With the sudden title change of Alberto Del Rio becoming the new World Heavyweight Champion, it seems as though a monkey wrench has been thrown into everyone’s WrestleMania plans.
Ryback against Big Show and Sheamus against Randy Orton have been the most discussed World Heavyweight Championship matches to occur at WrestleMania 29, yet neither match involves the current champion.
So who will be World Heavyweight Champion at WrestleMania 29 and who will be the challenger?
Here are a number of possible World Heavyweight Championship matches we could see at WrestleMania 29 and the likeliness of them coming to fruition.
One possible World Heavyweight Championship match is the rumored Sheamus versus Randy Orton.
A feud between the two seems to be at the start on WWE TV, so the only question that remains is how the WrestleMania match would get set up.
As of right now, both superstars are babyfaces. The obvious choice to turn heel would be Randy Orton since he has requested the turn himself.
Which superstar would be champion?
While one could certainly win this year’s Royal Rumble, this match would have to be set up mainly at the Elimination Chamber pay-per-view. Sheamus is on the released poster for the February event, but Randy Orton is not.
How likely is it? Somewhat Likely
This was the match many fans were expecting if Big Show was still World Heavyweight Champion.
In fact, 411mania.com reported that WWE was also considering the match. With a potential WrestleMania moment hanging in the balance, is this match still possible?
Just before the New Year, I ranked Ryback as the most likely candidate to win the Royal Rumble.
Big Show may have lost the title to Alberto Del Rio, but isn’t he going to invoke his rematch clause?
Chances are Big Show gets his rematch at the Rumble, but Show is also on the Elimination Chamber poster, suggesting he could be involved with the title through February as well.
Ryback could still win the Rumble and Big Show could still regain the title. However, if Show does win back the World Heavyweight Championship, then what was the point in having him lose it at all?
How likely is it? Somewhat Likely
Del Rio and Orton are no strangers to each other, but we were used to seeing them playing different roles.
With the World Heavyweight Champion now a babyface and Orton’s heel turn possibly coming to fruition, a match between the two at WrestleMania would be quite intriguing.
The set up of this match would be quite simple. Del Rio keeps his championship through WrestleMania, while Randy Orton wins the Royal Rumble.
With WWE seeing Del Rio as their next top Mexican babyface, it wouldn’t be surprising to see Del Rio as a long-term champion.
As for Orton, it would be surprising if Orton were pushed to the top again. If Orton were brought back to the main event though, it would be expected for him to do so against Sheamus.
How likely is it? Not Likely
Could the World Heavyweight Championship match at WrestleMania be between Mr. Money in the Bank and the Royal Rumble winner?
Ryback could very well win the Rumble, as discussed, but the real issue with this scenario is having Dolph Ziggler cash in prior to WrestleMania.
I have already discussed when the right time for Ziggler to cash in was, but as we get closer to WrestleMania, it seems unlikely Mr. Money in the Ban will cash in prior to the event.
There has not been any rumors or reports regarding Dolph Ziggler’s participation at WrestleMania, suggesting he may not cash in until after.
However, there is plenty of time for Ziggler to cash in prior to WrestleMania. There are plenty of episodes of Raw and SmackDown, plus Royal Rumble and Elimination Chamber.
Ziggler’s participation in this match is contingent on Ryback winning the Rumble though.
How Likely Is it? Less Likely
A few months ago, you probably never thought you would see Ziggler vs. Del Rio, or perhaps you would’ve thought it would be Ziggler as the babyface.
However, it is another possible match with a simple set up.
Once again, Del Rio could very well retain his title leading up to WrestleMania. Also as discussed, Dolph Ziggler could cash in his Money in the Bank briefcase prior to WrestleMania.
However, there are issues involving this situation.
First, Ziggler is not likely to cash in until after WrestleMania based on factors discussed in earlier slides such as the lack of reports suggesting a big WrestleMania match for Ziggler.
Second, Del Rio also has not been in any discussion regarding World Title matches as well.
How Likely Is it? Not Likely
Could the Big Hungry meet the Viper at WrestleMania for the World Heavyweight Championship?
It’s hard to say.
Ryback could win the Rumble, while Randy Orton could turn heel. However, it is Ryback who is featured on the Elimination Chamber poster, not Orton.
If Ryback is featured on the Elimination Chamber, perhaps he does not win the Rumble and wins the title in the Chamber.
Then Randy Orton could win the Rumble and choose to face Ryback at WrestleMania.
While Ryback vs. Randy Orton would be a captivating match for WWE fans; it seems difficult to set up for this year’s WrestleMania.
How Likely Is it? Not Likely
This is a match that I would love to see, but how could WWE set up Daniel Bryan against Dolph Ziggler for the World Heavyweight Championship at WrestleMania?
First, Ziggler would have to cash in his briefcase prior to WrestleMania. Plus, Daniel Bryan would have to win the Royal Rumble.
Neither superstar has been discussed in the Elimination Chamber or WrestleMania discussions; however, both are expected be big parts of WWE in 2013.
This match would also signal the end of Daniel Bryan and Kane’s run as a tag team. While this is likely to happen during 2013, it may be too soon for Team Hell No to break up.
While Bryan versus Ziggler for the WHC will most likely happen at some point in 2013, WrestleMania seems questionable.
How Likely Is It? Not Likely
While Alberto Del Rio is World Heavyweight Champion right now, he may not be come WrestleMania 29.
All the superstars discussed in these scenarios have a chance at being in the title match whether through winning the Rumble, cashing in his Money in the Bank briefcase or simply defeating Del Rio.
What do you think the most likely World Heavyweight Championship match at WrestleMania 29? Please leave your comments, suggestions and ideas in the section below.
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