@Wells Fargo Center, Philadelphia
Rushonrock steps back between the ropes to preview WWE’s latest PPV, Extreme Rules. Set in the same city that saw the rise of ECW decades ago, it is a brave choice of location to host an ‘extreme’ PPV. Factor in one of the most raucous and vocal crowds in the States, you better believe WWE will be pulling out all the stops to appease the Philly fans. With a stacked weekend of wrestling across rival promotions (NJPW and AEW) the layers of intrigue just keep piling up.
That being said, the recent appointment of Paul Heyman and Eric Bischoff as Head Creatives of Raw and Smackdown Live respectively, has seen a slight upturn in fan opinion.
Be under no illusions, the card for Extreme Rules is nothing short of stellar. Gimmick matches have been punctuated with some tantalising bouts throughout. Even the most stern of critics (and there are many at present) must be salivating at the thought of matches like AJ Styles vs Ricochet, The Revival vs The Usos and Kofi Kingston vs Samoa Joe.
The slightly bizarre pairing of The Undertaker and Roman Reigns, feels forced but the individual elements within the match could add up to an entertaining affair. If nothing else, the match should serve as the closing chapter to the long winded rivalry between Reigns and Shane McMahon, with Kevin Owens likely to get involved at some stage of the match.
PPV matches historically served as the payoff to storylines between heated opponents and Extreme Rules will deliver this in abundance. Real life couple and Raw champions, Becky Lynch and Seth Rollins put their titles on the line in a winner takes all match against Baron Corbin and Lacey Evans. After roughly four months of back and forths, this really has to signal the end for a pair of bloated rivalries.
Both of the men’s tag titles are on the line in a welcome return to PPV action. Admittedly one of the bouts could be bumped to the preshow, but expect some thrilling action as all five teams involved over both matches, are more than capable of putting on a clinic.
A special mention has to go to the debut PPV singles match for Aleister Black. He will face off against a refocused Cesaro, in what we are picking as the match of the night. Providing they are given the right time, this really could be a fantastic display of striking and wrestling prowess. If the chemistry in the ring is even half of what we are expecting we could have a match of the year candidate on our hands.
Here is the full match card with Rushonrock’s predictions via Andrew Spoors, John Burrows and Reese Burrows:
No Holds Barred Tag Team Match
The Undertaker & Roman Reigns vs. Shane McMahon & Drew McIntyre
RB: Undertaker & Roman Reigns
JB: Undertaker & Roman Reigns
AS: Undertaker & Roman Reigns
Extreme Rules Winners Take All Mixed Tag Team Match for the Universal and Raw Women’s Championships
Seth Rollins (c) & Becky Lynch (c) vs. Baron Corbin & Lacey Evans
If Corbin & Evans lose, they can never challenge Rollins & Lynch for the titles again.
RB: Rollins & Lynch
JB: Rollins & Lynch
AS: Rollins & Lynch
WWE Championship Match
Kofi Kingston (c) vs. Samoa Joe
SmackDown Women’s Championship Handicap Match
Bayley (c) vs. Alexa Bliss & Nikki Cross
United States Championship Match
Ricochet (c) vs. AJ Styles
RB: AJ Styles
JB: AJ Styles
AS: AJ Styles
Raw Tag Team Championship Match
The Revival (c) vs. The Usos
RB: The Usos
JB: The Revival
AS: The Revival
SmackDown Tag Team Championship Triple Threat Match
Daniel Bryan & Rowan (c) vs. The New Day vs. Heavy Machinery
RB: New Day
JB: Bryan & Rowan
AS: New Day
Aleister Black vs. Cesaro
Last Man Standing Match
Braun Strowman vs. Bobby Lashley
WWE Cruiserweight Championship Match
Drew Gulak (c) vs. Tony Nese
*Card correct as of time of writing.