Posted October 5th, 2019 by Bill Apter

By Don “The Predictor” Murphy (Twitter: @DonThePredictor)

This will be a fairly short article since, at the time I’m writing this, there are only four advertised matches for Sunday night’s Hell in a Cell event, emanating from the Golden 1 Center in Sacramento, California. So, before we get to that, a few thoughts as we end the first week of the new weekly wrestling television landscape.

Week 1 of the AEW/NXT Wednesday Night War: It’s been quite some time since I looked forward to a night of wrestling the way I did this past Wednesday. And I wasn’t disappointed. Many have said this and it bears repeating – “what a great time to be a professional wrestling fan!” While I thought, overall, NXT delivered a better quality wrestling show, I enjoyed AEW. The production and sound was top-notch and I love the fact that for many of these guys, we’re getting to see them as a clean slate. Ratings aside, for me, the key for both companies will be consistent storytelling and character development. They both can deliver great in-ring work, but, as we know, that only takes you so far. If you can combine that with a compelling story, then we’ll really be in for a treat. And, from the initial groundwork I’m seeing, I don’t think we’ll be disappointed,

The debut of Friday Night Smackdown on Fox: Production and star power-wise, the show was great. I can’t say I was overwhelmed by the in-ring presentation, but I am willing to chalk that up to it being the premiere, only having two hours and needing to get a lot of things in. That being said, while I don’t have an issue with Brock Lesnar winning the WWE Championship, having Kofi drop the title in 8 seconds was ridiculous. I understand they had to get to the big angle with Cain Velasquez, but they basically flushed away about 9 months of the story where Kofi was the lovable underdog who fought for 11 years through the ranks and finally won the championship. I’m not saying you make the match 20 minutes long, but an F5 and a pin? And then there was the Rock segment with Becky Lynch and Baron Corbin. Hey, I love the Rock as much as the next person, but he’s not going to be there next week. Becky Lynch is – and while I understand the point of the segment was for the Rock to get Becky over, I think it actually downplayed Becky more than anything else, as she basically just stood there while the Rock hit all his catchphrases. I think you could have easily put the Rock elsewhere on the show, and had Becky and Baron handle the opening. It gives her more time to talk and she looks like a world beater when she attacks him and throws him out of the ring. Long and short – I don’t think Becky needs the Rock to get her over. She’s proven she can do that on her own.

Now, onto Sunday night’s card….

WWE Universal Championship Match/Hell in a Cell: Seth Rollins defends the WWE Universal Championship against “The Fiend” Bray Wyatt

Topline Thoughts: The Fiend is the hottest act the company has right now, so I don’t see any scenario where he doesn’t take the title. The weekly attacks on Seth have gotten a bit repetitive and I’m not sure that I’m in favor of my babyface champion cowering in fear every week. That being said, this should be a fun match and I continue to be intrigued as they continue to establish the Wyatt character.

The Predictor Predicts: “The Fiend” Bray Wyatt wins the WWE Universal Championship

WWE Raw Women’s Championship Match/Hell in a Cell: Becky Lynch defends the WWE Raw Championship against Sasha Banks

Topline Thoughts: I should be more excited about this feud, but it hasn’t been built in a way that has me anticipating this match. It’s based on the premise that Sasha consistently runs away or relies on Bayley and the cage prevents that from happening. If you watched Sasha in NXT, you know that she can play the heel role much better than she’s being portrayed. I hope we eventually get there once the draft happens and the rosters settle in. My assumption is that she and Becky will be separated, so she should be moving on shortly. As Sasha has been portrayed as vulnerable and beatable, I fully expect her to win the title here.

The Predictor Predicts: Sasha Banks wins the WWE Raw Women’s Championship

WWE Smackdown Women’s Championship Match: Bayley defends the Smackdown Women’s Championship against Charlotte Flair

Topline Thoughts: This match was added on Saturday morning, as I suspect other matches will. It makes sense given the last event and is likely the blow-off to the feud. I see Bayley retaining, with Becky moving to Smackdown to challenge her, while Charlotte moves to Raw to face off with Sasha. Charlotte and Sasha have history, but have been apart long enough where that program can be reset. And, Becky and Charlotte need to be apart for a long while, given their long program last year and earlier this year.

The Predictor Predicts: Bayley retains the WWE Smackdown Women’s Championship

Tag Team Match: Roman Reigns and Daniel Bryan meet Erick Rowan and Luke Harper

Topline Thoughts: For those of you looking forward to Daniel Bryan’s return to the babyface side, you’re about to be disappointed. Once they made a big presentation out of his handshake with Roman Reigns on Smackdown, it’s pretty clear it was all a ruse and Bryan will be revealed to be behind the attacks on Reigns all along. It’s a bit disjointed, as if Bryan is behind it, why did he undergo several attacks over the last several weeks? But, it’s wrestling and we’re supposed to suspend logic. I will say, Rowan’s work on the mic has been a nice surprise and I’m looking forward to seeing more.

The Predictor Predicts: Erick Rowan and Luke Harper defeat Roman Reigns and Daniel Bryan

Category: Wrestling.

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