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WWE SummerSlam 2017 predictions: Universal title Fatal 4-Way

WWE returns to pay-per-view (PPV) -- if your cable provider is carrying the event, of course -- tomorrow night (Sun., Aug. 20, 2017) live from the Barclays Center in Brooklyn, New York with its SummerSlam event starting at 5:00 p.m. ET with the Kickoff show leading right on into the main course at 7 p.m. ET on the WWE Network.

Set for the card: A Fatal 4-Way for the Universal championship, Jinder Mahal vs. Shinsuke Nakamura for the WWE title, and more!

Luckily for you Cagesiders, our staff of learned wrestling blowhards is here to help figure out just how the event is going to play out with predictions for each match on the card.

Let's get to it.


Brock Lesnar vs. Roman Reigns vs. Braun Strowman vs. Samoa Joe

Geno Mrosko: What’s the only thing that can stop a beast? A monster. Pick: Braun Strowman

Sean Rueter: Neither Kurt Angle or Scott Steiner are in this match, so the numbers don’t lie. Someone has a 100% chance of winning. Pick: Samoa Joe

Kyle Decker: I think teasing that this is the way they get Brock off TV for a bit is a smoke screen for his eventual victory. Paul Heyman said it himself in one of his promos (whilst Brock jogged alongside): The person who bests the Beast should do so one on one. Pick: Brock Lesnar

Cain A. Knight: This should be a great match because Brock is the big star, Samoa Joe is the great worker, it's fascinating to watch the crowd boo the hell out of Roman Reigns, and Braun's weaknesses can be hidden in between spurts of monster spot offense. Brock Lesnar isn't leaving WWE just yet so the stipulation means he's pretty likely to win here, and perhaps they set up a match with Lesnar and Strowman for the next PPV. Pick: Brock Lesnar

ReverendKain: The math is simple, and it’s been hammered into our heads over and over again that the odds are against Brock Lesnar here. Whether by intentional conspiracy or coincidence, only Kurt Angle can say, but for my part, I’m picking the man most willing to pick the bones here. Pick: Samoa Joe

Jinder Mahal vs. Shinsuke Nakamura

Geno Mrosko: They’ve wanted to get Mahal over for the India market but they also wanted Nakamura to be the next John Cena. That means he has to win, and far more often than he loses. I realize I’m saying this despite the fact that Cena always loses at SummerSlam. Pick: Nakamura

Sean Rueter: If a Punjabi Prison couldn’t keep the Singhs out, how in the world will regular ring ropes? Plus, Samir and Sunil have to really like their chances considering Randy Orton won’t be around the throw them through tables and drop them on their heads and stuff. Pick: Jinder Mahal

Kyle Decker: I had this all figured out earlier this week. Cena beats Corbin. Nakamura beats Mahal. Corbin cashes in. Then Baron revealed himself as the dumbest, lost his cash in, and it left me unsure. Jinder is a project of the boss, a boss who may see Nakamura as the guy who dropped John Cena on his head. Pick: Jinder Mahal

Cain A. Knight: Prior to Corbin's cash-in failure, I figured Nakamura would win this match and then Corbin would immediately claim his prize. But since that scenario is wiped out now, I wonder if WWE will just run another uninspired finish where the Singh Brothers interfere and help Mahal retain. It seems likely that WWE will want Mahal to be the WWE Champion as they head into their upcoming tour of India. Pick: Jinder Mahal

ReverendKain: That the King of Strong Style is wrestling for the WWE Championship still feels wild even though he’s been in the company for well over a year now, but here we are. If the #1 contender’s match had gone the other way things would be different, but as it is, the Maharaja’s reign ends here. Pick: Shinsuke Nakamura

Alexa Bliss vs. Sasha Banks

Geno Mrosko: That Bayley is going to be out for quite a while makes me wonder if they aren’t thinking title change just to get this feud kick started again but I just don’t see it happening here. Pick: Alexa Bliss

