I’ve already posted about what I believe the shortcomings of this PPV concept is (https://rtvwrestling.wordpress.com/2010/10/13/some-notes-on-bragging-rights-and-wwes-ppv-schedule/), but i’ll just say here that this is the only PPV on the WWE schedule where most people will barely care about a main event (referring to the Bragging Rights tag team match). I reiterate, the winning team needs to win more than a trophy and an abstract idea of ‘bragging rights’ to make it relevant. So far there have only been five matches announced, and it seems innevitable that there will be another ‘Smackdown vs RAW match’ booked for the show, if not two. There will almost certainly be a divas tag match, and in that i’d like to see (as Smackdown can only spare two more divas) just a divas tag match, so Gail Kim and Melina for RAW against Kelly Kelly and Rosa Mendes (not a great fit, but all that’s available unless WWE decide to call Tiffany back to television). As for another match, no particular ‘bragging rights’ style match-up stands out, though I think MVP is always deserving of a PPV appearance. Anyway:
Match 1) Daniel Bryan vs Dolph Ziggler
This is a very difficult match to predict, simply because both superstars are at a very similar position in the company (as their parallel titles suggests), both being potential future world champions that have recently won their respective upper-mid card titles and have a lot of momentum behind them. I think a lot of this depends on the other results (i.e. how it will affect each brand’s won/loss record on the night), and this is difficult to pressume upon without knowing the other results. Tentatively then, I think WWE probably feel they have to work more at getting Bryan over with the fans, and that Ziggler can take a loss better. Also, no doubt the Vickie Guerrero/Kaitlyn story will segway into it somehow, offering more opportunity for a calamatous loss and added heat to their complicated relationship. Predictions aside, I think this match has a lot of potential. Bryan and Ziggler are something of an odd couple, but this could make for an entertaining and unique match. Bryan will go over, but Ziggler will be made to look strong nontheless, and will quite possibly lose with the distraction of Kaitlyn trying to sway his attention from Vickie.
Winner: Daniel Bryan
Match 2) Divas Championship Match: Layla (c) vs Natalya
I think Natalya is a very credible candidate to be the one to finally end LayCool’s monopoly of the divas championship. However, i’m not sure they’ll be losing the championship just yet. Whenever one of LayCool lose the championship, I have no doubt that will spell the beginning of a split for the duo, and since I don’t see that hapenning just yet, I see Layla retaining. Also, the sheer dominance of Natalya in the run up to the PPV would suggest, according to the wrestling textbook (so to speak), that Natalya’s luck will turn on Sunday.
UPDATE! Match 3) Goldust vs Ted DiBiase
Goldust just heavily hinted on twitter that he’d be taking on Ted DiBiase tonight, so i’d best preview and predict it’s outcome! Well, this is sensible booking in some ways. This is a pretty prominant feud right now and deserves PPV attention, I would rather be seeing anothe bragging rights style match (though I understand four of them does not make the required odd number for Bragging Rights. Whether or not this is for the Million Dollar Championship remains to be seen, but i’m expecting a short match which ends with Goldie keeping the belt (whether it’s on the line or not), maybe cut short by Nexus.
Match 4) Divas Tag Team Match
I wont go in to any more detail about the match, if it takes place you can definately expect Kelly Kelly for Smackdown, as for RAW, they have more selection. Eve, Maryse, and Melina would be favourites, but i’d prefer to see Gail Kim. As for who would win: seen as I picked a RAW victory earlier, it only makes sense that Smackdown would even the score.
Winners: Smackdown Divas
Match 5) Buried Alive Match for the World Heavyweight Championship: Kane (c) vs The Undertaker
I’m starting to realise how unpredictable this PPV is. Unlike other PPVs, there are no matches with an obvious winner. The result of this match will depend a lot on whether the ‘buried alive’ aspect will necessitate the loser to take some time out. My instinct tells me that it probably will, and for that reason, i’m backing Kane to again retain his championship. Not only does ‘Taker’s recent potency suggest his momentum will be stopped, but if anyone is to make a comeback, it will be ‘Taker rather than Kane as that would be a bit contrived. I can see Kane winning and claiming that he’s ‘vanquished’ his brother and continue to dominate the blue brand for a month or two until ‘Taker makes a big return around Wrestlemania season (either against Kane, or possibly rejuvinated against another competitor). All this in mind, i’m looking forward to seeing a buired alive match again. There’s definately a great spectacle to them!
Match 6) Bragging Rights Tag Team Elimination Match: Team Raw (Miz, Sheamus, CM Punk, John Morrison, R-Truth, Ezekiel Jackson & Santino Marella) vs Team Smackdown (Big Show, Jack Swagger, Edge, Rey Mysterio, Alberto Del Rio, Kofi Kingston & Tyler Reks)
Initially I was sure Smackdown was going to win this match for the second year in a row, simply because of their re-launch on SyFy as a way to get the brand over more, and secondly because their team is clearly a little stronger. However, i’m starting to think, for a couple of reasons that RAW will take it this year. Firstly, with Smackdown employing their bragging rights to the extreme, and the Smackdown superstars doing so well of late, the RAW superstars have more to gain while a Smackdown retention would be a little disappointing. Plus, the RAW superstars arguably need the victory more. Miz, who needs to seem prominant as a MITB holder, Sheamus who needs to recover from losing the WWE Championship, CM Punk also needs a new impetus, while John Morrison could do with a good PPV performance to keep his push momentum going. I’m expecting the inter-brand rivalries from Smackdown (Edge-Swagger, Del Rio-Mysterio) to affect their performance, possibly with the heels attacking their antagonists or simply abandoning the team. Also, look out for Tyler Reks turning on his team. What a way to make a name for yourself!
Match 7) WWE Championship Match: Randy Orton (c) vs Wade Barrett w/ John Cena
This has the potential to be another showstopping, heart-stopping match with John Cena’s involvement being the incredibly interesting ‘x-factor’ in it all. What I am really begging to see is Cena help Barrett, and willingly. However, I think at this point at least, that is out-of-the-question. I expect Cena to help, but unwillingly, which in itself will be pretty special nonetheless as he would be furthering his commitment to Nexus. Indeed, I think Cena will, eventually, help Barrett, and help him win. This isn’t perfect. I would have liked to have seen a longer Orton reign, but I think a Barrett win would be so shocking and incredible that it would be worth it. I expect a highly moving and emotionally charged match.
Winner: Wade Barrett
I’m looking forward mostly to the world title matches. I’m not too bothered about the tag matche(s), but Bryan-Ziggler also has potential.