Welcome to another edition of eWN Round Table, where we gather some of the most active writers here on eWrestlingNews and share the platform to answer some questions surrounding a centralized topic, upcoming event, etc.
This is meant to showcase the potential for both a wide range of perspectives as well as how sometimes, there can be a group consensus no matter what your viewpoint is, so we also invite all of you to join in on the discussion by answering these questions yourself in the comments section below.
For this particular volume, we’ll be focusing on NXT TakeOver Toronto and SummerSlam 2019.
Participants for this round = Anthony Mango, Richard Staple, Ethan Absler and Kyle Dunning.
1) “How long should SummerSlam be?”
MANGO: Ideally, start time at 4pm EST, end time at either 10 or 11pm EST. The first hour is strictly recap material and nothing more, not even advertised as anything else, and no video packages on the actual show (watch the pre-show if you want to be caught up, or just watch Raw and SmackDown). That should be the pre-show, and there should be no kickoff match. It should just be an event from 5-10/11, all matches. However, WWE doesn’t do that, so I say keep it from a 5pm start time with a 2-hour kickoff and the main card from 7-11 with the slight possibility you go into 11:30, but it shouldn’t end at midnight.
STAPLE: Ideally it will be no more than 3 and a half hours, but knowing WWE will end up being closer to 5. Let’s hope Summerslam doesn’t end up being the cure for insomnia.
ABSLER: I believe SummerSlam should be no longer than 3-4 hours. Anything longer than that, and even the most passionate wrestling fan will have trouble paying attention for the whole show.
DUNNING: Four hours is enough for me, including the pre-show. There’s only so much any fan can watch before it feels like we’re running a marathon.
2) “Which top champion has the highest chance of losing his/her title between Brock Lesnar, Kofi Kingston, Becky Lynch and Bayley, and why?”
MANGO: I expect all four to retain their titles, but if I had to pick, I’d say Kofi Kingston by a narrow margin over Bayley. Essentially, I’m 100% certain Lesnar and Lynch keep their belts (even with Nattie being in Canada), 99% sure Bayley retains and 98% sure Kingston is still champion, too.
STAPLE: I was gonna say Becky because we’re in Toronto, but I actually am going to go with Kofi Kingston. With Smackdown’s move to FOX looming, they may want more mainstream stars holding their top titles at the moment. Orton has the name and the legacy.
ABSLER: I think Kofi Kingston is in the most jeopardy of losing his title. There is no way that Lesnar loses on his first defense, Natalya defeating Lynch seems unlikely, and same with Ember Moon’s match. Kingston on the other hand, must face Randy Orton. Orton has proved time and time again that he’s still relevant and this will be Kofi’s toughest challenge yet.
DUNNING: Hard to say, because I believe they will all retain. If I have to pick someone though? It will be Randy Orton winning in controversial circumstances.
3) “What are you hoping the third stipulation will be for Adam Cole vs. Johnny Gargano?”
MANGO: It’s a waste that one of them is a regular match, and with Street Fight being #2, that really renders most other stipulations pointless (like Falls Count Anywhere). What would be hilarious is if the final stipulation was “2-out-of-3 Falls”, making this an Inception-like maze. However, I’ll keep it simple and say Last Man Standing with Cole only winning because The Undisputed ERA pick him up.
STAPLE: The feud between the two has to end, and I’m hoping that the final fall will end up being the first ever Hell in a Cell match in NXT history. Then again, it wouldn’t be much of a surprise considering that the cell would have to be suspended above the ring and everyone would know it’s coming. So I’ll hope for Falls Count Anywhere to see the craziness they can come up with.
ABSLER: I am hoping that the third and final stipulation is a “Falls Count Anywhere” match. This match will allow the two to fight anywhere in the arena, a great and violent climax for their match.
DUNNING: We’ll know if it’s a cage match early in the night, but if it’s not? I’d like to see an I Quit stipulation to decide the NXT Championship.
4) “Have you enjoyed the NXT Breakout Tournament so far? What are your thoughts on the competitors? Who should win the title shot?”
MANGO: I don’t see why they went with Cameron Grimes for a finalist, as he hasn’t impressed me too much. Bronson Reed, Joaquin Wilde, meh. Angel Garza stood out to me. Jordan Myles is worthy of a finalist spot. Dexter Lumis has something to offer, for sure. Boa is big. Overall, I really like that they did this out of the blue, as it makes all 8 guys seem more important than if they just slowly rolled them out.
STAPLE: The Breakout tournament has provided some quality matches on NXT, and I’ve very much enjoyed it. I am very much high on Cameron Grimes to get the shot.
ABSLER: So far I have loved the NXT Breakout tournament. All of the talent is incredible including the in-ring work and character work. Some of the matches have been the match of the night and competitors such as Dexter Lumis were able to effectively get over despite losing.
DUNNING: It’s been enjoyable seeing familiar faces from Impact, ROH and other promotions. While I’ve seen more of Cameron Grimes’ work, Jordan Myles is a more exciting talent. In future, I’d like to see more of Angel Garza and Dexter Lumis. Myles is my pick to earn the title shot with the biggest smile.
5) “Agree or disagree: Trish Stratus should retire with this being her final match.”
MANGO: Disagree. I think this should be “her final match” only in the sense of it possibly functioning in that role. But what about Alexa Bliss and other people who she wanted to work with? If she’s able to go at any point in the future, it should be left open without her having to formally come out of retirement. This should be a spiritual final match, similar to The Undertaker vs. Roman Reigns, but not something where she says she’s officially done, like Kurt Angle vs. Baron Corbin.