Sean Rueter: Bliss reign hasn’t done much for me, and I was pulling for a change even before Bayley got hurt. While I honestly doubt she can win in her hometown and earn his first big Brooklyn win in the same seven day span, I’m picking with my heart anyway. Sometime a prognosticator gonna push it all out the way, know what I’m saying? Pick: Sasha Banks

Kyle Decker: Even if they end up putting the belt on Sasha with whatever plan (or lack thereof) they came up with after Bayley’s injury, you think they’d want to build up a story. But then again, that would make sense and nothing this division does makes sense, so screw it. Pick: Sasha Banks

Cain A. Knight: I really enjoyed their match at Great Balls of Fire and hope they can also reach that standard here. Sasha is a fill-in for Bayley, so she's not likely to win this match. But it's also probably not wise to apply any kind of logic to this division, after all they did manage to find a way to destroy the babyface Bayley character. Pick: Alexa Bliss

ReverendKain: Let’s go babyface replacement rule! Well, okay, this change happened well in advance of the show, so maybe that’s not super applicable, but I’m still feeling a win for the Boss here. Pick: Sasha Banks

Naomi vs. Natalya

Geno Mrosko: Literally everything about this screams Naomi winning, Natalya getting pissed after, putting her in the Sharpshooter for a time before referees can pull her off, and Carmella showing up right then to cash in the Money in the Bank contract. Pick: Naomi, then Carmella

Sean Rueter: Glowing is great and everything, but when you’ve got Two Paws AND The Anvil on your side, you can’t lose. And that’s a clapclapclapclap FACT. Pick: Natalya

Kyle Decker: I think Naomi holds the strap until Carmella cashes in on her. Pick: Naomi

Cain A. Knight: Naomi isn't losing the championship to Natalya. The more interesting scenario to consider is, will Carmella show up afterwards and escape this show as the champion? If Carmella successfully pulls it off, I hope Ellsworth rubs it in Baron Corbin's face before they leave the arena. Pick: Naomi

ReverendKain: Cat bros gotta stick together. Pick: Natalya

AJ Styles vs. Kevin Owens

Geno Mrosko: They’ve gone back-and-forth but if they really are building to an Owens vs. Shane McMahon match they’re going to have to do something to create that. Pick: Styles

Sean Rueter: Other than a perfectly fine match which doesn’t move me much despite featuring two of my favorite wrestlers, I have no idea what to expect from this feud. Since I’m probably not allowed to choose chaos as an answer, lets say... Pick: Kevin Owens

Kyle Decker: I can’t wait for Shane to be the worst ref ever. Because someone may lay hands on him. And if they do, he’ll have no choice but to respond with violence. Since they already did Shane/AJ, it’ll be KO who gets screwed here tonight. Pick: AJ Styles

Cain A. Knight: I pretty much always expect these two wrestlers to deliver something special and nothing has changed on that front despite a somewhat lackluster feud. I think Styles will walk out with the win while KO's frustrations with Shane continue to mount going forward. Pick: AJ Styles

ReverendKain: The Face That Runs the Place, the Champ That Runs the Camp, and the Wrestler That's Goin' to End the Feud with Owen(s). Pick: AJ Styles

Cesaro & Sheamus vs. Seth Rollins & Dean Ambrose

Geno Mrosko: It seems like the right timing to move the titles here, right? Well, when is WWE any good with timing? Pick: Cesaro & Sheamus

Sean Rueter: What else are any of these guys gonna do? I’ll pick Team Fanfic when the inevitable Monday night rematch happens. WWE seems intent on having the big beats in The Shield Bros story happen on Raw, anyway. Pick: Cesaro & Sheamus

Kyle Decker: It’d be kind of disappointing to build up how great Ambrose and Rollins can be together and then have them lose to Cesaro & Sheamus. Doesn’t necessarily mean it won’t happen, but probably not. Pick: Ambrose and Rollins

