Whether it is Great Balls of Fire or WWE Stomping Grounds, WWE seems to put together a makeshift PPV in the middle of the summer to pass over time. And as we say that, Stomping Grounds is this Sunday and it is time to preview the matches. Unfortunately, plenty of the matches are rematches from either WrestleMania, Money in the Bank, or WWE Super Showdown. Backlash died for this Stomping Grounds PPV, that somehow didn’t have Seth Rollins as the cover boy on the poster despite his finisher being The Stomp. Regardless, let us take a look at the lineup and get hyped for the first-time ever PPV!
Cruiserweight Championship: Tony Nese (c) vs Akira Tozawa vs Drew Gulak
If fans haven’t figured this out by now, here is it being said again. This match has an opportunity to steal the show. The Cruiserweight Championship and 205 Live in general allow some of the best in-ring action in all of WWE to occur. Tony Nese has proudly held the Cruiserweight Championship since defeating Buddy Murphy for the belt at WrestleMania and now looks to face his toughest battle yet. In the Fatal 4-Way match to decide the number one contender for the championship just a week ago, Akira Tozawa and Drew Gulak pinned each other to lead to dysfunction to end the show. It was then decided this week on 205 Live that both men would go on to face Nese at Stomping Grounds, which raises the question of who will walk out Cruiserweight Champion? Nese is sure to impress in hopes of retaining. While Tozawa being a former champion wants that championship back. And then the true wild card, Drew Gulak. Gulak has been chasing the championship for months and months, now he has his opportunity to win the championship. This should be a fun one.
SmackDown Tag Team Championships: Daniel Bryan & Rowan (c) vs Heavy Machinery
Daniel Bryan and Rowan are in for a true test as they defend their SmackDown Tag Team Championships against the young, up and coming team of Heavy Machinery. Otis and Tucker have earned the opportunity to compete for their first championships since making it to the main roster and are sure to do all they can to win those tag team titles. On the other hand, the Planet’s Tag Team Champions look to keep spreading the truth and changing the WWE and do not plan to lose to the Blue Collar Solid boys. Bryan went out of his way this past Tuesday on SmackDown LIVE to explain that these two can be a serious force but have too much fun to be a real threat. It will be interesting to see how the young team competes against the former WWE Champion and his partner.
Big E & Xavier Woods vs Kevin Owens & Sami Zayn
It is always nice to get tag team action on a PPV. And to follow that, tag team action that doesn’t involve a tag team championship. While some may be rolling their eyes at the thought of a TV type tag match happening at Stomping Grounds, this one has a chance to steal the show. Big E and Xavier Woods take on Sami Zayn and Kevin Owens in tag team action. Zayn and Owens have been a thorn in the side of WWE Champion Kofi Kingston, which means that his New Day brothers will gladly step up to shut them up with Big E back, healthy, and ready to go.
United States Championship: Samoa Joe (c) vs Ricochet
Quite possibly the most exciting matchup for this Sunday’s Stomping Grounds event comes through the form of the United States Champion Samoa Joe defending his championship against “The One and Only” Ricochet. Following the Fatal 5-Way Elimination Match victory by Ricochet, it is clear that he has found his groove on the main roster. On the other hand, is Samoa Joe, who is fresh off his rivalry with Rey Mysterio. With Joe on an angry rampage through the locker room, no one is safe. One way to put the end to this rampage for Joe is to hit Joe with the 630, a move that has not been kicked out of since his debut. It is not difficult to believe that these two could really steal the show this Sunday as the superhero-like Ricochet looks to slay the “Samoan Submission Machine” and win his first main roster championship on Sunday.
Roman Reigns vs Drew McIntyre
A good ole WrestleMania rematch. To be truthful, their first match was not too much to write home about but then again that was the first singles match since his return for “The Big Dog”. Roman Reigns lost to Shane McMahon at WWE Super Showdown due to a Claymore by Drew McIntyre, resulting in him being on the hunt ever since. On Raw, he laid out everyone in his way and even a Spear on Shane McMahon that left him lying. Now, the hunt is on to McIntyre, who has made this match as personal as possible. McIntyre pledges to make this fight uncomfortable and leave Reigns unrecognizable. The question that remains is simple. Can Roman Reigns fight off Drew McIntyre on his road back to Shane McMahon? Or will Drew McIntyre get his payback from his WrestleMania loss and for the Spear on Shane McMahon?
