Post-WrestleMania season brings in lots of rumors both of the good and bad variety. If Backlash was any indication of what is to come, it’s going to be a rocky road heading into SummerSlam; the event was not well received.
In this article, we take a look at the good, which features possible signings, long awaited returns and future storylines that are possibly in the works. However, not all of the current stories are of the good variety. We’ll take a look at the dark side as well, with future scheduled matches nobody wants to see along with other lackluster future plans. Wrestlers featured in this article include Braun Strowman, Dean Ambrose, Hulk Hogan, Roman Reigns and Brock Lesnar - along with lots of others.
Enjoy the article folks and like always, be sure to share it with a friend. Without further ado, here are eight recent WWE rumors currently circulating (that we hope are true) and eight that we don’t. We begin the article with the rumors swirling around regarding who the possible chosen one is to finally slay Brock's Universal Championship run. However, on the “don’t” side, we’ll feature news discussing Lesnar and the fact that his title run isn’t ending in the upcoming weeks...
16 True – Braun Strowman To Defeat Brock Lesnar
The finish to last night’s Backlash show was truly puzzling, especially seeing Roman’s hand once again raised in victory. It seems like the Big Dog is staying in the Universal Title picture, though the one to dethrone Lesnar might not be Reigns after all. A new rumor is now emerging that Braun Strowman might be the one to defeat Brock, a rumor which most WWE fans would be happy with.
It seems like the Universal Title scenario is constantly changing. We were sure that Roman was set to win the championship at either WrestleMania or the Greatest Royal Rumble, though both finishes (at both events) saw Lesnar retain the title. We even read a rumor that Lashley was the one set to defeat Brock but given his booking since returning, that rumored SummerSlam bout also seems highly unlikely.
Braun remains over and it seems as though he’s got the best shot at beating Brock. The rumored timeline for such a match is at the upcoming Money In The Bank PPV event.
The details of the match are still sketchy but we wouldn’t be too surprised if it’s a fatal-four-way featuring Strowman, Lashley and Roman all going for the Universal Championship against Brock Lesnar.
15 Untrue – Neville Nearing The End
It’s hard to believe, but it has now been seven months since Neville walked out of the WWE. Rumors have swirled about a possible return ever since, even linking the WWE star to a move on the SmackDown brand. Regardless of the scenario, the popular opinion would be for Neville to return, however according to the latest reports, things are at an all-time low between Neville and the WWE. Neville is expected to be gone from the company.
The story intensified due to the fact that he’s now gone from the Florida area and has moved back to the UK. Surely, that doesn’t help his future. The word backstage is that WWE officials haven’t even discussed Neville in months, which also doesn’t help things either.
This case seems to be unique as WWE normally releases talents on breach of contract. CM Punk got his release five months after walking out of the company. We hope there is some type of resolution to the story, though things are now at an all-time low between both sides. Who else secretly hopes Bray Wyatt and Broken Matt find Neville inside of the Lake of Reincarnation? Yup, that’s wishful thinking on our part; you’re more likely to find him in ROH or New Japan in the very near future it seems.
14 True – Major Returns Expected To Take Place
Wrestling fans love debuts, but returns are also quite key for WWE programming. You can expect some major names to return really soon, as soon as this upcoming episode of Raw. Jason Jordan is expected to return on the May 7th episode, and in all likelihood, he’ll resume his work with Seth Rollins and maybe down the line, challenge his “father” Kurt Angle. For those of you that are hoping Jordan rejoins partner Chad Gable, that’s likely not going to happen.
Another major return is also in the works, but for a later date in the summer. Dean Ambrose sustained a devastating triceps injury which has put him on the shelf for quite some time. Prior to the injury, Ambrose was looked at as an 'iron man' rarely missing any time whatsoever for the company. Whether it was a live event or Raw, Dean was there.
The timing of his injury wasn’t all that bad as his character needed a bit of a refresh. We haven’t heard much from Dean since he got hurt, however Shield brother Seth Rollins recently gave us a bit of an update in terms of a timeline for his return;
“He (Dean) had some pretty extensive triceps surgery earlier this year so he’s definitely still on the mend and rehabbing. But he’ll be back and better than ever, you wait. Summertime, maybe late Spring. Somewhere in there, I think, whenever that wily guy gets back to normal."
13 Untrue – Roman & Jinder Program
Fans certainly hope this one isn’t true.
However, future live event bookings give us an idea of feuds that are set to take place and with Roman and Jinder to partake in numerous matches against one another, this feud seems highly likely, but don’t tell all the Roman haters...
