WWE No Way Out 2012: 13 Bold Predictions for the Upcoming PPV
May wasn't a great month for the WWE, and the first week-and-a-half of June hasn't been much better.
But now, we have No Way Out.
The WWE's next pay-per-view takes place this Sunday, and although the current feuds and storylines haven't been all that great, the company is looking to continue its hot streak of quality PPVs with another one.
As always, that's easier said than done and will depend largely upon how the creative team books this thing.
You can never know exactly what those guys are thinking heading into any pay-per-view, but here's what I'm thinking.
Here are 13 bold predictions for Sunday's No Way Out PPV.
13. We'll See at Least Two Squashes Added Mid-Show
Only four matches have been announced for No Way Out so far, and there aren’t really any other riveting feuds that should result in a match at the PPV.
So, you know what that means, right?
Yep, a number of matches added during the show.
This has become the norm for the WWE over the last couple of years and is one of my biggest pet peeves about the company, but it doesn’t look like it’s going to change anytime soon.
With a number of recently returning/debuting stars—Ryback, Damien Sandow, Antonio Cesaro, Sin Cara, etc.—I’d fully expect at least two, if not three, of these guys to get squash matches on the show.
Squashes should be relegated to TV, but we all know they won’t be.
12. AJ Will Affect the Outcome of the WWE Title Match
AJ has gone crazy, and though her motives are unclear, it is clear that something bigger is brewing with her.
Realistically, the way she’s acted recently leaves open the possibility that she could be aligned with Kane, CM Punk or Daniel Bryan.
Given that AJ wears his gear, Punk seems like the most obvious choice, but Bryan also makes sense as the ex-boyfriend. Meanwhile, that little look that AJ gave Kane on Raw last week could mean that she’s aligned with Kane, too.
We don’t know, but regardless, I think it’s safe to say that AJ will play a huge role in the WWE Championship match and its outcome in some way or another.
What that role will be, we can’t be sure. But I wouldn’t be remotely surprised if AJ tried to help one of the three competitors (likely Punk) and inadvertently wound up costing him the match instead.
11. It'll Be Sheamus vs. Ziggler for the World Heavyweight Title
News broke over the weekend that Alberto Del Rio had suffered a concussion, and thus, that his status for No Way Out is up in the air.
That means that a number of situations could play out for the World heavyweight championship match at the PPV, and here are the three most likely: ADR is replaced by Dolph Ziggler (who has faced Sheamus twice recently), a new No. 1 contender is determined at Tuesday's SmackDown tapings or ADR faces Sheamus anyway in a match that has some sort of non-finish.
I think we’ll ultimately end up seeing the first option.
Sheamus and Ziggler have developed a mini-rivalry of sorts over the last week, and it makes sense for the WWE to continue this by either giving Ziggler a World title shot (not a great option) or by having him earn another shot at Sheamus on this week's SmackDown (a better option).
Although there's a chance that we could see Kane end up being Sheamus' opponent when it's all said and done, Sheamus vs. Ziggler is the match I want to see.
I may be totally wrong, but right now, I think it's gonna happen.
10. The Steel Cage Stipulation for Show vs. Cena Will Mean Absolutely Nothing
John Cena and The Big Show are going to face off inside a steel cage.
But guess what? That stipulation is going to mean diddly-squat.
One of the dumbest things about the WWE’s cage matches is that you can win by pinfall, submission or escaping the cage (either through the door or over the top).
In my view, this renders the cage stipulation totally pointless, because the only way someone should win a cage match is by escaping over the top.
Not only that, but cage matches are meant to “keep everyone out.” But come on—we know that it’s still easy for anyone to interfere in the match despite the WWE’s insistence that a steel cage is an impenetrable barrier.
It won’t be any different at No Way Out.
Although Show and Cena are supposed to compete in a cage match that features no interference, I think that we’ll ultimately see plenty of interference, and the cage stipulation will end up meaning absolutely nothing.
9. Michael Cole Will Get Involved in John Cena's Match
What is the WWE’s reasoning behind involving Michael Cole with John Cena on last week’s Raw?
I have no idea, because the last thing that any wrestling fan I know wants to see is another non-wrestler like Cole involved in another high-profile feud.
Regardless of our feelings, the WWE seems hell-bent on getting Cole involved with Cena, and given how much TV time this little rivalry has gotten over the last week, I don’t think we’ve seen the end of it.
After cooling off as a heel for a while, Cole has turned the heat back up, and since he was embarrassed big-time by Cena on last week’s Raw, I think he’ll have revenge on his mind.
What this should and likely will lead to is Cole interfering in Cena’s match against The Big Show at No Way Out, although he may or may not succeed in trying to screw over Cena.
8. Triple H vs. Brock Lesnar at SummerSlam Will Be Made Official
Triple H is set to return to WWE TV at No Way Out, where he’s expected to address the recent happenings between himself and Brock Lesnar.
It’s been really hard for the WWE to keep this HHH/Lesnar rivalry going with both men off of TV, and because Lesnar has a limited number of appearances in his contract, that might not change anytime soon.
Thus, the WWE needs something major to increase the interest in this feud and to prevent the fans from forgetting about it.
That something major? Triple H officially challenges Lesnar to a match at SummerSlam.
This could be done in a number of ways, but perhaps Triple H could simply challenge Lesnar to a match, and as the WWE COO, tell Lesnar that he will give in to all of Lesnar’s ridiculous contract demands if, and only if, Lesnar can beat him one-on-one at SummerSlam.
I think just about everyone expects this match to happen, so the WWE might as well start building it up to improve its quality.
