411's Roundtable Preview: WWE Summerslam 2014 (Part 1)
Posted by Sean Garmer on 08.16.2014
John Cena defends the WWE Title against Brock Lesnar, Roman Reigns battles Randy Orton, Dean Ambrose faces Seth Rollins and more as WWE presents SummerSlam! Check out 411's roundtable preview and be sure to join us for LIVE coverage on Sunday night!
This year's edition of WWE Summerslam is of course headlined by a match of epic proportions in Brock Lesnar vs. John Cena. Then there's also Stephanie McMahon vs. Brie Bella, which is a feud that started epically and then week after week started trending downward. However, at least this show has an undercard that could prop it up wrestling wise with Seth Rollins taking on Dean Ambrose in a Lumberjack match, Roman Reigns vs. Randy Orton, Miz defending his IC Championship against Dolph Ziggler, AJ defending her Divas Championship against Paige, plus the rematch of Chris Jericho & Bray Wyatt, and there's even a Flag match to boot. Will this year's Summerslam be one for the ages when it airs LIVE at 8ET/5P on PPV and on the WWE Network? Well that's left to be seen. However, one thing we can do for sure is give our predictions for this event. And the best thing is they won't cost you $9.99
Justin Watry, Truth And Lies, Which Was Better
Paul Leazar, Wrestling 2 the MAX Podcast
Gary Vaughan, Wrestling 2 the MAX Podcast
Wyatt Beougher, Wrestling Zone Columnist, MMA Fact or Fiction Organizer
Michael Weyer, Shining A Spotlight
Alex Crowder, WWE Main Event Reporter
Mike Hammerlock, The Wrestling Zone 8-Ball
Nick Sellers, 411 Instant Analysis
Jack Bramma, Ring Crew Reviews
Sean Garmer, Wrestling 2 the MAX Podcast, WWE Roundtable Organizer, Games Top 5 Organizer, Cooperative Multiplayer Podcast
(Champion) The Miz vs. Dolph Ziggler Intercontinental Championship Match
Justin Watry Dolph Ziggler vs. The Miz for the IC Championship? What happened to that never ending rumored IC/US Title match? Right. Guessing equals headlines these days. Since that is not going down, we are left with a former WWE Champion taking on a former World Champion not for either title. Truth be told, this will probably be a good match bell to bell. However, I question how many fans actually care about the "money maker" story line going on. It is not like Dolph ZIggler has a finisher that hurts The Miz's face anyways. Like Shemaus's Brogue Kick. Whatever. My pick is The Miz to retain, but does it actually matter? As I gave been writing about in my column (on another website), I just do not think it really matters who the is mid-card champ. If you think it does, tell me again what United States Champion Sheamus is doing at Summerslam...
Winner: The Miz
Daniel Wilcox: At the time of writing, this hasn't yet been relegated to the pre-show, but I'd be surprised if this made the main card. And at least if it's on the pre-show, they can get 15 minutes to have a good match. That said, they had a good match on Raw a few weeks ago, and I don't particularly need to see it again. I really wish creative had more interesting ways of setting up title matches outside of somebody getting a pin-fall on the champion. And I'm trying really hard to get into Miz's new character, because he's doing really good work, but it's just not happening for me. Dolph's great, we all know that, but seeing him tread water for the last year has lowered my interest in him even though I consider him one of the best workers they have right now. All that said, I hope these guys get time to have a good match. I can see the outcome going either way, and I wouldn't mind them trading the title back and forth for a few months. I'm going to predict a Ziggler win for no other reason than I have a lot of heels winning in my predictions, so we need to even the balance somewhat.
Winner: And NEW WWE Intercontinental Champion, Dolph Ziggler
Paul Leazar If this match is even half as good as what we got on RAW a few weeks ago, I'll be stoked. That being said, there aren't enough words with my head to say how much I want Dolph to win this, but I feel like The Miz is going to retain in what is hopefully one hell of a match.
