The Rope Break #11: WWE Battleground Predictions and More!!!

By Curtis Suthard – 7/21/2017


The Rope Break #11:

WWE Battleground Predictions

& More!

Hey there! It’s that time again. Time to throw some predictions out there, as we take a look at the upcoming WWE PPV, Battleground. I did pretty well the last time around with Great Balls of Fire. So, let’s see if I can call a few more correctly this time!

Kick-Off Match: Tye Dillinger VS. Aiden English: Do I really need to go in-depth on my analysis on the lead-in to this match and my reasons for picking the one who I think will win? No. There is no real lead in for this one, except to say maybe, two NXT call-ups that WWE hasn’t really figured out what to do with now that they are on the Main Roster. Which sucks! I love Aiden English. Especially in his Artiste’ gimmick. And, then there is Dillinger. How could “The Powers That Be”, let him stall out before he ever really got a chance to take off? Tye was white hot in NXT and upon his arrival at the Royal Rumble and then Smackdown he got huge pops. But, now, it seems that there just isn’t anything for him to do except have Pre-show matches and fill time. Maybe he’ll luck out and guest star in a backstage segment, too. Beyond that though? Nothing! C’mon. So, I’m just going with the guy that I like more and I think needs a win.

My Pick: Aiden English

Sami Zayn VS. Mike Kanellis: I really thought that Mike Kanellis would get to make his debut on Battleground. But, instead, they pulled the trigger a little early and had his debut this past week on Smackdown Live. Which is kinda good! 9 times out of 10 the debuting wrestler wins their first match, that’s just tradition. And, since Mike had his debut against Sami on Smackdown and subsequently won, we may not have to sit through yet another Sami Zayn loss on a PPV. Which is great! I have no problem with this feud continuing on and I do know that Sami will suffer some losses along the way. But, it’s time to start making Sami look strong and this match could be a good starting point for that. A win here is a perfect setup for some momentum. He, Sami, will be the one seeking revenge for the recent loss and the ambush that the Kanellis’ hit him with (literally) a couple of weeks ago in the form of a glass vase. It time to push Sami! Oh, and let’s start to work on that whole Mike & Maria “Crazy in Love”-gimmick, too. It’s gonna get real old, real fast! Hopefully, this will be a quick, fun one that ends up making both guys look good. Especially Zayn.

My Pick: Sami Zayn


Shinsuke Nakamura VS. Baron Corbin: Nakamura is technically undefeated on Smackdown, so far, and I don’t see that changing here. Corbin is the Money in the Bank holder, so he has a free “push”, essentially, in his back pocket whenever he cashes that thing in. So, he doesn’t really need this win to keep the momentum going for him. I see Shinsuke heading toward the not-so-subtly hinted at confrontation with Styles. Which could happen as soon as Summerslam, I think. And, if that is the case, I see Shinsuke walking out U.S. Champ, which will be great. Corbin needs to tone things up a bit in the ring and his recent stuff with Nakamura has been good. This match could help convince me (and, maybe some others) that he is closer to being ready to be a convincing WWE Champion. So, basically what I’m saying, all of the pressure is on Corbin in this match as I have no doubt Nakamura will do just fine.

