Mark: WWE Extreme Rules is here! The PPV where tables, ladders, chairs, and anything is legal…..Except for this one. The most extreme we’re getting here is a No Holds Barred match. But don’t let that spoil a pretty solid card here peeps. I’m actually looking forward to this card, even more so when you have an All Elite Wrestling event the night before! The talent here will be looking to remind the world that the best in the world are in the WWE.
Marc: On Sunday, July 14th, WWE presents its annual Extreme Rules event. What emerged from the ashes of ECW’s One Night Stand event comes a night where it’s essentially like The Purge takes wrestling form only no one dies but acts like they’ve been robbed. Speaking of which it is also a night where we could see theft if both Seth Rollins and Becky Lynch‘s respective titles are taken from them. Unlike The Purge, we don’t have a case where the authority doesn’t have control over a situation.
However, if Roman Reigns and The Undertaker have anything to say about it, Shane McMahon won’t be physically cable of making any decisions after they are through with him and Drew McIntyre. Our Purge analogy continues as former Sanity member Nikki Cross whose former anti-government approach to competition could prove to be the biggest threat to Bayley and her Smackdown Live women’s championship. Who will walk away once all the dust settles, as Pro Wrestling Post preview’s the WWE’s presentation of Extreme Rules 2019.
WWE Cruiserweight Championship
Tony Nese vs Drew Gulak (c)
Mark: As the site’s resident Cruiserweight expert 😉 (I review 205 Live folks) I’m supremely confident that Drew Gulak will retain here. It’s often been said that Tony Nese is a freak athlete. I mean just look at the guy and what he can do in the ring. He looks a million bucks and outstanding in the ring. He’s a former champion to boot.
It’s just that Drew has that smug look on his face that every heel champion worth his salt, has. That “I’m better than you and I know it” look. With Drew on top of the mountain, he can make credible challengers from anyone on the roster.
A convincing Gulak wins here folks. You’re resident 205 Live expert has spoken.
Marc: In their first championship match since Stomping Grounds, the current champion will defend his title against the man that was never pinned or submitted for the title. This will be an interesting story to be told as Nese will now face his old friend and now rival in Drew Gulak. Gulak has seemingly had to endure a tough road. He went from leading the likes of Tony Nese, Brian Kendrick, Humberto Carillo and Jack Gallagher to walking alone.
Is 205 Live a better place now as Drew Gulak is the face of the brand as its Cruiserweight champion? Many will argue that a true mat technician is finally a hold of that place while others that have seen Nese slowly emerge to the top was what is, missed. Will Nese be better than Gulak for more ‘than 3 seconds‘? We will see if these one-time good friends will bring out a fire in each other that made them as hungry as they once were in chasing the championship.
WWE Raw Tag Team Championships
The Usos vs The Revival (c)
Mark: A tricky one to call here. The Revival’s second run with the belts hasn’t really set the world on fire. Well apart from their short run in Shane O’Mac’s faction. A title switch wouldn’t really be a surprise. But Uncle Vince and his booking team sometimes like to mix it up a bit, and I can see that here.
The Usos would be a great safe pair of hands (well two pairs to be accurate) to hold the belts while Dash and Dawson go off-screen or off to pasture new….cough AEW cough…..They’re multiple time tag champs, they’re one of the best teams in the world right now. I mean I can see the appeal.
But I’m gonna stick to what I said, The Revival to retain. But it won’t be a convincing win. Just enough to scrape past the Usos.
Marc: In a feud that seems to have done an about-face, we have the champions looking strong and the challengers looking to save face. Since being made a part of Shane McMahon’s collection of talent, The Revival has received preferential treatment and come out on the winners share of the purse as the late great Gorilla Monsoon would say. This would be The Uso’s prominent challenge for the titles since joining the Raw brand. The Revival has gone through the wringer since they have been embroiled in a feud with The Usos.
Whether it was the embarrassing series of events that Dawson and Dash have gone through on Raw or losing nontitle matches, it was time for The Revival to prove why they were top guys. Dawson and Wilder could cement their roles as the champions with a win over Jimmy and Jey Uso. It could also be an opportunity for them to get the last laugh over their feud with the brothers Uso.
WWE Smackdown Women’s Championship
Nikki Cross & Alexa Bliss vs Bayley (c)
Mark: Hands up who remembered what I wrote about Bayley for the last WWE PPV, Stomping Grounds? I basically said that Sasha Banks would make her return and help Bayley defeat Alexa by nullifying the threat of Nikki Cross.
Guess what I’m predicting this time around? Yup you clever so and so’s THE EXACT SAME THING!
I do like the idea of co-champions though. Especially the prospect of Bliss and Cross. The storyline could go on until Survivor Series, maybe even Mania. Cross would slowly see that Alexa is using her, basically the same feud as Alexa’s with Nia Jax. But this time the title would be on the line.