Winner and STILL Intercontinental Champion: The Miz
Gary Vaughan: The IC title is up for grabs and the biggest question is if this will be Ziggler's time to shine? Sadly, Ziggler will shine in the match, but it will not be the shine off the IC title from around the Miz's waist. Miz needs the IC title to stay relevant. So, we may get a short and sweet match that really means nothing in the long run.
Winner: Dolph Ziggler
Wyatt Beougher: This match is a microcosm of the WWE's booking - do they go with the guy that the fans want to see, or the guy who they favor because he's a great media ambassador and a minor movie and television star? Ideally, this feud would've started a few months ago and featured Bad News Barrett and Ziggler, (and we would've likely had a Miz/Sheamus US Title match). Unfortunately, Barrett's injury put the kibosh on that, but at least Miz has been doing his best character and ring work since 2010 and Ziggler is getting huge reactions from the live crowds, so this match should make the Intercontinental Title feel important. Ultimately, I'm not sure the WWE doesn't give Miz the win here, but with the WWE World Heavyweight title likely going to a heel in the main event, I think the WWE puts the IC title on a face to give the fans something to be happy about.
Winner and NEW Intercontinental Champion: Dolph Ziggler
Michael Weyer: Like many, surprised Miz got the belt last month, seemed sure it was Cesaro's time. It also seems against the rumors of the IC/US belt unification but Miz and Ziggler are able to work well together so a title match seems more interesting than other challengers would be. I think WWE might be realizing Miz wasn't the right choice and passing it off to Ziggler would be a move to keep Dolph hot again which he deserves. I'll go with the old "SummerSlam curse" of the belt changing hands but a bit rough to see yet another shift so soon.
Winner and NEW Intercontinental Champion: Dolph Ziggler
Alex Crowder This match is the least interesting on the card. I think it will actually be a decent match, and if it weren't for the apathy mostly shown for Miz...it could surprise people. Miz's lack of reaction will probably hurt this one, but Dolph's reactions could counteract that. I'll say this match is decent at its worst, and really good at its best. I'm not sure which match we will get on Summerslam, but it won't be actively bad.
Winner and Still Champion: The Miz
Mike Hammerlock: These two had a hot match on Raw a few weeks back and I expect we'll get no less here. Miz has been getting traction with his Hollywood heel gimmick. Good for him. He can be useful part of the midcard. Plus, his acting work is dynamite marketing for the WWE. As much as we all like to give him grief, it doesn't make sense to bury a guy like that. While I'd like to Dolph win (because I'm a fan), it would make some sense to let Miz walk around with the IC belt for a while longer … unless they want to have the two in a back-and-forth war.
Winner: The Miz
Nick Sellers: I'm looking forward to this one. Hollywood Miz is absolutely fantastic and it seems like a natural evolution of his character. If WWE really get behind that gimmick I think it's money. They should be sending him to film premieres, show pictures of him schmoozing with Hollywood stars, arriving to the arena in limos, the lot. The hard-working, industrious Ziggler is a great foil for him at this point and I expect they'll probably open the show in a vibrant clash. I think Miz has to keep the gold and go over just so he still has license to shamelessly brag and self-promote about how much better he is than everybody else. Rematch at Night Of Champions where they could possibly transition the belt then, which would open the door for Miz to climb back up the card if they chose to go down that route.
Winner: The Miz
Jack Bramma: Dolph is uber-talented, but snakebit when it comes to front office timing and tact. Miz, on the other hand, is a requisite company guy and is finally back to his wheelhouse – a condescending, dickish prima donna. Time for both to do what they do well – Dolph to make someone else look good and Miz to posture and preen in his sunglasses.
Winner: The Miz
Sean Garmer: I was at the RAW in Miami where Miz and Dolph put on a show, I would hope WWE gives them the same amount of time to put on at least an equally good, if not better match than that. I've actually liked Miz with this "Moneymaker" character and discussing him being some big movie star. Hopefully, WWE continues to run with it and they can finally get Miz over and keep him over with the audience. Dolph Ziggler is a perfect opponent for Miz because the fans love him and want to see him win the belt. Dolph has actually been booked well in the lead up and it is possible Dolph could win the belt here. However, I think this continues on to Night of Champions and I think it makes more sense for Dolph to be chasing it still. So, Miz should win.
