WWE Battleground 2013: Full Card Predictions After Night of Champions
WWE Battleground 2013 is going to induce deja vu.
WWE follows an underwhelming Night of Champions pay-per-view with the inaugural Battleground event which will feature continuations and repeats. While bringing back a War Games-type match would have been ideal here, it doesn't appear that the company is heading in that direction.
Had The Shield and Big Show interferred in the WWE Championship match, seeing a team versus team main event would have been probable.
Instead, it appears that fans will be treated to a number of Night of Champions rematches. Some stories appear to be just beginning, while other stories are not yet over.
With the short build between pay-per-views, expect WWE to sing many of the same tunes fans heard on Sept. 15.
Ryback vs. CM Punk
When it was announced that CM Punk's match against Curtis Axel and Paul Heyman was a No-Disqualification match, it put Punk's seemingly assured victory in doubt. Anyone could interfere on Heyman's behalf with no repercussions, and that's exactly what Ryback did.
Ryback charged in during the bout and sent Punk crashing through a table.
Punk’s hunger for revenge shifts from his former friend to his former foe.
Ryback and Punk revisit their rivalry from late 2012-early 2013, now with the roles reversed. Punk is now the angry fan favorite and Ryback plays the dastardly one.
Ryback is better in the ring and on the mic since that feud over the WWE title and now has a great chance to showcase that growth against "The Best in the World."
Kofi Kingston vs. Curtis Axel
Triple H made an impromptu Intercontinental Championship match at Night of Champions, pitting Kofi Kingston against Curtis Axel.
Despite Paul Heyman's protests, Axel had to defend the title with no notice. Though the champ struggled to focus at times, he eventually wrenched Kingston's head toward the mat and earned the win.
Kingston gets another shot.
He and Axel have been battling several times as of late without much story. Count on that burgeoning rivalry blossoming. With his feud with CM Punk over, the champ's lack of rivals points to Kingston challenging once more.
Kingston has been a consistent midcard title contender and continues that legacy at the first-ever Battleground.
The Shield vs. The Prime Time Players
Titus O’Neil and Darren Young came close to dethroning The Shield.
The tag team title match was solid; the rematch should be even better. The Prime Time Players could be the one to take the titles, but more work needs to be done. WWE must build the story, set the scene and make the challengers look stronger going into the second round of this battle.
WWE missed out on an opportunity to follow up The Shield’s good match against The Usos at Money in the Bank with one at SummerSlam, but expect the company to have a full-fledged feud develop here.
Rob Van Dam vs. Alberto Del Rio
Alberto Del Rio pulled out a classic play from the heel playbook at Night of Champions in getting himself disqualified to retain the World Heavyweight Championship.
In a match filled with teeth-rattling kicks, Del Rio refused to let go of his Cross Armbreaker despite Rob Van Dam reaching the ropes. Del Rio tried to then hurt his challenger after the bell, sizing him up with a steel chair before Ricardo Rodriguez got involved.
Bet on Van Dam demanding a second shot at the title.
With a short turnaround until Battleground, WWE won't have to cram in a story for a new challenger. Van Dam can simply hunger for the championship he almost tasted, and Del Rio will be forced to fend off "Mr. Monday Night" for a second straight time.
Bray Wyatt vs. The Miz
Bray Wyatt needs prey to tear apart as he continues to build momentum. The perfect foe for him at this stage is someone low enough on the WWE ladder to lose to Wyatt, but high enough that beating him means something.
Enter, The Miz.
"The Awesome One" headed out of the Joe Louis Arena a victor after making Fandango tap out. That likely ends their mini-feud over Fandango interrupting his hosting duties. It's time for a fresh rivalry.
Wyatt can use Miz as a stepping stone to wherever WWE is sending him—much in the way Ryback beat Miz after dispatching a long list of jobbers.
Triple H vs. Big Show
WWE's COO has been bullying the giant, making Big Show his puppet.
That storyline seemed to be setting up for some sort of mutiny led by Big Show, but it's gotten increasingly personal. It has become less and less a narrative about Triple H silencing the Superstars through intimidation, but instead a battle of wills between him and "The World's Largest Athlete."
Battleground gets two marquee names on the card with this clash, one that likely puts Big Show's career on the line a la Cody Rhodes for added drama.
Triple H will be looking to prove his dominance over the roster and will claim that inserting himself into the product is "best for business."
Randy Orton vs. Daniel Bryan
The journey back to being WWE champ for Daniel Bryan was more commute than odyssey when he defeated Randy Orton to end Night of Champions 2013.
Something didn't feel right about the moment.
It felt like Triple H might come down and reverse the decision or find some other way to rip the title from Bryan's hands once more. The celebration went interrupted, though.
The referee’s count was mighty fast and that’s the ticket to Bryan’s victory parade getting soaked come Monday's Raw.
Expect Triple H to either strip the title from Bryan or make him beat Orton again. This story isn't over, and its next chapter will mirror the one from Night of Champions, at least in terms of the participants.