Tomorrow night, WWE will air it’s second of three pay-per-views in a 2-month span. Fans dread this time of year, and it makes it really difficult to support the product. But, here we are.
WWE needs to present a credible product to make folks feel like reaching into their pockets for another $50 is worth it. I’ll be honest - I’m not sure they have. The main title matches are direct repeats of matches from Night of Champions, and even CM Punk’s feud is an extension of the previous pay-per-view.
Well, let’s get to it, shall we?
Preshow match: - Dolph Ziggler vs. Damien Sandow
I must’ve missed something important, because I see no reason for this match to exist. Ziggler is kind of stuck in job-land right now, playing the fool to beat downs courtesy of The Shield, as well as “standing up” to Triple H’s authority. Sandow, meanwhile, has the Money in the Bank Briefcase, but you’d never know it the way he’s been booked lately.
I’m sure it will be an exciting match, but it doesn’t matter who takes the win here. I’ll give it to Ziggler - he needs it more and Sandow has the briefcase to help him get his heat back anyhow.
Winner: Dolph Ziggler
Kofi Kingston vs. Bray Wyatt
This match was thrown together on Smackdown last minute, after a strange promo from Bray on Raw. I don’t get it either. I guess we’ll give the win to Bray Wyatt. Kofi isn’t doing anything worthwhile right now and he won’t be the one to draw the line in the sand against The Wyatt’s, either.
Winner: Bray Wyatt
Curtis Axel (w/ Paul Heyman) vs. R-Truth for the Intercontinental Championship
Another thrown together match. We’re three for three now. R-Truth isn’t doing much. Axel isn’t either, but at least he has Paul Heyman, right? Right.
I think it will be a shady victory, but Curtis Axel will retain.
Winner: Curtis Axel
Goldust & Cody Rhodes (w/ Dusty Rhodes) vs. The Shield (Roman Reigns & Seth Rollins w/ Dean Ambrose)
This is one of the few matches I’m actually interested in. If the Rhodes boys pick up the win here, they both get re-hired. The concept itself is kind of silly at best, but the tension behind it has been played up quite well by the Rhodes family.
Goldust had a great match on Raw with Randy Orton a few weeks ago, and Cody Rhodes has been doing great work lately as well. I don’t think we’ve seen the last of them, by any stretch. I’m not sure how much Goldust has left in the tank, but he hasn’t lost a step, and has plenty to offer as far as I’m concerned.
The finish will be screwy - a “Dusty” finish if you will. But, the Rhodes Brothers will prevail.
Winners: Goldust & Cody Rhodes
AJ Lee vs. Brie Bella
Between being engaged to Daniel Bryan, starring on Total Divas, and being a Bella Twin, Brie has a really good shot of walking away the winner of this match. Sad, because AJ has been doing brilliant lately. I’m not sure she needed Tamina, but Tamina can add an interesting dynamic to the situation.
I can’t in good faith pick Brie Bella over AJ Lee in this match, but I won’t be surprised if Brie takes the win. Still, I’m sticking with AJ. Long term, AJ can do more good as champ.
Winner: AJ Lee
CM Punk vs. Ryback (w/ Paul Heyman)
Heyman and Ryback have been pretty brilliant lately. The “Will you be a Paul Heyman Guy?” bit from Raw had me in tears.
I don’t know where the feud is going right now. I don’t think Punk is done with these guys, and I’m sure there will be some sort of major blow-off match down the line (maybe Survivor Series next month). I’m going to give the win to Ryback here. He could use the victory, and the feud continues.
Alberto Del Rio vs. Rob Van Dam (w/ Ricardo Rodriguez) for the World Heavyweight Championship
A rematch of a sloppy match from Night of Champions? No thanks. I wasn’t excited about this three weeks ago and I’m not excited now. Maybe this is when Ricardo turns back?
Winner: Alberto Del Rio
Daniel Bryan vs. Randy Orton for the vacant WWE Championship
Stupid power-trip story aside, these two work well together and it shows. The matches they’ve had prior to their feud, and even last month at Night of Champions, have all been top notch. This will be more of the same.
I’m so sick of watching Daniel Bryan win the title, however, only to have it taken away from him instantly. WWE keeps pulling the rug out from underneath us, and Bryan isn’t showing enough fire or passion to indicate that he’s pissed about it. “It’s ok, fans. We’ll get another shot again next month.” Nope. Wrong signal to send.
Let’s be honest here - they’re riding this out til Survivor Series. The only way to do that is to have Daniel Bryan win and win clean, and this time actually retain the title more than 24 hours. Orton can get it back at the next pay-per-view at the end of the month.
Winner: Daniel Bryan