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WWE SummerSlam 2014: Randy Orton vs. Roman Reigns preview

According to an Aug. 17 report from Cageside Seats, two of the most popular superstars on the WWE roster collide tonight at WWE SummerSlam 2014, as Roman Reigns challenges Randy Orton. The bout between Reigns vs. Orton is essentially a number one contender match to determine who is next in line for a crack at the WWE Heavyweight Championship.

Randy Orton battles Roman Reigns at WWE SummerSlam 2014
Photo by Dimitrios Kambouris/Getty Images

Orton, 34, is a former champion, but he's in for the toughest test of his life with his bout against Reigns. The feud here stems from Triple H telling Orton he must take out Reigns if he wants to ever get back into title contention. Orton promised Triple H on a recent episode of WWE Monday Night Raw that he would defeat Reigns if it meant earning another shot at the belt.

Will Orton make good on his word and beat Reigns to earn a title shot? That seems highly unlikely. Orton should have plenty of good years left in the tank, but his days of being a dominating champion might be over. At age 34, Orton could legitimately wrestle for another decade. However, it seems he is slipping a bit past his athletic prime.

As for Reigns, he is still in his 20s, and he's just now coming into his fighting prime. The WWE is trying to mold him into the next great superstar, and perhaps the man to take the mantle from John Cena as the top babyface in the promotion. Reigns is already a top draw and a major superstar, but he still needs work on the mic.

Reigns is still learning how to cut a solid promo, and his inside-the-ring skills need some sharpening. However, he has shown great potential, and his upside is brighter than anyone else on the WWE roster. This clash could go either way, but the plan seems to be to script Reigns to notch the victory at WWE SummerSlam 2014.

With the winner of Reigns vs. Orton to likely earn a title shot as soon as Wrestlemania 31, obviously a lot is on the line and both men will be feeling the pressure to deliver an exciting performance. Will Reigns finally be able to dazzle audiences and hold people's attention for a 15-minute match? Will Orton get back into title contention? Those are questions that will be answered tonight at WWE SummerSlam 2014. The event kicks off at 7:30 p.m. on the WWE Network.