Last week on Monday Night Raw, the WWE World Heavyweight Championship match between champion Seth Rollins and Randy Orton was made official for Extreme rules this Sunday. The match will be a Cage Match and Orton’s finishing maneuver, the RKO, is banned. In another rematch from Wrestlemania, John Cena will take on Rusev in a Russian Chain Match for the United States Championship that should conclude their feud.
There are already six planned matches for the pay-per-view. The entire Extreme Rules card should be complete by the end of Raw. We may see a Dean Ambrose vs. Luke Harper Tables Match and a Tag Team Championship Match on the pre-show officially added by the end of the night.
Here are the latest WWE news, rumors and spoilers from the previous week (April 13-20):
Disclaimer: The following rumors are a compilation of WWE related news stories and speculation that circulated around the internet from the previous week. Each rumor should be taken as that, just a rumor, and nothing concrete or factual given the nature of WWE and the industry. All plans are always subject to change based on circumstances.
Bray Wyatt’s Next Opponent
According to Wrestling Inc., a Roman Reigns vs. Bray Wyatt match at Extreme Rules was briefly discussed.
Right now, Wyatt continues to show up on Monday Night RAW and cut his usual cryptic promos about targeting his next opponent. Based off of what Wyatt has said, he is targeting a determined, beloved superstar:
From Wyatt’s promo on April 6th:
You know who you are… I’m talking to you. Your entire life has revolved around dedication but I’m here to tell you that no matter how dedicated you are, you cannot compete with the force of nature. You cannot compete with the power of the wind or the ocean, and you most certainly cannot compete against the greatest power of them all – fear. For it is not your drive for success that molds you… it is your fear of failure. And I know deep behind your skin underneath the flesh and bone holds the key to your undoing. Do I have your attention now? Behold The New Face of Fear.
From Wyatt’s promo on April 13th:
Love, love can be blinding. It can come out in judgment. Love can consume your well-being, and it could very well cost you everything you worked so very hard for. And you, you’re in luck, friend. Because I have decided to reach deep inside of you and rip out that love like a cancer. I’m a fill this now-empty void with good ole fashioned fear. For fear is much stronger than any ‘love’ could ever be.
Reigns current story-arc in context with Wyatt’s promos make sense. Reigns is proud of his Samoan heritage, he wants to prove himself and the WWE Universe that he can fulfill his potential, and has repeatedly stated in interviews that his doubters motivate him. Could it be possible that the Eater of Worlds is Reigns’ biggest doubter?
The WWE’s Relationship With ‘Stone Cold’ Steve Austin is Getting Complicated Again
The last podcast on the WWE Network was not Stone Cold’s — who conducted the first two with Vince McMahon and Triple H — but with Chris Jericho who conducted his Talk is Jericho Podcast with John Cena. Jericho’s podcast with Cena was MAYBE slightly less controversial, but the demeanor and atmosphere surely felt different.
According to Cageside Seats, a major reason that the WWE decided to go in the Jericho direction is because Vince himself wasn’t entirely supportive of the types of questions Austin was asking and the manner in which he was asking them. Austin’s style is very blunt, up-front, no non-sense — kind of like the freaking character he played all those years ago… — so obviously he would ask the tough questions.
Even more controversy has surrounded Austin in the last three weeks. The WWE also expected Stone Cold to show up at Wrestlemania 31, but he didn’t and confirmed that he wasn’t in his last podcast before the pay-per-view. According to PWInsider.com, the WWE sent a cease-and-desist letter to ProWrestlingTees.com shortly after Wrestlemania 31 asking them to remove their ‘Stone Cold’ Steve Austin related merchandise from the site.
Daniel Bryan Has Serious Health Concerns Going Forward
According to Lords of Pain, there are real long-term health concerns when it comes to Daniel Bryan and just how long his neck and shoulder injuries will hold up. Bryan was recently pulled off of the European tour for those very reasons.
At this point, it’s anybody’s guess how long Bryan’s injuries will hold up. Although Bryan and his fans are hopeful for the best, using Shawn Michaels, Stone Cold and Edge as comparable superstars is a good place to start.
– HBK lost four years of his career to an upper-back injury he suffered in his Casket Match with The Undertaker at the 1998 Royal Rumble.
– Austin lost some time in late 1997, from November 1999 until October 2000 and had his career shortened in March 2003 after sustaining his neck injuries as a result of an Owen Hart Piledriver at Summerslam 1997.
– Edge broke his neck in February 2003, but first injured it in a Ladder Match with Eddie Guerrero in September 2002. Edge returned in April 2004. after tearing his Achillies in July 2009, he returned in January 2010. Due to his “neck” injuries, though, Edge was forced to retire in April 2011.
In all of these cases, each superstar missed significant time due to their respective injuries. Bryan was out from June 2014 until January 2015, just over six months. While nobody wants to hear it, if Bryan continues to have these brief injury scares that continue to force decisions such as pulling him off tours or not putting him in high-profile matches and feuds, then the best decision is to give him more time off and hope that with extra time, it will squeeze out, hopefully, a few more years of borrowed time.
Seth Rollins, Dean Ambrose, Roman Reigns, Bray Wyatt, Dolph Ziggler, Neville and future NXT call-ups could take the ball and continue to run with it in a hypothetical Bryan absence.
April 20th Monday Night RAW Predictions:
– The Authority — namely Triple H and Stephanie McMahon — will play a large part in this week’s show. Seth Rollins has been protected as much as he could have been over these last few weeks, but it seems that Orton is destined to get his hands on Rollins, and RKO him, before their Cage Match for the WWEWHC on Sunday.
– John Cena will skip over his newly-implemented U.S. Championship Open Challenge for one week only and implement the “John Cena Openly Invites Rusev to Come Fight” Challenge before Sunday’s Russian Chain Match for the U.S. Championship.
– Daniel Bryan will appear on Monday Night RAW for the first time in over two weeks.
– Dean Ambrose vs. Luke Harper in a Tables Match will be the 7th and final match named for Sunday’s Extreme Rules. Harper will most likely team up with another superstar to take on Ryback (has fought Harper for consecutive weeks) and Ambrose.
– Paige, after being attacked last week by Naomi, will one-up her by getting some revenge this week. Noami will then proceed to cost Paige the Divas Championship at Extreme Rules.
– In a surprising turn of events, Summer Rae will turn on Damien Mizdow, helping lead her Marine 4 co-star The Miz to a victory, retaining the rights to use… his own ring name. Mizdow will refer back to Damien Sandow and find his way into an upcoming feud with… STAAAAAAAAAARDUST.