By John Napolitano
It was on a significantly ordinary summer day, last year, that I chose to debut a blog entitled, John’s Jargon. In my first ever column, I ventured into the prediction department and guessed what my favorite pay-per-view of 2014, SummerSlam, would bring us. Although I was not perfect in my pursuit, the event proved to be outstanding, and thus, a blog was born. This year’s four-hour installment looks to be no less entertaining and perhaps more unpredictable than ever before.
Unlike last year, I will not be viewing SummerSlam from the comfort of my own home, but rather I will be in the raucous sea of WWE fanatics live at the Barclay’s Center. Seeing as though this will be my first-ever experience at a WWE Pay-Per-View, my excitement cannot be contained, especially because I will be sitting alongside my buddy, Graham “GSM” Matthews. On this historic edition of John’s Jargon I return to the prediction department and attempt to foretell what we will witness on August 23rd in Brooklyn, New York, at SummerSlam 2015.
Dolph Ziggler w/ Lana vs. Rusev w/ Summer Rae
This contest was added to the SummerSlam card just last week on the go-home Monday Night Raw. Not to mention, the WWE Universe has been far from invested in this campy, overdramatic, and drawn out couple against couple angle. Ziggler has been off of television for the better part of a month so the real heat in this feud has emanated between Lana and Summer Rae; however, Ziggler’s return to Raw was well-received by the WWE Universe, meaning there is still some regard for this rivalry. I do not doubt that these superstars will put forth a great match come SummerSlam.
People forget just how talented Rusev is because of his routine squashing of his opponents. There is no doubt in my mind, however, that either Lana or Summer Rae will help decide the victor of this contest. If it is given a fair amount of time and minimal outside shenanigans, I am sure this match will exceed expectations. I’ve got Dolph Ziggler defeating Rusev at SummerSlam and becoming only the fourth man to do so.
Dolph Ziggler w/ Lana def. Rusev w/ Summer Rae
Prime Time Players vs. New Day vs. Lucha Dragons vs. Los Matadores for the WWE Tag-Team Championships
As much as I enjoy chaotic confrontations, especially in the tag-team ranks, I do not see the need to showcase a Fatal 4-Way matchup for the tag-team titles at this year’s SummerSlam. The only two teams who have proven their legitimacy this summer are the Prime Time Players and the New Day. The Lucha Dragons are an entertaining tandem with all of the potential in the world; however, they have not been booked well enough to appear as a threat to win the gold this Sunday.
Not even for a microsecond have Los Matadores been over with the WWE Universe at any point in their stint. Their gimmick is far too outlandish, and they even detract from the complexion of this contest. Despite the questionable cast of contenders, this match will be exciting from bell to bell. I don’t expect these combatants to steal the show, as three young, hungry teams did 15 years ago, a la TLC 1, but I also don’t expect any “BORING” chants to ring throughout the Barclay’s Center. I predict the New Day will become two-time WWE Tag-Team Champions, as their shtick has much more gas in the tank.
New Day def. Prime Time Players, Lucha Dragons, and Los Matadores for the WWE Tag-Team Championships
Randy Orton vs. Sheamus
Randy Orton and Sheamus know each other very well. They have battled up and down the road across the span of five years. Whether they have been over the WWE Championship, the World Heavyweight Championship, or simply the desire to be the better man, their contests have proven to be purely physical and brilliantly brutal all along the way. I cannot say that this current installment of their storied rivalry has been a compelling masterpiece. The catalyst of this feud is as confusing as it is anticlimactic. Their involvement in the Money in the Bank Ladder Match led to Sheamus targeting Orton for absolutely no reason. In other words, Sheamus metaphorically knocked over Randy’s cup of coffee, and now they hate each other.
It is abundantly clear that these men didn’t have any clear direction going into the summer, they were paired as dance partners, and now their program has long overstayed its welcome. That being said, their match at Battleground was exceptional so I can’t give them too much grief. I hope a stipulation is added to somewhat change the dynamic of this contest at SummerSlam. Unfortunately for Sheamus, the holder of the Money in the Bank briefcase is, historically, made to lose quite a few matches before cashing in, in order to heighten the shock value of their eventual cash-in. I believe Randy Orton will defeat Sheamus at SummerSlam.
