Anyone who watched SmackDown Live this week would have been surprised to see that Sami Zayn took on Aleister Black, a match everyone had assumed would take place at SummerSlam on Sunday.
According to Dave Meltzer and several other sources, Vince McMahon re-wrote the entire show just hours before it went on air, and one of the changes he made was to put Zayn vs. Black on the show instead of SmackDown.
Speaking on Wrestling Observer Radio, Meltzer said:
“The Aleister Black and Sami Zayn match, the reason they did that [early] was when Vince showed up and he didn’t like SmackDown and he tore the whole show apart, when he was done with the stuff he didn’t like and then changing the main event, they had an hour to fill so one of the ideas fro that hour was ‘well, what can we do in this hour?’ — ‘Let’s put the Aleister Black and Sami Zayn on’ — so that’s one of the things they did to fill the hole so they took that off the pay-per-view so that’s the reason it’s off the pay-per-view.”
So basically, they re-wrote the show, did a bad job, and then plugged a gap with a PPV calibre match.
To be honest, it’s probably a blessing in disguise as before this week, SummerSlam was shaping up to be a nearly 7 hour show.