Celebrating its 36th anniversary, WWE SummerSlam 2023 hits Detroit for the Biggest Party of the Summer with a stellar card.
The event features a plethora of top stars, two deeply personal grudge matches, four championship bouts, and the first-ever Tribal Combat match. However, there are some notable absences on the show.
For example, it was expected that Becky Lynch would be taking on Trish Stratus at the event but their match was reportedly removed due to there being too many matches on the card. Another major star missing from the PLE is Women’s World Champion Rhea Ripley. Again it was assumed she would be defending her title against Raquel Rodriguez in Detriot, but the match was never announced.
The full line-up is as follows:
- Roman Reigns (c) vs. Jey Uso – Undisputed Universal Championship
- Gunther (c) vs. Drew McIntyre – Intercontinental Championship
- Logan Paul vs. Ricochet
- Asuka (c) vs. Charlotte Flair vs. Bianca Belair – Women’s Championship
- Cody Rhodes vs. Brock Lesnar
- Seth Rollins (c) vs. Finn Balor – World Heavyweight Championship
- Shayna Baszler vs. Ronda Rousey – MMA Rules
- Battle Royal
With all these matches going there’s a lot to talk about, so without further adieu let’s pick our winners…
WWE SummerSlam Battle Royal
WWE announced a 20-man Battle Royal would be part of the event with Superstars such as LA Knight, Sheamus, Tommaso Ciampa, Shinsuke Nakamura, Otis, and Chad Gable all competing with more to be announced.
Prediction: As of yet, WWE is yet to capitalize on the popularity of LA Knight. The former Million Dollar Champion had the full support of the WWE Universe at Money in the Bank, yet he did not prosper. He was part of the United States Champion tournament, which many expected him to win, but alas he did not, leaving the Battle Royal as somewhat of a consolation prize. A Knight wins.
Shayna Baszler vs. Ronda Rousey – MMA Rules
At Money in the Bank Shayna Baszler shockingly attacked her partner and long-time friend Ronda Rousey costing them the WWE Women’s Tag Team Championships in the process. Following the double-cross Baszler has constantly ridiculed her in promos saying that she was the one who brought her into WWE and she will be the one to take her out. After several altercations, the two decided to clash in a MMA rules match.
Prediction: It is safe to say that Rousey’s second WWE run has left a lot to be desired but this feud has seemed to have given her a much-needed boost. However, if rumours are to be believed and she is stepping away for a while then it is all a little too late, but if she can put Baszler over on the way out then at least that is something. Baszler wins.
Seth Rollins (c) vs. Finn Balor – World Heavyweight Championship
Finn Balor challenges Seth Rollins for the World Heavyweight Championship for the second PLE running. At Money in the Bank, the Judgement Day member was unable to dethrone the champion due to the presence of his stablemate and MITB holder Damian Priest. This caused friction between the two as they argued over who would be the one to take the title off Rollins. After seemingly patching things up with Priest, Balor challenged Rollins to a rematch via a sneak attack that left the champ lying with the entire Judgement Day standing tall over him.
Prediction: This long-time rivalry has a new twist with the addition of Priest and his briefcase. Yet despite some initial animosity between the stablemates it seems as if they are once again functioning as one solid unit, which spells trouble for the Architect. Balor wins, and a new champion is crowned.
Cody Rhodes vs. Brock Lesnar
Brock Lesnar has been targeting Cody Rhodes since the night after WrestleMania 39. Right before their supposed tag team match against Roman Reigns and Solo Sikoa, Lesnar surprised Rhodes with a brutal attack. This series of events led to a heated rivalry between the two stars and has seen them clash in a bloody main event at Backlash in Puerto Rico, in which Rhodes emerged the victor before Lesnar levelled the playing field in a fight at Night of Champions in Saudi Arabia. Now with their feud at one match apiece, they will finally settle their differences at SummerSlam in Detriot.
Prediction: Throughout this entire ordeal Rhodes has not backed down from Lesnar one bit. Even a broken arm couldn’t keep him from taking on the Beast. It is this tenacity that will see him prevail again, but hopefully in a more convincing manner than his win at Backlash. Rhodes wins.
Logan Paul vs. Ricochet
After creating two WTF moments the human highlight reels Logan Paul and Ricochet will for the first time ever step into the ring for a one-on-one match. At the Royal Rumble, the two high-flyers set the wrestling world into meltdown with their jaw-dropping mid-air collision and then upped the ante with a more dangerous viral moment at Money In The Bank. Both moments left them with little else to do other than go toe-to-toe at the Biggest Party of the Summer in what will undoubtedly be another top spectacle.
Prediction: During the build-up to this match, Ricochet has had Paul’s number. This is a huge match for the former Intercontinental Champion, who despite creating multiple viral moments is yet to truly establish himself on the main roster. A win over someone like Paul would be a massive step in the right direction. Ricochet wins.
Gunther (c) vs. Drew McIntyre – Intercontinental Championship
At Money in the Bank, Drew McIntyre made his long-awaited return to confront and layout the dominant Austrian before hoisting the Intercontinental Championship above his head. Following the epic moment, the two heavyweights have remained locked into a feud over the title that will see them clash at the PLE.
Prediction: McIntyre has come back with a renewed focus and purpose and is undoubtedly one of Gunther’s toughest challengers to date. However, the leader of Imperium is on the verge of becoming the longest-reigning IC Champion of all time and will therefore retain at SummerSlam. Gunther wins.
Asuka (c) vs. Charlotte Flair vs. Bianca Belair – Women’s Championship
Bianca Belair has had an Asuka problem for a while. The two entered a feud in the lead-up to WrestleMania 39, which saw the Japanese star re-introduce the dreaded mist, which she used to defeat Belair for the title at Night of Champions. Following the title win Asuka was challenged by a returning Charlotte Flair, much to Belair’s chagrin thus locking all three into a rivalry. After several weeks of match interference and blindside attacks, a Triple Threat was announced for Detriot.
Prediction: Charlotte Flair walks into SummerSlam with an impressive 5-0 record and whenever she is competing for the title there is a high percentage she walks out as the winner but, Asuka and Belair will both have something to say about that. However, the chaotic nature of the match stipulation gives Iyo Sky the perfect opportunity to cash in at steal the title for herself. Sky wins, and a new champion is crowned.
Roman Reigns (c) vs. Jey Uso – Undisputed Universal Championship
After suffering years of manipulation at the hands of Roman Reigns, the Usos broke away from the Bloodline in dramatic fashion when Jimmy took out the Tribal Chief at Night of Champions. Jey soon followed suit, which led to a match between the members of the fractured faction at Money in the Bank.
At the end of the civil war, Jey became the first person to pin Reigns since 2019. Following the sensational victory the twins conducted a trial of Reigns and highlighted all of his shortcomings as the Tribal Chief. Reigns wept and offered Jey the position of the leader lulling him into a false sense of security before hitting him with a low blow and instructing Solo Sikoa to destroy Jimmy. This led to Jey calling out Reigns for a match with the title on the line and under Tribal Combat rules.
Prediction: As much as it would be great to see Jey dethrone Reigns after the years of turmoil he has experienced it doesn’t feel like WWE is done with the story. The stipulation of the match allows for both Sikoa and Jimmy to get involved and therefore interfere on behalf of the champion leaving Jey double-crossed, destroyed and distraught. Reigns retains.
SummerSlam, streams live on Saturday, Aug. 5, at 8 ET/5 PT on Peacock in the United States and on WWE Network everywhere else.