The battle flags have been set in the ground. And the Battleground has been prepped for a SD Live war.
This year’s edition of Battleground belongs to the home of the current WWE Champion, Jinder Mahal. Mahal has been at odds with Randy Orton ever since Mahal defeated him for SD Live’s top prize. Another rematch has been set between both men and this time, the WWE Championship will be up for grabs in a Punjabi Prison Match. Another big time star is going to be a part of this second July PPV – John Cena. Cena will fight for the good ol’ US of A in a Flag Match. He’ll have a tough fight ahead of him when he faces off against the returning “Bulgarian Brute,” Rusev.
Those two matches and more will be covered in my preview and predictions piece for WWE Battleground 2017.
The Usos (Jimmy Uso and Jey Uso) (c) vs. The New Day (Big E, Kofi Kingston, and/or Xavier Woods)
(WWE SmackDown Tag Team Championship)
Predictions & Winners: How bout that rap battle, though? Both teams exchanged some lethal bars that were full of scathing disses and inside jokes. Who could have predicted that The New Day would remain as fresh and hilarious as they were when they first assembled? And who would have thought that The Usos thugged out heel act would turn out to be a highlight of SD Live every week? They turned out a pretty solid bout at Money in the Bank that ended in expected fashion (The Usos hauled ass and took the countout victory). That act of cowardice (genius if you’re a fan of heelish behavior) has led to this rematch. While it may seem like it’s about time that The New Day capture those titles, I think WWE’s going to go with the more unexpected finish. The Usos will retain their titles here through some form of twin magic. The old switcheroo will screw over The New Day, which will lead to another rematch of some kind in the future. Two out of Three Falls at SummerSlam, perhaps?
Becky Lynch vs. Charlotte Flair vs. Lana vs. Natalya vs. Tamina (Fatal 5-Way Elimination Match to Determine the #1 Contender for the WWE SmackDown Women’s Championship at SummerSlam)
Predictions & Winner: I gotta hand it to the ladies of SD Live – they’ve been settling their issues in a variety of interesting matches, plus they competed in two Money in the Bank matches. Carmella ended up claiming that title shot briefcase, so the rest of the women’s roster has to battle it out to determine who gets Naomi at SummerSlam. Judging by the names on this list, I’m pretty confident in this next prediction – Tamina and Lana are non-factors here. Lana already had plenty of title shots and failed to impress, so it would be a waste of time to go back to her. And Tamina’s just downright terrible, so there.
Now Natalya is someone who can be called on at any moment to bring it in a championship feud, but I can’t see her being the one picked for such a marquee match at SummerSlam. Charlotte’s a big name who has the credibility needed to make such a big match with Naomi stand out at next month’s PPV. But we’ve seen that already. That leaves one more woman to speak of – the one I’m picking to win it, Becky Lynch. She’s been away from the title for far too long, plus her vs. Naomi is a fresher matchup that presents a cool babyface vs. babyface scenario. That sounds like the most logical way to present a great SD Live Women’s Championship Match at SummerSlam.
Shinsuke Nakamura vs. Baron Corbin
Predictions & Winner: YA BOY WAS RIGHT! I totally called Baron Corbin becoming this year’s male MITB briefcase holder. Now that he’s the man to watch, Corbin’s stock has gone up even more than before. That slow burn to his eventual cash-in is going to be interesting to follow. In the meantime, Corbin is going to remain that pissed off lone wolf who’s quick to ambush anyone backstage or before a match. He’s chosen to target Shinsuke Nakamura, another shining star who’s made waves since moving to the main roster. Now if this match happened to feature a MITB briefcase-less Corbin, I’d easily pick Nakamura as the guy to win it all here. But Mr. MITB is just too viable right now and there’s really no need to give him any big losses right now. I might sound crazy when I say this, but Corbin’s going to remain strong in his current state by knocking off someone as big as Nakamura.