THREE GUYS AND… WWE
series created by Marvin Mercer and Nick Stephenson
“ELIMINATION CHAMBER 2018 — PREDICTIONS”
by Dominick Cappello
WWE Universal Championship Match: Brock Lesnar © (w/ Paul Heyman) vs. Roman Reigns
- Roman Reigns wins. Brock Lesnar has overstayed his welcome in WWE and “The Big Dog” Roman “The Big Dog” Reigns will be anointed as the face of WWE for the third WrestleMania in a row. If this match closes the show, Roman Reigns aka The Big Dog will have main evented WrestleMania more times than “Stone Cold” Steve Austin. Paul Heyman has done his best to hype this as the match fans are desperate to see, but it feels more like we’re desperate to get it over with. Have I mentioned yet that Roman Reigns is The Big Dog?
WWE World Championship Match: AJ Styles © vs. Shinsuke Nakamura
- Shinsuke Nakamura wins. I don’t expect this match to close the show. In fact, very few do despite Shinsuke Nakamura having won the Royal Rumble Match. This would be the eighth time since 2006 that the Royal Rumble winner won’t actually main event WrestleMania. My prediction is that Shinsuke Nakamura wins though it’s not a lock. AJ Styles retaining the WWE World Championship is a distinct possibility. It seems that fans are rooting more for this match to steal the show than they are for either of the participants in the match.
Daniel Bryan & Shane McMahon vs. Kevin Owens & Sami Zayn
- Daniel Bryan & Shane McMahon win. Perhaps there could be a swerve where Shane McMahon turns on Daniel Bryan, but I think WWE will most likely play it safe with this one. Daniel Bryan scores the winning pinfall or submission in his triumphant comeback match. Kevin Owens & Sami Zayn will be banished from Smackdown Live only to pop up on Monday Night RAW 24 hours later. Newly hired by Stephanie McMahon to stick it to her brother.
Mixed Tag Team Match: Triple H & Stephanie McMahon vs. Kurt Angle & Ronda Rousey
- Kurt Angle & Ronda Rousey win. I hope this match doesn’t close the show. I can’t cope with Stephanie McMahon being a WrestleMania main eventer. Neither Triple H or Kurt Angle looked particularly good at Survivor Series. Time’s slowed them down considerably. But, this match is a showcase for Ronda Rousey. WWE wanted her for WrestleMania 32, so some have said that she’s no longer relevant. Just remember that WWE (WWF at the time) wanted Mike Tyson involved in the Hulk Hogan / “Macho Man” Randy Savage feud in 1989, but they couldn’t secure him until WrestleMania 14 in 1998, so I don’t think the ship has completely sailed on Ronda Rousey. Kurt Angle & Ronda Rousey have to win this match. Ronda has to win her first match in WWE. Triple H & Stephanie McMahon usually put their egos aside at WrestleMania (for the most part).
The Undertaker vs. John Cena
- Yes, The Undertaker will be at WrestleMania, but I don’t believe that he and John Cena will have an actual match. There will be a physical altercation between the two, but without a referee and anyone being declared the winner. Something akin to the WrestleMania 12 Hollywood Backlot Brawl between “Rowdy” Roddy Piper and Goldust or dare I say something akin to King of the Ring 2001 where Diamond Dallas Page sat in front row and waited for The Undertaker to appear. American Badass Undertaker rolled up and beat the holy hell out of DDP. The difference being that this altercation with John Cena will be competitive and evenly matched. The Undertaker will beat John Cena in a street fight type situation, but it won’t be an official match, so The Undertaker’s WrestleMania record will remain 23-2. FYI I’m fine with The Undertaker appearing as The American Badass and not The Dead Man because The Dead Man was essentially retired at last year’s WrestleMania.
Intercontinental Championship “Triple Threat” Match: The Miz © vs. Seth Rollins vs. Finn Balor
- Finn Balor wins. The Miz has come along from the insufferable reality show reject he was a decade ago. I’ve always said that WWE put him in main event too soon. He wasn’t ready in 2011 and that’s why he’s been perceived as a mid-carder for life ever since. But, as much as The Miz has impressed, Finn Balor needs the win. WWE has done virtually nothing with him. He never received a rematch for the Universal Championship, he never got revenge on Seth Rollins for the shoulder injury, his Bullet Club reunion amounted to nothing, so he needs a big win. He needs to win a title. Now is the time. As for Seth Rollins, I don’t see him winning and the rumors are that he’s moving to Smackdown Live following WrestleMania.