The Big Dog was once again poorly received at the Backlash PPV event. Reigns inexplicably main evented the show in a non-titled bout and as if that wasn’t bad enough, Roman saw his hand held in victory. The fans once again refused to have an interest in the match, even with Joe involved. Chants of “beat the traffic” during a match are truly never a good sign for any performer.
Giving Roman Jinder to work with isn’t going to help things, but looking at the heels currently on Raw, such an opponent would make total sense. Baron Corbin is another possible rival but again, that’s another match fans can do without. Best case scenario, Roman turns heel and has a fresh slate of opponents to take on but again, that’s highly unlikely. At the very least, please WWE, put him against Drew McIntyre, that’ll give the crowd some good matches while elevating the former NXT Champion.
12 True – PPV Name Returning & PPV Time Length
WWE has a lot of underwhelming PPV names, such as Fast Lane, Payback and Battleground, just to name a few. WCW, in the past, had some great PPV concepts and one of them was the Great American Bash. The event served as a rival for WWE’s SummerSlam. From the theme of the show to the set design, WCW nailed the PPV during its prime in the wrestling industry. WWE used the event name in the past and it looks as though they plan on doing the same in the very near future.
The company caused a buzz most recently filing a trademark for the name. It’s believed that the trademark was used for the usage of an upcoming show.
Another positive is the WWE deciding to use the non-major PPVs with both brands and keeping it to a three-hour show. Fans feared McMahon would revert to four hour shows for every PPV, however thankfully, that’s not the case. This is great in the sense that matches will have more meaning and that the card is going to be stacked from top to bottom. Some would argue that the dual branded events got off to a terrible start as Backlash pretty much sunk following the opening bout. And oh, as of 11 PM, the main event wasn’t even underway...
11 Untrue – SmackDown Pushed To 3 Hours
The likes of Forbes recently discussed the possibility of SmackDown moving to three hours – a decision that was highly debated by the WWE Universe. Following the Superstar Shakeup, the Tuesday show added a plethora of talent making the roster that much deeper. Putting things into perspective, the likes of the Usos, Rusev and Aiden English got relegated to pre-show duties on the recent show in Montreal. Cracking the main roster over on SmackDown is a lot harder given the two hours of programming.
Yes, the show can easily revert to a three hour format and fill-in the time slot easily, however that’s not the right decision. What makes SmackDown so unique is the fact that it’s easy to watch and filled with action.
Changing it to three hours takes a lot of that away and it’ll likely drive viewers away. Thinking about dedicating three hours of your day is a lot different than two. We hope these rumors stay rumors and that this doesn’t come to fruition. However, knowing McMahon’s love for lengthy shows, it’s definitely a possibility. And with the USA deal coming to an end, the network can also make a pitch to keep the shows while pushing SD to three hours as well.
10 True – Major Indie Talents Signed
Now, more than ever before, the WWE is constantly searching for the top talents from around the world. The purpose of NXT was initially done to develop major athletes from other sports. However, over the years we’ve seen a shift in that mind-set with lots of independent talent joining the company. Two other prominent indie names recently made the headlines with rumors swirling that both are set to join the WWE. As a matter of fact, according to PWTorch, Keith Lee is already a part of the company;
“PWTorch has learned from multiple sources that Keith Lee has signed with WWE and is expected to report to NXT in the near future after finishing up his independent dates in May.”
A rival of Keith’s is also strongly linked to the company. It’s being reported that the WWE also extended an offer to WALTER;
“PWTorch sources have confirmed that WALTER has been offered a WWE deal. International signings are usually very complicated and the process for WWE to sign an international talent takes a long time to play out. According to multiple sources, WALTER has not signed the deal WWE offered him.” Such news is nothing but positive especially given the mammoth size of both these talents. They’ll become major names if these rumors are proven to be true down the road.
9 Untrue – WWE Snubbing Batista
Last workout before I head out to promote @avengers .. and that’s what this picture is for! Strictly promoting Avengers Infinity War. It’s not at all a shameless gratuitous ab shot! 😳.... 😖ok ok!! It is! It’s a cheap, shameless, douchey, pointless, gratuitous ab shot!! I admit it! But in my defense 1-I rarely and I mean rarely post shots like this. And 2-at my age, how much longer am I going to have abs?! So cut me some freaking slack people! and I am already aware that you don’t like my damn tattoos! So save your shitty comments! Have a nice day😊...and remember to get your tickets for @avengers #infinitywar #Drax #dcpride
In the recent months, Batista was approached by the WWE. The company thought about adding Batista as the partner of Ronda Rousey for the recent WrestleMania encounter against Triple H and Stephanie. Now it all sounded great on paper, however Batista wanted a prolonged feud with Triple H leading to another singles match between the two.
