A shoulder injury is poised to derail Bayley’s WWE SummerSlam dreams, and the company’s backup options aren’t plentiful.
The No. 1 contender is scheduled to clash with Alexa Bliss for Raw Women’s Championship at the Aug. 20 pay-per-view. Bayley, though, found herself bandaged and in pain after her bout against Nia Jax on Monday’s Raw, unsure whether her title chase will be put on hold.
WWE announced on its website: “Bayley suffered an injury to her right shoulder.” The report also mentioned she will be undergoing further testing.
While WWE’s website is famous for blending storyline and reality, Bryan Rose of Figure Four Online noted: “The injury appears to be legitimate, though the severity of it isn’t currently known.”
Depending on what the doctors have to say in the coming days, Bliss may have to find another foe to face her at SummerSlam.
The Raw women’s division doesn’t offer a ton of legit alternatives. Summer Rae and Paige are both inactive because of injury. Dana Brooke, Alicia Fox and Mickie James have zero momentum. Emma is a heel like Bliss and has not been showcased in the least.
There are only two choices who make sense as Bliss’ SummerSlam opponent: Sasha Banks and Jax.
Banks had Bliss reeling when they meet at Great Balls of Fire in July. The champ saw defeat coming and chose to retreat instead. She took a count-out loss on purpose to retain the title.
Logically, Banks should get another crack at Bliss to allow their rivalry to come to a more decisive ending.
Plus, The Boss is one of the most popular women on the Raw roster. She’s a three-time Raw women’s champ. At last year’s SummerSlam, Charlotte Flair dethroned her in one of the night’s best matches.
There would be a certain poetry to having Banks come full circle and win back the crown at the summer blockbuster a year later.
Jax’s heel alignment aside, the powerhouse makes plenty of sense as Bayley’s replacement. She has a tenuous alliance with Bliss, one that could shatter in an instant if Jax could get her hands on the gold.
The ideal route would be to slowly have their partnership deteriorate into a feud, to have Jax organically move into a babyface role.
But WWE is in a pinch here and needs a big matchup for Bliss. Jax could provide that. She would be a fresh face in the title scene, and her relationship with the champion would provide a strong narrative base to build on.
The path to Jax vs. Bliss writes itself too. The bruiser can brag about taking out Bayley and demand that she take her place. If Banks has something to say about it, Jax could floor The Boss to secure a title shot at SummerSlam.
Bliss vs. Jax would result in the better story, even as rushed as it would be. Bliss vs. Banks would be the better match, as The Boss is a proven big-bout performer. WWE would be smart, though, to combine the benefits of both contests by booking a Triple Threat match featuring both challengers.
That would result in a replacement that is superior to the original.
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appeared first on Sport News 5.