It’s a crazy time in the world of sports and entertainment. The gossip mill seems to be flooded at the moment, whether it pertains to the WWE’s inability of sticking to a plan, or the success of other promotions currently killing it on the indie scene. The gossip mill hasn’t helped the WWE by any means as it seems like plans are constantly changing at the moment. You’ll see what we mean throughout this article with big time marquee matches being re-booked for both SummerSlam and WrestleMania.
Along with the two major events, we’ll also touch base on other gossip making the news which includes new arrivals, possible departures, future storylines leaked and everything in between. This is the latest gossip making the rounds so buckle up and get ready folks, this one’s going to be a wild ride!
From Paige’s demise outside of the WWE continuing to the main events of SummerSlam and WrestleMania being re-worked, we have a bit of everything in this article. However, you'll need to scroll down to number 11 for the "show stealer" of the article, a match being rumored for the August PPV. If this match happens, boy, will it ever make things interesting! So without further ado, here are 15 of the latest backstage WWE gossip you need to know about. Ring the bell and let’s get started, folks! Ding. Ding. Ding!
15 Returns & Departures
According to recent news, SmackDown Live in particular will see some returns and departures in the very near future. The Bulgarian Brute Rusev is finally set to return. After weeks of video packages promoting his arrival, Rusev was put on the sidelines for an extended amount of time due to Jinder Mahal’s recent push. The company didn’t want similar anti-American gimmicks running at the same time, particularly now with Jinder’s huge push. However, that’s likely finally changing as it appears Rusev is set to return, and probably, set to join forces with Jinder.
With Cena returning, it also makes Orton’s departure easier to digest. Randy is also set to take a break in the near future. According to the recent gossip, he’s scheduled to lose the Punjabi Prison match and likely, take a couple of months off.
14 A Tag Team Wants Out
The WWE Universe gulped when it was announced that the word backstage was that a team over on SmackDown wanted out. Many initially believed that duo was American Alpha, as the team has suffered big time since joining the main roster. Their TV time has been sporadic and insignificant for the most part as of late. However, thankfully, Jordan and Gable were not the two demanding the releases.
Instead, it’s believed that The Colons, Primo and Epico, finally want out. This shouldn’t be a surprise as the duo continues to flounder year after year. They have the talent but the gimmicks have just been lacking; seriously WWE, how do you expect a bunch of dudes selling time shares to get over? Nonetheless, it appears the two have a greater interest in pursuing a run over in Mexico, and you can’t blame them for that.
13 WWE Creative Not Committing To Long-Term Storylines
The main event for next year’s WrestleMania seemed to be penciled in, however, the new word backstage is that the creative behind the scenes have changed their plans due to Vince’s new requests. Once again, a storyline being put on paper a year in advance has caused some problems, and it appears as though the company is now heading into a different direction. We’ll have more on the new rumored route for SummerSlam and WrestleMania a little later in the article.
One thing we do know, is that the company no longer wants to commit to the long term. Many things have factored into this decision; for one, injuries can derail a long-term plan like we recently saw with Braun Strowman. Two, ratings also play a big role in the decision; with Lesnar as a part-time roster member, the ratings have suffered with no champion on the show. It appears like the WWE plans on changing that sooner than expected. The morale of the story here, don’t expect plans to be worked on a year in advance any longer.
12 The New Total Divas Cast & What It Implies?
The announcement was made for the new Total Divas cast just recently. The selections weren’t too surprising, however, those leaving did turn a couple of heads as it might indicate more turmoil with the talents. The likes of Paige and Eva Marie are now off the show despite being big draws for the reality program. Many believe Eva’s WWE days are done and as for Paige, knowing her personal life with Del Rio, placing her on the program was impossible. Even with Paige, the gossip backstage is that her time with the company is also up. Renee Young is the other name out of the cast, but that’s only to make way for the new faces.
The newest cast members for the next season includes Carmella, which isn’t too surprising given her recent push; Alexa Bliss is also set to debut on the reality show. And the wild card added to the cast is Nia Jax.
