For over a decade WWE has dubbed SummerSlam the largest social gathering of the summer time.
This yr, Sportsnet will add to the branding of the thirty fifth annual premium dwell occasion by christening it, “the largest income of the summer time.”
With the data that Vince McMahon is not behind the artistic choices at WWE — which means match outcomes may really be decidedly totally different than previously.
Here is Sportsnet’s betting information to SummerSlam 2022 going down Saturday in Nashville.
WWE Undisputed Common championship
Roman Reigns (C) (-600)
Brock Lesnar (+350)
We’re attending to a stage the place future matches between Roman Reigns and Brock Lesnar ought to include a roman numeral to point the legacy of the rivalry. SummerSlam 2022 brings us Reigns vs. Lesnar VII, with Reigns main the pinnacle to sequence 3-2 (with one match turning right into a triple risk, which each misplaced).
Reigns vs. Lesnar V plus Reigns vs. Lesnar II = Reigns vs. Lesnar VII: Lesnar’s Revenge!
Initially, SummerSlam wasn’t speculated to function one other version of the Reigns vs. Lesnar rivalry, however fairly Randy Orton in the primary occasion championship spot. A again harm has sidelined Orton for, possible, the remainder of the calendar yr.
Lesnar is WWE’s ace within the gap, by way of his drawing energy and skill to contribute to memorable and entertaining matches. His promo on Uncooked three weeks earlier than SummerSlam the place he known as Reigns a “hog” that was ready to be slaughtered was each eye-rolling and plausible on the identical time as a result of Lesnar looks as if the type of human being who could be able to convincing one other human that he would certainly slaughter them like farm livestock.
There may be even motive to counsel Lesnar might be able to unseat Reigns based mostly on the disclosing of a brand new Brock Lesnar motion determine at this yr’s ComicCon. On the annual occasion, a brand new particular version determine of Lesnar was premiered that includes the 2 championship belts that Reigns at present possesses.
Whereas it’s enjoyable to assume WWE might have spoiled their primary occasion by letting the cat out of the bag early, it’s most unlikely to really be the case. As a substitute, Reigns is sort of assuredly to proceed to reign and carry the WWE Undisputed Common championship via to, at the very least, WrestleMania subsequent yr. Actually, his line has gone from -400 one week out of SummerSlam to -600 on Wednesday.
In case you’re searching for some type of assurance that Reigns will certainly proceed to carry the highest prize within the recreation till April 2023 in Los Angeles, you’ll be able to guess on the primary occasion of ‘Mania proper now, fictitious although it could be. It’s rumoured that Reigns will defend his championship towards his real-life cousin, and WWE legend, The Rock, who can have no film productions scheduled round that point and might be trying to promote the just lately re-launched XFL, of which he’s an proprietor.
All that’s to say, there isn’t plenty of worth in Lesnar until you assume WWE will apply some shock ways by the use of taking the straps off Reigns for a brief interval earlier than he regains them (and with the brand new regime in place behind the scenes, it does really feel like something could also be potential). It doesn’t appear possible, although, simply based mostly on the power of Reigns’ present championship run, which is continuous to be etched into the annals of WWE historical past as one of many best of all time.
Prediction: Reigns (-600) wins
Uncooked ladies’s championship
Bianca Belair (C) (-500)
Becky Lynch (+300)
On a card that options a number of matches seemingly strung collectively on the final minute due to a litany of accidents all through the roster, Bianca Belair vs. Becky Lynch is justifiably in the fitting spot, near top-billing.
The 2 ladies will culminate a year-long rivalry with a rematch of their encounter from final yr’s SummerSlam when a returning Lynch defeated Belair for the SmackDown ladies’s championship in a matter of seconds after it was introduced that Sasha Banks wouldn’t be competing in a scheduled matchup towards Belair attributable to harm.
Lynch’s win was met with absolute bewilderment by wrestling followers, because it appeared that Belair, a future stalwart throughout the firm, was forged apart after months of constructing her right into a famous person. However in a pleasant little bit of long-term storytelling (which WWE usually doesn’t get credit score for), Belair bought her win again. At this yr’s WrestleMania, Belair defeated Lynch for the Uncooked ladies’s championship in what was probably the greatest matches of the weekend.
Now cemented as a premier star inside WWE, Belair seems to be to finish the comeback story one yr after it commenced.
