Posted September 25th, 2016 by 1Wrestling News Team

By Don Murphy

Over the next two weeks, wrestling fans will be treated to three major events, the first of which takes place on Sunday, as the WWE Monday Night Raw brand presents the Clash of Champions show, emanating from Indianapolis, Indiana, As the name suggests, most of the matches on the eight match card are for championships, so there’s a good chance we’ll see at least one title change, as the Raw brand heads deep into the fall months and begins to put things into place for the Survivor Series, the Royal Rumble and WrestleMania. The nice thing about this show are the stories behind the matches. With the exception of a couple of the matches, there’s been a decent build, enough so that the final product should be entertaining. Let’s run down the card…

Main Event: Kevin Owens defends the WWE Universal Championship against Seth Rollins

Analysis: There’s definitely some intrigue as we head into this match. In particular, we haven’t heard from Triple H since the shocking angle a few weeks back on Raw that gave Owens the championship. So, there’s always the anticipation of a Triple H appearance, which will play into the outcome of the match. I wasn’t a fan of last week’s “go-home” edition of Raw, which should have strongly positioned Owens. Instead, he lost cleanly to Reigns and the creative team made more of an effort to tease a Shield reunion, than they did to sell me on this match. Plus, Rollins as a babyface really hasn’t taken off yet. Nevertheless, from an in-ring perspective, this will likely be a great match. In the end, I don’t see a clean finish, which ultimately means that Owens will hold onto the title.

Murphy Predicts: Kevin Owens retains the WWE Universal Championship via a non-clean finish

Singles Match: Rusev defends the United States Championship against Roman Reigns

Analysis: The hopeless quest to make Roman Reigns a top babyface continues, as he gets another shot at Rusev’s U.S. Title. The fans really haven’t bought into this match, even though both have proven that they can perform at a high pace. I don’t really see what else they can do with this feud, nor do I see future programs involving either man in their current roles. So, I’m going to go out on a limb here and say that Reigns wins the U.S. title, which serves as the catalyst to put the needed heel turn in motion, once the reunion with Seth Rollins plays itself out. For Rusev, hopefully the creative time can find a way to keep him at monster heel status, since he has proven that he can play the role well.

Murphy Predicts: Roman Reigns wins the U.S. Title

Triple Threat Match: Charlotte defends the WWE Women’s Championship United States Championship against Sasha Banks and Bayley

Analysis: The match itself will be fine, but the build-up has been flawed. My guess is that the WWE didn’t expect Sasha Banks to be back so quickly and were preparing for a singles match between Charlotte and Bayley. When Banks returned, they invoked her rematch clause, but didn’t want to leave Bayley without a spot on the show, hence the Triple Threat match. They could always shift the focus to the tension between Charlotte and Dana Brooke, but Dana hasn’t sold me yet as a sympathetic character, so that story needs to build a bit longer. I see Charlotte retaining here, as she plays the heel champion role so well. Sasha is doing great as the “chaser of the title. And Bayley’s character is at its best when she loses and has to climb back up again.

Murphy Predicts: Charlotte retains the Women’s Championship

Tag Team Match: The New Day defends the WWE World Tag Team Championship against Luke Gallows and Karl Anderson

Analysis: I am happy to see that the creative team seems to have scaled back with campy comedy skits, involving Gallows and Anderson. These two need to be a no-nonsense team that kicks butts and takes names. They’re not quite there yet, so I think a title change now might be abrupt; however, this could be the starting point of a whole new direction for the two. A feud between a serious Gallows, Anderson, Enzo and Cass, if built right, could be amazing. So, I see Gallows and Anderson finally getting the titles and evolving to the next level.

Murphy Predicts: Gallows and Anderson win the WWE World Tag Team Championship

Singles Match: T.J. Perkins defends the WWE Cruiserweight Championship against Brian Kendrick

Analysis: To me, Perkins shouldn’t have been chosen to carry the inaugural title, but as tournament favorites weren’t signed to contracts, Perkins was a decent choice. Kendrick was the right pick as his first opponent, as he’s somewhat known to the fanbase and the most familiar with the WWE style of matches. He won’t win the title, but he has the experience and credibility to give Perkins a good showcase in his first successful title defense.

Murphy Predicts: T.J Perkins retains the WWE Cruiserweight Title

Singles Match: Cesaro and Sheamus conclude their Best of Seven Series

Analysis: The series was predictable from the first match. I don’t think there’s any reason to doubt that Cesaro will win and go on to challenge Kevin Owens. The question I have is – what’s next for Sheamus? Does he have any equity left? Or, is he doomed to flounder in the mid-card. Unfortunately, these matches haven’t wowed me to the point that Sheamus gains in loss.

Singles Match: Sami Zayn faces Chris Jericho

Analysis: I love the pairing for this match. Chris Jericho has been executing some of his best heel work in years and Zayn has the potential to be a top star down the road. He can only benefit from working with an iconic veteran and stands to jump in credibility upon winning, This is also a nice feud for Zayn to occupy his time, as he works his way up the card.

Murphy Predicts: Sami Zayn defeats Chris Jericho

Singles Match on the Kickoff Show: Nia Jax meets Alicia Fox

Analysis: This the right match for the kickoff show and the right opponent for Jax, as she works her way up the women’s division and into the title picture. Fox doesn’t offer much in the way of match quality, so I see this as a pretty straightforward squash match.

Murphy Predicts: Nia Jax defeats Alicia Fox

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Category: Wrestling.

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