Such an idea doesn’t sound horrible, however it might have sounded bad to the WWE as the Animal never got a call back. He even reached out, but to no avail.
Snubbing such a wrestler with so much star power outside of the company is truly bizarre and a rumor we hope isn’t true. Batista discussed the matter and he wasn’t too pleased with his dealings with the company;
"But they reached out to me earlier this year to possibly come back and do that thing with Ronda [Rousey]. And I said that I would be willing to do it only if we teased something for me and Hunter [Triple H] to go to Mania next year. They just stopped talking to me about it. Man, I don't know what else I can do to try to... I want to end my career the right way. I'm faithful and loyal to the WWE. I'm proud of being from there and I want to do good business with them, but they just don't make it easy. You know, they just don't."
8 True – Rusev’s Push On The Way
A major story currently being discussed is Rusev finally getting the push he deserves. However, for those of you that like Aiden English, it might result in his partner getting the ax from the act.
The word backstage is that Rusev can become a star but he needs to do so without English. Despite the fact that Aiden is a respected name behind the scenes, the company just doesn’t buy into his look and gimmick as being one with legitimacy (compared to the top stars).
Therefore, a split between the two is expected to take place in the upcoming weeks. While some might think it’s too early to separate the due date, it seems like the WWE is backed in a corner with the two, especially due to the fact that they have absolutely nothing for them as a tag team.
Whether or not Rusev reunites with Lana remains to be seen. The good news here is that the company is finally listening to the fans and they know they have something special with the character. Back in 2014 it would have been unthinkable to discuss Rusev’s name as a major babyface for the company, but that’s the current reality.
7 Untrue - Heat On Corey Graves Could Get Him Replaced
By far the best part of the Raw and SmackDown commentaries are the witty remarks made by color commentator Corey Graves. Given how over the announcer is, this rumor was quite alarming. According to recent reports, Corey entered the WWE’s bad books for a controversial statement he made in relation to WWE’s recent trip to Saudi Arabia. Here’s what he had to say;
“A drink to remember that no matter how bad WE think we have it, at least our women have rights and we all have freedom of expression.”
Graves proceeded to deactivate the comments on his IG post given the controversy it stirred up. Reports later surfaced that Graves wasn’t as untouchable as he thinks he is, and that he’s replaceable.
The rumors weren’t the most popular, however Dave Meltzer gave us some clearance on the matter stating the story of Graves being replaced is “laughable”. According to Meltzer, the word backstage is that he’s “a big part of WWE TV and is well liked by almost everyone”. Is the "almost liked by everyone" dropping a little hint? Okay, we might be digging a little too deep, although he did have some past heat with Enzo but seriously, who didn’t? And oh, that Booker heat turned out to be all a work as well.
6 True – Hogan Returning To The WWE
“WWE applauds the work Hulk Hogan is doing with Boys & Girls Clubs of America to turn what was a negative into a positive by helping young people learn from his mistake. While he has taken many steps in the right direction since we parted ways, Hogan is not currently under contract to WWE.”
It seems as though Hulk Hogan continues to do his very best behind the scenes to get back in the good books of the WWE. The fact that the company is now more open to discuss his name is most certainly a clear sign that he might be returning in the near future.
Following his initial departure in 2015 due to the controversy, Hogan was instantly taken off from all major video packages and his name was not mentioned when it came to WWE programming. As we’ve seen in the past, time heals all wounds and a Hogan return is closer than ever.
How and what he’ll do remains a mystery. Hogan has expressed the desire to wrestle, however that seems highly unlikely. A role as a GM can be a possible position for the Hulkster. We can also see Hogan serve as an ambassador for the company, similar to his role prior to the fallout.
5 Untrue – Ronda Rousey Not Wrestling Till SummerSlam
It’s great to have Ronda Rousey in the WWE. To her credit, she’s been on the show following her WrestleMania match, however her role hasn’t been inside of the squared circle and instead, she’s taking part in backstage skits and serving as a manager for Natalya in the recent episodes of Monday Night Raw.
Rousey’s not being advertised for anything asides from SummerSlam, leading to speculation that her next match is set to take place at the event.