Usually instances it’s talked about inside professional wrestling circles that sure wrestlers don’t want a championship, which means they’re a sufficiently big star to hold a program with out the help of the title. Lynch undoubtedly falls into that class, which means a loss to Belair will do nothing to hurt her standing inside WWE, which additionally means her underdog standing is justified. Belair, in the meantime, is within the means of nonetheless writing the early chapters of what might be an all-timer of a championship run. She’ll want new challengers and there are a number of choices on the market (Rhea Ripley? Renewing a rivalry with a retuning Bayley?)
Belair was -250 to win the match per week forward of SummerSlam however has since moved to an astronomical -500.
Prediction: Belair (-500) wins
SmackDown ladies’s championship
Liv Morgan (C) (-200)
Ronda Rousey (+150)
When Liv Morgan cashed in her Cash within the Financial institution contract to seize the SmackDown ladies’s championship on the identical night time she received the contract, it become one of many better feel-good tales of the yr in professional wrestling. Morgan’s colleagues hopped onto Twitter to bathe the brand new champ with heaps of reward, cementing Morgan’s standing throughout the business as some of the likable in and out of doors the ring.
Followers had been additionally thrilled for Morgan, who had been constructing a loyal following. It helped, too, that Morgan cashed in on Ronda Rousey, who many followers have soured on. Rousey stays a mega star based mostly on identify recognition alone, and her dedication to enhancing her craft has not wavered.
However the happy-go-lucky, smiling and waving version of Rousey just isn’t the one which introduced her to the dance within the first place. She captured the “baddest girl on the planet” nickname not via some company machination, however via her real-life persona and athletic accomplishments. Rousey is a UFC legend, a standing achieved by approach of kicking ass and taking names, an perspective she has not showcased just lately in WWE.
There is a chance for her to reassert that standing by completely ragdolling Morgan on this championship match after which beginning a brand new feud with somebody reminiscent of Bayley or reopening her outdated rivalry with Charlotte Aptitude.
If Morgan is to retain her championship, there should be one hell of a narrative instructed surrounding Morgan beating what could be seemingly insurmountable odds if this had been a UFC bout. Nonetheless, Morgan has crushed the percentages earlier than, doing so to place the SmackDown title round her waist.
Will WWE run with the underdog story additional? Is there sufficient momentum behind her to proceed a run as champion? The betting markets assume so. And there are such a lot of contemporary matchups WWE can run with after this system with Rousey is completed, together with a returning Bayley, or maybe Rhea Ripley, contemporary off the injured checklist.
This line has remained the identical within the week main as much as SummerSlam.
Prediction: Morgan (-200) wins
Tag staff championship
The Usos (C) (-300)
The Road Income (+200)
As WWE takes to Nissan Stadium within the coronary heart of Nashville for SummerSlam, they’ll even be proper within the coronary heart of the previous Continental Wrestling Affiliation. And what higher solution to have a good time the historical past of wrestling in Tennessee than with one of many largest stars to return out of the world? Let’s all spell his identify collectively: J-E-double-F, J-A-double-R-E-double-T. That’s Double-J, Jeff Jarrett.
The previous self-proclaimed best intercontinental champion of all-time has been inserted into this match because the particular visitor referee after the final matchup between these groups resulted in controversy due to poor refereeing.
We reached out to former WWE referee Jimmy Korderas to see what kind of recommendation he would give Double-J forward of this necessary matchup.
[brightcove videoID=6310189881112 playerID=JCdte3tMv height=360 width=640]
Many due to Korderas for that recommendation. We at Sportsnet will ensure that Jarrett sees it earlier than he dons the zebra colors.
As for the matchup, this seems like a implausible alternative to offer an enormous pop for the hometown followers by the use of giving the babyface Road Income a win. The imaginative and prescient of this match surrounds the Usos making an attempt to cheat with Jarrett catching them every time, with the ultimate time involving Jarrett catching them making an attempt to make use of a guitar, given to them by honourary “Uce” Sami Zayn. This could result in Jarrett confiscating the guitar and hitting Zayn with it earlier than the Income rating the victory, which might be met with an enormous crowd pop.
The betting line has remained the identical within the week main as much as SummerSlam.
Prediction: Road Income (+200) win
United States championship
Bobby Lashley (C) (-300)
Concept hasn’t had a complete lot of success within the ring recently. Actually, he’s 0-6 since profitable the Cash within the Financial institution contract. Exacerbating his woes on the Monday Night time Uncooked forward of SummerSlam was Reigns declaring, “your daddy isn’t right here anymore,” referencing McMahon’s retirement and the storyline that surrounded Concept being McMahon’s protégé.
