WWE returns to pay-per-view (PPV) — if your cable provider is carrying the event, of course — tomorrow night (Sun., July 19, 2020) from the Performance Center in Orlando, Florida, with its Extreme Rules event starting at 6:00 pm ET with the Kickoff show leading right on into the main course at 7 pm ET on the WWE Network.
Set for the card: SWAMP FIGHT, and Eye for an Eye match, 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.
Extreme Rules predictions
Braun Strowman vs. Bray Wyatt in a SWAMP FIGHT
Geno Mrosko: I think I would have gone with Bray Wyatt here either which way but as soon as it became clear this was a non-title match, it made it obvious they’re giving Bray a win en route to another dance at SummerSlam. Pick: Bray Wyatt
Sean Rueter: You shouldn’t use traditional wrestling logic when it comes to the Eater of Worlds, but regardless of what guise Bray’s in, we should get a split to force the rubber match at SummerSlam. Otherwise, why not put the title on the line? Bonus prediction... since they’re going cinematic, we see The Fiend at the end of Sunday night’s match to set-up the trilogy. Pick: Bray Wyatt
Kyle Decker: I think the story of this is going be that Braun beats Bray in Fun House and Cult Leader form, but can’t beat him as the Fiend. So Strowman takes this. Pick: Braun Strowman
Rev. Claire Elizabeth: SWAMP FIGHT means Bray has the home advantage, and wrestlers with the home advantage almost never win. I gotta go with the Monster Among Men here. Pick: Braun Strowman
Cain A. Knight: This match exists because WWE has no opponents for Strowman besides Wyatt, and they are trying to save The Fiend for SummerSlam. Pick: Braun Strowman
Stella Cheeks: Is it an appropriate answer to just say “the gators win”? Because I wanna see some GATORS! Look, we all know this match is just a stepping stone for Braun on his way to facing The Fiend, but I’m still hoping for some hot swamp gator action! Maybe it’ll even be a puppet. Pick: Braun ““The Gator” Strowman
Drew McIntyre vs. Dolph Ziggler
Geno Mrosko: There is zero chance in hell the title changes hands here. Pick: Drew McIntyre
Sean Rueter: I mean, it’s not gonna be the blonde. That would just be ridiculous. Pick: Drew McIntyre
Kyle Decker: Yeah, it’s not gonna be Dolph. Pick: Drew McIntyre
Rev. Claire Elizabeth: I get so, so sick of Dolph and then they give him one of these seemingly-random title shots and it works and I... still don’t especially want to see more of him, but dang, credit where it’s due and whatnot. Anyway, three... two... one... Pick: Drew McIntyre
Cain A. Knight: This is the third straight pay-per-view where McIntyre’s WWE championship defense will not be the main event. I don’t know if that means anything in the bigger picture, but what it means this month is that Dolph Ziggler doesn’t have a prayer. Pick: Drew McIntyre
Stella Cheeks: Here’s hoping that McIntyre will claymore Ziggler so hard that he can’t promo for at least a month. Pick: Drew McIntyre
Seth Rollins vs. Rey Mysterio in an EYE FOR AN EYE match
Geno Mrosko: I honestly don’t even care who wins, I just want to see how they’re going to deliver on this monumentally stupid stipulation. It actually makes sense for the story but there’s only so much they can deliver on. More cinema! Pick: Seth Rollins
Sean Rueter: The legendary luchador’s sticking around to feud with new legend-killing WWE champ after SummerSlam, and the Monday Night Messiah’s transformation into a Bond villain continues. Pick: Rey Mysterio
Kyle Decker: This is a tough one give the weird stip. Either Seth is going to wrestle in an eye patch or Rey is going to use this as a write off. My thoughts is we’re going to finally get that Dominik Mysterio heel turn. He’ll stick around with the Monday Night Messiah and dear old dad goes off to learn Braille. Pick: Seth Rollins
Rev. Claire Elizabeth: One of these cats better be wearing Punisher gear here, seeing as there’s an absolutely killer Sodom song named Eye for an Eye that’s about our pal Frank. Anyhoozle, this stip, huh? Interesting times, boy howdy. This match is either going to be fantastic or terrible and I can’t see any middle ground. Booking-wise, Rey is on his way out, so I’m thinking the Monday Night Messiah adds another eye to his trophy case. Pick: Seth Rollins
Cain A. Knight: Rollins has lost three consecutive pay-per-view matches, and that losing streak is going to end when Dominick turns on his father and costs him his eye. I wonder how WWE will explain Rey having two functioning eyes when he returns in a few weeks. Pick: Seth Rollins
