Battleground 2016. Washington DC. This Sunday. Usually PPVs before the major ones like Mania or SummerSlam are booked lousy, but this one has a bit of an edge to it. First of all, the much anticipated Shield triple threat match is taking place. We all thought it would take place at SummerSlam at the minimum, and even held off on until Wrestlemania. But they are having it at Battleground, which I think is great. It not only helps elevate the “secondary” PPVs, it also allows creative to give each member of the Shield a different direction, which should help them all individually as wrestlers.
The other match that could have happened at SummerSlam but they didn’t want to elongate any long is of course Owens vs Zayn. A feud that hopefully will never actually end, this is their first big pay-off match. I’m not sure they’ve built it up as well as they should have, but I think a good video package before hand would do a lot of good, and you know they are going to go balls out to steal the show.
And finally, the third big thing before I get to my predictions, is Sasha’s mystery partner HAS to be Bayley, right? Like…has to be? What a waste if it isn’t. A Bayley debut teaming with Sasha would be perfect for the storyline. Because eventually Sasha will of course stab Bayley in the back, setting up their feud which if written correctly, could be one of the best WWE feuds in a decade.
The Miz (c) vs. Darren Young – I love the Miz. I have no idea why Darren Young randomly got this push, but it’s kinda working for him. Should he out of nowhere be in contention for the IC Title? Not in my mind, but yet here we are. I wish they were better at booking Miz because he’s great in the ring, on the mic, and could be a top heel. It’s just…he’s fighting Darren Young? I dont know, it isn’t like the old days when Y2J and Benoit were main eventing for the IC Title. Prediction – I can’t believe it, but I think Young wins. Might as well see what someone else can do with it.
Rusev (c) vs. Zack Ryder – So this is the funny thing about these PPVs…while you have an awesome match like the Shield triple threat, you also randomly have Darren Young and Zack Ryder in title matches. And I love Zack Ryder, but come on. Rusev was booked as a monster, unbeatable heel for a year straight, beating everyone, and we are supposed to believe Ryder can come in and beat him? Questionable booking, but WWE fans are supposed to have memories of gold fish (and Ryder DID win the IC Title at Mania, so that helps his cause) Prediction – Rusev
Becky Lynch vs. Natalya – I just haven’t been able to care about anything Natalya has ever been involved with. Just doesn’t do anything for me. Prediction – Becky
John Cena, Enzo Amore and Big Cass vs. The Club (AJ Styles, Luke Gallows and Karl Anderson) - First of all, anyone chanting “Cena sucks” right now is an asshole. I haven’t enjoyed Cena’s work like this in years. He’s fitting perfectly into the upper mid card, and that “old man Cena” promo from Raw on Monday was hilarious. He played off Enzo perfectly. I also love what they’ve done with AJ Styles for this feud. He’s temporarily breaking up with The Club due to the brand split, which should help him really excel as either a face or heel headlining SmackDown. Prediction – Cena and the boys.
The New Day vs. The Wyatt Family – I thought this feud kind of ended after that “Wyatt Family Compound” brawl thing, but here we are, another match. The good news I enjoy both the New Day and the Wyatts, and think this match should be entertaining. I also think it’s a great thing Bray is going on his own to Smackdown. As I have said before, it wouldn’t shock me if Smackdown is revolving around him within the year. Prediction - I think New Day should be victorious. Though either outcome won’t really hurt either team.
Sami Zayn vs. Kevin Owens - The feud that should never end finally gets a match. Look, everyone knows I’m not a Sami guy. I just don’t buy what he sells. I hate his music, his dumb hats, the way he talks, everything. I’m also a big time Kevin Owens guy and think it’s a tragedy that more shows don’t revolve around him. That being said, it seems Zayn is going to get a push against my liking. I think Owens winning would be best for both of their stories- Zayn gets to continue playing the underdog, and Owens gets to be the arrogant heel who can brag about beating up Zayn. It makes too much sense, so.. Prediction - Zayn. I guess. Unless they see it my way. Which I hope they do.
Sasha Banks and TBD vs. Charlotte and Dana Brooke – Heyyyyy, Bayley! Again, I’d be shocked if this wasn’t Bayley. If it’s Nia Jax or some shit they’re gonna get booed. Just make this Bayley. Have Sasha stab her in the back in 3-6 months. Perfect. Prediction - Sasha and Bayley
Dean Ambrose (c) vs. Roman Reigns vs. Seth Rollins – Who didn’t love The Shield. 3 ass kickers who would beat the shit out of anyone and everyone. Since they’ve broken up, all 3 have worn the gold. Now, all 3 fight for it. Reigns is returning from his 30 day suspension and will be facing NUCLEAR heat. Everyone loves Rollins, and Ambrose is decent too. For the record, I was wrong about Ambrose. I championed him forever, and though it’s probably because they won’t give him enough freedom, he hasn’t blown me away as champion. Reigns winning would be hilarious, Vince just loves to watch the world burn. Ambrose winning would be anti-climatic in a way. Rollins winning would get a huge pop, which is always awkward because they want him to stay heel. Of course there’s a chance he double turns with Reigns on Sunday, which would be awesome. Prediction - So many things can happen. Screwy finish, Reigns winning as heel, Rollins winning as a face…but I think Ambrose retains because Reigns and Rollins are too busy beating the shit out of each other.
Should be a fun PPV, which I will be at thanks to my friends at TapouT.