Welcome to WNW’s Clash of Champions 2016 Predictions! Clash of Champions will be emanating from the Bankers Life Fieldhouse in Indianapolis, Indiana. This time around, we have myself, Zack Krasney, Zeppelin Mayers, Joshua Tucker, and The Retro Goat providing full predicts, while Big M and Brendan Wahl are doing quick picks. Let’s get to it!
Alicia Fox vs. Nia Jax
I was rather pleased that the company announced Fox vs. Jax as the kickoff match. It's simple but effective. Jax will hopefully be able to showcase more of what she can do in the ring, as opposed to Fox being totally squashed. I'm really not sure what's to come for Nia, but I hope she continues racking up the wins.
CJ's Predicted Winner: Nia Jax
Nia Jax is going to get the win, but I think this will be the point they will start to make Nia look vulnerable.
Zeppelin's Predicted Winner: Nia Jax
Anyone that thinks Alicia Fox is going to be the one to stop the monster known as Nia Jax you need to have you head examined more than Fox does. Nia Jax will dominate Alicia Fox but this match will be more competitive then the squashes Nia Jax has had in the last couple months.
Joshua's Predicted Winner: Nia Jax
The Retro Goat:
I'm not going to waste my time justifying my prediction with this one.
The Retro Goat's Predicted Winner: Nia Jax
Big M's Predicted Winner: Nia Jax
Brendan Wahl's Predicted Winner: Nia Jax
Sami Zayn vs. Chris Jericho
There's not to say about this match for me. I can say that I'm glad Creative found something for Zayn to do, especially a built-up PPV match. Jericho will be a good opponent for him. Their handful of matches from this past summer were entertaining, so there's no doubt in my mind that these guys will raise the bar just a little. This would be a great opportunity for Jericho to put Zayn over for multiple reasons that I shouldn't even have to elaborate on. If this truly is the 'New Era,' WWE will please the fans, right?
CJ's Predicted Winner: Sami Zayn
Poor Sami went from beating Kevin Owens a few months ago then a few weeks ago watching him win the WWE universal champion. WWE has Sami win and then had nothing for him. I do like his pairing with Jericho. Jericho has been on fire lately and his personality seems to be running off on Zayn a bit. Never a bad thing. I think this match has a lot of potential and I'm excited about it. I know I said Jericho has been on fire lately but that has nothing to do with his in ring skill, which are still good, but Sami could use another big win already. I give it to Sami!
Zack's Predicted Winner: Sami Zayn
Hopefully this is just the beginning of a feud between these two. Sami needs momentum and a win over Jericho could start building him up to earning a shot at the belt.
Zeppelin's Predicted Winner: Sami Zayn
If anything we should applaud Y2J as a legend to be willing to get in the ring and put over talent and use his name to try and help build new stars. Some of it hasn't worked sadly but that is the nature of the beast though. Zayn is definitely someone that can use the win over Jericho to boost his career. I still wish he was on Smackdown because with KO on Raw it just seems like they are always too close together for my liking. Zayn wins a competitive match and moves on to his next feud whatever that may be.
Joshua's Predicted Winner: Sami Zayn
The Retro Goat:
It kind of annoys me that Sami Zayn doesn't look to be contending for the Universal Championship any time soon. Not saying he should win it already, but he's already definitively beat Kevin Owens and I'm thinking he's gonna beat Jericho here. Granted Kevin Owens could run in and cost Sami Zayn the match, but if this goes (mostly) clean, I don't see him losing. But then what? Not a huge fan of matches without much of an end goal or anything at stake. Still, should be a fun match.
The Retro Goat's Predicted Winner: Sami Zayn
Big M's Predicted Winner: Sami Zayn
Brendan Wahl's Predicted Winner: Sami Zayn
Match 7 of the Best of 7 Series
Cesaro vs. Sheamus
Thank goodness this series of matches is coming to a close. Don't get me wrong - I love watching these two duke it out in the ring, but not once a week over the course of two months. That's just way too much. Cesaro has made his big comeback, and now it's time to finish strong. I'm wondering if there's possibly anything we haven't seen out of these two yet that they could pull off in this final battle? If there is, please show us! I expect Cesaro to win, as there really is no reason for Sheamus to. If Sheamus does somehow go over, this series will have been a complete waste. Hopefully big things are in store for the Swiss Superman.
CJ's Predicted Winner: Cesaro
Cesaro needs the big payoff and I think this might just be it. I would dig it if Cesaro won and went on to battle with Kevin Owens and maybe Seth Rollins in the Universal Championship picture. I will say that I am surprised that these guys will wrestle for the NINTH time at Clash of Champions and I haven't been bored by any of their matches. They aren't all 5 star matches but I'll be damned if they aren't decent matches every time. It goes to show some guys can't do great work if given the right opportunity and partner.
