Battleground will be live this Sunday from Tampa, Florida on the WWE Network! It’s also on Pay-Per-View for those who don’t live in the U.S. or just like paying too much for something. This is looking to be a solid event thanks to a stacked undercard. Mitch Nickelson and Al N. Jaxson are walking through this preview together, so let’s get to it.
Cameron vs. Naomi
Mitch: I’ve come to appreciate Naomi’s in-ring skills. She can put on a great performance with the more talented women’s wrestlers. I wouldn’t put Cameron at the top of the list of talented women’s wrestlers, but she’s got that Alicia Fox style of crazy every now and then so that’s at least something. I hope this is short and Naomi has a serious shot at the Diva’s title in her future.
Mitch’s Pick: Naomi
Al: Naomi is my pick for this one. I’ll be honest I haven’t followed this one as much as I should have but nevertheless I’ll be watching and hoping for some good action.
Al’s Pick: Naomi
Intercontinental Championship Battle Royal
Mitch: There’s been quite a few battle royals in the WWE this year. I won’t list them all, but my pick to win this is the guy that won the Andre the Giant Memorial Battle Royal at Wrestlemania, Cesaro. He’s been losing several times to Kofi recently. WWE sometimes will make a guy lose a lot right before they let him win a big match like this, so that’s my reasoning.
Mitch’s Pick: Cesaro
Al: You’ve got to love a good old fashioned battle royal! Look for Kofi Kingston to go for the ooh’s and aah’s as usual
Al’s Pick: Cesaro
AJ Lee vs. Paige
Mitch: I like this feud. I expect these girls to have a pretty good match. Paige seems to be headed for a heel turn, so I expect her to get frustrated by a loss at Battleground to help her along. I’m sure she’ll see championship gold again, but I don’t expect it at Battleground.
Mitch’s Pick: AJ Lee
Al: This one I am looking forward to. These two know how to put on a good wrestling match and it’s good to see AJ back. Although I predict that Paige will take back what is rightfully hers. She will win.
Al’s Pick: Paige
Rusev vs. Jack Swagger
Mitch: If we judge feuds by crowd reactions only, this is the biggest match of the night. Lana and Zeb Colter are extraordinary mouthpieces for their wrestlers and have carried more than their fair share of the weight in this program. While I fully expect Rusev to win, I hope there’s some sort of controversy so they can justify having another match at Summerslam. I really want another month of Lana/Zeb promos!
Al: I certainly hope they give this match the time it deserves. I am enjoying this feud. With the recent situation in Russia I don’t know if they’ll tone Rusev down a bit or not. I guess we’ll see. Swagger wins.
Al’s Pick: Swagger
Usos vs. Luke Harper & Erick Rowan
WWE Tag Team Championship (2 out of 3 Falls)
Mitch: This rivalry has the potential of dragging on too long. What’s kept it fresh is the fact that all four of these men seem to have fantastic chemistry in the ring. The Usos are still two of the most annoying superstars in the WWE to me, so as long as they keep their talking to an absolute minimal then this could be one of the best parts of the show. All the action after the second fall should be highly exciting.
Mitch’s Pick: Harper & Rowan
Al: This should be a good tag match. These four guys mesh well together and there’s no reason this shouldn’t be entertaining.
Al’s Pick: Harper & Rowan
Seth Rollins vs. Dean Ambrose
Mitch: There are so many well-built matches on this undercard and this is one of them. Since the breakup of The Shield, Roman Reigns became the defacto main-eventer of the three. He’s done an okay job in his spot, but he’s still got some learning to do. Rollins and Ambrose have been gold, though. Rollins is the Money In The Bank contract winner and has to look over his shoulder every step of the way due to the constant thorn in his side, Ambrose. Dean Ambrose is a lunatic that is so fun to watch. They’ve worked hard at making us fans feel like there is absolute hatred between them. This seems like more of a toss-up to me, but I’ll go with Ambrose since Rollins already has that contract from the last Pay-Per-View.
Mitch’s Pick: Dean Ambrose
Al: If this match isn’t a match of the year candidate, I’ll be surprised. these two have a score to settle and look for Ambrose to get the revenge for last Monday night.
Al’s Pick: Dean Ambrose
Chris Jericho vs. Bray Wyatt
Mitch: This is a hard match to pick a winner for. Chris Jericho loves to put over younger talent. It’s what he does. Bray Wyatt spent several Pay-Per-Views losing to John Cena. He’s a rising star that needs a big win. Bray Wyatt will win this feud, but I see this going to Summerslam, at least. If Bray wins at Summerslam, and ultimately the feud in general, why not give Jericho the first big win?
Mitch’s Pick: Chris Jericho
Al: This match will certainly be one to watch, just for the fact that it’s CHRIS STINKIN’ JERICHO!!! this would be a big win for Wyatt and Jericho can do nothing but help the guy. Wyatt wins but barely.
Al’s Pick: Bray Wyatt
John Cena vs. Roman Reigns vs. Kane vs. Randy Orton
World Heavyweight Championship (Fatal 4-Way)
Mitch: This feels like a placeholder until Brock comes back on Monday (or at Battleground) to face off against Cena. That being said, this will need to further existing feuds. Roman will look strong and won’t be the one to take the fall. They’ll plant the seeds for a future bout between him and Cena. Kane and Orton mistrust each other and it’s looking like we might get a match between them two at Summerslam. I imagine that they’ll cost each other the win and one of them will take the fall. I pick Kane to take the fall but I don’t think it matters which of the two does lose, it just won’t be Roman. I expect Rollins to try to cash in his contract and failing, which will set up Paul Heyman’s “Plan C” on Monday night.
Mitch’s Pick: John Cena
Al: This should be a slobberknocker! Don’t be surprised if Cena walks away with the belts. Don’t be surprised if Reigns doesn either. If Orton or Kane walks away with the belts, be surprised.
Al’s Pick: John Cena
Mitch: This is the last event until Summerslam so there should be a lot of set up for that show. Many of the undercard matches have had some incredible builds and I expect several bouts to be potential show-stealers.
Watch this show live on the WWE Network at 8pm on Sunday night. Tune in about a half hour earlier if you don’t want to miss the pre-show.
As always, follow Mitch Nickelson on twitter @MitchNickelson to stay up on all of the writing out of our illustrious camp. And don’t forget to go to church in the morning.