WWE Extreme Rules 2017: Will Braun Strowman’s Absence Hurt the Show?


Braun Strowman’s injury couldn’t have come at a worse time, but the WWE can make it work without hurting June’s Extreme Rules pay-per-view.

Braun Strowman has become the WWE’s top good guy, whether he’s perceived that way on television or not. Fans are buying into his character, and want to see what he’s going to next on every episode of Raw.

As seems to be the way in the world of professional wrestling, just as Strowman was being positioned for a Universal Championship bout with Brock Lesnar at the superbly named Great Balls of Fire event, he gets hurt and written off of TV.

It may work out as a blessing in disguise for Strowman, but more on that in a moment. First, let’s talk about the upcoming Extreme Rules pay-per-view.

Just under three weeks away, the card already looks strong. Headlined by the Fatal 5-Way to determine Lesnar’s challenger in July, there’s plenty to whet the fans’ appetite.

Extreme Rules is often a fun pay-per-view, largely due to the change-of-pace added by the varying stipulations. This year promises to be no different.

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Outside of an intriguing main event, we get an anticipated rematch between Alexa Bliss and Bayley for the Raw Women’s Championship. The Kendo Stick on a Pole Match stipulation adds to the entertainment, but it’s the storytelling from now to Extreme Rules that will sweeten the deal. Bliss’ work as the top heel in the division makes every match she’s in must-see.

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The Raw Tag Team Championship showdown between The Hardy Boyz and Sheamus and Cesaro is yet to receive a stipulation, but will he we see the emergence of the Broken Universe?

Also on the card is potentially the conclusion of the The Miz’s pursuit of Dean Ambrose’s Intercontinental Championship, and the fact Ambrose can lose the title on a disqualification adds some intrigue.

Extreme Rules is set to entertain, and it doesn’t need another Strowman-Roman Reigns rematch to make it a success. That feud can be revisited down the line.

From Strowman’s perspective, his return could push him to the moon. While the WWE suggested he could be out as long as six months, Dave Meltzer of Wrestling Observer Radio reported (via WrestleInc.com) Strowman is expected back by SummerSlam in August.

That way The Monster Among Men looks like exactly that: a monster. Not only would he look strong by returning far sooner than originally reported, he’ll get his title match with Lesnar at arguably the biggest pay-per-view of the year not named WrestleMania.

His return to Raw might just blow the roof off the building. Long term Strowman’s absence will make fans’ hearts grow fonder, making his return all the more special.

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As for Extreme Rules, the card is shaping up nicely, and it has the potential to be one of the best events of the year to date. Strowman doesn’t need to be on the show for it to be a success, and it may prove to be a blessing in disguise that the monster is absent.