Points by Ben Simmons during Game 3 victory over Nets

Heel Turns: WWE goes to extremes

Posted by Achilles Heel On June 1

Achilles HeelThe success of Extreme Rules this Sunday (8 p.m.) on WWE Network depends on the main event. With five men involved in an Extreme Rules No. 1 contender’s match, that match should be given a lot of time. It also should be extremely good.

The combatants battling to be the No. 1 contender for the WWE Universal Championship are Roman Reigns, Seth Rollins, Finn Balor, Samoa Joe and Bray Wyatt. What makes this match so intriguing is that an argument could be made for almost any of the participants to win.

The least likely to win is Bray Wyatt. Given the other wrestlers involved, having Wyatt win and face Brock Lesnar doesn’t make much. Samoa Joe, however, would be an interesting physical matchup for Lesnar.

Having Balor win seems logical. Balor, the first WWE Universal champion, didn’t lose the title in the ring. He was forced to relinquish the title after injuring his shoulder in the championship match with Rollins. Reigns, who continues walk the line between babyface and heel, would also make sense as a challenger to Lesnar. Lesnar vs. Reigns would feature the two men who have defeated Undertaker at WrestleMania.

Rollins is also a viable option, but the Greek God of Wrestling doesn’t see that happening. The prediction here is that Reigns wins the match Sunday and becomes the No. 1 contender.

Matt and Jeff Hardy defend the Raw Tag Team Championship against Cesaro and Sheamus inside a steel cage. Achilles Heel senses a potential title change. Not as strongly as my feeling that Jinder Mahal would defeat Randy Orton for the WWE Championship, but not too far removed from that level.

Dean Ambrose defends the Intercontinental Championship against The Miz, with the stipulation being that Ambrose can lose the championship by disqualification. That seems to be the antithesis of extreme rules, doesn’t it? (If you don’t know what antithesis means, look it up. Achilles Heel doesn’t have time to teach English to all the nimrods reading this column.) A loss by disqualification would seem like a cheap way to do a title change, but it would fit well with Miz’s persona.

The Greek God of Wrestling expects Alexa Bliss to find a way to retain the Raw Women’s Championship in a Kendo Stick on a Pole match. He also expects Neville to retain the WWE Cruiserweight Championship against Austin Aries in a submission match, although, if Aries is going to win the title, he might as well do it now.

A late addition to Extreme Rules is a mixed tag team match featuring Rich Swann and Sasha Banks against Noam Dar and Alicia Fox.

The undercard can enhance Extreme Rules, but the main event is the key to whether this is remembered as a special event. Achilles Heel expects that the main event will deliver.


PHILLY IS A BATTLEGROUND: Tickets are available for Battleground, a WWE Smackdown pay-per-view event coming to Wells Fargo Center on Sun., July 23. A little birdie told the Greek God of Wrestling that tickets for the Royal Rumble may be put on sale during Battleground.


WOMEN CLIMBING THE LADDER: The Money in the Bank pay-per-view on June 18 will include a historic match. After an out-of-control brawl on Smackdown, general manager Shane McMahon declared that there will be a women’s Money in the Bank ladder match, with the winner getting a title opportunity against Smackdown Women’s champion Naomi. The five participants in this first-of-its-kind match will be Charlotte Flair, Natalya, Becky Lynch, Tamina and Carmella.

The traditional Money in the Bank Ladder match, with the winner receiving a title opportunity whenever he choose, will feature A.J. Styles, Dolph Ziggler, Shinsuke Nakamura, Baron Corbin and Sami Zayn. Styles seems to be the logical winner, although that could change if Randy Orton regains the WWE Championship from Jinder Mahal at Money in the Bank.

Another new match announced this past week features the returning New Day challenging Jimmy and Jey Uso for the Smackdown Tag Team Championship.


IS RHODES THE BEST? The main event for Ring of Honor’s “Best in the World” pay-per-view on June 23 will pit Cody Rhodes against Ring of Honor World champion Christopher Daniels.


FEEL THE POWER: CHIKARA will be at The Wrestle Factory in Philadelphia on Sunday for be an “Hour of Power” show. CHIKARA will return to The Wrestle Factory on Sat., June 10 for “Hide.” Announced matches include the CHIKARA debut of Michinoku Pro’s Kenbai against Kobald, Juan Francisco de Coronado vs. Obariyon, and the Throwbacks vs. Hermit Crab and Cajun Crawdad.


TOURNAMENT OF DEATH: Combat Zone Wrestling will present “Tournament of Death ‘16” on Sat., June 10 (3 p.m.) at the Ultraviolent Underground in Townsend, Del. First-round matches include a “Pains in the Glass” match between Rickey Shane Page, Jimmy Havoc and John Wayne Murdoch; a “light tubes and cinderblocks” match between Cannonball and G-Raver; a “Doorway to Death” match between Masada and Shlak; and a “Fans Bring the Weapons” match between Father Matthew Tremont and Mad Man Pondo.


DUNNE DEAL: Pete Dunne, the new WWE United Kingdom champion, has the chance to be a big star. He has the “it” factor.

His match with Tyler Bate may have been the best of the night at NXT Takeover: Chicago. He had another good match Wednesday on NXT. Dunne will likely be featured on NXT’s upcoming European tour.


POSITIVE SIGN: If you’re looking for some encouragement to watch Extreme Rules on Sunday, look no further than this week’s RAW. There were two terrific matches involving the participants in the fatal 5-way main event at Extreme Rules. Samoa Joe, Bray Wyatt and Finn Balor participated in an excellent triple threat match, with Joe prevailing. At the end of Raw, Roman Reigns defeated former Shield teammate Seth Rollins in a tremendous match.

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