The decision wouldn’t be a popular one as it means we’ll have to wait another couple of months for another bout featuring the former UFC Champion. Given all the hype from her recent match - waiting that long to get her back in the ring is a bad idea.
In terms of possible opponents, it seems as though Nia Jax is the likely Superstar to take on Ronda. Of course, the match would be for the Women’s Championship. We can also see the possibility of Nattie turning on Rousey, setting up a match between the two. If that is to take place, we hope such a bout happens before SummerSlam. Why not put it on Raw and get more national eyes on the product?
4 True – Major Push For Samoa Joe
Although his loss to Roman Reigns was quite peculiar given the recent rumors of a massive push, we’ll still hope that this rumor is true despite the recent loss, linking Samoa Joe to a big time future over on the Tuesday show. The current word behind the scenes is that Joe was moved to SmackDown Live due to the company wanting to put Joe in a bigger position.
The current rumor has Joe becoming a huge part of the main event picture, likely working a lengthy feud with a familiar foe in AJ Styles.
Given the talent level of these two performers, we can all agree that such a match and program is best for business once AJ finishes up his story with current rival Shinsuke Nakamura.
For now, we expect the company to continue in elevating Joe even further. As for AJ, he’ll likely continue on with Nakamura till the Money in the Bank PPV event. Given the recent puzzling finish between the two that saw neither make the count of ten, we can expect another future encounter between the two with a new stipulation added. Perhaps a Last Man Standing match might make sense given the recent finish? Either way, it’ll be another good one.
3 Untrue – Brock Set To Break The Championship Record
All of a sudden, Brock’s lengthy title reign is starting to make more sense. The current rumor suggests that the WWE has plans to make Lesnar the greatest champ of all-time in terms of the length of his run with the championship. He isn’t expected to defend the strap till the Money in the Bank PPV, meaning he’ll pass the record once that championship defense takes place. The current record has Punk at 434 days, while Lesnar is set to pass that by the MITB event; he’ll be at 441 days.
Of course, most fans won’t be too happy that we're in for an extended Lesnar championship run. It also doesn’t help that we rarely see Lesnar on WWE programming these days. This is a negative rumor and one fans are hoping to see end sooner rather than later. Whether it’s Strowman or Reigns winning the strap, Lesnar losing the title is best for business. At this point, he’s doing the title no favors and the championship hasn’t been the same for quite some time. Once again, he’s expected to lose it at MITB but we won’t be shocked if the run with the strap is once again extended to SummerSlam, depending on his future with the UFC.
2 True - John Cena & Nikki Bella Breakup Not Real
One of the most shocking stories to recently emerge was the breakup of John Cena and Nikki Bella after a six year relationship. Even more puzzling, it’s been revealed that the two actually filmed the separation, leading lots of people to believe that this was done in order to bring in more viewers for the upcoming season of Total Bellas.
Mike Johnson discussed the matter and he stated that ratings might have something to do with the breakup;
“They were together before the whole Total Divas began and then they had to ask John if he would do the show. He always did it because he said it was good for her and good for the company. But announcing that they had broken up just a few weeks before Total Bellas debuts — certainly, that’s a lot of free publicity leading into the new season. With WWE in the middle of doing television negotiations, so let's show NBC Universal how worthwhile our reality show are for them — and their ratings have been down compared to previous seasons."
With television rights on the line, McMahon himself could have given this breakup a nudge as well. We won’t be surprised if this story transpired purposely, though most fans would be pleased given the popularity of these two as a couple.
1 Untrue - Carmella and John Cena Dating
This one is likely to be totally false, however recent speculation certainly has fans buzzing nonetheless. According to Brad Shepard of BodySlam.net, not only is John Cena dating again, but his partner is rumored to be a member of the Total Divas cast (and her last name is not Bella). Now given the fact that most of the Divas are taken and in a relationship, that leaves the door open for Carmella possibly being the one that’s dating John, especially due to the fact that she’s now single since her split with Big Cass.
Adding fuel to the fire, it is said that Cena was spotted at a bar in Tampa.... perhaps this is a coincidence, but Carmella also resides in the Tampa area. The story caught even more heat given Carmella’s recent push that seemingly came out of nowhere. Some are linking the push to her connection toJohn Cena. It was expected that Carmella was to lose her MITB contract but instead, she won the championship and successfully defended her title against Charlotte. She’s clearly receiving a massive push and some are speculating that it’s due to her new connection with a certain WWE star...
Again, for now this is only speculation and a rumor a lot of fans hope is untrue.