Zack's Predicted Winner: Cesaro
It is time for this rivalry to come to an end. Give Cesaro the win. Hopefully he will win the United States title, because we all know he won’t win the Universal title.
Zeppelin's Predicted Winner: Cesaro
It was obvious that Cesaro would come back from the 3-0 deficit all along as an effort to build sympathy towards him and his push and here is game 7 so to speak in the series with the winner to get a title shot. I am assuming and I know how dangerous that is the title shot will be for the Universal championship so with that in mind I pick the face to win to face a heel champion. Cesaro wins and gets to main-event a PPV with Kevin Owens before Cesaro goes to Smackdown.
Joshua's Predicted Winner: Cesaro
The Retro Goat:
This is probably the most pointless Best of Seven ever. I know it was retconned into being for a nondescript title shot one day, but that just means these two guys went from fighting for no reason to fighting for a shot at a title at some point if WWE remembers. The bad story telling is definitely harming what has been a fairly decent set of matches, since there's still barely any reason to care and the booking has been grossly inconsistent. Still, hopefully this is the chance for Cesaro to have a shot at becoming a main eventer, though I feel like that's the sentiment for almost all of his PPV matches nowadays. Whatever, I for one am looking forward to Cesaro getting his shot and challenging for...a title. Whichever looks best with his suit, I guess.
The Retro Goat's Predicted Winner: Cesaro
Big M's Predicted Winner: Cesaro
Brendan Wahl's Predicted Winner: Cesaro
T.J. Perkins (c) vs. Brian Kendrick
Cruiserweight action, woo! I'm super happy that TJ Perkins gets to make his main roster debut this PPV, making his first title defense against Brian Kendrick, nonetheless. This will be a fun match, and probably one that fans will be buzzing about after the show. Perkins dropping the title just doesn't make sense, but using this to build up a legitimate feud would be a fantastic idea. Perkins will go over, setting up a rematch at Hell in a Cell most likely.
CJ's Predicted Winner: T.J. Perkins
This match is going to be fantastic and a definite match of the night contender. I am a huge fan of Brian Kendrick so I can't help but pull for him here. That said, my brain says they won't strap Kendrick after just strapping Perkins. I know better but my heart still wants Kendrick. I am excited to see how the cruiserweight division evolves over the next few months. I'd still like to see it be hour 1 or hour 3 of Raw so that there can be less BS to stretch Raw into three hours. This match will have to set the tone if we are going to see that happen.
Zack's Predicted Winner: T.J. Perkins
Since this is the first of many things with this division. It only makes sense for TJ Perkins to win in his debut match and first title defense.
Zeppelin's Predicted Winner: T.J. Perkins
This is a very interesting match. Honestly I have no problems with whomever wins here. I'm going to say the title will switch hands and The Brian Kendrick will walk out as the New Cruiserweight champion. Kendrick is the only person so far in the very brief existence of the division to show any type of character yet so I think that is why he will take the title and the others will have to chase him to take it back.
Joshua's Predicted Winner: Brian Kendrick
The Retro Goat:
Why was TJP not at Raw? That was one of the things Triple H stressed when he introduced the Cruiserweight Championship during the CWC (must watch, by the way) and yet he was only referenced as guy who winner of the Fatal Four Way match would be facing. That aside, Perkins versus the returning Brian Kendrick sounds like an awesome match. I'm cautiously optimistic for how the Cruiserweight Division will be handled, but for now I'm hoping for awesome matches that aren't just WWE Formula with smaller guys. Though it's definitely too early to dethrone the current champion, it'd be a terrible start to the division to instantly hot potato the title.
The Retro Goat's Predicted Winner: T.J. Perkins
Big M's Predicted Winner: T.J. Perkins
Brendan Wahl's Predicted Winner: T.J. Perkins
Raw Tag Team Championship Match
The New Day (c) vs. Luke Gallows & Karl Anderson
As I felt last month before SummerSlam, I'm still bored with the tag team division on Raw. The New Day, while still entertaining, have been doing the same thing for over a year now. Let's see something new, please! As for Gallows and Anderson... I'm disappointed that they aren't as over as we all hoped. They're corny and fans really don't seem to care. The matches we've seen between these two teams have been decent, so hopefully this one will be better and have a clean finish. Since most seem to think Gallows and Anderson are just going to be transitional champions for Enzo and Cass, I think now is the time to start that process.
CJ's Predicted Winners: Gallows & Anderson
It's now or never for Gallows and Anderson and I'm not even sure if it should be now. We haven't seen the best from Gallows and Anderson and I'm starting to wonder if we will. Right now I just can't justify taking the championships away from New Day. They have been champions so long that the team that finally beats them will get a big pay off, but that team needs to earn it and so far the only team that has earned it is Enzo and Cass.