Stella Cheeks: Look, I’m all for someone losing an eye. I’m extremely (maybe horrifyingly) ok with it. What I’m worried about is WWE’s complete inability to stick to their own cannon when they create these “cinematic” matches. Remember when AJ Styles was BURIED ALIVE and then just casually strolled back into the ring without even being a flipping ghost?!! If the rumors of Rey’s departure are true then perhaps they can write him off TV forever with no eyes. But whoever loses an eye better commit it it forever. Or at they very least until they get robot eyes. Pick: Seth Rollins
Asuka vs. Sasha Banks
Geno Mrosko: I really love the idea of Bayley and Banks as the Two Woman Power Trip of Wrestling, I just don’t think WWE is going in that direction. It looks far more likely Asuka will continue her reign on Raw. Pick: Asuka
Sean Rueter: Oooooo... I just don’t know. I’d be happy with either outcome, and think there’s story potential and prospective matches for both wrestlers whichever way they go. Just because I like when the wrestling internet is on fire, I think I’ll pull for The Boss to win on Sunday and lose it back on Raw. Pick: Sasha Banks
Kyle Decker: Part me wants to pick Sasha to will it into existence. I so want the Two Woman Power trip. But with the tease of a Kairi match and return of Baszler, it feels like Asuka has more title plans in her future. Pick: Asuka
Rev. Claire Elizabeth: All in on the Two Woman Power Trip! I do think some dissent between Sasha and Bayley gets sown before the end of the night, but I’m not thinking it happens here. Let’s get the Boss some more gold, shall we? Pick: Sasha Banks
Cain A. Knight: It looks to me like Asuka will retain, because she has some matches with Shayna Baszler and Kairi Sane waiting for her. Bayley might accidentally play a role in Sasha’s defeat, accelerating their breakup story. Pick: Asuka
Stella Cheeks: At this point, the idea of Sasha & Bayley feuding is a myth. It’s like John Cena turning heel or Corey Graves being good at his job. It ain’t gonna happen. Sasha & Bayley are consistent and bring out the best in their competitors. They are exactly what all three brands need right now. Pick: Sasha Banks
Bayley vs. Nikki Cross
Geno Mrosko: It was a surprise Cross earned this spot, until the realization that they just needed to get through another PPV. Pick: Bayley
Sean Rueter: Dos Straps 4Eva. Also, I miss berserker “Let’s Play” Nikki Cross. Can we have her back? Pick: Bayley
Kyle Decker: I can’t make an argument for Nikki winning here. Especially if the plan is going to be Sasha vs. Bayley for the title. Pick: Bayley
Rev. Claire Elizabeth: So. Dissent. How do we get there from here? I don’t think Bayley’s losing the title here, as much as I’d love to see Nikki Cross with the SmackDown Women’s Championship around her waist. But disqualification wins are a thing, and interference going awry is exactly the kind of thing that will lead us through weeks of Bayley and Sasha insisting they’re still great friends when we know they’re not. Pick: Nikki Cross
Cain A. Knight: There isn’t any reason to think Cross will be the one to end Bayley’s championship reign. Pick: Bayley
Stella Cheeks: I love Nikki Cross. She’s talented, funny, irreverent and entertaining. What she isn’t, however, is championship material. She’s just not there yet. Pick: Bayley
Apollo Crews vs. MVP
Geno Mrosko: It’s entirely possible there’s a title change here to get to the new title, but I’ll stubbornly stick with the babyface. He’s gotta beat the manager, right? Pick: Apollo Crews
Sean Rueter: Title change, Lashley turns on his manager, and Porter switches sides to manage Ricochet, Crews & Cedric. Pick: MVP
Kyle Decker: If they want to establish the new title as the legit title, MVP needs to win. Plus, with Crews being a Heyman push, his position as champion may be rather tenuous. Pick: MVP
Rev. Claire Elizabeth: Cards on the table, Montel Vontavious Porter is an absolute top shelf favorite of mine that I never in a hundred years thought would get another real chance at WWE, but I don’t think this is his match. I don’t think Crews is long for the title, either, but I’d bet on something like Crews wins here, and then MVP offers him the new belt if only he’ll accept a challenge from Bobby Lashley on Raw tomorrow, and we get the switch there. Pick: Apollo Crews
Cain A. Knight: Lashley will be winning this title shortly, but I guess they decided to kill time for a month. Pick: Apollo Crews
Stella Cheeks: Apollo Crews wins and then reveals MVP’s new championship to be cake. Pick: Apollo Crews
That’s how we see the card playing out.
How about you?