WWE Extreme Rules 2017 Preview - Triple Threat POV | Smark Out Moment

WWE Extreme Rules 2017 Preview - Triple Threat POV

Posted by Jordan Chaffiotte Thursday, June 1, 2017
Welcome to another edition of Triple Threat from Smark Out Moment, where three of us get together to discuss three questions based on one big topic going down in the week of professional wrestling.

This week, Jordan Chaffiotte, Robert DeFelice and Charlie Gregory will be giving their opinions on WWE's Extreme Rules 2017. We'll give you our perspective, predictions, and gripes as the usual summer slump rolls on. With implications for the second biggest show of the year, SummerSlam, there's a lot that can happen this Sunday.

Question 1: The most important match of Extreme Rules is also the largest, who do you think will win the number one contendership for Brock Lesnar's Universal Championship in the Fatal 5-Way?

CHAFFIOTTE: It SHOULD be Seth Rollins. There's no way Brock is dropping the title in his first title defense, at a pay-per-view called Great Balls of Fire nonetheless. Seth can take a loss, as his credibility is so high that it's not a big deal to see him get knocked down a peg. Plus, it seems apparent to me that Seth, the real person behind the character, is dealing with a pretty significant mental block right now. I've heard his offense be criticized for feeling soft and I think that is symptomatic of him trying to find a safer style and a fear that one more injury will take him out of the game for good. That's a story already written for them, Seth defeated his biggest opponent, but almost lost his career in the process and now can't quite get into that zone. His win in the Fatal 5-Way could be a fluke and Paul Heyman could come out with some dirt that he's been hiding difficulties with his knee. It's a giant mountain that he must overcome and when he can't get the job done, it hits a restart on this face run. Everyone wins.

Instead, they're probably going to give it to Balor, just to have him lose at SummerSlam. This is such a mistake. His road has been so long and grueling, but they've got him locked in now. His presentation has been perfected, his expression during his entrance fine tuned to be more "amazed this is his life" than "possibly concussed." He talks trash and acts like he's done this before but doesn't sacrifice the personality we know is under there. It is SO GOOD GUYS. Don't feed him to the monster Brock Lesnar, not right now, not like this.

DeFELICE: I'm going to start this by saying that all five would make tremendous matches for Brock at one point or another, but the winner here will likely fight the beast at the July pay-per-view, Great Balls of Fire. They only bothered to have Paul Heyman interact with Finn so it appears pretty obvious that that is the direction they're heading. However, I feel like the best opponent here would be Seth Rollins. Now as a babyface, he could exemplify tremendous heart in his battle against The Beast and he also deserves a fair match against him following their lopsided matter during his first championship reign. It simply makes sense unless they have no bigger (SummerSlam) plans for Finn and don't want to make Brock a momentary good guy for a match against Bray. I honestly feel like Samoa Joe and Bálor would be more appropriate for a big-time fresh SummerSlam match. They're in a pinch year, and I believe that The Architect is the guy to get them out of it and prove himself as the workhorse in the process.

GREGORY: I think Finn Balor will end up being crowned as number one contender. They've been building up Balor's return to the top of the pile for quite a while now and now that he's back to full fitness and able to potentially hold the title again, I think he's going to be thrust straight back into the spotlight. My one worry is if they do end up having him lose to Brock Lesnar for the title. Balor is so popular right now and is ready to reclaim the belt again. Having him take a loss would be the worst thing that they can do.

Having Rollins win wouldn't be a bad thing either, but I feel that WWE has gone all in on Finn so far and now he is back, I think they're ready to throw him straight back into the title picture.

Question 2:With the absence of the Universal Championship, all other championships will all be on the line. Should any of these change hands this Sunday?

CHAFFIOTTE: Bayley absolutely should not regain the title. It was way too fast to begin with and now she's in proper chase mode and they can start to fix some of the damage done. The Miz seems poised to get his intercontinental title back. Maryse will be the wildcard in this match and by the wildcard I mean we know exactly what she's doing. Dean Ambrose's only chance at keeping it would be for Renee Young to switch brands and show up unexpectedly to even the odds. I hope he taught her how to use nunchucks.

Austin Aries could pull it out given that he seems to be more adept at submissions. Why did Neville even agree to this? Sheamus and Cesaro could too, but it will probably be temporary as a way to break Matt Hardy again. That's the one I'm most excited about to be honest, though I'm sure the cruiserweights will impress as always. It feels like the Sheamus and Cesaro story is going somewhere, and fast. Their heel turn has been impeccable and they look good with gold around their kilted waists. Hey, maybe an early call up in Kassius Ohno could throw a wrench into their story by tempting Cesaro to reform the Kings of Wrestling. There are a lot of possibilities this month.

