WWE has another huge weekend of wrestling events scheduled this weekend, and it’s safe to say that the stakes are high in a lot of ways. Over the course of a live NXT TakeOver special and a four-plus hour SummerSlam Pay Per View, an incredible nine titles will be on the line, including a match to determine the very first WWE Universal Champion. Plus, Brock Lesnar wrestles his first match since WrestleMania, amidst accusations of drug use from the USADA and laziness from other wrestlers. Oh yeah, and it’s also the first Pay Per View to occur fully within the confines of the new Brand Extension (remember, Battleground’s matches were booked before the Draft ever happened), and will likely set the tone for WWE’s plans for the rest of 2016. We thought about predicting match results, but anyone can do that, so we decided to take a deeper look at all the important stuff we think you should pay attention to on SummerSlam weekend, things that could determine if the whole event is a smashing success, or WWE’s worst nightmare.
14. It Pays To Be Roode
Bobby Roode’s NXT debut instantly made him a star. Sure, he’d been a big deal in TNA, but even at their best, that company got a fraction of WWE’s viewers, so it’s likely a lot of people still hadn’t heard of him when he walked through the curtain in NXT. But none of that mattered because from that first promo, Bobby Roode established that he is a big deal to be taken seriously. Also, his incredible entrance music (which might also be terrible, we’re still deciding) didn’t hurt his cause. While Roode’s prior experience definitely helped with his recognition, it was also on him to take the ball and run with it, and so far, he’s done a spectacular job, which should make his Brooklyn entrance something to behold. Contrast this to Roode’s opponent at TakeOver, Andrade “Cien” Almas, a very talented wrestler who was a big star before NXT, but who has stumbled badly out of the gate with an odd name, fairly silly ring attire, and very little character to speak of. Almas has tried hard, but the writing was on the wall when he was overshadowed by his first opponent, Tye Dillinger, at NXT TakeOver: Dallas, and we wouldn’t be shocked if he gets retooled very soon after facing Roode in Brooklyn.