SK WWE Exclusive: Major changes were made to SummerSlam
What's the story?
As reported by The Dirty Sheets via our "DS Breaking News" show on YouTube and iTunes, a number of changes were made to the SummerSlam card during Battleground weekend.
It appears that matches such as Kevin Owens vs Shane McMahon, AJ Styles vs John Cena and Naomi vs Charlotte were all initially set for SummerSlam and then changed. You can view the video, below:
In case you didn't know...
This Sunday at SummerSlam, Kevin Owens is currently set to face AJ Styles with Shane as the referee, whilst Cena will now face Baron Corbin. Meanwhile, Charlotte currently has no place on the card.
The heart of the matter
Our sources couldn't confirm why the card was revamped just weeks before SummerSlam. However, it appears that the Cena vs AJ Styles match was scrapped because the WWE wanted to allow the Shane and Owens feud develop longer and culminate at Hell in a Cell — a PPV where the company felt like they needed a marketable match.
Therefore, the decision to extend AJ and Owens was only made at the last-minute, with the Battleground finish changed mid-match. Charlotte vs Naomi was only scrapped 48 hours before Battleground, when the company opted to go with Natalya and hold off the Charlotte vs Naomi match, in order to extend the Florida native's title run.
SummerSlam will take place this Sunday in Brooklyn, with Nakamura vs Mahal set to headline for the SmackDown brand. That match was planned in June and hasn't changed since.
The SummerSlam card seems to have enough strong matches on the card, without fans dwelling on the fact that changes were made to it.
Although some strong matches have been omitted, the decision to book the show with long-term plans in mind can't be heavily criticised, especially when fans notoriously complain about WWE creative's lack of effort during the NFL season.
It appears that SmackDown plans to heavily compete with Raw during the season where only Raw will go up against NFL's MNF, which is likely to lead to SmackDown drawing numbers equal to or even better than Raw.
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