DeFELICE: I think quite a few championships should change hands. Austin Aries should have won the title back at WrestleMania. It's time for the cruiserweights to have a babyface again. I am also very bored with Dean Ambrose as Intercontinental Champion, and although it feels like wash/rinse/repeat at this point, I believe that whenever he is champion The Miz elevates the prestige of that title. For both of these matches, I truly hope that this is the end of the line for those particular issues and we are presented with fresh scenarios this upcoming Monday.

Regarding the other championships, I think each champion should retain. Matt and Jeff Hardy are still riding the wave of nostalgia and are just waiting to break new ground and I feel like it's definitely time for the team of Sheamus and Cesaro to disband and go back to doing great things as individual competitors. They should have the chance now seeing as the brand split is in full effect. As far as the women's championship is concerned, I simply feel like Bayley is more effective chasing the championship than when she is sitting atop the mountain.

GREGORY: The Intercontinental Championship is the only title that I can see changing hands at Extreme Rules. The Miz was one of the best superstars on SmackDown and has now become one of the best on Raw too. His work as a heel has been incredible and with Maryse by his side, he has really flourished and made the most of that role. I think the title is about due to go back into The Miz's hands and expect Maryse to play a part in winning it back for her husband too.

As for the Raw Women's Championship, Bliss is on fire right now and it would be a mistake to give Bayley the title back. Bliss really does deserve to be the champion and to give it straight back to Bayley would be a huge error. With the tag team titles, I can see The Hardy Boyz holding onto the belts for the time being. As much as a Sheamus and Cesaro win would be great and could even benefit The Hardy Boyz, it doesn't feel right to hand over the belts at this moment in time. Finally, the cruiserweights are bound to put on a good show and the title picture is getting interesting. Eventually, TJP is likely to have his shot for the title and as much as the match at Extreme Rules benefits Austin Aries, like the tag team matchups, it doesn't feel right to have Neville drop the belt right now.

Question 3: A few feuds and several notable superstars have been left out of this show. What's missing from this year's Extreme Rules card for you?

CHAFFIOTTE: A proper secondary women's feud is what's missing for me. Yeah, there's Sasha and Alicia in the mixed tag on the pre-show and I actually really appreciate mixing up the divisions when it makes sense. However, it is not the same as having a real feud that's really about them. We know Sasha and Alicia are friends backstage and their styles meld well together. If given more than a few minutes they could definitely put on a good match. The big problem is in the storytelling, or lack thereof. What's this feud about again?

Meanwhile, Summer Rae is cleared, Emma will be cleared in mid-to-late June, and Nia Jax, Dana Brooke, and Mickie James are nowhere to be found. Raw needs to buckle down and start using their women's division properly. That doesn't necessarily mean do what SmackDown Live is doing—at least not to me. Instead, I think they need to establish three ongoing feuds and weave them together, create alliances and rivalries that pop up when needed. You know, treat it like a men's division. Maybe the women's Money in the Bank ladder match will light a fire under Raw to keep up.

DeFELICE: The sporadic nature with which talent moves up and down the card is always a frustrating thing for us sitting on the outside looking in. This month caused a lot of interesting shake-ups that left some potential key players lost in the shuffle. I'm going to put my focus towards Kalisto. I was really hoping he would try to make himself the last member of what would be a Six-Pack Extreme Rules Match but no such luck. He's shown fire over the last couple months and it appears to me that they want to try to make him the new Rey Mysterio and I thought that the extreme rules setting and even a potential win and David vs. Goliath type match with Brock Lesnar would definitely put him on the map. In the coming weeks, I'd like to see them do more with him. I would also like to see more from the tag team and women's divisions. Overall, I think it's time for them to create new stars on Monday nights because the blue brand is eating them up in that regard.

Gregory: Apart from the obvious omission of the Universal Championship and its champion, I agree that we are in desperate need of another, proper women's feud on the card. It's all well and good having Sasha and Alicia in a mixed tag match and sure it gives them something to do but it would be great to have a full-on secondary rivalry going on away from the main Women's Championship picture.

Sasha is well capable of putting on a solid match by herself, so perhaps separating her and Alicia and having them lock horns in their own singles match and then having another separate cruiserweight rivalry/bout (not necessarily between Noam Dar and Rich Swann but any of the cruiserweights) would be good. I know TJP and potentially Jack Gallagher might appear at some point in the Neville vs Aries but both are currently missing from the show - why not pit them in a match? We know the cruiserweights can put on a show!

Those are our thoughts on the issue, but where do you stand?
Let us know your answers to these questions in the comments below!

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THIS POST WAS WRITTEN BY JORDAN CHAFFIOTTE

Jordan Chaffiotte is a writer and blogger on a variety of channels and is an alum of Her Campus. Her long-term love of writing has been matched recently by a new love for professional wrestling. You can follow her on Twitter and LinkedIn.

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