My Pick: Shinsuke Nakamura

John Cena VS. Rusev (Flag Match): I have been begging for it for weeks on end now. The return of my precious Bulgarian Brute, Handsome Rusev! And, just as I finally get what I’ve been wanting, I get reminded, yet again, by WWE, to be careful what you wish for. Because, while Rusev made his return to action and in a high-profile feud to boot. He also returned saddled with the same-old, tired, worn out and lame gimmick that he had before: Anti-American foreigner! Yay….I mean…c’mon! Not only has this whole thing been played out too much by Rusev and almost every other foreign heel over the course of decades, but, it’s being done by another heel! Another heel On The Same Show! At least, Jinder Mahal’s dislike for the American people is a little more fleshed out. Jinder feels that the American fans are biased against him simply due to his cultural background and so he returns that hate with his own smoldering disdain for them. Rusev just “Bull in the China Shops” the whole thing and just hates America because….reasons and he’s from another place. Lame! To make matters worse, he runs up against the immovable object in the form of Super Patriot, John Cena. And, now, just to in case you weren’t convinced that Rusev hates America, the two of them will have a Flag Match, which is essentially just an “Insert Something Here” on a Pole Match! Only the catch here is that you must retrieve the flag, run it up the entryway and plant it in a stand “firmly” to win. Blargh! I thought, foolishly, that Rusev maybe stood some small chance at winning this and starting out on the right foot with a win. But, then on this past weeks Smackdown Live, as Cena was hyping this match up, he referenced 9-11 and that was that. No way is Rusev going to win over Cena now!

My Pick: Rus….can’t…do…it…S…E…AHHHHHH……John Cena! Dammit.

Charlotte Flair VS. Becky Lynch VS. Tamina VS. Natalya VS. Lana (Five-Way #1 Contender’s Match): So, Carmella just wasn’t included in this, huh? I mean, just because she holds the Money in the Bank briefcase, with a free shot at the Women’s Title anytime, doesn’t mean that she shouldn’t also be able to earn a legitimate shot at the title. Anyway, this one could be interesting. My mind is telling me Charlotte has this. But, my body….MY BODY! Is telling me, Becky Lynch. I am desperate for Becky to get put back at the top of the heap in Smackdown’s Women’s Division. Things could get weird in this one though. I could kinda, honestly see Tamina getting the shot at Summerslam, only to definitely loss it immediately afterwards to Carmella. Honestly, I think Carmella’s cashing in at Summerslam, regardless of who wins that match. So, maybe it’s a good thing Becky isn’t gonna win this. I just don’t know if I want to sit through her getting the belt snatched out of her grasp. Sure, Lana could also….snicker…snicker….BWAHAHA! Sorry, I couldn’t type that with a straight face. And, then, of course there is also Natalya, who deserves a win, but won’t be getting one that matters ever it seems.

My Pick: Charlotte Flair

Kevin Owens VS. A.J. Styles (United States Championship): The match that I am most looking forward to! Everything these two have done has been great and there is almost no doubt in my mind that this match will, yet again, be another great one. Styles winning the title at Madison Square Gardens, at basically a house show, was an odd choice, I thought. But, on the other hand, it was a nice call back to a time when those things happened with a little more frequency. I firmly believe that Styles walks out of this retaining and heads toward a match at Summerslam with Nakamura, which will kick off a feud between the two that may very well run through to Wrestlemania. I’m not sure where that will leave Owens though, if I am right. Though, I’m sure Kevin will land on his feet somewhere and may even still be in the mix as a third wheel in the whole Nakamura-Styles affair. No matter how everything turns out, am sure that this will be the show stealer and the match to watch.

My Pick: A.J. Styles

The New Day VS. The Usos (Smackdown Tag Team Championships): I haven’t really hidden just how much I like these two teams and all of the stuff that they do together. Though, if you had asked me just earlier this year which team I would have to pick as my favorite, it would have easily been New Day. Even after the Usos decided to turn heel, I just wasn’t feeling it from them. Jimmy and Jey almost seemed to be just going through the motions at first. But, man, have they stepped it up! The Usos have been nothing short of incredible lately. Even the “Rap Battle” segment that both teams had on the Fourth of July edition of Smackdown was awesome. Normally, I write off segments like that, but it was just done so well. Now, I know that The New Day is bound to be winning and potentially holding the Smackdown Tag titles anytime now and for an extended period of time. I just don’t think it starts here. I also, sort of, hope that it doesn’t start here either, as I’m afraid that the Usos might once more lose that momentum and energy that they seem to have again. Plus, I think New Day winning the Championships at Summerslam would be a bigger deal. Again, everything is telling me to go with the New Day. I just can’t do it!

