The first PPV after Wrestlemania is always exciting for one reason or another, but this year is even more special since we witness the return of Brock Lesnar! I know I can’t be the only one excited. Let’s do this!
Pre-Show United States Championship Match – The Miz vs Santino Marella (C)
What I find most interesting about this is that it’s been formally and internationally announced. We’ve seen in the not too distant past that WWE aren’t afraid to let the title change hands at a non-televised event (hey Primo and Epico… are you guys still employed?), so this is by no means a formality. Santino has been getting ridiculous pops considering his lowly status, and just by that probably deserved a title reign. But there’s only so many times he can fluke a victory. Let’s face it, The Miz has been dropping down the card since Wrestlemania 27 – there’s not anyone on the roster right now that I can think of that needs the title more than him if he’s going to play a prominent role in the future, so I’m going with a Miz victory here.
Prediction: New United States Champion – The Miz
Divas Championship Match – Beth Phoenix vs Nikki Bella (C)
I think it surprised a lot of people when Beth lost the title on Raw, and a lot of people thought she was legitimately hurt and changed the finish on the fly. If online reports are to be believed, then Beth is not really injured, and there is a very good reason to take the title away from her for a while – and maybe even give her time off to sell the injury. For those few left who actually care about the quality of the female division of the WWE, online reports are very good news…
Prediction: Still Divas Champion – Nikki Bella
Intercontinental Championship Match (Stipulation TBD) – Cody Rhodes vs Big Show (C)
It is obvious to most people on the internet – Cody Rhodes has all the potential to be a major main event player for them, and should be moved up to that level. Problem is, who is there to feud with? Sheamus will likely be tied up with Daniel Bryan, Alberto Del Rio and possibly Christian over the next few months, we already saw Rhodes vs Orton at the end of last year, plus he could be feuding with Bryan or Brock Lesnar, and the next biggest face on Smackdown is the IC champ, Big Show – the level he’s looking to move past. On Raw you have Cena, who is currently feuding with Lesnar, and Punk, who is feuding with Jericho, on the main event level. So just because of the lack of feuds available, I see this one continuing until an opportunity for him to move up arises.
Prediction: Still Intercontinental Champion – Big Show
Falls Count Anywhere Match – Randy Orton vs Kane
Kane won at Wrestlemania, Randy won on Smackdown. Since then we have had attacks on each other’s fathers. This should be the decider. The stipulation gives them the opportunity to round off the feud the way it should: with an all out brawl. It makes sense that Randy just want to kick Kane’s ass for what he did to his father, and it makes sense for Kane to want to kick Randy’s ass because of his gimmick. Because I think this will be the end of the feud, I will go for the face to be left standing victorious.
Prediction: Randy Orton
2 out of 3 Falls World Heavyweight Championship Match – Daniel Bryan vs Sheamus (C)
No matter how short-term the WWE can be, I refuse to believe that they would have Sheamus win the title in 18 seconds at Wrestlemania, only to lose it at the next PPV. Plus Del Rio has been granted a future world title match, and that will be against a face. What I would expect is the match to go the distance, and Sheamus to win 2 falls to 1. Possibly with some interference by AJ in the final fall to keep their storyline going.
Prediction: Still World Heavyweight Champion – Sheamus
Chicago Street Fight WWE Championship Match – Chris Jericho vs CM Punk (C)
This match will be better than their Wrestlemania bout. There I said it. It better happen now. I went for Jericho to win at Mania to give Punk time to win the title back before Jericho leaves – which will apparently be before Summerslam. He didn’t. Now I’m not sure what will happen. If the only reason Jericho came back was to put Punk over, then I can see him winning here. If he came back for more than that, the I would assume he loses, and then starts a rivalry with someone else as Punk moves on to his much rumoured feud with Lord Tensai. And then if I pick Punk, I pick every champion on the main show to retain. Crazier things have happened…
Prediction: Still WWE Champion – CM Punk
Extreme Rules Match – John Cena vs Brock Lesnar
Theoretically, this is simple. Lesnar wins and starts his rampage through the WWE. However, that would mean Cena losing clean to The Rock, Lord Tensai and Brock Lesnar all in the space of a single month. That would be a huge step away from the Super-Cena we had experienced for years up until Mania – it would almost make him vulnerable. Even despit the apparent unlikeliness of Cena appearing weak, I still think Brock needs to win. It would no sense even for the WWE if Brock came back, beat Cena up for a couple of weeks, claimed he was going to legitimise the WWE and then lose (even though I’m sure I said something similar about Rock-Cena). Lesnar needs to look unstoppable. Maybe even stay undefeated until Mania next year, where he faces Rock for the WWE title… Anyone else see the potential for money to be made there? And if there’s one thing we know about Lesnar, he loves making money.
Prediction: Brock Lesnar
I’m not sure I’m looking forward to the event as much as I’m looking forward to the aftermath. It will be a very interesting time for the top players in the company, regardless of the routes they take, with the potential for new stars to be pushed into the spotlight, and multiple new arrivals on the roster.
In non Extreme Rules-related news, I’m working on a piece looking at the main event scene in the WWE over the past year and looking to the future which I hope to have completed in the next week. Plus we could see the debut of a new columnist. Exciting times ahead.
Agree with my predictions? Let me know at firstname.lastname@example.org