11 Blockbuster SummerSlam Match
The gossip regarding the backstage pertaining to SummerSlam is quite tense due to the fact that the company plans on making the event a huge deal this year. The WWE wants big matches for the card, something similar to a WrestleMania event.
We’ll touch base on some of the other matches a little later, but for now, we need to discuss the newest match being rumored for the show and one that has sent shockwaves throughout the WWE Universe. According to the rumor mill, the highly anticipated bout between A.J. Styles and Shinsuke Nakamura is set to take place at the major event. Many thought the company would have waited till ‘Mania to pull the trigger on such a bout, but it seems like the two will lock horns at the biggest event of the summer. Are you guys ready?
10 Hulk Returns To Face Jinder?
With SummerSlam looming, headlines and gossip seems to be trending upwards with various bits of information coming out. Some have validity, while others are pretty big head scratchers. A name that surfaced recently for a possible return was of the great Hulk Hogan. Now that doesn’t sound too bizarre as he’s been linked to return for quite some time, however, the rumor is for him to wrestle, which is kind of farfetched.
According to this piece of gossip, Hogan would return to take on Jinder Mahal in the classic anti-hero versus American-hero storyline. The WWE wants to elevate Jinder in India, so making him face someone like Hulk sounds masterful on paper. However, once again, such a plan seems really far from being true. The likely scenario will see Cena take on Jinder instead at the event with Corbin likely cashing in his MITB briefcase once John picks up the victory.
9 Raw’s Women’s Championship Plans For SummerSlam
Rarely does the WWE sprinkle in some long-term storytelling nowadays. The only match we can think of that included that ingredient featured an epic program involving Chris Jericho and Kevin Owens. Aside from that, matches are usually built for a couple of weeks. Take some examples for matches at Great Balls of Fire with the likes of Balor and Samson, and Bray Wyatt and Seth Rollins feuding for mere weeks.
However, this match has been worked on for quite some time with constant hints being dropped. It appears as though the long-term storyline between Nia Jax and champion Alexa Bliss, is finally set to combust at the SummerSlam event. Bliss has constantly dodged the match and it appears it's now happening in August, with Jax likely set to go over, giving her a first title reign and dethroning the long-time Women’s Champion.
8 Amore To The Cruiserweights
It seemed inevitable; however, many were surprised at how fast the WWE pulled the trigger on the duo of Enzo and Cass. The team was still over with the crowd, however, looking at Vince’s dislike for tag teams, the move really shouldn’t come as much of a shock.
Cass is set to work as a heel and get elevated feuding with the likes of Big Show. As for Enzo, many believe his future will be as a member of the 205 Live roster. The division needs a big time spark, and adding someone with the draw value and entertainment value of Amore would certainly help things. Also, given his smaller size, he would seem like a greater fit in the division. 205 Live has experienced some major dips since being up with the main roster, so we hope the company can change this sooner rather than later. First piece of business, move them out of live venues and go back to Full Sail!
7 The Club & Shield Rivalry
We haven’t seen factions battle it out in quite some time and the near future might be a good time to pull the trigger on such an idea. Looking at those involved, such a move would work wonders. The likes of Seth Rollins, Dean Ambrose, Finn Balor and The Club are really doing absolutely nothing noteworthy at the moment. Ambrose is an afterthought working a continuous story with The Miz, while Rollins and Balor, who are immensely talented, have gotten lost in the shuffle lately. And as for The Club, well many forget they're still on Raw.
The idea seems like a no-brainer and one that should take place following SummerSlam, or maybe even sooner. A possible rematch between Seth and Finn could also take place at the summer event, setting up the faction rivalry in the future heading into the next major event: Survivor Series.
6 Eva Marie Claims She’s Not Done With WWE
Joining the Performance Center in 2013, Eva had the look to make it. However, with the modern day WWE female being recognized for her true in-ring talents, that same potential went downhill. In another era, Eva would have likely made it pretty far, but not in this one.
