At the very least, I'm hoping that the in-ring performances make up for it.
Here are my thoughts and predictions from start to finish...
Jeff Hardy vs. Shinsuke Nakamura for The United States Championship
After the match, as the referee helps Hardy to his feet, Hardy is viciously assaulted from behind by Samoa Joe, who then grabs the microphone.
Joe: This right here? Is this what I have to do to get noticed around here?! I came to Smackdown! Live hungry for blood! So this goes to anybody in the back who currently has a managerial position: their blood is on your hands! I want the WWE Championship! And if I have to go through the entire Smackdown! Live roster to get it, then so be it! The pain starts now! But it doesn't end until I say it ends. And I say it ends when I am the WWE Champion. So AJ! Rusev! May the best man win. But whoever it is, you better feast your eyes on your next challenger.
[Joe looks like he's about to leave, but quickly pulls Hardy into a Coquina clutch, as the referees desperately try to break it up. This should at least excuse Hardy for not participating at SummerSlam, and also create two new feuds for him when he returns, in Joe and Nakamura]
[The announcers replay the footage of the lumberjill match from Smackdown! Live, as we then go to a live shot of Carmella walking backstage, with James Elsworth reluctantly following behind, with his head down]
Carmella: Would you pick it up a little? I mean what's your deal anyway?
Elsworth: My deal? Do you have any idea where they're gonna make me go?
Carmella: I'll tell you where you can go. James, you go where the money is. And since 'Mella is money, you go where I tell you to go, understood? It'll be a cold day in hell before Paige, or anyone else for that matter, outsmarts me.
Elsworth: Carmella, you might not know it to look at me, but I am deathly afraid of heights. What am I supposed to d...
Carmella: Look! Just follow the plan, alright? Now come on, we're late.
Carmella vs. Asuka for The Smackdown! Live Women's Championship, with James Elsworth in a shark cage
After the match, with Asuka still blinded, Elsworth holds her up, as Carmella attempts to nail her with the belt. Before she swings away, Charlotte and Becky Lynch run out for the save, and chase off Carmella and Elsworth. As Charlotte goes to check on Asuka, Asuka, who is still blinded, elbows Charlotte in the face, thinking it's Carmella. Charlotte then tries to fight back, but Becky steps between her and Asuka, attempting to break it up.
[Charlie is in the back with Dolph Ziggler and Drew McIntyre]
Charlie: Well Dolph, as you head into your title defense tonight, the odds are clearly in your favour, as your business associate, Drew McIntyre earned the right to accompany you to the ring, after defeating Seth Rollins last week. Any last thoughts?
Ziggler: Don't act like you're not impressed. Don't act like we haven't been telling you for months how good we are. I don't need to say it, because I go out there every night and do it. And so does my "business associate." We're more than just business associates, Charlie. We are best friends, because we understand each other. Unlike Seth Rollins, I don't sell my best friends up the river to get ahead. It's a real shame too, because now Seth has nobody to watch his back. Not that it would have mattered anyway, because whether Drew McIntyre is in my corner or not, I am fully capable of beating Seth Rollins on my own. It's just too damn bad that I'm too damn good. Let's go, big man.
Dolph Ziggler vs. Seth Rollins in a 30-minute Ironman match for The Intercontinental Championship
[WWE Network commercials air]
The Deleters of Worlds vs. The B Team for The Raw Tag Team Championships
[Kurt Angle is shown texting someone in his office, as Constable Baron Corbin comes in]
Corbin: Kurt, I just got off the phone with our boss, Stephanie McMahon. And neither her nor I are very impressed with what's been going on tonight. I mean I know it's Extreme Rules, but it seems like everyone is just taking full advantage of it, and you're letting it happen. Fortunately, the match between myself and Finn Balor is a straight up wrestling match. And after I win, Stephanie wants me to call her right back, and go over the details of our in-ring conference tomorrow night.
Angle: Conference? What conference?
Corbin: What, do I have to explain everything? Stephanie will be on Raw tomorrow night, so for your sake, I hope the rest of this show runs smoothly.
Finn Balor vs. Baron Corbin
After the match, Kurt Angle comes out.
Angle: You know, Baron, as Constable of Raw, I'd think that you should be leading by example. But you were right about one thing. This is Extreme Rules. So I am ordering that this match be restarted as an Extreme Rules match!
The referee rings the bell, and the distraction allows Balor to hit a running dropkick to the chair in Corbin's face. Balor follows up with the coup de grace for the win.
[Daniel Bryan and Kane are shown in an undisclosed location]
Bryan: How many times do I have to tell you? No! I'm not wearing that goofy mask.
