With the recent injury of Braun Strowman, WWE creative had to get ... well, creative ... in a hurry to rebuild their broken summer plans. Thankfully, Vince and crew do some of their best work when backed into a corner. Instead of the rumored Ambulance Match between Strowman and Reigns, we will now get a Fatal Five Way match at Extreme Rules with the winner moving on to face Brock Lesnar at July's Great Balls of Fire pay per view.
Raw General Manager, Kurt Angle, announced that Roman Reigns, Seth Rollins, Finn Balor, Samoa Joe and Bray Wyatt will battle in the first ever Fatal Five Way at Extreme Rules to determine The Beast's next opponent.
The best thing the newly formed match brings to the WWE Universe is the feeling of uncertainty. When modern wrestling fans feel like they know what's coming, they are much more likely to revolt against the outcome. We may actually have more fun speculating on who could win than we do watching the match unfold.
It's this feeling that makes The Royal Rumble and Money In The Bank such a successful event. Give us multiple performers with some kind of championship opportunity to vie for and we are ALL IN!
With that in mind, let's take a look at the five men who will be getting Extreme for a golden ticket to Suplex City and rank them in order of best choices to come out on top.
5. Samoa Joe
Lesnar transcends heel or face, so putting Joe in a bout with him at a second tier pay per view like Great Balls of Fire isn't completely out of the question, although it seems very unlikely. While the thought of Lesnar and Joe clashing like angry water buffaloes is intriguing, it just feels like its too soon.
Ultimately, I believe Samoa Joe's best run on the WWE main roster will come down the road, possibly on SmackDown Live. He's been booked well since coming up to Raw, but his timing sucks. With Braun Strowman sitting at the top of the heel card and WWE looking to build Lesnar as an unstoppable champion until WrestleMania 34, Joe will have to carve out his own niche right below the main event for the time being.prevnext
4. Seth Rollins
Are you going to put Seth Rollins in a Universal Championship match and not have him win it? Would having Rollins lose to Lesnar stunt all the momentum he gained from defeating Triple H and Samoa Joe?
Rollins failed in all of his attempts to defeat Kevin Owens for the Universal Championship last year. If he did lose to Lesnar, would he suddenly not be seen as a valid Championship contender?
Whether any of the above is true, it just doesn't feel like the time is right for Rollins to challenge for Lesnar's belt.prevnext
3. Bray Wyatt
Some of the scary shine has come off Wyatt after the House of Horrors debacle and honestly, his spooky promos are way tired. But have you noticed Bray Wyatt gets the best reactions when he hits a fellow 'heel' with Sister Abigail? Perhaps his best days will be ahead of him as a cooky babyface. He's got the smile down already!
Wyatt winning at Extreme Rules would give him a good opportunity to play to a bit of a tweener against Lesnar, who also draws mixed reactions from the crowd.
Yeah, I know a match between the two would ultimately result in another Wyatt loss on the biggest stage, but I don't believe losing to Lesnar would hurt him as much as losing to Orton did.
Great Balls of Fire is an incredibly strange pay per view name, so in a way, having an incredibly strange main event would make a lot of sense.prevnext
2. Roman Reigns
if the rumors are true, Reigns and Lesnar will be kept apart for as long as possible. WWE apparently wants to cash in on a big WrestleMania 31 rematch by having Reigns dethrone Lesnar next year in New Orleans at WrestleMania 34.
With that wrestling logic in mind, putting Roman in a match with Lesnar now would be too soon. However, there's a way WWE could do it that would help boost interest in Great Balls of Fire and hype next year's WrestleMania main event.
Lesnar and Reigns could have a bout that makes both stars look larger than life without giving away a clean finish. Braun Strowman is now expected to be back in time for SummerSlam, so having him unexpectedly interfere in this match would be a perfect no-finish.
Imagine Strowman laying out both Roman and Brock to end the pay per view. He would come off as a freaking wrestling god! This could happen with Brock and anyone, but Roman would make the most sense.prevnext
1. Finn Balor
When Balor first burst on the main event scene, he shot straight up the card to become the WWE's first Universal Champion. Since his return from injury, he's already been pinned twice, once cleanly by Roman Reigns.
If Balor doesn't get a chance to at least attempt to regain his Universal Championship soon, he could fade into the midcard.
The worry here is that Balor is too small to face Brock Lesnar, but if Kalisto can fight Braun Strowman in a dumpster match, anything is possible! Unless they plan on putting Finn Balor in the Cruiserweight division, which they obviously don't, they may as well capitalize on his popularity and get him back in the main event scene.
I realize WWE wants to get all roads pointing to Lesnar and Reigns at 'Mania 34, but it's just not feasible to have Brock Lesnar hold the belt for an entire year. Modern WWE fans have add. We need belts swapping every few months, damn it!
Even if Balor doesn't beat Lesnar, he could come out of the battle looking like an absolute star, just as he did last night on Raw with Roman Reigns.prev