It’s that time of year again, the WWE pay-per-views are coming thick and fast as we are right in the middle of an eight-week run that sees four different events before the nice three-week break ahead of Survivor Series at the end of next month.
This week the focus switches to the SmackDown Live brand as Kevin Owens and Shane McMahon look to end their feud inside Satan’s Structure at the event named after one of WWE’s most infamous matches. The New Day also defend their Tag Team Championships inside the cell for the very first time as it looks to finally be the end of their feud with The Usos.
All other SmackDown Championships are also on the line on Sunday Night as Natalya defends her Women’s Championship against Charlotte, AJ Styles defends his Championship against Baron Corbin and Jinder Mahal looks to retain his WWE Championship ahead of WWE’s upcoming tour of India as he faces Shinsuke Nakamura for the second time in consecutive events.
As ever the Brass Ring team is here to share all of their predictions ahead of the event and this weeks panel includes, Jake Waring, Emellio Savvas, Russ Hammersley, Conair Bibby, Andy Arthurs, Vickie Hopwood, Andrew Parker and Chris Rossington.
Phillipa, Jake, Russ, Conair, Vickie, Andrew, Andy, Emellio – Chad and Shelton
Thoughts by Vickie – Chad Gable has basically seen his former partner Jason Jordan replaced by an older more experienced Jason Jordan over the past few weeks as American Alpha is seemingly still going strong. The duo have been on a decent run over the past few weeks and the fact that they face The Hype Bros on the pre-show has led many fans to believe that WWE could be planning for Zack Ryder to finally turn heel on his longtime friend Mojo Rawley, so The Hype Bros are no more. Mojo will gain a decent push out of it and the duo will perhaps even gain more air time on SmackDown so don’t be sad. If they are best friends, they’ll STAY friends…Or, they won’t.
Phillipa, Jake, Vickie, Emellio – Dolph Ziggler
Russ, Conair, Andrew – Bobby Roode
Thoughts By Emellio – Is it just me or is everyone else feeling that Dolph Ziggler is becoming more and more of an enhancement talent for the new wrestlers moving from NXT to the main WWE roster? We have seen many new stars entering the squared circle since Wrestlemania, and it seems that Dolph has stepped up to be WWE’s welcoming committee on the main roster. We’ve also seen many of these stars unable to live up to the standards we thought, much like Shinsuke Nakamura. As for Bobby Roode, will this be a “Glorious” start to a glorious career? Or will it be more of another waste of time for us as an audience… I mean someone has to be as useful as a rusted bike to make everyone else look better. But, with a Glorious time in NXT, can he live up to his reputation at his first Smackdown PPV? My thoughts for this match are very biased, Dolph is the show-off and will do what he does best and I hope he can secure the match. Whether Bobby will be able to keep up with Dolph’s fast-paced mentality and vast ring experience will be interesting enough. But Dolph hasn’t won a PPV match since No Mercy back in 2016! Is this the beginning of the end of Dolph’s PPV career or is this gonna be the end of the losing streak?
Phillipa, Russ, Andy – Natalya
Vickie, Andrew, Emellio – Charlotte
Jake – Charlotte (Carmella Cash-in)
Conair – Carmella (Mid-match cash-in)
Thoughts by Jake – History is on the cards in one way or another in this one. Natalya and Charlotte will become the first wrestlers to compete for a fourth different title for the first time in WWE history. If Charlotte wins she becomes the only woman to have held all currently active WWE Women’s belts. There’s also the threat of Carmella and her briefcase, and we could see the first ever cash in of a women’s briefcase. Natalya hasn’t had a very long run with the strap, and since the Queen of PPV lost her streak she hasn’t won at a PPV since. There is also the chance that Tamina could interfere, but I’m going to go for the princess cashing in on the Queen after she has won a slobber fest and is exhausted. Look out for a sick moonsault as always.
Phillipa, Russ, Conair – Baron Corbin
Jake, Andrew, Vickie, Andy – AJ Styles
Thoughts by Russ – I think Corbin is due for a push after his underwhelming cash in and the fact that he was embarrassed by John Cena back at SummerSlam. I also think AJ is set to be pushed into the main event picture alongside Shinsuke Nakamura now that he’s seen as more of a face star and because he’s been an awesome worker in the ring over the past few months. My prediction is for AJ to drop the belt but it will be a dirty finish with AJ being on top for most of the match. It will lead nicely to a Styles /Nakamura (providing Jinder drops his Championship in his match against Nakamura that takes place later in the night). This could also feed nicely to continue the feud between Tye Dillinger and Corbin if The Lone wolf takes the title.