Winner AND STILL WWE INTERCONTINENTAL CHAMPION: The Miz
Rusev w/ Lana vs. Jack Swagger w/ Zeb Colter Flag Match
Justin Watry A Flag Match? Anybody know the rules? Anybody care? No. Rusev crush. I am a fan of Jack Swagger, but he is not the guy to FINALLY beat Rusev in a one on one mach, even if the rules may not necessarily call for a pin fall or submission. Not the time to slay the monster. Not yet.
Winner: Lana (oh, and that Rusev guy)
Daniel Wilcox: I'm struggling to remain interested in this feud. It was pretty cool at first with the Swagger face turn, and the crowd was into it, but they've been doing practically the same thing week in and week out for two months now with little traction. OK, both guys can wave a flag, and both competitors' managers can cut a promo, bashing another country while saying very little of substance. Their match at Battleground and the rematch on Main Event weren't all that interesting, so there's not a lot of investment from me on this one. I'm not sure if Swagger has had one too many chances to make himself a player in the company, but this isn't really working. The Flag stipulation gives creative an easy if they want to give Swagger a win to create something of a feel-good moment, but you have to imagine that Rusev is the favourite here. The problem with Rusev is that he's a completely one-dimensional character. OK, he's a Russian sympathiser who doesn't particular like America, but what else? Modern audiences need something more to latch onto. At the very least, turn the heat up on the gimmick to really rile up the audience. So we're assuming Rusev gets the win here and moves onto something more interesting. Personally, I'd love to see him and Sheamus beat the crap out of each and feud over the United States Championship, so somebody should probably book that for next month.
Paul Leazar I think it will hurt Rusev to lose at this point, no matter how we get there. The only thing that I think keeps the main audience interested in him is the fact that he is undefeated and everything else works around Lana and those wonderful legs of hers. Rusev wins, Swagger goes back to doing nothing, and we see what's next for Rusev.
Gary Vaughan: I'm not sure if everyone is on board with this match, but it at least has some potential. This feud has stood the test of time and it seems like the WWE Universe is enjoying this feud. I'm going to say this match does not last very long. Both men will battle and despite some botch moments, I think this match will at least be entertaining.
Winner: Jack Swagger
Wyatt Beougher: One of my personal favorite feuds in the WWE right now, I'm actually very much looking forward to this match. While Swagger was the less talented member of the Real Americans, he's still a very, very good professional wrestler and to see him actually be treated as such over the past few months has been a joy. On the other side of the ring, you've got Rusev and Lana playing 80's stereotypical foreign heel characters with such aplomb that it's hard not to get invested in this story. From the time Rusev was called up to the main roster, I was sure that he was going to be built up as the next Umaga to set up a match with Super Cena, but with Cena likely to be involved with Brock for the next few months, I think there's actually a chance that Swagger wins this one. He's getting the best reactions of any point in his career, and the most interesting direction that they can take the Rusev character at this point is to see how he responds to losing to the avatar of a country that he believes is inferior. I still wouldn't be surprised if Rusev wins this one, but assuming this is a classic WWE Flag Match, where the winner has to retrieve their country's flag from the pole, the storytelling is simple enough - Swagger uses the Patriot Lock to take out Rusev's ankle and retrieves the flag, which allows Rusev and Lana to rightfully point out that the Bulgarian-Russian Brute has never been pinned or submitted.
Winner: Jack Swagger
Michael Weyer: I still wonder how real-life politics can mess with this, sort of harder to push the evil Russian heel now. It should be a fair battle and Rusev is still getting over well enough but hard to really care about Swagger as the American hero now. It's tempting to say Swagger wins grabbing the flag and thus Rusev can continue to say he's never been pinned but I think they'll keep his regular win streak up, smash up Swagger and with some cheating, nab the flag to win and hopefully both move on to something more interesting.
Winner: RUSEV SMASH!
Alex Crowder I feel like this feud needs to end, so Rusev should finally overcome Jack Swagger. If the crowd stays into Swagger this will be decent. I think these two have decent chemistry actually making for a nice big man clash. The flag stipulation fits the feud well too. Hopefully, Rusev wins and moves onto another feud. I don't foresee Swagger winning, but I guess if Swagger is going to beat Rusev it'd be in a match without pins or submission. I'm going say Rusev wins though.
