Do I have to watch WWE Payback tonight? Can I just watch the Radio Disney Music Awards instead? I already know who won since the show was taped yesterday, but I kind of wanna watch that more than some of the stuff on this card. Hell, at last the RDMAs is gonna apparently feature the three-Diva Disney collaboration of a lifetime between Ally Dawson, Maya Hart, and Grimhilde‘s kid. I’d much rather that over Dolph Ziggler vs. Baron Corbin. But this is the first post-WrestleMania pay-per-view, and I guess they could have done worse. Hell, even the WrestleMania card wasn’t perfect and the show turned out decent for the most part (still haven’t decided if I’ll review it or not), so maybe I shouldn’t expect the worst out of this card. Hell, I usually hate it when people do. For all I know, this could be PPV of the Year material. After Shane risked his life for nothing and ended up in power for a month anyway and it leading to some decent RAW’s, anything is possible. So let’s take a look at Payback in the Forecast.
WWE United States Championship
Kalisto vs. Ryback
The U.S. Title run of Kalisto has been a colossal disappointment. And that just shouldn’t be; Kalisto is an amazing competitor who’s left the WWE Universe speechless numerous times this year with his flashy offense and fighting spirit. Yet after he vanquished the man he won the title from, Alberto Del Rio, they stuck him with Ryback on the WrestleMania Kickoff Show. And now, he’s facing Ryback yet again…..on the Payback Kickoff Show. Man, why are they doing Kalisto like this? He nearly broke his ass on a ladder spot to get the recognition he deserves; he shouldn’t be curtain-jerking.
Who I Want to Win: Kalisto; sure, his reign has been wack, but would you really rather Ryback win the title?
Who Will Win: Probably Ryback. Boy, that would send us into the PPV on a downer, wouldn’t it?
Dolph Ziggler vs. Baron Corbin
The loser of this match should be banned from wearing tacky jackets for the rest of the year. Dolph Ziggler, a man who’s current wardrobe looks like he’s expecting a Mötley Crüe cover band audition to happen at any moment, has found himself at odds with recent NXT graduate and Andre The Giant Battle Royal winner Baron Corbin. This rivalry has been such a big deal to the Zig Man, he was willing to sacrifice a Damian Sandow match just to get his hands on his former foe. That should be considered an official heel turn for Dolph. But can he defeat Corbin or will the roll of “The Lone Wolf” continue?
Who I Want to Win: Baron Corbin. I’m kind of over Ziggler at this point.
Who Will Win: Baron Corbin. He just debuted and needs the momentum. And Ziggler has punching bag status; Vince has no problem making him lose to this bigger guy.
#1 Contendership for the WWE Tag Team Championship
Enzo Amore & Colin Cassidy vs. Aiden English & Simon Gotch
I think I need to slap my computer or something because I believe I am seeing an NXT match scheduled on a main roster pay-per-view. In all seriousness, when The SmackTalker SkyWalker and his unteachably-tall tag team partner came up from NXT, the WWE Universe were hyped for the charismatic duo, even if sexy valet Carmella wasn’t part of the deal. The Vaudevillains received less hype and adulation, debuting on Smackdown rather than RAW. But they still found themselves in the finals of the #1 Contender Tag Team Title Tournament (sponsored by Booty-Os Cereal). The winner of this one will have New Day in their sights.
Who I Want to Win: Enzo & Cass! Give this to us, WWE!
Who Will Win: Enzo & Cass; call me when people care for The Vaudevillains as much as Enzo & Cass.
WWE Intercontinental Championship
The Miz vs. Cesaro
Coming to a Payback near you; a man possessed with ruling the wrestling landscape (or at least it’s midcard) and shutting down his detractors carries the prize that has been held by many of the all-time greats before him. And with his lovely lady by his side (we promise this is not a Michael Bay film), he vows to vanquish any who wish to challenge him. But one man – one sharp-dressed, Swiss-born man – looks to show this unbearable hellion a lesson he won’t soon forget. Featuring Best Supporting Actress contender Maryse Ouellet. Best Direct-to-DVD movie actor contender The Miz, and Best Section winner Cesaro in: The Defense of the Intercontinental Championship by The Coward Mike Mizanin. (You know, I think I’m getting this movie referencing thing down.)
Who I Want to Win: Agent C. (Forget James Bond; I’m still trying to make this Men in Black reference stick.)
Who Will Win: The Miz; you better believe Maryse has some shenanigans planned. Maybe the Anti-Mickie perfume makes an appearance.