United States Championship “Fatal 4-Way” Match: Randy Orton © vs. Bobby Roode vs. Rusev vs. Jinder Mahal
- It’s Rusev Day! Rusev was my favorite to win the Andre the Giant Memorial Battle Royal, but now he’s in this match. WWE needs to strike while the iron is hot. It’s taken Rusev three years to recover from losing three straight PPV matches to John Cena in 2015. When Randy Orton won the US Championship from Bobby Roode, it was the first time in years that Randy Orton seemed motivated. He had string of terrible PPV matches last year with Bray Wyatt and Jinder Mahal. I was hoping to see Bobby Roode have a longer reign as US Champion, but The Glorious One is being overshadowed by Rusev Day. And I surely cannot endure another Jinder Mahal title reign. You can hinder Jinder as much as you’d like especially when it’s Rusev Day!
Smackdown Women’s Championship Match: Charlotte © vs. Asuka
- Asuka wins. I know it seems so obvious that Asuka is going to win and remain undefeated that it makes sense to have Charlotte win for the sake of unpredictability. Like AJ Styles / Shinsuke Nakamura, this match could go either way, but I’ll play it safe with my prediction and go with Asuka. Also, if Carmella tries to cash-in her Money in the Bank contract on the winner, I think she’s going to fail in her attempt.
RAW Women’s Championship Match: Alexa Bliss © vs. Nia Jax
- I know it sounds crazy, but I think Nia Jax wins by count out or disqualification. Alexa Bliss and Mickie James have been body shaming Nia, so Nia should win for there to be a happy ending, but it wouldn’t surprise me for WWE to have Alexa Bliss lose by count out or disqualification, so Nia doesn’t win the title. However, whereas I think Carmella will fail if she tries to cash-in after the Charlotte / Asuka match, if she somehow jumps to RAW, she might have a chance to cash-in after this match.
RAW Tag Team Championship Match: The Bar (Sheamus & Cesaro) © vs. Braun Strowman & ???
- Braun Strowman & ??? win. Sheamus & Cesaro have always been a makeshift tag team, so they can win or lose and it doesn’t really matter. I have my fingers crossed that Samoa Joe will be Braun’s partner. Joe deserves to have a match at WrestleMania. To be honest, I’ll be disappointed if The Big Show, Kane, or Mark Henry are Braun’s partner. Braun Strowman & Samoa Joe don’t need to have a lengthy title reign. Heck, they could lose the titles the next night on RAW.
SmackDown Tag Team Championship “Triple Threat” Match: The Usos (Jimmy & Jey) © vs. The New Day (Big E & Kofi Kingston w/ Xavier Woods) vs. The Bludgeon Brothers (Harper & Rowan)
- The Usos win. For the past four years, The Usos have been relegated to the pre-show, so WWE will finally let them having their WrestleMania moment this year. The New Day are over enough that they don’t need to be champions anymore. The Bludgeon Brothers should have won the titles when they were in The Wyatt Family several years ago. The Usos will have their WrestleMania moment, but lose to The Bludgeon Brothers in the near future.
5th Annual Andre the Giant Memorial Battle Royal
- Big Cass wins. Only a few of the participants have been announced. So far, this Andre the Giant trophy has failed to build stars. Cesaro is still a mid-carder, The Big Show was already established and didn’t need the win, Baron Corbin is still a mid-carder, and Mojo Rawley is a borderline jobber. There’s a lot of buzz around Elias, but I don’t believe that Elias will be in the Battle Royal. He’s only spoken about performing at WrestleMania like he’s going to put on a concert. So, I say Big Cass returns from injury and wins the Battle Royal.
1st Annual Women’s Battle Royal
- Becky Lynch wins. Becky has been criminally underutilized in WWE. The build has been all about the Sasha Banks / Bayley feud. They’re great too, but I’m hoping that the Battle Royal is used as a launching pad for Becky Lynch. BTW This isn’t the first ever Women’s Battle Royal at a WrestleMania. Santino Marella won the Miss WrestleMania Battle Royal in drag, but I guess we’re all agreeing to pretend that match never happened?
Cruiserweight Championship Tournament Finals: Cedric Alexander vs. Mustafa Ali
- Cedric Alexander wins. I think Cedric was intended to defeat Enzo Amore for the Cruiserweight Championship before Enzo’s controversial departure from WWE. Mustafa Ali has garnered goodwill with the fans of 205 Live as of late, but I’m thinking that WWE sticks with the original plan and gives the title to Cedric Alexander.
*If Elias does perform a concert, here’s hoping that it’s interrupted by The Rock!