Shore's WWE Payback preview and predictions: How many people will survive the Shield vs. Evolution elimination match? Will Daniel Bryan surrender his title or see his wife fired? Will any titles change hands tonight?
By Chris Shore
As Jason Powell and I discussed on Friday in the member exclusive Dot Net Weekly audio show, Payback has the potential to be good. I still think it won't live up to NXT Takeover, but the two shows have something very interesting in common. Both shows have suffered from a poor build. NXT had less hype for it than Payback does, but neither show has been given the respect it deserves. That won't matter much if the show delivers, but I continue to be amazed at how the once great marketing juggernaut that was WWE has become a lip service company when it comes to promoting their core product outside of WrestleMania. On to the picks.
The Shield vs. Evolution in a No Holds Barred elimination match: The elimination stipulation (cool rhyme!) is what gives this match the most teeth, and potential, to be a big hit for WWE tonight. The Shield did a good job of teasing Triple H being the sole survivor for his team before getting beaten, but I think Roman Reigns is the guy who is the sole survivor before The Shield wins. What I'm not sure about is how many Evolution guys are left once he is the last one standing. My best guess is Batista and Hunter left as I expect Randy Orton to be the first guy eliminated to give the Shield a big boost out of the gates and will allow Evolution to get good heat as they come back to go up 2-1.
The Shield wins. Roman Reigns is the sole survivor.
Daniel Bryan's decision regarding the WWE World Heavyweight Championship: I can't see Daniel Bryan turning over this title unless he is going to be out for a long, long time. Part of Bryan's charm is his ability to look like a complete underdog in his storylines. How do you make a champion an underdog? Well, look to comics. Heroes are forever having other things taken away from them, family, friends, principles they adhere to. Those sorts of weaknesses give us reason to cheer them. Brian has the title after a hard fought storyline about bursting through. Taking the title from him serves no purpose. We've seen that. But saving his wife's career while still sticking to what he believes in? Now that's a story. Bryan refuses to give over his title and Brie gets fired, just so Bryan can win it back soon.
Daniel Bryan keeps the WWE World Heavyweight Championship and Brie Bella is fired.
John Cena vs. Bray Wyatt in a Last Man Standing match: I want to analyze this and give you reasons why Bray Wyatt will win tonight but come on: there's no way he wins. It's John Cena for goodness sake. I hope Chicago is unmerciful when he wins. The only other thing I can write about this match is this: If you are a Dot Net Member and I happen to be wrong on this, make sure you listen to the audio review of the show. I will be downright giddy about my error.
John Cena %*@#%$ wins.
Sheamus vs. Cesaro for the United States Championship: The sleeper match of the card, Cesaro and Sheamus have the ability to tear the house down. I have no idea how limited they will be. Hopefully none. The two main matches have stipulations that allow them to take shortcuts for big pops. This should be the most technical match on the card, so I hope WWE turns them loose. Regardless, I think this feud is just beginning, so Sheamus retains here, but probably after Heyman is caught interfering or something to that nature.
Sheamus retains the US Championship.
Bad News Barrett vs. Rob Van Dam for the Intercontinental Championship: I don't know if I could care less about this match. I like Barrett, but RVD is staler than day old bread and the guy just returned. About the only thing worth watching here is to see how Chicago tries to derail the "heel" Barrett by treating him as a babyface.
Bad News Barrett retains the Intercontinental Championship.
Paige vs. Alicia Fox for the WWE Divas Championship: Alicia Fox has been absolutely fantastic as of late, and WWE is going to screw it up by having her lose clean here to Paige. Don't get me wrong, Paige should win, but this feud should continue. I hope they kill it in the ring tonight and remind everyone, like Natalya and Charlotte did, just how good women's wrestling can be.
Paige retains the WWE Divas Championship.
Rusev vs. Big E: More flag waving competitions. Hooray!
Hornswoggle vs. El Torito in a hair vs. mask match: These two absolutely won me over when I refused to like their match last month. I do not see a repeat here. Horny gets his head shaved. Wow, that sentence reads dirtier than it should
Hornswoggle goes the full Goldberg.
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