My Pick:  The Usos

Randy Orton VS. Jinder Mahal (Punjabi Prison Match for the WWE Championship): Whoo and Hoo, I guess? Ah, the Punjabi Prison! A bamboo cage with four doors surrounding the ring, which is then surrounded by another bamboo cage which surrounds the ringside area. The only way you win is to escape both cages and reach the floor first. Sounds cool, right? Sure, on paper. Do yourself a favor go back a watch any of the few other Punjabi Prison matches, then tell me if you still think that it’s cool. Granted those other matches all had at least one large, slow moving, lumbering competitor in them and this one has two rather lithe and quick moving, able-bodied men, who could potentially make this whole thing fun. Or, they could work their respective asses off, only to have all of their efforts be overshadowed by the overkill of gimmicky-goodness that this type of match brings with it. I have faith that Orton and Jinder could step it up and have a good, fun match here. So far, the other two matches that they have had have been pretty good. The first one was actually really strong, in my opinion. Throw in the Singh Brothers, who are sure to interfere in some form or fashion, and things could get interesting. Though, there is almost no doubt in my mind that Jinder will walk out the WWE Championship. The real question, if that is the way things wind up, is: What happens with Randy Orton, now? Does The Viper take a little break or get thrown right back into another feud? Or do we see this carry over to Summerslam for yet another match? I’m willing to bet the answer to that last question is: No. Rumor has it that Cena is more than likely to be Jinder’s next opponent at Summerslam. Which could lead to the “Modern Day Maharajah’s” first title loss and Cena’s record breaking 17th Championship! Yay, again, I guess.

My Pick: Jinder Mahal

Now that we got all of that other nonsense out of the way. Let’s take a look at the most important thing to come out of WWE Battleground 2017: Breezango, The Fashion Police, Close the Case! That’s right. We finally get to the bottom of just who it has been who has terrorized our heroes for so long. Some rumors say that it could be Sanity, from NXT getting that call up. Though, I don’t think I see that happening. Let me rephrase that a little, to be a more accurate. I HOPE that this is not the case. As much as I think that the Smackdown Tag Division needs some new talent, this is not the way to go. I like Sanity, but they were only just starting to get a back story of sorts going in NXT and will benefit from sharpening things up a bit down in developmental before making that leap to the Main Roster. Hopefully, it turns out to be Luke Harper and Erick Rowan reforming as a real powerhouse team that would greatly benefit not only these two guys, but the Smackdown Tag Division, as well. Harper and Rowan have more or less completely been written off for the last few weeks. So, my money is on these two monsters being the fiends who decapitated poor Tully!

Now onto the REALLY big news that came out in WWE this past week…Talking Smack is getting cancelled! Man, does that suck. The show was really great and helped propel a lot of the storylines and character development of so many of the men and women who appeared on it. Baron Corbin, Kevin Owens and The Miz are a few that come mind who easily benefitted heavily from their time on the show. Not to mention all of the fun moments that were had in such a short time. Talking Smack was one of the best things the WWE Network has produced. So, goodbye old friend.

Something, or more accurately, someone else was almost cancelled prematurely, as Shane McMahon was involved in a helicopter crash landing off of Long Island. He’s fine. I don’t know if the vehicle is, but Shane-O-Mac is perfectly fine to jump off of (or fall off of) something really high once again.


And, finally, Kurt Angle revealed that his long-lost, illegitimate son is….Jason Jordan! Hey, this is good news the way I see it. Chad Gable, Jordan’s former Tag Team partner in American Alpha, seems to be getting a solo push over on Smackdown, which would have left Jordan with seemingly nothing to do. So, this attention and potential push could work out great for a guy as talented as Jason Jordan is. Let’s just hope that he runs with it and builds something good from these shaky foundations.

So, that is that! Check back here after Battleground for my views and coverage of all the ins and outs of the show. Now back to the G1 Climax!

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