SmackDown Women’s Championship: Bayley (c) vs Alexa Bliss
The best build to a match on this card has been between the SmackDown Women’s Champion Bayley and Raw Superstar Alexa Bliss. Bliss won a number one contenders match on SmackDown LIVE a month ago when she pinned Carmella to gain the opportunity. Since then, the fear in fans hearts is that Bayley, finally back on top and once again over with the crowd, finds her way back to her problematic times following her first feud with Bliss. At the “Moment with Bliss” this past Tuesday, things got incredibly heated between the Stomping Grounds opponents. Bayley told Bliss she deserves nothing she has been given, while Bliss let it be known that Bayley peaked in NXT and she has lived the career Bayley dreamed of having. Alexa left Bayley laying at the end of the segment and will have Nikki Cross in her corner. Can Bayley overcome the odds and possibly bring some backup with her this Sunday? Possibly a “Boss” even? It should be a physical bout between the Raw and SmackDown Women with Bayley hopefully continuing her run.
Raw Women’s Championship: Becky Lynch (c) vs Lacey Evans
God bless Becky Lynch. Somehow through all of this with Lacey Evans, she remains one of the most popular wrestlers in the WWE. After forcing Evans to tap out at Money in the Bank, it seemed as though “The Man” could move on from “The Sassy Southern Belle”. Oh, how we were wrong. Instead, Lacey Evans gets her second opportunity at the Raw Women’s Championship this Sunday after helping Becky lose her SmackDown Women’s Championship at Money in the Bank. Their first match was nothing to write home about by any means and there is not much here to make us feel it could be any different. Of course, it may help that Lynch doesn’t have to wrestle twice in one night. It is hard to believe Lacey Evans will dethrone Becky Lynch of her Raw Women’s Championship this Sunday as Becky remains incredibly popular, but we have certainly seen crazier things happen.
WWE Championship: Kofi Kingston (c) vs Dolph Ziggler in a Steel Cage Match
Dolph Ziggler is on a path like no other to prove that it should have been him and not Kofi Kingston winning the WWE Championship. After Xavier Woods’ inclusion in their match at WWE Super Showdown, Ziggler went out of his way to keep The New Day away from helping Kingston this time around. The match will take place inside a Steel Cage which may be what Ziggler wants, but unfortunately for him, there is not a hotter wrestler in the company. Kofi Kingston has yet to lose since winning his WWE Championship and it is hard to believe he will be losing to Ziggler come this Sunday. It should be a fun match between two longtime rivals with Kofi Kingston more than likely coming out on top, retaining his WWE Championship.
Universal Championship: Seth Rollins (c) vs Baron Corbin
The Universal Champion Seth Rollins has hit everyone with a steel chair the past two weeks it seems. Rollins has gone all out in hopes of leaving Baron Corbin with zero options of a Special Guest Referee that Corbin has been allowed to choose for their match. Rollins has taken out the B-Team, Eric Young, and EC3 among others in hopes of proving no one should or would want to help Baron Corbin. With Brock Lesnar breathing down his throat at the Money in the Bank holder, Rollins has become an out of control maniac to keep his Universal Championship around his waist. That should probably be loved by the fans of Rollins as he will simply do whatever it takes to keep the championship he was so determined to take away from Brock Lesnar. For the love of all who is good, we can only hope Baron Corbin does not walk out of WWE Stomping Grounds as Universal Champion and Rollins can Stomp his way to another successful defense.
While this event is filled with rematches and dual brand bouts, there are some things to happily look forward to on this card. What is difficult to think is that Intercontinental Champion Finn Balor is absent from this card and has been from SmackDown LIVE for weeks now. Hopefully, we hear from Finn soon. WWE Stomping Grounds airs for the first time ever this Sunday at 7 pm EST.
Stay tuned to the Last Word on Pro Wrestling for more on this and other stories from around the world of wrestling, as they develop. You can always count on LWOPW to be on top of the major news in the wrestling world, as well as to provide you with analysis, previews, videos, interviews, and editorials on the wrestling world. Make sure to watch WWE Stomping Grounds on the WWE Network