Mike Hammerlock: I wanted a flag match at SummerSlam and, by gum, they've delivered it. I find it hard to believe Swagger won't win. The flag match stip (first guy to retrieve his flag and waive it) is a perfect setup to have Rusev lose without suffering a pinfall or submission. Swagger doesn't have to make him tap to the Patriot Lock, just gimp him enough to keep him on the mat. SummerSlam tends to have a decidedly patriotic bent, so Swagger waiving Old Glory makes a lot of sense in terms of giving fans a keepsake moment. The real interesting thing is, if Swagger wins, how over will he be? I suspect "crazy over" might be the answer.
Nick Sellers: The USA vs (insert dastardly foreign nation here) scenario may have been recycled yet again, but it's recycled because it works and it does provoke strong responses from live audiences. As for the rest of the world watching it unfold, i.e here in the UK, I think we're a little indifferent to it but I understand why it's there. As a vehicle to promote both talents I think it's a good opportunity for them, but there's only so long you can drag it out for. To me, Rusev's next natural step should be the U.S title, which allows him to continue his anti-US schtick and keeps him ticking over for a good while. For Swagger, I'm not sure where they can go with him after this unless they eventually build him back up to go for the US title himself after they've been kept separate for a while. I'm expecting a Coulter heel turn at some point, possibly even to align with Rusev and become a massive turncoat and a real heat magnet in the process.
Jack Bramma: I love the renewed vigor and fan interest in Jack Swagger of all people. It's a nice surprise that he and Zeb have come out of the split with Cesaro looking the better. But I have a hard time seeing it last beyond this PPV. Unless, the WWE plans on going full bore with Swagger to turn him into the next Patriot, Hacksaw, Sgt. Slaughter, etc. he is probably just fodder for Rusev to dismantle after 10 or so minutes. A nice twist would be Rusev going for the kill post-victory but Cesaro coming out to re-turn face and re-join the Real Americans. Somehow we work in Rusev getting the US title from Sheamus on free TV and we're gold through the fall with Cesaro chasing a heel Rusev for the US title.
Sean Garmer: I've enjoyed this feud, especially getting to see Lana every week, that gets me excited if you know what I mean. I've also been surprised by how Swagger has been able to maintain his status this time around, although the feud has lost a little bit of traction since Battleground. The interesting thing here is that the rules indicate it is a "Flag on a pole" match. So, I think we could see Swagger win here, you have the fans be happy, and then you add something new to Rusev. At least I hope that's what happens because just having RUSEV CRUSH would be kind of boring. I just hope this match has some substance and isn't just two guys climbing for flags most of the match.
Chris Jericho vs. Bray Wyatt (Luke Harper & Erick Rowan banned from ringside) Singles Match
Justin Watry Chris Jericho vs. Bray Wyatt should feel more important than it does. Not that I am a fantasy booker (I am not), but their Battleground match last month was not needed. It should have been The Uso/Chris Jericho vs. The Wyatt Family in a wild street fight or something. Instead, we already saw Jericho/Wyatt once with the face winning, and now the rematch feels like it has been de-emphasized until the third and final blowoff clash. Their sit down interview segment on RAW was a step in the right direction, and if any two guys can lure me back in, it is Chris Jericho and Bray Wyatt. I am going for a 'wild' prediction here and something I have written about this past week in my column (on another website). With Luke Harper and Erick Rowan banned from ringside, I think it is time to freshen up the Wyatt Family, and there is no better way than with the debut of Sister Abigail. Bray has been yapping and yapping and yapping for far too long without anything actually happening. Time for a payoff. Debut the mythological being that is Sister Abigail, allowing the act to feel 'cool' again and give Bray Wyatt a win.
