WWE CLASH of CHAMPIONS [Preview]: RAW is WAR.
This Sunday is the WWE’s Clash of Champions, the first RAW-exclusive pay-per-view following the brand-split. Coming two weeks after Smackdown Live’s excellent (well, much-better-than-anticipated) Backlash, it’s a chance for Team Red to show what it can do–despite some lackluster episodes in recent weeks.
Thankfully for you, the Ringside Apostles are here to preview and predict all the madness like only we can. Break it down!
So, the battle of the GOAT and the new kid on the block. Mongoose McQueen, one of my all time favorite wrestlers of all time, is on his way out. The days of WCW and ECW, as the ayatollah of rocknrolla and the POP of the HEEL of a lifetime, are nearing its end. With that, the match-up is gonna be a great showing for Sami to put on the top tier slot, and Jericho–as usual–will make him a superstar by the end of the evening, with some great back-and-forth matwork and turnbuckle high-flying. attacks. PREDICTION: Swerved ya! While Zayne will get to show off his skills, it will be Y2J who forces the tap with the Walls. It should be one hell of a slobber knocker, as good ol’ JR would say! #FozzyRulez
One RAW Superstar who has been noticeably absent is the current US Champion, Rusev. Ru-ru has been on his honeymoon with Lana, but in-storyline has had injured ribs, stemming from every smark’s favorite guy to hate, Roman Reigns, attacking him before their match at SummerSlam. More than likely, Rusev will retain the title (probably with an assist from his wife), keeping Reigns clawing his way back to the top spot and eventually silencing those naysayers that say he’s isn’t a good worker and that he doesn’t deserve to be where he is. Cheating to win also keeps Rusev’s heat and adds more value to a title that WWE claims to be prestigious on their Twitter account, but then relegates to the pre-show. PREDICTION: While the other probable option is Reigns winning clean–which could reignite the chorus of boos that seem to follow him everywhere–I still see the currently midcard babyface losing to Rusev after a low blow from Lana, as revenge for throwing her in that wedding cake.
It comes down to this. Cesaro, the Swiss Superman vs The Celtic Warrior – Rockstead…ahem- Sheamus! After starting off strong with Sheamus leading the entire way during this best of seven, Cesaro has shown he’s more than willing to do anything to win. But now that Sheamus has lost 3 straight, he’s coming across as desperate and perhaps a bit wreck-less. Is this Magnum TA v Nikita Koloff? (Look it up on the Network, you Millennials!) Not necessarily, but these two men can go full steam ahead every time they step into the ring. PREDICTION: I see a big swing in Cesaro‘s future. A swing up the card that is. Cesaro wins 4-3.
Awwwwwwwe, Apostles!!! Don’t you dare be sour!!! Put your hands together and feeeel the power!! The New Day. The current kings of comedy in the WWE, making sure “you ain’t booty” and your current two time W… W… E… Tag… Team… Champions. (yeah, my hips gyrated as I types that. So what?) They’ve been champs for how long now? And in pure dominant fashion. It seems like every time someone should beat them the New Day comes out on top. I guess it’s the power of positivity. This leads us to the question, WHO can possible dethrone them? Who? Who? Who? Who?… Enter the Club… Luke Gallows and Karl Anderson. Anyone who follows the independent circuit knows how dominant The Club was in Japan. Since coming to the WWE, Gallows and Anderson have continued their dominance but with a little bit of an attempt at a comedic twist. I’m not a huge fan of these guys playing the comedians but I do love what they do in the ring. I just can’t possibly see the powers that be on RAW not giving these guys the belts and letting them run rough shod over the show at least for the next few months. And what better way to stake your claim as the new dominant force than by beating the 10,000 day reigning champion New Day? PREDICTION: Come Sunday, The Club will be left standing in the ring your new RAW Tag Team Champions. And the new eta of the tag team division will officially begin on Raw. It’s a new day, yes it is.
Seriously, Moody? This is the match you assigned me to write about? Well, since the “Bishop” don’t got time for nobody’s pre-shows, I’ll make it easy for ya. PREDICTION: Uh. Nia. Uh. Jax.
With the CWC officially in the bag, WWE RAW General Manager Mick Foley decided to name the #1 contender for T.J. Perkins newly won WWE Cruiserweight title. The man that survived the fatal four way match to earn that right was a very game Brian Kendrick — who, since his return to WWE in the CWC, has been on a tear; “The” Kendrick has used all of his veteran maneuvers to outsmart and outright put a hurting on his opponents. But don’t count our champ out, yo! Perkins beat multiple favorites to win the tournament to gain his title and won’t be letting it go so easily. As lauded as these two are for their awe-inspiring maneuvers, this Apostle bo-lieves the match will be more technical and could come down to a battle of submissions with the Captain’s Hook vs. Knee Bar. PREDICTION: Although I’m very partial to both of these competitors, I’ll say that Perkins successfully defends his title in this bout.
The triple threat match for the RAW Women’s Championship on Sunday has the potential to steal the show. Charlotte, Sasha and Bayley have some of the best in-ring skills we’ve seen for some time! Adding to this, the chemistry they have shown on RAW these past few weeks and their longstanding history of amazing matches over at NXT makes this a must-see. Dana’s ridiculous antics and needless involvement in Charlotte’s matches aren’t as damning as they have been in the past, either; Charlotte has still managed to look more like the strong competitor we remember. However, it seems that they have been trying to place much of Sasha’s latest missteps on bad luck or outside forces, leaving her open to a solid shot at the title; at the very least, making her look strong and “close”. Which leads us to Bayley — the best baby-face ever to grace women’s wrestling. Her determination and spirit are easily the strongest of the 3 ladies, with the only problem? WWE doesn’t seem interested in letting stories take root and then grow naturally. Everything is a rush job. A damn shame in the case of Bayley, since she has an incredible history with both ladies. PREDICTION: As much as I love her(!!) I just don’t see them letting Bayley walk away champion on Sunday. It would be a waste to have her plucky underdog story go from 0-100 so fast on the main stage. She will be the heart of this match, with our desire to see her win driving the match more than Sasha’s redemption. Which will result in Sasha bringing the drama and attitude, while Charlotte adds her athleticism to what will be an awesome match regardless of the winner. For the sake of story progression, Charlotte wins. It will allow Bayley more time to tell her story and refocus on Sasha getting another chance to prove why she’s the boss. Either way, these ladies are sure to put on a show you shouldn’t plan on missing.
Hell Yes! Kevin Owens vs. Seth Rollins! This is bound to be either the best match of the night (Women’s Title Match will be a contender) or the runner-up. Two of the top–of not the top–contenders in the WWE facing off for that hideous.. Universal title. This match will not disappoint. Big spots, back and forth action.. It’ll have everything. So I find myself wondering: “I’m looking forward to the match itself, so why can’t I escape this reeling feeling of meh?”. Ah.. Because we already know the outcome. PREDICION: Owens. It has zero predictability to it. It’s by-the-numbers WWE. Can you remember the last time we had a “PPV to PPV” title reign (that wasn’t Sasha’s)? I can’t. If it’s a 1-on-1 title match involving someone that just became champ, 9 times out of ten, that title isn’t going anywhere–for at least 5 months. So, as much as I know the match will be great, it’s like playing a story-driven video game to which you know the ending to.