7. New Tag Team Champs Will Be Crowned
At the moment, WWE tag team champions R-Truth and Kofi Kingston don’t really have any challengers for their titles, and a title defense at No Way Out looks unlikely.
But the WWE has done a solid job of rebuilding the tag team division lately, and though Kingston and Truth may not be feuding with any tag team right now, there are a still of number of them who would love a shot at tag team gold.
On a whim, I think that we could see a tag team title match as a late addition to the card, one that could involve perhaps three or more tag teams, such as Epico and Primo as well as the Primetime Players.
And why do I think Kingston and Truth may lose the titles? Because there are rumblings that Truth has a foot injury (via WrestlingNewsWorld.com).
I know that the WWE can keep the titles with those two despite the injury, but perhaps now is the time to put the straps on an up-and-coming tag team like Darren Young and Titus O’Neil.
6. The Intercontinental Championship Match Will Be the Best of the Night
No Way Out doesn’t exactly have a loaded card in terms of match quality.
Sure, Alberto Del Rio vs. Sheamus could be very good (if it happens, that is), and the Triple Threat match for the WWE Championship might be solid.
But there’s no heat to the World heavyweight title feud, which leads me to believe that the match won’t be great, and Triple Threat matches tend to be really formulaic.
Then there’s Big Show vs. John Cena, which—as history will tell us—isn’t exactly going to be a classic.
Thus, I think that the best match on the card is going to be one that involves a midcard title: Christian vs. Cody Rhodes for the Intercontinental Championship.
Rhodes and Christian are two of the most well-rounded performers in the WWE, and should they be given 10-15 minutes at No Way Out, I’d fully expect them to tear the house down with the Match of the Night.
After all, there are only four announced matches so far, which should mean that Christian and Rhodes get a chance to go out there and do what they do best: wrestle.
5. The Seed for a Blockbuster Angle Will Be Planted
The WWE creative team has reportedly been told to come up with a “blockbuster” angle this summer (per SEScoops.com), one that would rival the formation of the Nexus in 2010.
Given that we’re almost already halfway through the month of June, creative is going to have to get the ball rolling quickly if that major summer angle has any chance of happening.
So, why not start that angle at No Way Out?
With Triple H returning to TV at the pay-per-view and the return of Vince McMahon on Monday's Raw, the stage is set for that major angle to begin as soon as Sunday’s pay-per-view.
I’m not saying that we’ll see something huge like CM Punk’s worked shoot promo from 2011, but I do think that—at the very least—we’ll see the seeds planted for a “blockbuster” storyline at No Way Out.
So, what’s that storyline going to be? Your guess is as good as mine.
4. John Cena Will Lose His Second Straight PPV Main Event
John Cena has competed in the main event of each of the last four pay-per-views.
His record in that span is 2-2, with his most recent loss obviously taking place against John Laurinaitis at last month’s Over the Limit pay-per-view.
After seeing Cena drop that match, I know what you’re thinking: There’s no way Cena is going to lose his second straight PPV main event, right?
Given that Big Show just turned heel and is being booked as this unstoppable monster, there’s absolutely no way that the WWE is going to kill all of his momentum by having him lose to Cena in his first PPV match during his current heel run.
Show has to win, Cena has to lose, and that’s exactly what will happen, with Cena picking up his—gasp!—second straight PPV loss.
3. A New WWE Star Will Debut
The WWE roster is ridiculously thin at the moment.
With Brock Lesnar only working part-time, Chris Jericho, Rey Mysterio and Randy Orton suspended, Wade Barrett and now Alberto Del Rio injured, we need more stars added to the main roster now more than ever.
We've seen guys like Ryback, Damien Sandow and Antonio Cesaro all debut recently, and I don't think that trend is going to stop.
New stars are going to continue to debut, and they should do so in the near future.
Why not at No Way Out?
It's probably going to be a lackluster show, so the WWE might as well spice things up a bit by having a new star debut at some point during the PPV.
My two picks? Dean Ambrose (who's been working a ton of dark matches recently) or Seth Rollins.
2. Daniel Bryan Will Become the New WWE Champion
When CM Punk became the hottest act in all of pro wrestling after cutting that epic promo last summer, what happened?
The creative team immediately put the WWE Championship on Punk to capitalize on his incredible hot streak and ever-increasing popularity at the time.
Fast-forward to the summer of 2012, and who is the hottest act in pro wrestling right now? Daniel Bryan, of course.
Bryan’s popularity has increased exponentially this year, and he has firmly established himself as one of the best overall performers in the WWE.
There likely will never be a time when Bryan is as over as he is right now, and the WWE absolutely, positively has to capitalize on that while it can.
So, what does this all mean? Bryan should—and I think will—win the WWE Championship at No Way Out.
As the saying goes, you have to strike while the iron is hot.
1. CM Punk Will Not Be Involved in the Finish of the WWE Championship Match
According to WrestlingNewsWorld.com, Kane was reportedly added to the WWE title feud between CM Punk and Daniel Bryan as a “smack at smarks.”
I can’t even begin to explain how stupid that is, and I won’t.
But there’s probably another reason why Kane was added to the mix: to put the belt on Bryan without having Punk lose to him.
As evidenced by his two recent losses on TV, Punk is rarely going to lose clean, and I don’t think creative wanted to put the belt on Bryan by having him beat Punk in cheap fashion.
So, a logical way to avoid both of those things is to add Kane to the match and have Bryan pin Kane to win his first WWE Championship.
That way, Punk still looks strong, but you can create a better story with the baby face Punk chasing the heel Bryan to regain what he never really lost in the first place: the WWE Championship.