Zack's Predicted Winners: The New Day
It is time to end the New Day’s reign. Gallows and Anderson need to appear dominant. A win here would set them up as the fearsome duo they were meant to be.
Zeppelin's Predicted Winners: Gallows & Anderson
This prediction hurts me to make. It really pains me to say the boring and uninteresting Gallows and Anderson will be the next WWE Raw Tag Team Champions but they will be. Somebody has to Transitional champions to take the titles off of The New Day so Enzo and Cass can get them and unfortunately that is Gallows and Anderson. They will bring an end to a glorious near 400 day Tag Team Title reign.
Joshua's Predicted Winners: Gallows & Anderson
The Retro Goat:
I've heard rumors of The Club winning the gold, which considering The New Day is pretty stale at this point would make sense...except The Club has been booked to use a huge amount of Vince humor, and no one can make that work. Vince is known for his exceedingly juvenile humor and there are countless times where segments reek of bad Vince booking, which is now essentially every time Gallows & Anderson pop up on screen. It's all been a hot mess, and I personally can't be bothered to care about the winner of this match because everyone involved has looked stupid this whole feud. It could've been the silly but effective team of The New Day versus the straight up badass Gallows & Anderson, but instead it's testicles, urine, old people, and zero laughter across the globe. Who cares anymore.
The Retro Goat's Predicted Winners: Gallows & Anderson
Big M's Predicted Winners: Gallows & Anderson
Brendan Wahl's Predicted Winners: The New Day
Triple Threat Raw Women's Championship Match
Charlotte (c) vs. Sasha Banks vs. Bayley
Is it bad that I'm slightly disappointed Bayley was added to this match? I love her to death, but that mega fan in me was really pulling for Sasha Banks to win back the title, not that that can't happen anyways. This feels kind of like a 'Big 4' marquee match, and not just something thrown together for a B show. These ladies will work their tails off to have us cheering in the end, at least. My proposal is that Banks wins the title and defends it against Charlotte again next month, but this time, it's INSIDE Hell in a Cell! Talk about Women's Evolution.
CJ's Predicted Winner: Sasha Banks
Who would've thought they'd pull the trigger for a Bayley, Sasha, and Charlotte triple threat so soon? Not me! That said, I'm not complaining one bit. This match should be fantastic and it makes me crave the four horsewomen fatal four way very bad. Hopefully we get that one at Wrestlemania. I'm glad to see Bayley going right back to the top after leaving NXT. I would love to see her win and Sasha turn heel. It's a great rivalry that would help WWE against their stiff competition in the ratings. I like Charlotte but she should be a transitional champion this go around.
Zack's Predicted Winner: Bayley
Out of the three women, Charlotte is the only one that makes sense to win. It is too early to give the title back to Sasha and too early to give the title to Bayley. I don’t think Charlotte should hold the title for very long, but it is just to early for another title change.
Zeppelin's Predicted Winner: Charlotte
I'm going with my heart on this one over my head. Everyone knows I'm a huge fan of Bayley's so I'm picking her to win the WWE Raw Women's Championship even though in my head I am certain it won't happen but I will be extremely happy if it does happen. I expect Bayley is going to be the Face of the division and company for the women and I expect Sasha Banks will be her foil and the Heel opposite to her. I can see Bayley vs Sasha Banks at WM 33 very easily happening.
Joshua's Predicted Winner: Bayley
The Retro Goat:
This is my pick for potential match of the night, as these three women never disappoint when put together. I also think this exact combination of the Four Horsewomen has never been done before, but I could be wrong. I have high expectations for this match, but as with the Cruiserweight Championship, I believe it may hurt the prestige of the title itself to hot potato it, even though all of these women deserve to retire multiple-time champions by the time their careers are over. While I'm disappointed Sasha Banks lost the title so quickly, I still think it would be the wrong call to put it on her again so soon. As for Bayley, she needs more time to showcase herself as the underdog to the casual audience, so her eventual title victory can tell a greater story to the overall WWE Universe. So for now, I'm calling the winner to be Charlotte.
The Retro Goat's Predicted Winner: Charlotte
Big M's Predicted Winner: Charlotte
Brendan Wahl's Predicted Winner: Bayley
United States Championship Match
Rusev (c) vs. Roman Reigns
I was pretty hyped for this headed in to SummerSlam, and while I still am, my excitement level just isn't the same after all these weeks. It's one of those situations where I know the title should stay on Rusev because he's actually a decent champion, but there's still that part of me that wants to see what would happen if Roman Reigns won the belt. Actually you know what... I'm changing my original prediction. I'm calling Reigns to win the United States Championship! Oh, how the internet would explode.
