Jay's Ways - WWE Payback 2017 Preview Submitted by Justin Watry on 04/29/2017 at 11:41 PM
"I have been reading your stuff on 411mania and nodq.com for the longest time now and I have never felt inclined to email in. The general consensus of you not being most popular is harsh at times but also can be well-founded too. But I still read your stuff because I do enjoy your articles and find your perspective interesting most of the time.
That said, your article about your friend Megan and trip to Wrestlemnaia was the greatest thing you have ever wrote. Forget about the predictions you brag about getting right. This is your crowning piece. Maybe it is because I can relate as going to Wrestlemania is my ultimate dream and it will be happening next year. But I genuinely loved your article.
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WWE Payback 2017 Preview & Predictions
KICKOFF MATCH: Gallows and Anderson vs. Enzo Amore and Big Cass
Considering I do not have cable and only get to watch the Hulu version of RAW (plus Youtube clips), I have no clue what this feud is about. My guess is it involves Enzo insulting the bald brothers or something, and WWE needing something to pad out a Kickoff Show for Payback. I guess Finn Balor on Miz TV isn't enough of a hook for viewers. Needless to say, I don't care who wins here. The Superstar Shakeup had two goals in my mind besides flipping a few wrestlers who needed a fresh start. First was revamping the entire women's division by sending Charlotte to Smackdown LIVE. That was accomplished. Second was completely switching the tag team divisions for both shows in a major way. That was kiiiiinda done but not really. Thus, we are left with this.
Winner: Big Cass & Enzo
Samoa Joe vs. Seth Rollins
Samoa Joe was protected in NXT for 20 months, just as he has been protected on RAW for his first three months. So far, so good. Unfortunately, I believe we are getting to that point where he can eat a few losses and be okay. Sunday feels like one of those times. Seth Rollins is still not 100% there as a top good guy. Joe can help him get there. No controversy, no interference. I see Rollins winning after a hard hitting bout.
Winner: Seth Rollins
Roman Reigns vs. Braun Strowman
Probably the main event. Not that I would enjoy a non-finish to close the show, isn't the only logical result here? You can get creative with an Ambulance Match or some kind of gimmick. That isn't the case here. It is one on one - a normal grudge match between two beasts. Braun is supposedly next in line to challenge Brock Lesnar for the Universal Championship. No sense in having him lose a month or two before that showdown. On the flip side, Roman Reigns just beat The Undertaker at WrestleMania! No sense in him losing four weeks later. None. I am going to pick Reigns but really, neither should lose right now. Tough spot.
Winner: Roman Reigns
EDIT: Seriously, neither man should lose here,
especially with Brock Lesnar waiting for both men in the future.
Cruiserweight Title Match: Champion Neville vs. Austin Aries
If Austin Aries was going to get his moment, it was going to happen at WM33. While the company may have just wanted to reward a heel Neville with a nice gift that night, I think it was more of a long-term move. The cruiserweight division is STILL nowhere near as important as it should be, so the champion needs to be a stable name that people know and recognize. That is Neville. No more flip flopping the title and going with different guys every month. They have picked Neville, so stay with him.
Raw Women’s Title Match: Champion Bayley vs. Alexa Bliss
Hey, remember that garbage report about officials souring on Alexa Bliss or whatever some bogus website thought up of a few weeks ago? I loved it. Oh look, Bliss won the number one contender's match in OHIO!!! No way. The internet tells me WWE loves to humiliate the hometown wrestler. Guess Dean Ambrose didn't get the memo that night either. Huh. Funny conspiracy theories never cease to amaze me. Truthfully, I will be rooting for Bliss to win, making her the first to win both RAW and Smackdown Womens' Titles...but Bayley is the prediction. Like Neville, WWE chose her for a reason. Don't play hot potato with the belt. Not now. That Bayley/Sasha Banks bout awaits.
Raw Tag Team Title Match: Champions Matt and Jeff Hardy vs. Sheamus and Cesaro
Well, Jeff Hardy won his single's match. Then the following week Matt Hardy won his single's match. Cesaro and Sheamus lost their single's matches. Weird. At every turn, it has been shown that The Hardyz are better than their opponents. I mean, they ARE but still, very interesting hype for a tag team title bout. Either Sheamus and Cesaro are turning heel (bad idea) or something else is going on here. Not sure what, but WWE has my attention. Hardyz retain; the aftermath will be the real story though.
US Title Match: Champion Kevin Owens vs. Chris Jericho
One could argue this deserves the main event slot. With the House of Horrors match being a mystery (and apparently non-title?), and Reigns/Strowman possibly not having a finish, that would leave Kevin Owens and Chris Jericho. It is for a title, plus their story line actually dates back to last summer. Seems like a fitting conclusion - main events a WWE Network live special with the younger star defeating the wrestler about to take time off. Nothing worth with that at all.
Winner: Kevin Owens
House of Horrors Match: Randy Orton vs. Bray Wyatt
Okay, so Jinder Mahal stole the WWE Championship. That eliminates the title belt. Not like Bray Wyatt cares about a rematch clause or anything. Whatever this House of Horrors 'thing' is, I don't have a ton of interest. I predicted this story line would slowly lose buzz once Luke Harper and AJ Styles butted their nose into it...and yep, nailed it. This feud never regained momentum again and now comes to a quiet finale. Either Orton wins in Wyatt's own invention OR Wyatt wins to get some little credibility back for his RAW feud with Finn Balor. Initially, I had this pegged as an easy win for Mr. RKO, and life moves on. Just two seconds ago, while writing this paragraph, I changed my mind. Jinder Mahal can interfere in a 'shocking' move (brand split rules?), and the WWE Champion goes down. Remember it is non-title. Wyatt has a winning promo for Monday night planned, and BOOM - Finn Balor enters the picture. Perfect feud.
Winner: Bray Wyatt
Ark Of Experience
Excellent website about all things in life and a new column posted, which received a great deal of press in the poker community. Give it a read here: https://arkofexperience.com/
New 411mania.com column posted two days ago. I discuss Shaq NOT appearing at WrestleMania 33, WWE Payback this weekend, Jinder Mahal getting a main event opportunity, and the latest Impact Wrestling reboot. Here is the column: http://411mania.com/wrestling/truths-lies-jinder-mahal-shaq-payback-more/
The return. It's happening.
Stay tuned to @JustinWatry on Twitter for more details. This summer...
Okay, I wrote something like 15 columns in the build up to WrestleMania 33 and following the big event. Instead of the usual stale Raw and Smackdown LIVE reviews, you tell me what you want in future columns! More personal stuff like my Orlando journey, flashback junk, re-posts where I make a fool of myself, lists, etc. YOU tell me. I am more than content in keep doing my thing but have no issues going to the audience for ideas. Don't be shy, let me know. Use the comment section or hit me up via email or social media.