Despite her squandered WWE run, she’s managed to make the most of a Hollywood career. Eva is currently on set on the regular working various films. For that reason, she was taken off the WWE roster as an active wrestler, although she’s still employed to the company. Many believe her time is likely done for good, ending her horrible run. However, in a recent interview, Eva discussed that she might not be fully done, and a surprise appearance or run can happen at some point down the road. What do you guys think; yay or nay on the return?
5 Joe To Get Prolonged Push
Not sure how this is even possible, but it seems like the WWE overlooked Joe’s abilities as a heel despite the fact that he’s been around the wrestling business forever. Joe was set to take on Lesnar is a short-term storyline, however, given Joe’s excellent work with The Beast, the program is set to get extended and run a little longer following their clash.
Joe has benefited greatly in the role. It seems like poor Braun Strowman won’t get his shot at the Beast anytime soon given the new SummerSlam plans, and the fact that Joe is expected to extend his work with Brock. However, never say never with the WWE, and we won’t be too shocked if Braun finds himself in a title match at some point. For the time being, he’s set to end his feud with Roman as the two lock up in an Ambulance Match set for the Great Balls of Fire PPV. Strowman was initially set to go over given his SummerSlam bout with Lesnar, but considering the plans have changed, it remains to be seen what the outcome will be.
4 Big Show Trashes WWE Creative
With his contract set to expire in February, it seems like Big Show is letting loose on the current backstage environment. During a recent Podcast interview, Show revealed that the atmosphere at live events is great, however, it’s the exact opposite when it comes to TV. According to the vet, Superstars are waiting around all day for a piece of paper from creative which is said to be horrible most of the time. Show was baffled at how writers that never even laced the boots can be given such power. Show revealed that the scripts usually lead to hours and hours of back and forth between the creative and the Superstar.
The sentiment felt by the locker room was a positive one pertaining to Show’s recent comments. Many believe Big Show spoke on behalf of the locker room. Given his status with the company, he was the right guy to reveal such information.
3 The Daniel Bryan Future Watch
The Daniel Bryan story continues to catch heat and you can expect that to only intensify once his contract expiration date gets closer in 2018. For now, Bryan continues on as the acting GM of SmackDown in a non-wrestling related role. However, that’s likely set to change as Bryan has expressed his desire to return in the squared circle.
He recently took things a step further via Twitter challenging the new ROH Champion Cody Rhodes. It was all done in good fun, however, it further speculated his possible release. With desires to have a last run in Mexico, Japan and ROH, his departure almost seems like a guarantee once his contract expires. It’ll be interesting to see how the WWE deals with such a decision, possibly losing one of their greatest stars of the 2000s to other promotions.
2 The Paige & Del Rio Break-Up?
Paige and Del Rio once again made the headlines last week pertaining to an apparent break up. Even wrestling insider Dave Meltzer, picked up on the story claiming there was some validity to it. However, all that speculation was finally put to an end during this weekend as the two were spotted together. Paige was alongside Del Rio at the Impact’s Slammiversary event as she was said to be backstage with her man. We can now confirm that the story was only gossip.
There had to be some truth however, and it seems like it isn’t the first time the couple has battled it out. Many WWE fans hope the relationship sours, which might lead to a Paige WWE return. It’ll be interesting to see how this one plays out but for the time being, Paige's WWE future still looks extremely bleak.
1 The New SummerSlam/WrestleMania Plans
The previous plan was simple: Lesnar retains against Strowman, leading to a blockbuster ‘Mania encounter between Roman and Brock for the championship. However, with ratings experiencing huge dips as of late, the plan has now been tweaked. The moment for Lesnar/Reigns appears to be now, with the two set to feud entering the upcoming SummerSlam event. This will also cause the WM main event to change, and man is the change ever drastic!
The new plan now involves Reigns to enter as champion, taking on Cena in the main event of the New Orleans show. The WWE has hinted at this colossal matchup for years, and it now appears as though this is the new direction intended for the biggest PPV of the year. Seems like the right decision, especially with the show needing a full-time champion. It’ll be interesting to see if the WWE follows through on the new plans.