Smackdown will host Battleground on July 23, 2017 as its final major event before Summerslam. It will be held in Baltimore, Maryland and will air on pay per view and the WWE Network. Here is the finalized official card:
Kickoff Pre-show: Aiden English vs. Tye Dillinger
WWE Championship: Jinder Mahal (c) vs. Randy Orton (Punjabi Prison Match)
United States Championship: AJ Styles (c) vs. Kevin Owens
Flag Match: John Cena vs. Rusev
Tag Team Championship: The Usos (c) vs. The New Day
Shinsuke Nakamura vs. Baron Corbin
Fatal Five Way #1 Contender Match: Becky Lynch vs. Charlotte Flair vs. Lana vs. Natalya vs. Tamina
Talking Smack’s cancellation came as a shock but the reason behind it is equally shocking. The official statement given as to why the show was axed was low ratings but the truth is that Vince McMahon himself did not like the show. According to a report from SI.com, Vince was at television this past week and was “unhappy with the show and strongly believed it did not serve the company’s best interests.” For now it will air after PPVs but it appears to be on borrowed time on that slot according to this report.
Rey Mysterio may be coming back to the WWE. According to SI.com, WWE and GFW are in negotiations with the icon. Rey’s current contract with Lucha Underground expires 90 days after the third season stops airing in September but that deal has a 90 day noncompete clause. El Ray Network has not announced plans for a fourth season as of yet, making Rey a potential free agent.
WWE may resurrect Saturday Night’s Main Event. According to Pro Wrestling Times, the fan favorite show may be making a return after its last show in 2008.
Reports are circulating that Brock Lesnar is leaving the WWE after WrestleMania 34. Sportskeeda reported that Brock was leaving the WWE after WrestleMania 34 Brock Lesnar was seen with Paul Heyman at UFC Headquarters for a meeting with top officials. According to a MMA Fan by the name of #Dizz ©?, Brock was entering the US Anti-Doping Agency’s testing pool. He also stated that Brock would drop the belt at Summerslam and head back to UFC to fight in a bout in Madison Square Garden for UFC 217. This would be his first bout since his fight with Mark Hunt at UFC 200, which was marred by Brock failing two prefight drug tests. Brock’s win was turned into a no contest after the results of the tests.
Paige may be facing battery charges in regards to her highly publicized spat with her fiancee, Alberto Del Rio, at Orlando International Airport. The State’s Attorney Office will ultimately make the decision after detectives determined that probable cause exists. This looks bad for the embattled star, especially in light of all the negative press that’s come her way before this happened. So far, WWE has not acknowledged the incident but she could be released if she is convicted of the charge in accordance to company policy. She could still be released if she is charged should the company wish to distance itself from her.
NXT’s Buddy Murphy was injured during a live show on Thursday. He appeared to have injured his ankle. There has been no statements so far regarding his status.
Mark Henry is transitioning into a role outside of the ring with WWE. He’s no longer actively wrestling but has been increasingly working behind the scenes in other areas, such as talent evaluation.