Phillipa, Andrew, Andy – Rusev
Jake, Russ, Conair, Vickie – Randy Orton
Thoughts by Phillipa – This feud has been an odd one to watch, poor Rusev hasn’t won a match on pay-per-view since Roadblock back in 2016. After taking a lengthy hiatus from WWE to have surgery, Rusev returned back in July, only to be defeated by John Cena in a flag match at Battleground, before he lost to Randy Orton at SummerSlam in 10 seconds. Rusev did get revenge when he defeated Orton on SmackDown Live a few weeks ago in just nine seconds before it was later proclaimed to be Rusev day and Orton’s present was an RKO Out of nowhere. Now, I didn’t say this feud hasn’t been entertaining, it just seems that Rusev is the one most in need of a win here, and if he has any hope of being seen as a credible threat on WWE TV in the future then that should be the way it goes.
Phillipa, Jake, Russ, Andrew, Conair, Vickie, Andy, Emellio – The New Day
Thoughts by Andrew – How many battles have the Usos and The New Day had so far? Dozens at least. Maybe thousands. Millions. But damn, I’m not bored of them yet. Every time they go war, they show exactly why they’re two of the very best tag teams, not in WWE, but in the world. They tear the house down each and every time, building on what made the previous match great and adding even more craziness. Judging from what they did on a throwaway Smackdown, in that beautiful street fight, they are literally going to kill each other come Hell in a Cell – and I can’t wait to bear witness. New Day to win along with every wrestling fan watching.
Jinder Mahal Vs. Shinsuke Nakamura – WWE Championship
Phillipa, Jake, Russ, Vickie, Andy, Emellio – Jinder Mahal
Andrew – Shinsuke Nakamura
Thoughts by Andy – We’ve broken the 100-day mark of one of the most unlikely Championship reigns in WWE history. Jinder Mahal has rubbed everyone up the wrong way since dethroning Randy Orton back at Backlash in May, and now has his 2nd match against Shinsuke Nakamura. The same guy who took AJ Styles to a 5* contest back in NJPW. Will this be another 5* classic? No. Absolutely not. But it gives Mahal the negative heat that we crave in a heel. We want to see him get beat. But it won’t happen. Not by Shinsuke. Even with the media backlash over the “racist’ promos, there is still an experiment, one I don’t want to see end anytime soon. Which means Mahal will “rook” to put away the …. well. Whatever his nickname is now…
Shane McMahon Vs. Kevin Owens – Falls Count Anywhere Hell in a Cell Match
Phillipa, Vickie, Emellio – Shane McMahon
Russ, Jake, Conair, Andrew, Andy – Kevin Owens
Thoughts by Conair – Oh boy. It feels like this is the only match that the Smackdown Live writing team has bothered to put some effort into. At least they’ve done a bloody good job with it. Kevin Owens vs Shane McMahon isn’t a match that anybody would’ve predicted in their wildest dreams three years ago, but here we are, and in Hell in a Cell no less. The story here is that Kevin Owens has had a few (fairly legitimate) grievances with the way that Shane O’Mac has been running things – conjuring up such ideas as to make himself the special referee in Owens’ match with AJ Styles among other things. This all came to a head a few weeks ago when Kevin Owens attacked Shane’s father, Vince McMahon. Only a McMahon would have no problems with bleeding everywhere at 73 years old. Vince made the match before receiving his yearly “we’ve gotta get this guy some attention” beat down, and here we are. There is no reason for Kevin Owens to lose this match. Shane’s next contest is likely to be at Wrestlemania, as the “put the commissioner in the brand tag team at Survivor Series” trope was used last year. Shane is more than likely striking a punching bag with his limp wrists and jumping out of a few windows to prepare for his inevitable tumble off the cell. The only question is, will he jump off the cell himself, with Kevin Owens give him the world’s biggest pop-up powerbomb, or will the fall come at the hands of somebody else? (Ole!)