But I’m sticking with a Boss return to help Bayley overcome the odds…..and maybe stab her in the back a few months down the line 😉
Marc: It is hard to truly gauge this feud as it has been predominantly involved Nikki Cross as a means of helping Alexa Bliss to earn this match up. As it’s been reported Alexa Bliss has been fighting illness and hasn’t been fully cleared to compete on a number of occasions during this feud. This is why the match has become a handicap match. In an effort to ensure that the match still takes place the reported booking is that it has had Cross heavily involved working to aid her friend.
Bayley has long been booked as the one that has looked weaker, but not in this feud. One has to wonder what the long-term booking with the Smackdown Live women’s championship will be especially considering that the feud is between a member of the Smackdown Live roster and one of the Raw roster. Will the likes of Carmella, Sonya DeVille, and Liv Morgan all be used at some point to challenge for the Smackdown Live women’s championship?
Aleister Black vs Cesaro
Mark: Oh boy, I’m looking forward to this match!
One of the best pure strikers versus one of the strongest men on the roster. The Philadelphia crowd will appreciate this match more than any other market, which will come across through the TV and make the match even more special.
This has been a dream match for many (me me me) since Black was signed to NXT. And although it’s taken a while it’s here. This match may not be for the faint of heart, and yes there will be some fantastic wrestling, but this will be an ALL OUT WAR.
I don’t care who wins, I just want a brilliant match. But if I had to choose, it would be Black. This re-debut will be for nothing if he loses straight out the gate.
Marc: Much like Edgar Allan Poe’s The Raven would share that there was a knocking on his door, Aleister Black awaited someone to knock on his door. The time has finally come to answer that knocking. It would come in the form of none other than Cesaro. In what is another cross-brand matchup, Black has his first challenge since the Superstar Shakeup has taken place. While Black has likely been on Live events this is the first time that Black will be seen on-screen.
Extreme Rules will lend itself to a great battle for both men as Cesaro is heavily used on Raw competing for the United States Championship on Raw he now turns his attention to someone else. Will Cesaro fade to black or will Black will fall prey to Cesaro’s neutralizer. Here, we have a battle between technique and strength against kickboxing and high impact strikes. It would be surprising if after as much time away in an effort to build him up that Black would be defeated. That said, it would be surprising that Cesaro would be the one defeated after being seen as a title threat lately.
WWE Smackdown Tag Team Championships
Heavy Machinery vs The New Day vs Daniel Bryan & Rowan (c)
Mark: I’m going to break this down team by team, and tell you why it would be nothing short of a tragedy if DBry and Rowan don’t retain.
Heavy Machinery, as Bryan pointed out in a promo last month, are still too green to carry the division. They are talented, have a different, cool, look but just don’t have enough experience. Try again in six months’ time.
The New Day has had multiple championship reigns but are at the point of their career that they should be putting over teams, not going over.
The Planets Champions just have to retain. They need to dominate teams, so when the moment comes to switch the titles, that new team will be made from the get-go.
Marc: This triple threat tag team match seems to achieve a few things. It involves arguably one of the most successful teams in WWE history, the current champions and a team that is clearly getting pushed in that direction as well. Heavy Machinery did once challenge for the NXT Tag Team championships, but they failed to capture the championships in that opportunity. However, since their move to the main roster, it appears as though management is quite high on them with the goal to be for them to be an active part of the tag team division.
Daniel Bryan and Rowan are in a position where they are truly put to the test as they face not one, but two tag teams. Will they be able to overcome the odds of having to defeat not just one, but two tag teams? Will Extreme Rules be the night where the ‘rumored Big E heel turn finally takes place?
Last Man Standing Match
Braun Strowman vs Bobby Lashley
Mark: UGH! The build to this has been flat out terrible. Hurry up and take charge, Heyman!
I honestly think that Braun’s time at the main event level has come and gone. The guy, due to his size, is just too injury prone. And because of that, Lashley will walk away victorious, straight into a feud with Seth Rollins for the Universal Championship.
Or possibly the often talked about “dream match” against Brock Lesnar?
Marc: There is something special about this match. Unlike the typical big man or ‘hoss’ battles that have graced the WWE. These two massive men bring a number of special qualities to the table. Their feats of strength alone are enough to make a weaker person tremble. When you add the fact that they have run the gamut of tests to prove who is the stronger of the two, to reach this point it is quite remarkable.
The last time fans would have seen either of these men was when they went through an electrical circuit triggered wall on Monday Night Raw. In an instant it made the monster among men appear human. Braun Strowman was carried out on a stretcher and seemingly unresponsive. Bobby Lashley was also in severe condition but was able to return and put forth a challenge to Strowman. Of these two massive forces could this be the match where Lashley walks away over Strowman?
Samoa Joe vs Kofi Kingston (c)
Mark: The times….they are a-changing….
Samoa Joe has been one of the most consistent and believable performers over the last 18 months in the company. His coming-out party versus Brock Lesnar at Great Balls Of Fire should have resulted in him becoming champion a lot sooner. But due to injuries and those damn writers, it didn’t happen. This Sunday, it happens.