[Kane is holding one of his masks in his hand for Bryan to wear]
Kane: Look, every great team has a gimmick. The Bludgeon Brothers have their own masks. The New Day have those stupid unicorn hats. This could be our thing. Let me put it to you this way, we're doing it!
Bryan: N... you know what, let's not argue. We have a chance tonight to be two-time tag team champions. So let's go show The Bludgeon Brothers that we still got it.
[They start "Yes" chants back and forth for a while, before the cameras cut to the pay per view panel, who provide their thoughts on the night thus far]
The Bludgeon Brothers vs. Team Hell No for The Smackdown! Live Tag Team Championships
[More WWE Network commercials air]
[Footage is shown of Braun Strowman's intimidation of Kevin Owens in recent weeks]
Braun Strowman vs. Kevin Owens in a Steel Cage match
[Renee Young is in the back with AJ Styles]
Renee: AJ, before we get to your title defense tonight, I'd like to first address the comments made earlier by Samoa Joe.
Styles: Yeah, I'm not hard of hearing, and I'm also not hard to find. But you know what, I'll cross that bridge when I get to it. As far as tonight goes, while it may be Rusev Day everywhere else in the world, in the house that AJ Styles built, we don't celebrate it. As much as I don't want to rain on the Rusev Day parade, I hit like thunder and I move like lightning, so I guess Rusev is in for a long night.
AJ Styles vs. Rusev for The WWE World Heavyweight Championship
Alexa Bliss vs. Nia Jax in an Extreme Rules match for The Raw Women's Championship
After the match, Alexa taunts Rousey, who finally breaks free. Alexa then shoves Mickie James in Rousey's way, so she can escape. Rousey then takes out her frustrations on Mickie with a flying arm bar, which Mickie furiously taps out to.
[The pay per view panel provide their predictions for the main event]
Roman Reigns vs. Bobby Lashley
So there you have it.
Here are my match predictions for SummerSlam:
Brock Lesnar vs. Bobby Lashley for The Universal Championship - The WWE would be incredibly foolish to do Reigns against Lesnar again, especially if it's Lesnar's last match. At the very least, it shouldn't be a one-on-one match.
AJ Styles vs. Samoa Joe for The WWE World Heavyweight Championship - Joe keeps destroying talent on Smackdown, until AJ agrees to give him a title match.
Roman Reigns vs. The Undertaker - This is probably the best use of Reigns, as Taker would still want to avenge the WrestleMania loss, and also takes exception to Reigns calling the ring his "yard."
Daniel Bryan vs. The Miz in a Career match - This stipulation is a way to write Miz off TV for a while, at least until 2019. Miz also ends up costing Bryan and Kane the tag titles in a rematch against The Bludgeon Brothers, and Joe attacks Kane after the match to write Kane off of TV as well.
Dolph Ziggler and Drew McIntyre vs. Seth Rollins and Dean Ambrose for The Raw Tag Team Championships - Ziggler and McIntyre defeat Hardy and Wyatt to win the titles, and Ziggler basically refuses to give Rollins another shot at the IC Title, so Rollins finds a partner and challenges for the tag belts instead.
Alexa Bliss vs. Ronda Rousey for The Raw Women's Championship - Ronda's fellow horsewoman Shayna Baszler is brought in as Alexa's trainer, and there are weeks of vignettes of Baszler teaching Bliss MMA techniques, including how to avoid the arm bar, which could be very entertaining.
Carmella vs. Becky Lynch for The Smackdown! Live Women's Championship - Becky wins a triple threat match over Charlotte and Asuka to become number one contender.
Charlotte vs. Asuka
Bayley vs. Sasha Banks
Kevin Owens vs. Braun Strowman in an Ambulance match with Strowman's Money in the Bank briefcase on the line - Owens only agrees to the rematch if Strowman puts the briefcase on the line, but Angle doesn't tell Owens that he's letting Strowman pick the stipulation.
Triple H and Baron Corbin vs. Kurt Angle and Jason Jordan - The whole "Conference" turns out to be a set-up on Angle, as Triple H returns instead of Stephanie.
Shinsuke Nakamura vs. John Cena for The United States Championship - Nakamura starts doing the U.S. Title open challenge that Cena made famous, so Paige makes this match for SummerSlam.
The Bludgeon Brothers vs. The Usos vs. The New Day vs. Sanity in a Fatal four-way match for The Smackdown! Live Tag Team Championships
Finn Balor vs. Jinder Mahal - I was originally going to predict Balor vs. The Velveteen Dream who gets called up, and claims to be the only "Prince" in this world. But that was before they started teasing Velveteen Dream feuding with EC3, and it looks like he may also be turning face.
Rusev vs. Aiden English - Rusev turns face after Extreme Rules, and Lana is paired with English.