Winner: Bray Wyatt
Daniel Wilcox: This match features two world class performers who, so far, have not delivered in this program. With Chris Jericho once again leaving us after Night of Champions next month, one has to assume that the program with Wyatt will be the only one he works during this current run. Jericho got the somewhat surprising win in an underwhelming match at Battleground, so the Eater of Worlds is a safe bet to take the second bout, leading to the rubber match next month in some type of gimmick match. Jericho and Wyatt are two of the best promo guys in the business and yet neither guy has managed to really sell me on this rivalry whatsoever. Wyatt says the same things over and over, and it goes nowhere. And Jericho doesn't seem overly motivated at this stage. So here's hoping that Summerslam is the stage where both guys begin to bring it. I genuinely feel that with fifteen minutes of ring time, these two have a damn good match in them and I hope we get to see that Sunday. Wyatt picks up a clean win here before the big blow off at Night of Champions.
Winner: Bray Wyatt
Paul Leazar Where did the excitement go for this feud? When it was originally brought out during Jericho's return to RAW, I was stoked! However, the booking for this feud has been way below par. Why do they even hate each other? Where are the specifics from Bray Wyatt about why he hates somebody that we have become so accustomed too? Either way, their match at Battleground was perfectly fine, but this needs to blow everything out of the water to leave us with those warm, fuzzy feelings we all have for Bray. Please WWE, give this guy the win. Please?
Winner: Bray Wyatt
Gary Vaughan: Boy, I hope this match is better then last month and helps the feud make more sense once it is over. The feud is barely warm, but I think this match will be pretty good. Jericho didn't return to WWE for all his work with Bray Wyatt to go down the toilet. Therefore, I think these two guys will put on a match that will surprise most fans. It would not shock me if we get some great highspots and get a great finish to the match. Bray should be impressive; while Jericho will just be his talented self and put on a great match.
Winner: Bray Wyatt
Wyatt Beougher: Hopefully, the fact that Harper and Rowan have been banned from ringside means that this match is going to allow Wyatt to pick up a clean and decisive win over Jericho like he did over Daniel Bryan at Royal Rumble earlier this year. Unfortunately, it could just as easily mean that Jericho picks up a win like he did at last month's Battleground show. At this point, if Wyatt doesn't win, and win dominantly, the only choice the WWE is going to have left for him is the nuclear option. Hard to believe the wrestler with the most momentum in the company going into Wrestlemania is at this point just four short months later, but that's where a horribly lopsided feud with Cena and a largely directionless feud with Jericho will leave you. In my opinion, Wyatt still has more potential than anyone on the roster to be a decades-spanning star for whom wins and losses don't matter, but the simple fact is that WWE Creative squandered their opportunity earlier this year to get him to that point, and so winning this match is very much crucial to any continued success the character might have. I'm going to hope for the best in this one - don't let me down, WWE.
Winner: Bray Wyatt
Michael Weyer: The feud hasn't been as great as we hoped but still potential there for something. With Harper and Rowan banned, we can hope these two really get to shine and given enough time, we might be able to get a great battle between them at last. We need it as this program hasn't lived up to expectations and a loss for Wyatt robs more of his heat, which WWE could use now for a major heel star. My hopes are a good match with Jericho giving Wyatt the rub and hopefully both can move on to better programs.
Winner: Bray Wyatt
Alex Crowder This feud feels like it is going nowhere. I will admit that I loved the sit down interview and I think more of that would be better for the feud. Either way, this match should be decent to great. Last month they had only a decent match. I think this time they can do better if they step it up. The question remains if they will step it up this month. I think they'll step it up a little at least. Once again this match intrigues if nothing else. I'll say Wyatt evens this score this time.
Winner: Bray Wyatt
Mike Hammerlock: Much as a I love Chris Jericho, Bray Wyatt needs to win this match. No Harper, no Rowan, no excuses. The WWE has booked itself into a fairly obvious conclusion for this match, which is a bit of mini-theme for SummerSlam 2014. Wyatt kind of has to win, otherwise it would be turning into a mini-burial of one of the E's most promising young stars. Jericho still will be Jericho regardless of whether he loses.
