Thursday, September 17, 2015

WWE Night of Champions 2015 Predictions!

Welcome to the official predictions for this Sunday's WWE Night of Champions!

Coming off a very strong SummerSlam card which was headlined by two part-timers, WWE needed something big for the September followup.  A shot in the arm if you will.  And what better way to galvanize the 2015 fans than by bringing back the hot new WWE sensation Sting!  That's right, direct from WCW circa 1997, the Stinger is back and ready to claim his rightful place atop the WWE roster.  Hot off the heels of his WrestleMania loss to Triple H, it only made sense for the 56-year-old youngster to step up and challenge WWE's top dog Seth Rollins for the WWE Championship!

Okay, snarky rant finished.

Let's get to the predictions.  Dan leads Justin 35/53 to 34/53.

PreShow Match: Stardust/The Ascension vs. Neville/Lucha Dragons

On paper I like this alright.  The Ascension are pretty terrible workers but the other four are all fun to watch.  As I feared though, Neville has been listless since being called up to the main roster.  It's a sad thing when moving UP from NXT to WWE is a poor career move.

Justin's pick: This new Stardust stable is just getting warmed up, so I gotta think they come away with a win.
Dan's pick:  I agree. Having the Ascension join with Cody seems to be a move to make them somewhat relevant. Maybe a victory will help them.

WWE Tag Team Championship: The New Day vs. The Dudley Boyz
Oh it's another set of young upstarts going after the Champs (ok one more snarky comment)!  Don't get me wrong, I'm glad to see Bubba and D-Von back in WWE and I hope their presence will boost the credibility of the tag division (supposedly WWE is considering bringing back Matt & Jeff Hardy as well).  However, The Dudleys need to be used to help get the current crop of teams over, not to win the belts yet again.  The New Day need to retain here or this whole thing is pointless.

Justin's pick: The New Day hold onto the straps probably through nefarious means or via a DQ.
Dan's pick: I think it's far too early to throw the gold onto the Dudleys. New Day retains.

Dolph Ziggler vs. Rusev
It's a rematch from SummerSlam.  Their match last month was pretty decent but ended in a double countout.  The careers of both Rusev and Lana have stagnated since Rusev got trounced by John Cena three times in a row, and I think it's time for them to reunite.  They're much better as a team than apart.

Justin's pick: Rusev wins, regardless whether Lana turns heel again
Dan's pick: This Lana face turn has been booooooring. I hope she does go heel and help Rusev win.

Intercontinental Championship: Ryback vs. Kevin Owens
I love the positioning of Owens here.  A stiff slugfest between these two brutes could help elevate both guys and the belt.  Owens as I-C Champ would be amazing, especially if he and Cena end up as secondary champions simultaneously.  This one should be fun.

Justin's pick: Kevin takes the gold
Dan's pick: I agree. Ryback lost all his momentum after being injured. Time for KO to reign.

Divas Championship: Nikki Bella vs. Charlotte

Nikki is now officially the longest-reigning Divas Champion.  Too bad she's only defended the thing like five times.  Anyway, now that she's achieved that goal (and WWE gets to erase AJ Lee from the record books), it's time for the Divas Revolution to begin in earnest.  An accomplished Champion like Charlotte (flanked by challengers like Sasha and Becky) if given the stage to really steal the show like she did in NXT, could finally position the women's division to be a major attraction.  This must happen.

Justin's pick: Charlotte
Dan's pick: Yup. I've said this before, but I've never cared for ladies wrestling. So sure, Charlotte.

The Wyatt Family vs. Roman Reigns/Dean Ambrose/Mystery Partner
This match should be a lot of fun, if it's anything like the February 2014 Shield-Wyatts melee.  Let's hope they can recreate that magic, because that feud was one of the highlights of last year.  As for the mystery man, I see five possibilities:

There's former Wyatt member Erick Rowan, who hasn't been on WWE TV for months due to an injury.  That choice would suck out loud.

There's Samoa Joe, who's been running roughshod on NXT but hasn't made his main roster debut yet.  The place would go absolutely nuts for Joe, and he'd unquestionably make the match better.

There's Cesaro, who is once again majorly over but "just isn't connecting with the audience because Europe."  He and Kevin Owens had a fine match at SummerSlam but he's been pretty directionless since then.  Cesaro would be a very nice surprise, the place would go bananas, and the match would be improved.

There's the obvious choice of Randy Orton, who was beaten to a pulp by the Wyatts the night after SummerSlam.  That would make sense and I'd be okay with it but a) he's not the most exciting option and b) I've read rumors that he's taking time off, hence the beatdown.

And of course there's the remote possibility (and this would be orgasmic), that the mystery man bit is a device to reintroduce the long-missed Daniel Bryan.  I for one would be over the moon for this.  Do I think it'll happen?  Not really.  But goddamn this would be good.

Regardless, this should be one of the stronger matches on the show.

Justin's pick: Since the babyfaces have the big mystery reveal I gotta think they win.  I'd say the two most likely picks are probably Joe and Cesaro.
Dan's pick: Of course Reigns & Rollins will win when their mystery partner is revealed as none other than Y2J CHRIS JERICHO! (Ok, probably not, but man that'd be great)

US Championship: Seth Rollins vs. John Cena
These two stole the effin' show last month and I expect no different here.  Say what you will about Mr. Cena, but he's had more good matches in 2015 than pretty much anyone in WWE.  He does need to lose that Springboard Stunner because it looks bad and never ends a match, but otherwise Cena's in the best form of his career and is incapable of having a bad night these days.  As for Mr. Rollins, he's the best all-around wrestler in the company right now.  Period.  Rollins is so goddamn good as a heel, so smarmy and unlikable, that his flashy, amazingly athletic offense hasn't turned him into a babyface.  It's really quite remarkable.  This should be great.

Justin's pick: I think Cena regains the US Title and resumes his yeoman's work elevating said belt.
Dan's pick: I didn't agree with the move to take the U.S. strap off Cena in the first place so him winning it back makes plenty of sense.

WWE Championship: Seth Rollins vs. Sting

Supposedly Rollins-Cena is going on last, but for this column I'm putting the WWE Title match last because that's where it should be.  I think this match will be fine.  I'm not a fan of giving Sting a title shot because it makes no sense, but the guy's still in great shape for a 56-year-old, and Rollins is Rollins.  They've kinda painted themselves into a corner - Rollins can't lose the belt here (I mean come the fuck on!) but Sting can't really lose two out of two PPV matches in WWE, can he?  There's always the possibility that Sting wins the belt and then Sheamus cashes in, replacing Rollins as The Authority's top man, and then Rollins turns face and feuds with Sheamus.  But I dunno, that seems like a lot of upheaval all at once.

Justin's pick: Sting wins the match but doesn't win the belt.  So a DQ finish of some kind.
Dan's pick: Sting wins, Sheamus cashes in, BOOM - Ireland on top, like the old days.

Like the old days of what, Dan?  Like the old days of fuckin' what??

I'm not expecting a landmark event here by any means, but this show should deliver at least a few good matches and memorable moments.  There's some good potential.  Hopefully it measures up.  If not, oh well.  New Japan's got four PPVs coming up this fall.

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