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“Hart Murmurs” Edition #66 – WWE Extreme Rules Predictions & Preview

Greetings.

I trust you’ve all had a memorable Memorial Day weekend.

This week I’ll preview the WWE Extreme Rules show, which takes place this Sunday, June 4th from Baltimore.  As the name suggests, each match on the card has some ostensible extreme rule or stipulation attached to it – some which have some plausible rationale attached, while others are for no ostensible reason.  In any case, we’ll preview the card, here and now.

Main Event Fatal Five-way: Bray Wyatt, Samoa Joe, Roman Reigns, Seth Rollins & Finn Balor (winner to face Universal Champion, Brock Lesnar)

This match features a stellar aggregation of WWE superstars – most of them at the top of their game and, as such, should be a pretty good match.  One of the major considerations for those in the WWE creative department orchestrating the schematics for this match however should be which of the five candidates is best suited to have a great match with Lesnar -whose style isn’t that compatible with many of the guys on the WWE roster.

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Having said that, I’d have to say that Reigns or Rollins are probably best suited to take bring out the best in the Beast and by that token, I’d probably have either one of them going over in this match.  I could see some surprise outcome here though, such as Bray or Balor pulling off an upset, and will be watching with interest to see what happens.

WWE Intercontinental Title Match – Dean Ambrose (champion) vs. The Miz:  Special Stipulation- if Ambrose is disqualified, he will lose his title.

Forgive my cynicism, but having two quasi heels with no discernible issues between them, whose styles don`t really complement each other, compounded with the decidedly lame stipulation that if Ambrose is disqualified, he loses his title, is more of a turn-off than a turn-on.  As such, there’s not that much about this match that really entices me or makes me disinclined to change channels when it comes on.

Not to digress, but back in the day, the Intercontinental title was second only to the WWE world title as far as prestige goes and was held by a host of iconic champions, including my brothers Bret and Owen, Curt Hennig, Randy Savage and Davey Boy Smith. Nowadays though, the IC belt has become more of a frivolous afterthought, which most fans don`t take seriously – which is too bad.

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Perhaps Ambrose and Miz can rise above my dubious expectations, but I`m not holding my breath. If nothing else, I hope they don’t go overboard on bashing each other with sticks, chairs and other non-wrestling bullshit and that the match is decided on a relatively straight, devoid of bullshit, finish. I have no idea whom the WWE brain trust is planning to put over here, but I`d probably be inclined to put my money on Ambrose.

WWE RAW Tag Team Title Match – The Hardys (Champions) vs. Cesaro and Sheamus (Cage Match)

I’m not really sure why the WWE has chosen to give Cesaro and Sheamus another title shot against the Hardys, given that they already did the job cleanly at the recent Payback pay per view and nobody seems to be really clamoring to see a rematch, much less having them go at it in a cage.

Regardless, this match should still be pretty entertaining, because the Hardys usually rise to the occasion in cage, ladder and unconventional matches of that sort.  I`d be quite surprised if the Hardys didn’t go over in this one, as their stock seems to be on the rise, while Cesaro and Sheamus, conversely, seem to be on the downhill slide.

WWE RAW Women’s Title Match – Alexa Bliss (Champion) vs. Bayley (Kendo Stick match).

I’m not sure what the prevailing rationale for having these two going at it in a kendo stick match is.  Beyond that, their previous match at the recent Payback pay per view, in which Bayley lost her title, wasn`t really all that entertaining either.

All things considered, I`d probably be inclined to put Bayley over here, as she’s probably better suited to do business with other more plausible championship contenders such as Charlotte, Sasha and Nia Jax, than Alexa, whose lack of size and wresting acumen makes it hard to plausibly program her with many of the other top divas.  I, none-theless, anticipate that they’ll probably leave the strap on Bliss for a while though, as the WWE scriptwriters, for some reason, seem to be smitten with her.

WWE Cruiserweight Title Match – Neville (Champion) vs. Austin Aries

These two hard working warriors have had some terrific matches in recent months, including an awesome encounter at the Payback pay per view, but because they’ve worked with each other so often lately there`s no compelling reason for anybody to want to see them work with each other again.

I anticipate Neville will retain his strap in this one – which will, hopefully, set him up for some potentially hot matches with other dynamic new contenders such as, perhaps, Nakamura, Balor, Styles and the rejuvenated Ziggler, although I’m not really holding my breath for that to be happening anytime soon.

On that note I’ll call this a wrap but will look forward to catching up with you all for my post-card prognosis next week.

In closing, I’d like to thank the PWP Nation’s Eron Ramadanov and countless others for posting encouraging well wishes for my brother Smith, who’s waging a valiant battle with cancer here in Calgary at the Foothills Hospital. Our thoughts and prayers are with him.

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About Bruce Hart