Winner: Bray Wyatt
Nick Sellers: This feud has taken something of a back seat compared to nearly everything else on the card and lacks the bite that other storylines have, but that doesn't mean we're not in line for a cracking bout all the same. I enjoyed their last PPV outing and I'm expecting a similarly good showing in LA. Jericho's schedule ensures he always comes back looking fit, fresh and still able to provide great matches against a variety of different opponents. As for Bray, I think they'll need to do something different with him soon; as brilliant as his promo skills are, it's starting to get a little repetitive without a gripping primary motivation behind them. His next feud needs to have a real personal edge to it, or at the very least in the pursuit of something to further his standing, i.e a title, trouble in the ranks of the Family with Harper & Rowan, etc. A decisive victory for him here without the aid of his compatriots is what I'd go for, possibly setting up a rubber match thereafter.
Winner: Bray Wyatt
Jack Bramma: I doubt this is a set-up for a debut or re-debut for someone to join the Wyatt Family. It seems the WWE has lost almost all short-term interest in the family for the meantime. They ignored the obvious title program with Daniel Bryan after Mania for Bray. They booked Bray like a second-rate, mid-tier, just another guy next to Cena in their best of 3 in the spring and then Bray lost rather perfunctorily to Jericho in a blah match last month. Rowan and Harper have been stealing the show but not the belts from the Usos. I know they are one segment, one development, one face/heel turn away from vaulting back up the crowd, but a win over Jericho doesn't seem it, even if it's a foregone conclusion.
Winner: Bray Wyatt
Sean Garmer: Lord, has this feud simmered into almost going straight cold. I have no idea why they are feuding? I have no idea what either man is mad about or anything. Bray Wyatt has lost his edge with his promos just basically repeating the same stuff over and over. The sitdown interview helped a little bit, but I'm still confused by all this. I hope the fact that Rowan and Harper are banned, means Bray Wyatt will win and win decisively. I just hope they get time to tell the story in the ring that hasn't been told in the build-up.
Winner: Bray Wyatt
(Champion) AJ Lee vs. Paige WWE Divas Championship Match
Justin Watry Here is my theory. WWE has no Divas division outside of AJ Lee and Paige right now. I do not know about any of you, but I have zero desire to see the Total Divas girls get more title matches. We already went through that, and they all lost. Repeatedly. Everything comes down to AJ and Paige feuding for the belt. With that in mind, I am going for a "shocking" prediction here - something I rarely do. I say we have a NEW Divas Champion this Sunday night in Paige. While I never like the idea of playing hot potato with a title, the Divas have no other option. Have Paige win it, allow AJ to truly chase her for a month or two, and then do another title change. Why not? Certainly better than AJ vs. The World again...
Daniel Wilcox: I'm absolutely loving Paige's character. AJ Lee has always been a personal favourite as well. I'd love nothing more for these ladies to get a real good amount of time each week to tell what could potentially a damn good storyline, but it seems lately the girls have been relegated to really brief TV segments. Some mic time is better than no mic time though, so I'll be grateful. The match these two had at Battleground was a little bit clunky at times, but hopefully they'll be used to working with one another by now, although I'm not actually sure they've been working house shows together. Regardless, these are the two best Divas WWE has to offer right now. Much like pretty much every other match on this card, I expect this will not be the final encounter between these two, but in this one the victory could go either way. You can trade the title back and forth between them for awhile, or you can have Lee retain leading to Paige going full-on heel and ditch the frenemies stuff. And while we're on the subject of the Divas, I think it's worth pointing out that for the third straight pay-per-view, we have two well-built Divas matches on the card, and that's something I have absolutely no issues with.
Winner: And STILL WWE Divas Champion, AJ Lee
Paul Leazar I really, really hope this gets enough time to really show off both of these ladies talents in the ring. While I haven't been a huge fan of the build-up (mostly because the idea of frienemies just baffles me to no end), this match should hopefully be a coming out party to show that the Divas can really go. NXT fans know that Paige can work, I just don't think the main show crowd does... yet. The result of this can go both ways I think, and it'll be alright. That being said, I'm gonna pick AJ to retain, but I haven't a clue.
