Friday, 31 March 2017

WWE Wrestlemania 33 : Predictions (Part I)

Alright, this is a first for me. I have never written anything about World Wrestling Entertainment, and never thought I ever would. I'm not even a big follower of the show, and have only been watching it for the last 3 months or so.

It all started way back in 2002 when I thought WWE was real. Being a 12 year old, it was all so fascinating. I would always get annoyed when a 'bad guy' would cheat and win, and became ecstatic when a 'good guy' would finally get his revenge. Edge vs Kurt Angle in a hair-vs-hair match is one first matches I remember watching, and it was really funny when Kurt Angle got his hair shaved off after he lost; don't think I would've been that happy if Edge had lost.

Board exams, then going to a TV-free place after my 12th, and the realisation that it was all fake, got me off wrestling completely by early 2007. A decade later, I randomly tuned into watch Royal Rumble 2017, and now I am hooked to the show again. Only this time, I know it is not real but just entertainment, and the storylines and booking decisions makes so much more sense to me.

So like a tennis pundit, I'll try my hands on predicting the outcome of WWE matches. For which event? Of course Wrestlemania 33, which is equivalent to say, 'Wimbledon' in the world of wrestling. For WWE fans in India, let me mention that the kickoff (pre) show will air on Ten 2 and Ten 1 HD, live at 2:30 AM on the 3rd of April. The main show will be aired from 4:30 AM.

So let me start off with my predictions for each match one by one, with a brief on how the matches will be booked, who wins, and if I'm wrong, what is the most likely 'scenario 2'.


KICKOFF SHOW



1. WWE SMACKDOWN WOMEN'S CHAMPIONSHIP


ALEXA BLISS (C) VS BECKY LYNCH VS NATALYA VS MICKIE JAMES VS CARMELLA (W/ JAMES ELLSWORTH) VS NAOMI  (SIX-PACK CHALLENGE)  





The current WWE Smackdown Women's champion, Alexa Bliss
(image courtesy : www.pwmania.com)


Probably it is Naomi who kicks off Wrestlemania in her hometown, coming out to a massive pop, followed by the other women. It is a six-pack challenge match, which I guess means that all the 6 women brawl it out till the first woman to get a pinfall or submission wins the match.

PREDICTION : ALEXA BLISS retains the '
WWE Smackdown Women's Championship' by pinning Natalya

SCENARIO 2 : NAOMI wins the title, as it is her hometown, and they usually prefer a face-win to kick off the show. But I feel if that was the case, they would have kept Naomi's comeback a surprise till Wrestlemania. As she had her moment on Smackdown last week, I think she won't win the title.

EDIT : I wrote this article before the WWE Smackdown Women's Championship match was moved to the main show. My prediction remains the same about the outcome, except now, things might get a little twist. Read about it in Part II of my prediction post.

2. WWE CRUISERWEIGHT CHAMPIONSHIP

NEVILLE VS AUSTIN ARIES

(image courtesy : whatculture.com)


This might be one of the best matches of the night, fast-paced, electric and high-flying. Both of them are good wrestlers, but Neville needs to win this encounter. Aries will probably get his hands on the title too, but he might have to wait till somewhere around Extreme rules or Summerslam. The match might end in a submission, as both of them picked up their respective victories in the go-home show by submission, but it might just make Aries look weaker if he loses by submission, so I'm going for a pinfall victory.

PREDICTION
: NEVILLE retains the 'WWE Cruiserweight Championship' by pinfall.

SCENARIO 2 : Let me make a bold call and say that it might end in a double countout, or crazier still, a double submission or something. Ok, a double submission is a bit too much, but WWE maybe would want to protect Austin Aries too, so no-result might be a good possibility.


3. ANDRE THE GIANT MEMORIAL BATTLE ROYAL

(image courtesy : dailywrestlingnews.com)


30 men are taking part in this match, though the only men of significance are Braun Strowman, The Big Show and Sami Zayn. It will be a shocker if Braun Strowman doesn't decimate everyone else and wins this one. Sami Zayn is slowly getting buried on Raw, playing a 'jobber' to Owens, Samoa Joe and the likes, and if the creatives have any sort of love for the guy, he should be the second last man standing in the ring. This also marks Big Show's farewell Wrestlemania, so expect him to play an important role. I feel he will have a one-on-one showdown with Strowman at some point in the match, and Strowman will eventually eliminate him or something.

PREDICTION : BRAUN STROWMAN wins by eliminating at least 8-9 guys

SCENARIO 2 : SAMI ZAYN wins by eliminating Strowman in the end.

EDIT : Now that the WWE Smackdown Women's championship match has been moved to the main show, I think the Battle Royal will begin the kickoff show. And now, the chances of Sami Zayn winning by scenario 2 is much more likely. Also, his music will probably kickoff the show.


Now the problem with my predictions so far is that I have picked heels (bad guys/girls) to win all three matches, which is a very unlikely scenario. Unless, they make it up by a flurry of face victories in the main show, which tallies with my set of predictions for the main show.
Click here to check out Part II

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