WWE Hell in a Cell is coming up on Sunday, Oct. 27. For many fans that have been less than impressed with the past couple of pay-per-views, expectations are high that this one will deliver. It's up to Vince McMahon's company to do just that because I doubt that many fans want to see a sequel to the last event.
Hell in a Cell must not be a retread of Battleground.
It's not that Battleground did not look good on paper. In fact, it seemed to have all the makings of a very good and exciting event.
The top-three matches alone were enough to sell it to the WWE audience. CM Punk versus Ryback may have been a match that we had seen before, but this time out was different for both guys. Punk was now a babyface and Ryback was now a heel.
There's also the fact that Ryback had become the newest client of Paul Heyman. Combine this with the heat that Punk has had with Heyman since SummerSlam, and this should have been a match well worth the price of admission.
But for me, it fell short of expectations. Though Punk is one of WWE's top guys, the bout against Ryback did not seem to do much to further the storyline. To me, it was not one of Punk's best.
The main event was a match that a lot fans could not wait to see. It featured Daniel Bryan versus Randy Orton for the vacant WWE Championship, and anticipation for this one could not have been greater. The WWE faithful who supported Daniel wanted to see him win and legitimately become the champion. They wanted a real win with a real title run to follow.
What they got was Big Show ruining the whole match. After he knocked out both Bryan and Orton, everything just stopped. There was no winner, which means there was no champion.
Despite who fans may have been rooting for, I doubt that anyone could have been very happy about that ending.
The third match that likely brought many fans to the table was the one that many of us will surely remember.
Cody and Dustin Rhodes versus Seth Rollins and Roman Reigns was the highlight of the night for me. This one had it all—drama, excitement and hard-hitting, intense action. Dusty Rhodes's sons were fighting not only for their livelihoods, but also for their family's honor. The storyline worked on many levels and fans immediately connected to it.
The match itself was top notch, with all four men giving everything they had to entertain. The pop from the crowd after the bout was over said it all. Fans were emotionally invested in this one and it showed.
But in my opinion, this was the best that Battleground had to offer in terms of a complete match that entertained from start to finish. And no other bout on the card was able to match the example it set.
Basically, Battleground had potential, but for many fans it just did not live up to the hype. The blackout, which occurred due to technical difficulties seemed to be the last nail in the coffin that night. And the truth is we do not need a second funeral.
Hell in a Cell is beginning to look good on paper. Already we have two championship matches booked. John Cena is back in action and CM Punk is on the card. It already looks like a very good, very exciting event.
But one of those championship matches is yet another bout between Daniel Bryan and Randy Orton. CM Punk is booked to face Ryback once again and Cena is in a World title match that he most certainly will win.
I'm not suggesting that there are not some attractive selling points for this event right now but I for one just do not see a lot of drama just yet. And if WWE hopes to make Hell in a Cell a bigger hit with fans than Battleground was, then that needs to change now.
We're accustomed to seeing rematches from one pay-per-view to the next but two of the three matches that have been booked so far already took place at Battleground. And if that event was not what fans wanted, then why would we want to see it all again?
However, there is hope that the company wants to make this one a success. Shawn Michaels is the special guest referee for the Orton versus Bryan WWE title match. Shawn has a definite history with both Daniel and Triple H, which will surely add some intrigue at the end of the night.
And if WWE keeps investing like this, then Hell in a Cell will likely not be a retread of Battleground. There is definitely no drama in that.