Winner and STILL Diva's Champion: AJ Lee
Gary Vaughan: This matchup will probably mean more in a couple of years. Yet, at the moment, this feud is just not very good and honestly the matches leading up to it have not been either. Until these two Divas can prove they can have a great match together, my expectations are not very high at all on this match. What I do know is that AJ will retain her title as she should.
Winner: AJ Lee
Wyatt Beougher: If AJ wins again, that leaves Paige dead in the water, as that's three successive losses to the Divas champion. I'm not entirely sure I trust the WWE's booking team to make that distinction, though, and in turn, I think there's still a pretty good chance AJ wins this one. Regardless of who wins this match, the biggest desire I have for it is that AJ and Paige finally find the chemistry that we've all expected them to have and actually put on a very good match. Their matches, to this point, have been passable (with the Battleground one being decent), but they have yet to look truly comfortable working against one another and their matches have been fairly sloppy as a result. I'm going into this one ready for Paige to lose, but I'm hoping against hope that she picks up the win to actually reward her heel work (which has been better than I expected) and prove that Kevin Dunn isn't going to be able to sabotage everyone who's come up from NXT in the past year.
Winner and NEW Divas Champion: Paige
Michael Weyer: So we got the Paige heel turn which does suit her well and we know these two work great in the ring together. If they get enough time, we may see a great match although that's unlikely given WWE continuing to ignore Divas. Still, AJ is hot after her return and both will want to impress and be nice to see the belt really mean something again for the Division, especially with some NXT ladies ready to rise up and challenge. If nothing else, nice to see the Divas represented by more than an E! reality show.
Winner and STILL Divas Champion: AJ Lee
Alex Crowder Paige has really caught fire as a heel. She seems far more comfortable on the mic. She also is playing the psycho character as good as AJ in a different way. This feud reminds me of the classic Mickie James and Trish Stratus feud. I will admit though, I'm not sure if these two have good chemistry. For whatever reason, these two lack chemistry even though they are two of the best female wrestlers in the world. Sometimes, two people just don't click in the ring as I would say Flair and Hogan didn't mesh well. Bret Hart and Ric Flair were two of the best at the time and did not make an automatic 4 to 5 star match as they should have. I hope that Paige and AJ can break that mold and establish chemistry. This match intrigues me if nothing else. I'm not sure who will win this one. You could make a case for either one, but on a coin flip I decide Paige.
Winner and New Champion: Paige
Mike Hammerlock: We're early stages on this rivalry. I still want them to take this all the way to Hell in a Cell. So far Paige has only been mildly despicable. My guess is AJ beats her again and it plants the seed that Paige needs to go megaheel in order to win back the belt. We saw some of the old crazy AJ on Monday, but the crowd loves crazy AJ. Also, beating down Eva Marie is a very face thing to do. After this match, maybe we'll get to know crazy Paige.
Winner: AJ Lee
Nick Sellers: The best WWE female rivalry in years. I just hope they get a decent amount of time to get out there and really strut their stuff. These two are leading the way for a potential golden generation of women's talent in the company once some of the NXT divas are called up and the deadwood with the likes of Eva Marie are put out to pasture. I have one request for WWE though: Please don't make this the piss-break match before the main event where the crowd is dead. I don't doubt they could get the crowd back into the match, but these two deserve better. Have them go on second, or third, early doors to give it maximum impact. I'd have Paige win the belt back just to give her heel turn more gravitas and give AJ something to chase for the next few months.
Winner: Norwich's own – Paige
Jack Bramma: AJ because.
Sean Garmer: The only thing I care about here is that Kevin Dunn, Vince, and whoever else is in charge of match times make sure to give these ladies some time to tell a damn story and figure out the chemistry issues. I've enjoyed the build-up so far, though I wish there was more of it. I could see this one going either way, with Paige winning and then saying that she was never AJ's frenemy and used that to mess with AJ, or the more likely scenario, AJ wins and Paige goes full on nuts setting up another confrontation at Night of Champions. I'm gonna go with story number 2.
Winner AND STILL WWE DIVAS CHAMPION: AJ Lee
That's it for Part 1 of the 411 SummerSlam 2014 Preview. be sure to check out PART 2 for the upper card and the main event.