Randy Orton def. Sheamus
Ryback vs. The Miz vs. Big Show for the Intercontinental Championship
After Daniel Bryan relinquished the Intercontinental Championship due to nagging injuries and Ryback was put on the shelf with a staph infection last month, many a fan thought the illustrious mid-card title to be cursed. Thankfully, Ryback’s infection did not keep him on the shelf for too long, and he will be able to compete at SummerSlam. The strap is surely not as prestigious as it once was, but its road to redemption begins on August 23rd. It’s no secret that Ryback is one of my favorite talents currently on the roster.
Conversely, I have never enjoyed The Miz’s character more than I do at the moment. Hell, I don’t even mind the Big Show’s involvement. My one criticism of this program is how volatile all of their in-ring styles are. I highly doubt we will witness a five-star classic when these three superstars do battle. Nonetheless, I’ve got The Miz winning the Intercontinental Championship, and hopefully, going on to have a historic reign with the championship.
The Miz def. Ryback and Big Show for the Intercontinental Championship
Bray Wyatt and Luke Harper vs. Roman Reigns and Dean Ambrose
This time last year, Roman Reigns and Dean Ambrose, respectively, were competing in magnificent singles matchups at the “Biggest Party of the Summer.” This time around, the two former S.H.I.E.L.D. brethren will team up and compete against the unhinged and unholy union of Bray Wyatt and Luke Harper. Roman Reigns and Bray Wyatt have been involved in a very personal rivalry, ever since the “Eater of Worlds” cost Reigns the Money in the Bank briefcase. After their controversial clash at Battleground, they’ve recruited their former allies, Luke Harper and Dean Ambrose, to join the fray.
This program has consisted of great action, high drama, and considerable character development. Therefore, we should expect nothing less but phenomenal storytelling when these four men hit the ropes. More specifically, it is definitely within the realm of possibility that either Dean Ambrose or Roman Reigns turn their back on one another and join the ranks of the Wyatt Family. Seeing as though Dean Ambrose’s summer has hit a decrescendo ever since his program with Seth Rollins over the WWE World Heavyweight Championship ended, I predict Dean Ambrose will cost his team the match and join Bray Wyatt and Luke Harper, in order to invigorate his career.
Bray Wyatt and Luke Harper def. Roman Reigns and Dean Ambrose
Kevin Owens vs. Cesaro
Ladies and gentlemen, it is in my humble estimation that this match will tear the house down, rebuild it brick by brick, and proceed to tear it down again. Kevin Owens and Cesaro have proven to be the breakout stars of the summer. These athletes are the hottest commodities in World Wrestling Entertainment and have an uncanny ability to invigorate a crowd like no one else can.
With their current trajectory, one or both of these superstars will find themselves in the main event scene before year’s end. Their feud has not been an afterthought at any point leading up to SummerSlam, and I firmly believe that this program will help launch their careers into the next stratosphere. Although I am a proud member of the “Cesaro Section,” Kevin Owens desperately needs a clean win, in order to maintain his legitimacy. Kevin Owens will beat Cesaro in a five-star affair and prolong their rivalry into the ever-imminent autumn.
Kevin Owens def. Cesaro
Stephen Amell and Neville vs. Stardust and King Barrett
How awesome was Stephen Amell, a.k.a. the Green Arrow, on Monday Night Raw? His athleticism combined with his enthusiasm has absolutely sold me on the tag-team bout between he and Neville against Stardust and King Barrett at SummerSlam. Although there was not a lot of onscreen build to this matchup, it will surely be a highlight of the night.
Amell does not come across as a hokey, illogical spoil to Stardust and Barrett, and hopefully, he will usher in a lot of extra eyes to the product. It seems academic that Amell and Neville will come out victorious, but it will definitely be interesting to see just how far the Green and Red Arrow will go in their pursuit of vanquishing the “Cosmic King” and the “Prince of Darkness.”
