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The Grapevine (6/29/18): A Beast of No Nation


Good morning, and this is the Grapevine! This section of Smark Henry is where we round up all the founded and unfounded rumors abound the pro wrestling scene that you may have missed over the evening.

Why isn't the Extreme Rules main event proceeding as originally planned?

  • WWE is apparently recycling Brock Lesnar's uncertainty with the UFC from earlier this year. The company has announced that they've been having "contractual issues" with Lesnar, which forced them to cancel the fatal four-way match at Extreme Rules that would have determined a new #1 contender for the Universal Championship at SummerSlam. This is all reportedly a work, designed again to get Roman Reigns over, as he's still the chosen one to win the title from Brock. There's still no definite date on when the next Universal Championship defense will be.

    Meanwhile, there is some talk of Brock fighting the winner of the Daniel Cormier vs. Stipe Miocic fight on December 29. In order to be eligible for that fight, Brock would have to enter the USADA testing pool this week. (Source: WON)
We say: This is a boneheaded, counterproductive idea and the biggest justification for the author's death. Call the audible already and save RAW.
  • Shinsuke Nakamura was pulled from this week's episode of SmackDown Live because he was bitten by a Bakersfield police dog backstage this Monday. The incident happened during a routine backstage search by the police, in which the dog apparently sniffed Nakamura and bit his leg without provocation. Though Nakamura only has a sore leg, WWE did not clear him to compete as a precaution. (Source: PWInsider)
We say: Although it's a total non-issue at this point, this story sounds really shady. Did Jeff Hardy plant some... herbs... on Nakamura's person? Why would a police dog—which doesn't really bite until either commanded or provoked—bite the King of Strong Style? It's also doubly fishy when Nakamura doesn't even get to have a backstage segment.
  • Jeff Hardy is still wrestling through some minor injuries. He's still dealing with a leg injury from the May 17th episode of SmackDown, as well as the aforementioned nerve injury causing numbness in his body. He's been booked in multi-man matches since then in order to protect him, but there's no news on whether he'll be dropping the United States Championship and taking time off soon to heal. (Source: WON)
We say: Jeez, give the guy a break. Surely the US title is something we can give to Nakamura, right?
  • For anyone wondering why the cruiserweights no longer show up on RAW, this was a decision made by Triple H. There is a strategy in place to try to change the perception of the cruiserweight division and protect the wrestlers from bad booking and overexposure. (Source: PWInsider)
We say: Yes, completely the right decision. Cruiserweights don't need to be on RAW, and 205 Live can exist as a true brand on its own.

Let us know what you think of today's news in the comments!

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