It's an exciting moment in WWE right now as they are in the middle of a soft-reboot that they've branded as the season premieres of Smackdown (tonight) and Raw on Monday, as well as the big NXT Halloween Havoc show this Tuesday. And right in between all of those shows in the next WWE premium live event, Extreme Rules, on Saturday, October 8th.
Here is a full preview of the card along with my predictions.
Liv Morgan vs. Ronda Rousey in an Extreme Rules match for the Smackdown Women’s Championship
It feels like this angle has been going on forever, perhaps a bit too long? At this point, Liv has had the title long enough where it wouldn't completely destroy her character to lose it. I can see Ronda retaining and Charlotte making her return here (although I literally said this last month and it didn't happen so take my intuition with a grain of salt).
Bianca Belair vs. Bayley in a ladder match for the Raw Women’s Championship
This is the match I am most looking forward to, and what I feel is the true main event of this show. Bayley is an excellent wrestler and Bianca is one of the most athletic people in all of WWE, so I imagine this will be a total banger. I hope they don't take too many dumb ladder risks that end up injuring them, and just plan a few fun, safe spots. I sound like an old man. Because it's a ladder match, and Bianca doesn't have to get pinned, I can see shenanigans to have her held back by the other two members of Damage CTRL and Bayley gets the win.
Matt Riddle vs. Seth Rollins in a Fight Pit match with Daniel Cormier as special referee
This is certainly the most unique match on the card. The previous fight pit matches in NXT have been a lot of fun, and I imagine these two guys will put together a great attraction with this match. With Cormier involved, I have to imagine Seth steps to him in such a way forcing Cormier to knock Seth out, or something along those lines, leading to Riddle winning the match. Rollins gets a US title shot this Monday on Raw and I can see him rebounding with a win there.
Drew McIntyre vs. Karrion Kross in a strap match
This feels like a real test for Karrion Kross, who is essentially being positioned in a match with the top full-time babyface (or good guy) in the company. Drew always brings his all, even though he's been plagued by some health issues like food poisoning recently. I imagine Kross gets the win here.
Edge vs. Finn Balor in an I Quit match
Edge only has so many matches left. Much like with the Raw women's title match, seeing as though this is an I Quit match, Edge can lose without being pinned. I imagine all the foreshadowing of the promo on Monday about how all he cares about is his wife and family and he would never quit would lead to Judgment Day somehow kidnapping a member of his family (likely his wife, WWE Hall of Famer Beth Phoenix) to get him to submit.
“Imperium” Gunther, Ludwig Kaiser, and Giovanni Vinci vs. “Brawling Brutes” Sheamus, Butch, and Ridge Holland in a Donnybrook Match.
Now this is going to be a fun match. Any time any combination of these wrestlers are in the ring together, it's been great, so I imagine that trend will continue with this match, which I can see being the opener of the show. Either this or the fight pit. I would say since Sheamus is probably losing tonight on Smackdown, the Brawling Brutes get a win back tomorrow.
Will you be watching Extreme Rules?
What else is on TV this weekend?
Announced for the Smackdown season premiere tonight at 8pm on Fox:
- Roman Reigns & Logan Paul face-to-face
- WWE Intercontinental Championship: Gunther (c) vs. Sheamus
- Solo Sikoa vs. Ricochet
AEW will have a two-hour block on TNT this Friday night with Rampage and Battle of the Belts:
- Jon Moxley, Wheeler Yuta & Claudio Castagnoli vs. Rush & Private Party
- AEW Trios Champions Death Triangle defend against Dark Order
- Tony Nese & Josh Woods vs. Varsity Blondes
- Tay Melo & Anna Jay AS vs. Skye Blue & Madison Rayne
- AEW All-Atlantic title: PAC defends against Trent Beretta
- ROH Tag Team titles: FTR defend against The Gates of Agony
- AEW TBS title: Jade Cargill defends against Willow Nightingale
Sunday night, and Monday morning, New Japan has a major show planned with this lineup:
- IWGP World Heavyweight Champion Jay White defends against Tama Tonga
- Kazuchika Okada vs. JONAH
- Provisional KOPW 2022 Champion Shingo Takagi defends against El Phantasmo in a "Who's Your Daddy" match (After the match, the loser must take the microphone and tell the winner "You are my daddy.")
- Non-title match: IWGP Junior Heavyweight Champion Taiji Ishimori vs. KUSHIDA
- Will Ospreay, Aaron Henare, TJP & Francesco Akira vs. Tetsuya Naito, SANADA, Hiromu Takahashi & BUSHI
- Hirooki Goto & YOSHI-HASHI vs. Jeff Cobb & Great-O-Khan
- Hiroshi Tanahashi, Hikuleo, Ryusuke Taguchi & Master Wato vs. EVIL, Yujiro Takahashi, SHO & Dick Togo
- Zack Sabre Jr. & Taichi vs. Shane Haste & Bad Dude Tito
- Ren Narita's homecoming match: Ren Narita, David Finlay & Robbie Eagles vs. El Desperado, Yoshinobu Kanemaru & DOUKI (Narita's first match following his excursion to the United States)
Announced for the RAW season premiere Monday:
- United States Championship: Bobby Lashley vs. Seth Rollins
- Johnny Gargano vs. Austin Theory
- D-Generation X (Shawn Micheals, Triple H, Road Dogg, X-Pac) to appear
- Roman Reigns and The Bloodline to appear
Our condolences to the family of former WWE Tough Enough winner Sara Lee, who suddenly passed away earlier this week at the age of 30. No cause of death has been revealed. She leaves behind a husband, former WWE wrestler Wesley Blake, and three kids. A GoFundMe has been launched to help the family.
As part of their season premiere reboots, WWE has changed up the announcing teams. SmackDown will have Michael Cole and Wade Barrett. Raw will have Kevin Patrick and Corey Graves. NXT will have Vic Joseph and Booker T and premium live events will be called by Michael Cole and Corey Graves. Pat McAfee is expected back after football season on Smackdown.
After the two exchanged words on Twitter earlier in the week, Andrade and Sammy Guevara ended up in an altercation backstage at AEW Dynamite. According to multiple reports, Andrade surprised Guevara and ended up punching him. It was immediately broken up and Andrade was sent home. Sammy fought in and won the main event that night. No word on how long Andrade will be suspended for. The two were talked to the night before the taping and told not to fight. Andrade, who has asked for his release to go back to WWE, was told that even if he fought Guevara, he would not be fired.
Legado del Fantasma (Santos Escobar, Joaquin Wilde, Cruz Del Toro & Elektra Lopez) are slated to debut on WWE Smackdown as soon as tonight. Zelina Vega will be making her return to Smackdown tonight.
Vice will air a two-hour documentary "The Nine Lives of Vince McMahon" next Tuesday, October 18th at 8 PM. The documentary will likely not be very flattering.
According to the Wrestling Observer, Saraya has been cleared to wrestle by AEW doctors. She got physical with Britt Baker on Wednesday night.
The Rock has now changed his tune and "closed the door" on any possibility of a presidential run, during a new interview with CBS. He says his priority is being a "daddy" for his daughters during this important time in their life.
Despite reports to the contrary, Bandido has not yet signed with AEW full-time. He is still considering the offer. WWE reached out with an offer as well, but according to the Wrestling Observer, Bandido is likely to go with AEW.