Austin Concept, err … Concept (perhaps he’ll get his full identify again now that Vince is gone) has not appeared good. Subsequently, by WWE logic, he’ll money in his MITB to win the WWE championship at SummerSlam. Not less than, that’s how issues have historically been booked in WWE. However this can be a new period with out McMahon, so it’s anybody’s guess as to what is going to occur.
One factor that appears sure, although, is that Bobby Lashley will defeat Concept to retain america championship.
Prediction: Lashley (-300) wins
Pat McAfee (-400)
Baron Corbin (+250)
In any profession area, in the event you’re tasked with evaluating a brand new worker, you’ll finally arrive at some extent the place you need to decide whether or not they’re a match for a task within the firm or not. Merely put, you are attempting to determine if the particular person in query, “will get it.”
For instance, this writer labored on the Sportsnet newsroom flooring chopping and voicing spotlight packs when SN first fired Kyle Bukauskas. Kyle shortly transitioned to rinkside reporting for hockey video games because it was clear to everybody within the newsroom that Bukauskas “bought it” and continues to “get it.”
Additionally falling beneath the “will get it” class is Pat McAfee. From the primary second he stepped into NXT, it grew to become clear the previous NFL punter turned radio-show host simply … bought it. Within the ring, exterior the ring, behind an announce desk, interviewing expertise, chopping promos, the whole lot was implausible. It seemingly culminated with a “match” towards McMahon at WrestleMania, some of the primetime spots potential throughout the world of professional wrestling. And what did McAfee do? After all, he bought it, however he additionally simply straight up killed it.
McAfee carries that momentum right into a SummerSlam match towards Baron Corbin. The 2 have exchanged some enjoyable promos forwards and backwards en path to Nashville, with McAfee coining the phrase, “bum-ass Corbin” alongside the best way, a lot to the delight of the followers. McAfee has achieved an amazing job of concurrently tearing down the virtues of Corbin whereas propping up his in-ring capacity. There aren’t many who can do it in addition to McAfee. There have additionally been some intelligent call-backs to the time McAfee and Corbin had been briefly on the identical NFL roster with the Indianapolis Colts.
There may be loads of meat on the bone for an entertaining match, with McAfee primed to offer a giant pop for the group with a victory over the very-loathed Corbin.
McAfee’s line shifted from -300 per week earlier than SummerSlam to -400 on Thursday.
Prediction: McAfee (-400) wins
Logan Paul (-2000)
The Miz (+700)
The Miz is the largest underdog on the SummerSlam card. Logan Paul’s credibility inside WWE circles seems to fall beneath two primary classes: 1) I hate this man, and; 2) I don’t care about this man. That is regardless of his apparent aptitude for professional wrestling.
Having stated that, sprinkle on the Miz as a result of this seems like a match that may over-deliver when it has no enterprise doing so and also you would possibly as properly seize curiosity by betting the underdog.
Prediction: The Miz (+700) wins
Tag staff match (no disqualification)
The Judgment Day (-200)
The Mysterios (+150)
The largest intrigue surrounding this match is whether or not Edge will return to take revenge on Finn Balor and co. for booting him from his personal steady virtually two months in the past. In case you imagine WWE will pull the artistic set off on that concept, then it’s price sprinkling on the Mysterios to defeat Judgment Day at +150. Nonetheless, Edge may additionally probably return after the match to take revenge or he may simply not return in any respect.
The selection is yours!
Prediction: The Judgment Day (-200) wins
Seth Rollins and Riddle had been speculated to sq. off at SummerSlam after a brief construct on tv. Nonetheless, Riddle seems to have suffered a legit harm and the match has been faraway from the cardboard.
Within the days main as much as SummerSlam, Rollins was listed as a -130 favorite over the underdog Riddle (-110), though solely barely.
Now the query is: Will somebody change Riddle? With Levesque now on the helm in relation to expertise and inventive choices, there may be some motive to imagine that he might be able to pull a rabbit out of his trunks to ship a top quality thriller opponent for Rollins, who’s able to delivering a top quality match with anybody (plus there was a stable thriller opponent matchup towards Cody Rhodes at WrestleMania this yr, as properly).
So who’s it going to be? Johnny Gargano, a former prime star in Levesque’s NXT, remains to be stated to be a free agent. Bray Wyatt stays on the sidelines. Maybe somebody from NXT will get an early call-up? If a thriller opponent does seem for Rollins at SummerSlam, that wrestler will undoubtedly be the heavy favorite, whomever it could be.
Be part of Kevin Michie for Sportsnet’s SummerSlam 2022 dwell weblog on Saturday at 8:00 p.m. ET for evaluation, response and match scores.