Cain A. Knight: Sheamus might be taking some time off to film a movie, and I don't think WWE spent all this time building up Ambrose and Rollins as a team just to have them lose the big match. Ambrose and Rollins are both much more interesting with this current storyline so hopefully it keeps on going for a while. Pick: Seth Rollins & Dean Ambrose

ReverendKain: Look, as much as I love The Bar, unless Seth wants to bring the Butchers into the present day and switch to partnering with Rhyno, I can't see a better team to defeat them than The Shield Pairing That Hasn't Held the Tag Titles. Pick: Dean Ambrose & Seth Rollins

John Cena vs. Baron Corbin

Geno Mrosko: Cena never wins at SummerSlam but Baron Corbin is real, real dumb and it certainly appears as though they’ve lost all faith in him. Pick: John Cena

Sean Rueter: Neither outcome helps either man right now. Corbin wins, he’s still the knob who couldn’t cash in on Jinder Mahal. Cena wins, all he did was beat a goof he was supposed to beat anyway. But it’s SummerSlam, and Big Match John is still paying off that Nexus karma, so... Pick: Baron Corbin

Kyle Decker: Man, after Baron looked like a huge moron on Tuesday, I don’t know if a win over John Cena would really help him recover. Pick: John Cena

Cain A. Knight: Baron Corbin is a big dummy who blew his cash-in opportunity, confirming that WWE probably never should have given him that briefcase in the first place. There's just no point in having him defeat Cena here considering that the Lone Wolf is a joke right now in the aftermath of his failure. John Cena isn't going to move on to Raw as the guy who lost a mid-card match to a nobody like Baron Corbin. Pick: John Cena

ReverendKain: Briefcase dork / Briefcase dork / Lost to a rollup did briefcase dork / Had his chance, back down the card / There goes briefcase dork Pick: John Cena

Randy Orton vs. Rusev

Geno Mrosko: It’s hard to imagine Orton doing the job here. Then again, maybe he’s in that phase of his career when he’s going to put others over? Pick: Rusev

Sean Rueter: My word there are a lot of matches on this card! How many more matches do I still have to pick? I need a distraction, so I’m just gonna think about how handsome Lana’s husband is for a while. Pick: Rusev

Kyle Decker: Randy dropped three PPV matches in a row to Jinder and the one prior was to Wyatt (albeit in a House of Horrors match). I just don’t see Rusev getting to put another notch the Viper’s loss column tomorrow. Pick: Randy Orton

Cain A. Knight: Randy Orton has yet to win on PPV since WrestleMania 33, and that PPV losing streak will not last much longer. Meanwhile Rusev has yet to regain his upper card legitimacy since losing his feud with John Cena in 2015. Add that all up and I think Rusev is destined to be crushed. Pick: Randy Orton

ReverendKain: You know it’s sad but true. Pick: Randy Orton

Big Show vs. Big Cass

Geno Mrosko: Coupla big dudes are fighting and it’s the little dude who is locked in a cage above the ring? That’s weird! But not really. I don’t know, I guess they push the guy they’ve been pushing. Pick: Big Cass

Sean Rueter: Someone who’s big. What’s that? I have to pick two names? Darnit. Cass will stand tall, but you’ve got to offer the tens of tens of Knucklehead aficionados something, so I’ll say that happens in post-match hijinks after Zo gets out of the cage. Pick: Big Show

Kyle Decker: Lotta Big in this match. Pick: Big Cass

Cain A. Knight: Enzo Amore and Big Cass pretty much both suck without each other, so I'm thinking that Enzo slips a weapon to Big Cass to help him win, and Vince McMahon will enjoy watching Big Show thrash Enzo around for the next month. Pick: Big Cass

ReverendKain: It probably IS to ask too much for Cass and Corbin to go the same way at the same time, isn’t it? Ah well, credit to them I’ve enjoyed the build here big-time (pun not intended but appreciated) all the same. Love me a good ol’ territorial hand smashin’. Pick: Big Cass

