrestling Booking 101 anymore? This match should be fun and have plenty of mind games. Imagine how good it would be if Bray were actually a threat to anyone.
Justin: Balor(d) - see what I did there?
Dan: Demon King
Landon: You'd think one of the 28 writers would have studied booking. Balor wins a 3 month feud compressed into 4 weeks.
Dave: Demon Balor needs to win.
RAW Tag Team Championship: Cesaro & Sheamus vs. Seth Rollins & Dean Ambrose
This might be the match I'm most excited for. They've done a fine job of slowly bringing Rollins and Ambrose back together and these four should have a wild, energetic match. The Shield is two-thirds rebuilt. Imagine if Rollins and Ambrose win here and then help Roman win the Universal Title later, thus turning all three guys heel. That'd be great. But they won't do that. You know Vince wants The Shield, if they do ever reunite, to be a babyface faction just for the merch sales. I could however see Ambrose turning on Rollins soon. Probably not yet though. First they'll win the belts together.
Justin: Rollins & Ambrose capture the gold
Dan: R + A = GOLD
Landon: Love me some Ambrose and Rollins.
Dave: Rollins & Ambrose
US Championship: AJ Styles vs. Kevin Owens (Shane McMahon is special referee)
I don't see the point of shoehorning Shane into this. I guess so he and Owens can feud later? Who cares? This has to be the most disappointing feud of the year, as far as overall match quality goes. Their first match in May was decent but not great, and their second match in July was pretty bad and had a nonsensical finish. I hope they can finally capture what they're capable of this time. But the guest referee thing is probably gonna get in the way a bit. Plus, a babyface special referee screwing over the heel is just stupid. AJ and KO are two of the best workers in the company, can you just let 'em go out there and crush it please?
Justin: This belt's gone back and forth like four times between these two. AJ needs to retain for the sake of stability.
Dan: I agree, stop throwing the belt around like a hot potato.
Landon: Styles retains because all this is is a platform to get Shane over.
Dave: Love these two, but Styles wins.
WWE Championship: Jinder Mahal vs. Shinsuke Nakamura
Jinder stinks. He's a terrible champion, maybe the worst they've ever had. Is he even moving the needle in India? Why isn't the WWE Title match at SummerSlam John Cena vs. Nakamura? Wouldn't that be a whole lot better?
Justin: Nak needs to end Jinder's Reign of Lame
Dan: Jinder? I dunno.
Landon: Nakamura becomes only the third man to have held bot hthe WWE and IWGP Heavyweight Titles.
Dave: I guess Nak
Universal Championship Fatal 4-Way: Brock Lesnar vs. Roman Reigns vs. Samoa Joe vs. Braun Strowman
Pretty strange main event for a SummerSlam, but this should be a highly entertaining match. Brock vs. Joe last month was very good, if way too short. We should see a lot more interaction between them here. Reigns and Strowman will obviously be looking to murder each other, which for me eliminates both of them from winning. And Brock is evidently looking to do another UFC fight, so the belt can't stay on him. That leaves Joe as the probable winner. The guy's been killing it since he got called up, and by all accounts the company has noticed. Put the belt on Joe and strap a rocket to his back. Then you'll have a full-time world-destroying monster on TV.
Dan: Brock wins
Landon: Brock retains
Dave: It's Joe's time, but I'm sure WWE will screw this up.
That's the SummerSlam card. I predict a reeeeeaaaallllly long show but hopefully this won't feel like the eternity WrestleMania was. With almost no part-timers in sight, this should feel pretty refreshing anyway. Let's stir things up a bit (and not in the way they did with Jinder) and see if we can't make WWE programming exciting.