WWE presents Extreme Rules, their annual show filled with few “extreme” matches. WWE has presented a decent card for the show, which is the last PPV before the biggest show of the summer, Summerslam.
Although WWE has done a good job of creating an interesting card for the PPV, there are still questions around the booking of certain matches. WWE has seen a lot of its PPVs get favorable reviews but their weekly content on RAW and SmackDown has left a lot to desire.
We look at five mistakes that WWE must avoid to ensure that Extreme Rules is an extremely enjoyable PPV.
Although WWE is criticized for not trying out new ideas from time to time, co-champions could be a relatively new format for the SmackDown Women’s Championship. Nikki Cross and Alexa Bliss have a chance to become the first-ever co-champions of RAW or SmackDown Women’s Championship if they are to defeat Bayley in a handicap match on Sunday.
Co-Champions of a singles championship seems like a good idea on paper but it’s messy and chaotic in reality. Singles championships are awarded to the best superstar of that division and should remain that way for the foreseeable future. If WWE intends to push Cross and Bliss as a team, they should put them in the Tag Team scene rather than diluting the prestige of a singles championship.
2. Ricochet Losing the US Title
If rumors are to be believed, new Executive Director of RAW, Paul Heyman is fond of the current United States Champion Ricochet and sees him as the future of the company. Ricochet has the potential to become a household name similar to Rey Mysterio in the mid-2000s, and if WWE intends on achieving that, they must keep him relevant.
Ricochet won the United States Championship less than a month ago, and him losing the title in his very first defense on a PPV will be anti-climatic. AJ Styles’ last match as a heel came against Shane McMahon (current the best in the world), at WrestleMania 33. The Phenomenal One losing in his very first match since his heel turn, would not be a great move and WWE must ensure they find a finish which helps to keep both Ricochet and AJ Styles credible.
3. Reigns-Undertaker II
Many fans were shocked when the Undertaker of all people returned on RAW to help Roman Reigns fend off Shane McMahon and Drew McIntyre. The motivation behind Undertaker returning to help Reigns is still a mystery and could be revealed at the PPV. There are rumors of Undertaker facing Drew McIntyre at SummerSlam, while some have speculated Undertaker facing Reigns once again.
Undertaker and Reigns contested in arguably the worst main-event of WrestleMania in recent memory in 2017. Undertaker was WWE’s last-ditch attempt to get Roman Reigns over as a babyface, and it failed terribly.
Roman Reigns hasn’t been booed ever since he returned in February, but if WWE were to pair him up against Undertaker again, there is a good chance that fans turn on him.
WWE must avoid a ‘Undertaker chokeslamming Reigns’ moment at all costs!
4. Samoa Joe Losing Clean
Although not a single soul in the world is a fan of dirty finishes at PPVs, WWE must try to protect Samoa Joe if they don’t intend to make him the WWE Champion. Similar to the dilemma around Ricochet-AJ Styles match-up, the WWE Championship match between Samoa Joe and Kofi Kingston has the same shenanigans around it.
Samoa Joe lost against Brock Lesnar twice in 2017 when he challenged for Lesnar’s Universal Championship and lost to AJ Styles multiple times last year during his quest for the WWE Championship.
Kofi Kingston has had a two-month reign filled with multiple victories over the likes of Sami Zayn, Kevin Owens, Dolph Ziggler. He is yet to be pinned since becoming the WWE Champion.
WWE should make sure both the superstars come out of the match looking like million bucks if they intend to continue the rivalry all the way to SummerSlam.
5. Brock Lesnar Winning the Universal Championship
Brock Lesnar is the current Money in the Bank holder, in case you have forgotten, and Paul Heyman warned Seth Rollins of a potential cash-in at Extreme Rules in the Winner-Take-All match.
Brock Lesnar’s Universal Title reign had quite a few good matches with the likes of Daniel Bryan, AJ Styles, Samoa Joe, etc. But apart from that, Lesnar’s absence and the Universal Title’s absence left a gaping hole in WWE programming.
A show without your top champion is a show which lacks an ultimate goal for its superstars. No one knows what the endgame is with Brock Lesnar as the MITB holder, but WWE must make sure the fans don’t get yet another 500+ day reign of a part-time wrestler.