Finn Balor vs. Bray Wyatt

Geno Mrosko: The paint is a spoiler. Pick: Finn Balor

Sean Rueter: Had to look away on Monday. I really don’t like the sight of viscous, acidic liquid. Did I miss anything? I mean, I know Finn’s getting painted up. WWE wouldn’t let me miss that bit of news. Pick: Finn Balor

Kyle Decker: Will Bray bring another bucket of blood to this match? Even so, it won’t over come a man in body paint the Demon! Pick: Finn Balor

Cain A. Knight: I'm looking forward to seeing the Demon gimmick and all, but this is still a Bray Wyatt feud, and most Bray Wyatt feuds are boring and don't help anybody. Pick: Finn Balor

ReverendKain: Bray can bring all the hibiscus juice he wants, the Demon will not be denied. Pick: Finn Balor

The New Day vs. The Usos

Geno Mrosko: The advanced scouting The Usos did gives them a clear advantage — and I’m still wondering why no one is questioning Daniel Bryan about this — but The New Day have the numbers edge. Pick: The New Day

Sean Rueter: Tempted to abstain to protest my favorite feud being relegated to the pre-show. But I won’t disrespect these guys like that. New Day have a historically long reign on their résumé, not they need to start leveling up the quantity. And a title change means the program will continue. Pick: The Usos

Kyle Decker: This has been a great feud, but even if they double back to it, I’d like to see a break from it. For that to happen, the New Day would need to win here. But maybe I just want to see a Breezango/New Day feud. Pick: New Day

Cain A. Knight: I really don't think the New Day are going to lose their titles in less than one month. This will be one of the best matches of the night, but it's too bad that it's destined to be forgotten forever due to being on the pre-show. Pick: New Day

ReverendKain: The Usos have been scouting, they’ve got all their advanced strategies, and hell, they’ve even got SmackDown GM Daniel Bryan on their side. They can’t lose! Pick: The Usos

Akira Tozawa vs. Neville

Geno Mrosko: There’s no reason to change the title back but I think they’re going to. Pick: Neville

Sean Rueter: The King’s title run was great, but it didn’t change anyone’s mind about the cruisers or 205 Live. Maybe Titus Worldwide and Broken Neville can. Pick: Akira Tozawa

Kyle Decker: It’d be a waste of his big victory on Raw if Tozawa just lost it back 6 days late. I mean what is this? The US title? Pick: Akira Tozawa

Cain A. Knight: I think the title was put on Tozawa simply to add more interest into this match, and the title will be swapped right back onto Neville so that he can continue dominating at the Neville level. Pick: Neville

ReverendKain: Tozawa winning the title might have made me happier than just about anything else in WWE since AJ Styles won the big one, so even if I believed the change was coming, I wouldn’t have the heart to pick it. Fortunately for me, I don’t see a scenario where Titus Worldwide’s place at the championship podium is so short-lived. Pick: Akira Tozawa

The Miztourage vs. Jason Jordan & The Hardy Men

Geno Mrosko: It’s the lowest match on the card, designed to get the crowd warmed up for the show, and this is the perfect heel team to do a job. Pick: Jason Jordan & The Hardy Men

Sean Rueter: Sure he’s got that pretty belt, and they didn’t break him up with his wife in-story, but otherwise, the Shake-Up hasn’t been kind to the A-Lister. I doubt that changes on the Kickoff. Pick: Jason, Jeff and Matt

Kyle Decker: The good guys I guess. Pick: Jordan and the Hardyz

Cain A. Knight: It's kind of interesting to recall that the Miz had a featured match at WrestleMania 33 while the Hardyz came off like huge stars on that show, yet here both acts are scraping by on the pre-show at SummerSlam. Ah who am I kidding, this is exactly where I think Miz belongs, and he's probably going to lose here because his teammates are Bo Dallas and Curtis Axel. Pick: Jason Jordan & The Hardy Boyz

ReverendKain: This can’t just be a PPV re-run of the Raw match, can it? Pick: Miz & the Miztourage

That’s how we see the card playing out.

How about you?

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