That’s not to say that Kofi hasn’t deserved this championship run. This run has shown what hard work and commitment will give you. To be honest, Kofi has knocked it out of the park as champion. But as I said….
The times, they are a-changing….
Marc: This matchup came about when Samoa Joe attacked an unsuspecting Kofi Kingston after defeating Kofi Kingston. It was a match many likely didn’t anticipate happening, but now that it’s here fans are looking forward to it. Kingston’s run as champion has still had him have to prove himself, despite being in the role of the titleholder. As champion, Kingston has successfully defended his title against the likes of Kevin Owens and Dolph Ziggler.
Against Samoa Joe, it is very different as the level of violence has simply risen exponentially. Joe has attacked Kingston’s character, his family and seemingly tried to beat the life out of him. The result is Kingston is left smiling and unphased by all of Joe’s antics. A win over Joe really puts Kingston in a different place. His reign as champion won’t be questioned and even his challengers will know that Kingston is every bit the champion he deserves to be.
WWE United States Championship
AJ Styles vs Ricochet (c)
Mark: There’s no way that Ricochet, a star that the company is pinning a lot of hope on, is going to lose this match. Now before you say “a loss will make AJ and The Club look weak”, let me explain my theory.
Ricochet walks away victorious after his 630 finisher. But as soon as the bell is rung, Gallows and Anderson will beat the ever-loving tar outta him, setting up a Phenomenal Forearm and Styles Clash from AJ. Yes, Ricochet wins, but you keep AJ and The Club look super strong and super heelish too.
You can bet ya ass that at SummerSlam Styles will grab that belt. But for now, Ricochet retains.
Marc: Some might be a little sad to see Styles become heel again. However, some of AJ’s best work in WWE was when he was braggadocious over his competitors. His feud with John Cena was fantastic and proved that he could ‘beat up John Cena’ and would still walk out on top on the other side. Styles has changed his tune recently and in doing it brought out the fire that made him the WWE champion when he defeated Dean Ambrose a few years ago.
It is that same fire and passion that will put him in a place where he will need to stop at nothing to beat the younger Ricochet. This is a feud that could prove to be great for both Styles and Ricochet. We get a champion that hasn’t really had a chance to sink his teeth into a meaningful feud and a former champion that is looking to prove that he is just as phenomenal as ever.
No Holds Barred Match
Roman Reigns & The Undertaker vs Shane McMahon & Drew McIntyre
Mark: I mean, c’ mon, do you really think that Taker will be a part of a losing team here? After what happened in Saudi Arabia? This whole match will be a shrine for The Undertaker after the Jeddah incident. Sure, Shane and Drew will get some good spots in, but Taker will make the deciding pinfall/submission.
It’s been kicked around that there could be a post-match angle between Taker and McIntyre that will lead to a SummerSlam match. That could be fun and something to look forward to.
Marc: Of any match on the card, this seems to make the least amount of sense. While we haven’t been privy to many promos between Roman Reigns and The Undertaker towards Shane McMahon and Drew McIntyre, but if they did it would help the decision making around this. The Undertaker’s motivation for wanting to save the Big Dog is what? Still, after a few weeks of attempting to understand why they have come together, it’s still a little difficult to understand.
For McIntyre and McMahon it’s about the rich son that has a backup in his corner in the name of the Scottish Psychopath while Reigns has someone that still has a presence but unsure what he has to gain from this entire situation. The Undertaker talks about taking souls because he can, the question is why does he want McIntyre and MaMahon’s souls? There was no rationale beforehand and still wondering what it is now.
Winner Takes All Match
Seth Rollins (c) & Becky Lynch (c) vs Baron Corbin & Lacey Evans
Mark: I remember a time when WWE would never have intergender matches on house shows, let alone a PPV. But here we are.
The story coming into this is interesting. Good even. It’s just a shame that the challengers literally have NO CHANCE (hi Vince) of winning. Can you imagine the online uproar if Corbin became Universal Champion?? You would hear the tapping of the keyboard warriors from hundreds of miles around.
The PPV will end on a feel-good moment, with the real-life couple standing tall in the ring. And the very next day the Heyman era begins, and that feel-good moment? It might be a while before anything like that happens again!
Marc: A match that came about the night after Stomping Grounds has emerged into a winner take all affair. While it would be easy to question the decision making on why to have a match with both prominent champions focused in one match rather than spreading them out throughout the night that won’t be the choice here. There are some positives that could be seen here. The way in which Becky Lynch is being portrayed in this match is positive.
Often the fear of having a mixed tag team where there was a relationship between teammates the female is often made to look weak or emotional. In this instance, it has been made so that Lynch is more on the offensive with Rollins having to hold her back. It seems difficult to get emotionally attached to this match and wonder if taking the titles off of Rollins and Lynch will ultimately be the best choice.
For Mark Blake, this is Marc Madison saying enjoy Extreme Rule if you can and if you can’t please don