Ideal Booking for WWE's Bray Wyatt and 'The Fiend' for Rest of 2020

Anthony Mango@@ToeKneeManGoFeatured ColumnistOctober 16, 2020

Credit: WWE.com

Not even Bray Wyatt has been immune to this tumultuous year, as he's had more than his fair share of ups and downs.

He started the year as universal champion, dropped it to Goldberg at Super ShowDown, defeated John Cena in a Firefly Fun House match at WrestleMania 36 before winning the title back, only to drop it to Roman Reigns at Payback.

This past week, The Fiend was traded to Raw during the WWE draft. This should provide a fresh start for him and new opportunities to turn things around heading into 2021.

Unfortunately, though, Wyatt is one of the many Superstars who will likely find himself stuck in limbo for the next several weeks.

This is an odd time for the draft to have taken place, given how Hell in a Cell is on Oct. 25. That doesn't allow flexibility for most wrestlers to start a new feud—at least, not one with any substance.

If Wyatt is to have any match at all at the pay-per-view, it will either be something meaningless or a continuation and conclusion of his short rivalry with Kevin Owens. Those two haven't had a deep feud, but it's all The Fiend has at the moment.

As they are on opposite brands, it doesn't make much sense for them to keep fighting. However, WWE has illustrated countless times this year that the Brand-to-Brand Invitational happens as many times as the writers want it to, rather than the supposed "once per quarter" directive, so one blow-off match isn't too strange.

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After all, Braun Strowman is wrestling on Friday's SmackDown for the Universal Championship after moving to Raw, a place where he had competed several times despite being part of the blue brand. It's illogical, but that doesn't stop WWE.

A match with Owens at Hell in a Cell is the best case scenario for Wyatt. Anything more would be pushing it.

Credit: WWE.com

Sadly, The Fiend may still be stuck in limbo even into November, as Survivor Series is set for November 22.

Even in an ideal scenario, there isn't much wiggle room for Wyatt to take part in that event if it has anything close to the lineup of matches that have made up the card in recent years.

While nothing has been confirmed, we should assume the plan is to build Survivor Series around the Raw vs. NXT vs. SmackDown setup like last year. That would include a men's and women's elimination match and several contests of champions against each other.

It's unlikely, unreasonable and not the best course of action to put a Raw title on Wyatt right now. He shouldn't be rushed to beat Drew McIntyre or Randy Orton for the WWE Championship, a babyface should dethrone Bobby Lashley for the United States title, and Wyatt has no tag team partner.

That rules him out of the champions showcases, but he's also not much of a team player. It's hard to imagine either persona—The Fiend or the sweater-wearing Firefly Fun House host—standing alongside four other Superstars to fight for the Raw brand's honor.

Technically, it is an option, but it would just be too strange.
Technically, it is an option, but it would just be too strange.Credit: WWE.com

Outside of a shoehorned random match that has no brand competition element to it, there isn't a spot on the card for him unless he simply attacks someone out of the blue just to make an appearance or set up his feud for December.

An alternative is to book Wyatt in a filler feud for the time being until Survivor Series has passed. If paired with someone like Ricochet, who might not make it onto the Raw team, it could keep Wyatt busy throughout November.

Since Alexa Bliss should be factored in, that would likely mean at least one mixed tag match with Wyatt and The Goddess against Ricochet and Nikki Cross. It's not the most thrilling rivalry, but it will do well enough to eat up four weeks of time.

Following that, WWE will have spent over a month with Wyatt on the back burner and will need to do something decent with him to make up for it.

This could be fun for a month, but it shouldn't be Wyatt's sole focus.
This could be fun for a month, but it shouldn't be Wyatt's sole focus.Credit: WWE.com

Depending on WWE's plans for WrestleMania 37, the best opponent for Wyatt come Tables, Ladders & Chairs would be McIntyre. The only reason not to do it then would be to save it, but if the Scot is penciled in to fight anyone other than Wyatt, it's worth doing it at the PPV on Dec. 20.

This could work whether McIntyre is still champion or not. If he loses to Orton at Hell in a Cell, he and Wyatt can have a non-title feud that follows a classic hero vs. villain dynamic. Better yet, though, would be if McIntyre still had the WWE Championship.

If that's the case, perhaps Wyatt should start the feud by interfering at Survivor Series to cost the titleholder the win in his match against Reigns and whoever the NXT champion is at the time. That would instantly put Wyatt on the Scot's radar.

Wyatt vs. McIntyre could stretch from TLC into Royal Rumble so that The Fiend doesn't have to get eliminated from the 30-man match.

Past that point, it's just a short stretch on The Road to WrestleMania 37 past Elimination Chamber and to set up his opponent for the big show, which should be Jeff Hardy.

Wyatt had his program with Matt Hardy, but never a rivalry with Jeff.
Wyatt had his program with Matt Hardy, but never a rivalry with Jeff.Credit: WWE.com

The Charismatic Enigma has continuously expressed interested in working with Wyatt, bringing his Willow character into WWE and tapping into some more artistic storytelling. A cinematic match between the two on The Grandest Stage of Them All feels like an easy call to make.

Wyatt has no place going up against Retribution, fighting The Hurt Business, or dipping his toes in Raw Underground. Outside of hoping he has chemistry with Matt Riddle or Keith Lee—two characters who may not mesh well with his—this is his most realistic course toward WrestleMania.

A face turn for Wyatt could change everything, but his character works better as the antagonist. It's not worth ruining the mystique just so he can fight Superstars like Elias and Riddick Moss, or retread familiar ground once more with Strowman.

In an ideal booking environment, many things would be different in WWE and the world as a whole right now. Given what the company is working with, the best-case scenario for Wyatt's next few months is to kill some time with a mixed tag team feud until Survivor Series before moving on to fight McIntyre for the WWE Championship at TLC and Royal Rumble, and then switching to Hardy for WrestleMania 37.

         

Anthony Mango is the owner of the wrestling website Smark Out Moment and the host of the podcast show Smack Talk on YouTube, iTunes and Stitcher. You can follow him on Facebook and elsewhere for more.