WWE Women’s Championship
Charlotte vs. Natalya
So I kinda feel like this is a slight step backward. On the RAW After Mania, fans were expecting the main roster arrival of Bayley, or any new girl who made a name for herself under the developmental banner (who wasn’t Eva Marie) to be a new challenge for Charlotte’s fresh-out-of-the-oven Women’s Championship. We didn’t get it and we had to deal with the fact that Natalya (who is a very underrated wrestler, mind you) gets the title shot in a match Charlotte already won at Roadblock, and even a couple of years ago at the inaugural NXT TakeOver with the Nature Boy and the Hitman at ringside. Well, it looks like WWE enjoyed those two matches so much that they decided to give us the NXT TakeOver version again at Payback. Flair and Hart are both set to be at ringside again. I hope WWE called Hart up to confirm he’d be there first, though; I wouldn’t be surprised if his lack of desire causes him to ditch at the last minute.
Who I Want to Win: Titus O’Neil‘s totes fr BBF (look it up, old people); since definitive cinnamon roll Becky Lynch didn’t win the title at ‘Mania, I’ll take a Nattie reign. It’s criminal that she’s only won it ONE SINGLE SOLITARY TIME anyway.
Who Will Win: Charlotte, because the corporate favoritism hasn’t worn off yet.
Dean Ambrose vs. Chris Jericho
Finally, we’re gonna follow up on that moment when Chris Jericho caused him, Ambrose, and Reigns to lose that six-man tag last year at Night of Champions and walked past them with a shove post-match. Thought I forgot that, huh? I thought WWE did…OK, they probably have. But the fact remains that over the past month, Jericho hasn’t been a fan of Ambrose‘s antics and the stage has been set for a match that way more level playing-field than Ambrose vs. Lesnar was less than a month ago. Jericho is fighting for his ability to troll fans and leave up-and-comers beneath him while Ambrose is fighting for the pride of both himself and his potted plant, Mitch, I assume.
Who I Want to Win: Dean Ambrose; I’m kinda cheering for Ambrose in all of his PPV matches because I’m never here for an Ambrose PPV loss.
Who Will Win: Chris Jericho, because life is not fair and wrestling often isn’t either.
Sami Zayn vs. Kevin Owens
Mr. Krabs vs. Plankton. 2Pac vs. Biggie. Even Manny Santos vs. Emma Nelson temporarily. Whenever former friends end up at odds with each other, drama is always the order of the day. Kevin Owens stabbed Sami Zayn in the back immediately after joining NXT, and he seems to have mistaken Zayn’s kindness for weakness. But all he’s really done is awaken an angry beast within the former El Generico and generally nice guy, leading to one of NXT’s greatest rivalries. Now the two former NXT Champions are on the main roster and headed for a collision course at Payback. Seeing as this is the main roster version, there’s no guarantee that this will be on par with their NXT matches or even their ROH ones, but let’s not jump to assumptions.
Who I Want to Win: Sami Zayn; the brilliant character of Kevin Owens deserves an ass-kicking for being the most easy-to-hate heel since AJ Lee.
Who Will Win: Kevin Owens; I see this feud going a little longer, so of course the face loses this round.
Mr. McMahon’s Announcement
Shane McMahon wasn’t still supposed to be on television, was he? Because after losing to Undertaker at WrestleMania, he failed in his mission to gain control of RAW and was supposedly set to ride off into the sunset. But Vince decided to do a one-month Shane McMahon trial run anyway. And while ratings haven’t improved in the slightest, the quality of the shows have actually been pretty good. Now it looks like he could be sticking around even longer, assuming that’s why Vince is showing up to Payback. Speculation has been going around that Vince is bringing back the brand split I grew up on that allowed WWE to use more of their then-bloated roster more effectively and not wear stories thin too quickly. In this case, Shane would get control of RAW and Stephanie would control Smackdown (or possibly vice versa). I know it’s not the most popular opinion on the net, but I’d welcome the split back. Whether or not that’s really what’s going on will be revealed tonight.
Who I Want to Win: This isn’t a match, so I don’t think it really matters.
Who Will Win: Vince McMahon, because he still runs the shows for real regardless.
WWE World Heavyweight Championship
Roman Reigns vs. AJ Styles
AJ Styles is no stranger to World Titles. He’s apparently the current Family Wrestling Entertainment Champion (Is that promotion even still around?), he’s been the IWGP Champion twice in New Japan, and his TNA run earned him two TNA World Championship runs and three reigns as the NWA World Heavyweight Champion. But he’s never had the opportunity to call himself the WWE World Heavyweight Championship. He has the chance to this Sunday if he can just defeat THE Guy, Vince’s guy, Roman Reigns. With the arrival of Styles’ former Bullet Club brothers Karl Anderson & Luke Gallows to WWE, things could heat up just a bit on Sunday.
Who I Want to Win: AJ Styles; him winning the one World Title that has eluded him would be amazing to see. But, let’s be honest…
Who Will Win: Roman Reigns. No one is going into this event thinking otherwise; Vince isn’t putting the experiment on hold this time. Roman will reign for a while.
Do you agree with the forecast? Who do you see winning at Payback? Who are you rooting for to win? Tag me on Twitter @FearlessRiOT and let me know or leave a comment below. Then check out Payback on the WWE Network tonight to see which predictions come true. Hope you all enjoy the show!