Stephen Amell and Neville def. Stardust and King Barrett
John Cena vs. Seth Rollins for the United States and WWE World Heavyweight Championships
This will be John Cena’s fifth SummerSlam in a row where he will be vying for the company’s top prize. He has certainly proven to be a big-time player when August rolls around, and this year looks to be no different. In my opinion, his latest run with the United States Championship has been his most successful, creatively expansive run in quite sometime. Just about every Match of the Year candidate for 2015 has Cena’s name stamped on it, and he has undergone serious character development by defending his U.S. gold just about every week on Monday Night Raw.
Seth Rollins, the WWE World Heavyweight Champion, is no slouch either. He has had a breakout year in cementing himself as the WWE’s top heel, stealing the show at the Royal Rumble, and being the first man to ever successfully cash in his Money in the Bank briefcase at WrestleMania.
These gladiators had a captivating matchup on Raw for the United States Championship, in which Rollins broke Cena’s nose. If that contest is any preview as to what we’ll be seeing this Sunday, then I cannot wait for their clash. Not to mention, this will be the first time in WWE history that both the United States and WWE Championships will be defended in one match. I have no doubt that this will be yet another Match of the Year candidate. Seeing as though Cena has not been victorious at SummerSlam since 2010, I’ve got John Cena beating Seth Rollins and holding both prestigious titles.
John Cena def. Seth Rollins for the United Stated and WWE World Heavyweight Championships
Team PCB vs. Team B.A.D. vs. Team Bella
You guys wanted a Divas Revolution, right? Here it is. This multi-diva elimination matchup will be combustible. These nine divas have gone above and beyond in recent weeks in order to legitimize the WWE Divas division, and they have done just that. With multiple matches in one night and a sensible storyline, it seems as though there is an all hands on deck effort to revamp women’s wrestling.
As much as I wish someone was competing for Nikki Bella’s WWE Divas Championship, I can assure that this will be an exhilarating contest from start to finish. I predict that the team of Paige, Charlotte, and Becky Lynch will find success at SummerSlam.
Team PCB def. Team B.A.D. and Team Bella
Brock Lesnar vs. Undertaker
The main event of the 28th annual SummerSlam is being billed as a rematch that is too big for WrestleMania. It was on April 6, 2014, at WrestleMania XXX, that the most cataclysmic event in sports entertainment history took place. After three F5s from the “Beast Incarnate,” Brock Lesnar, the Undertaker’s 21 match undefeated streak at WrestleMania was conquered. The New Orleans crowd sat stunned in disbelief, as too did everyone watching around the world when the Undertaker rode off into the sunset 21 and 1 at WrestleMania. So began the utter domination of Brock Lesnar.
Lesnar would go on to decimate John Cena at SummerSlam 2014 for the WWE World Heavyweight Championship and hold that prize until WrestleMania XXXI, where he was robbed by Seth Rollins. Back in chase mode, Lesnar would meet Rollins at Battleground to reclaim what he felt was rightfully his, the WWE Championship. Brock Lesnar would have been successful in his pursuit too, had it not been for the clap of a mysterious gong, the extinguishing of the lights, and the return of a familiar presence. Yes, the Undertaker returned to Battleground, cost Brock Lesnar his conquest, and made his intentions of violent retribution known to the WWE Universe. As excited as I was to see the “Deadman’s” return to the ring, I was not particularly excited for his rematch with the “Beast Incarnate.” The outcome of their match at WrestleMania shocked the world, but the in-ring action was undoubtedly subpar.
It wasn’t until their historic brawl on a recent July edition of Monday Night Raw that I, and just about everyone everywhere, was sold on this fated fight. Now the stage is set. The rematch that is too big for WrestleMania is a go. Brock Lesnar has far too much momentum to be thwarted by a semi-retired Undertaker. Considering that the “Beast Incarnate” has not been pinned in over two years, SummerSlam 2015 is not the stage to end that streak. I predict that Brock Lesnar will pull out the victory in the Barclay’s Center. Hopefully, he does so with an assist from the returning Sting, which sets up a match between Taker and Stinger at WrestleMania XXXII.
Brock Lesnar def. Undertaker