CJ's Predicted Winner: Roman Reigns
Personally I want Rusev to win here, it only establishes him more and brings him closer to being considered a main event guy. His work with Roman in the past has been damn good, too. I do think Roman is going to go over here and win the US title. Roman settles in very well in the upper midcarder and he needs to make that his home for a while until some of his heat blows over or he turns heel. John Cena did it with the US Title why can't Reigns?
Zack's Predicted Winner: Roman Reigns
I personally don’t have a problem with either men coming out on top. Either man winning would help build the championship. The smartest decision is to have Rusev keep the title though. It would keep him dominant and build prestige to his title reign, even if it’s a dirty win. Roman could use this lose to build a story around, and help convert Reigns to being a full time heel. This would help finally push Reigns to being a top star in the company.
Zeppelin's Predicted Winner: Rusev
I personally have enjoyed the build of this feud. I think Roman and Rusev are going to tear the house down and surprise people as both are really good in the ring. In the end I think Reigns will win the title and elevate the US title while he holds it making it more important. Reigns is a main-eventer who is working in the Mid-card right now, that makes this more important then most normal title defenses.
Joshua's Predicted Winner: Roman Reigns
The Retro Goat:
Remember how this match was booked at the last non-Smackdown exclusive PPV and Roman Reigns decided to be an idiot and beat down Rusev for little discernible reason, thus costing himself the chance to win the title? I guess we're just expected to assume he won't do that this time. If he can actually let the match start, I'm going to assume Reigns will win, so he can be in a prominent role without being in the main event. Not expecting any real surprises here.
The Retro Goat's Predicted Winner: Roman Reigns
Big M's Predicted Winner: Rusev
Brendan Wahl's Predicted Winner: Roman Reigns
Universal Championship Match
Kevin Owens (c) vs. Seth Rollins
Seth-freaking-Rollins will have what's sure to be an incredible first-time match against Kevin Owens. I'm still slightly disappointed with the way Seth's babyface turn has come off on TV over the last few weeks, but that doesn't take away from how fun this should be. I highly doubt Owens will lose the title already. He'll find a way, possibly with help from Triple H again. This feud will more than likely extend into Hell in a Cell, possibly inside the cage? Rollins will put up a good fight, but Owens will ultimately escape still the champ.
CJ's Predicted Winner: Kevin Owens
There's no way they're going to take the championship off of Kevin Owens this quickly. On top of that I think that there is a real confidence behind Owens. It was lucky for him that fin injured himself, as terrible as it is to say that. Owens has stepped up to the plate, and has been a really great champion since he first won a few weeks ago. Rollins has been transitioning well into his new role as a tweener/face. I think we are likely to see a dirty finish here that will keep the rivalry alive for another PPV at very least.
Zack's Predicted Winner: Kevin Owens
With the current shift in WWE it doesn’t make sense for Seth Rollins to win the title fro Kevin Owens. Kevin should have a lengthy title reign, especially with being aligned with Triple H. Seth also shouldn’t win the match. Kevin needs to look strong, and not weak like Rollins looked through a majority of his title reign. So a victory with the help of Triple H will keep both men looking strong, and fully transition Seth into the babyface role.
Zeppelin's Predicted Winner: Kevin Owens
I don't think now is the right time to end Kevin Owens's title reign so sorry Seth Rollins but you are going to fail again. Kevin Owens is on another level as a heel and we need to see what he can do as the top guy for a little while. I expect to see HHH on Raw the next night to kick start the feud with Rollins so he will remain on the top of the card. I expect a dirty finish via KO cheating to retain the title.
Joshua's Predicted Winner: Kevin Owens
The Retro Goat:
The big question isn't whether or not Kevin Owens will retain, but whether or not it'll be with the help of Triple H. Since he handed Owens the title on a silver platter after Finn Balor had to relinquish the title, Hunter's been nowhere to be found. Now would be a fairly likely time for him to return, and it would give a reason to tune into Raw tomorrow. Though it could be argued that Triple H protecting KO from Rollins would just make Owens into the coward heel champion that Seth was booked to be during his time as The Authority's chosen one. There's several directions this match could go, which is exciting, though I don't see any of them ending with Seth Rollins as champion.
The Retro Goat's Predicted Winner: Kevin Owens
Big M's Predicted Winner: Kevin Owens
Brendan Wahl's Predicted Winner: Kevin Owens
Thanks everyone for reading our predictions this round! Feel free to post yours in the comments below, and don’t forget to join us tonight at 7 PM EST for our live coverage and Open Thread Party for Clash of Champions!