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Posted in: Just Business
Just Business: The Preview Side of the Pond – Predicting Survivor Series 2017
By Samuel 'Plan
Nov 17, 2017 - 1:25:11 AM

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Just Business: The Preview Side of the Pond – Predicting Survivor Series 2017

On tonight’s edition of The Right Side of the Pond, exclusively available on Lords of Pain Radio, Mazza and I are going to be sort-of predicting Survivor Series 2017 this coming Sunday. Be sure to tune in to hear us chat generally about our love for the television of recent weeks, the brilliant closing segment to Smackdown Live (SDL) this last week and our thoughts about the promise of Sunday’s big show.

We do everything but actually pick any winners…

So, yep, that’s what I’m here to do now. With just a few hours to go before air time tonight – 9pm GMT / 5pm EST as always! – I thought I’d get the conversation warmed up by writing what may just be my first ever actual predictions column. I’ve picked a tough old show to do it with as well. Thanks to the inter-brand theme and the multitude of individual storylines all converging and underpinning the last Big Four event of the year, I’ve found it very difficult to pick a winner in almost any instance; except, perhaps, the main event.

Starting with Brock Lesnar vs. AJ Styles then, it’s hard to see anything in the Phenomenal One’s future other than a lamentably predictable trip through Suplex City and onto undeserved defeat. There are rumours being circulated by Dave Meltzer that Jinder Mahal may still make his presence felt in proceedings. I’d rather he not. Win or lose, this is another of a continuing line of big moments for AJ Styles in a company I’m still getting used to thinking of him as a part of. It’d be a shame to tarnish it, especially considering that Lesnar’s matches this last year have demonstrated an increasing degree of vulnerability, looking more like cases of survival than outright victory more and more with each go-round. Hopefully the size difference won’t put WWE off from continuing that trend. I hope (I dare not say expect) that Styles, with his deep arsenal of offense, will put in a fiercely competitive effort, but how do you not bet against Brock Lesnar at this stage? Disappointing as it might be, I think another win for the Beast is certifiable, and probably by clean pin fall.

Then there’s The Shield vs. New Day. It’s another toughie, not least of all because of the minimal story involved. It’s not like either team has emerged as the clear protagonist or antagonist, and coupled with the guarantee of this being a one-shot deal means that it could be anyone’s game. Ultimately, I have to pick The Shield though, and for two reasons. Frankly, New Day aren’t in the same stratosphere as The Shield when it comes to the historical role of both groups. The Shield are three once and future World Champions who changed the industry; New Day are legendary for their unrivalled consistency of popularity, and for their hefty series of tag-based accomplishments. The Shield, then, I feel have the greater legacy and the greater aura and I’d be mildly disappointed if they didn’t get the W. New Day undoubtedly would “gain more” from a victory, but (and here’s the second reason for my pick) this is The Shield’s first pay-per-view match as a full unit since their reformation. Do we really want to see them lose? Either way, I hope for an emergent underdog story of sorts that sees New Day unexpectedly take The Shield to their limit, followed with a respectful handshake and recognition of the unique, utterly different qualities of both vastly different units. Let the groups that escalated the conflict be the groups that write the cease fire. It’s only fitting.

The undercard is where the numbers game that will be where this year’s inter-brand war will be won or lost, though.

The Usos vs. Sheamus and Cesaro, for example, inherently favours neither team. There’s a nice slice of history – both were the final teams for their respective brands in last year’s Traditional 5 on 5 Tag Team Survivor Series Elimination Match – and the styles of both promise a hard hitting, intense affair; especially considering their shared status as villains. Honestly, I don’t care who eats defeat because we fans will be the winners here, with a match I expect to become the crowning jewel in an outrageously good season for tag wrestling these last few months. I’ll say The Usos; they’re the longer running tandem after all, and have a point to prove after losing to the same opponents this time last year.

The Miz vs. Baron Corbin is another example of villain against villain, though this time both are very different characters. One loves leading others and playing the Machiavellian while the other is a noted “Lone Wolf.” One is underhanded and cheap, the other brutal and seeking to prove a point. The characters seem to inherently hint towards the most sensible conclusion then: The Miz walking out upon taking an unexpected licking from his bigger, meaner opponent. I’d expect some hijinks along the way, and a wealth of wonderful dastardliness on both fronts ala Orton vs. Edge in ’07, but I’ll have to plump for Corbin by count out when The Miz decides it just isn’t worth it.

Charlotte vs. Alexa Bliss is the last minute addition that my cohort, Mazza, intimated would have that very count out finish on the show this week. I couldn’t disagree more with that notion. We both hope there’ll be plenty kept in reserve by the two most successful women on the main roster this side of the decade, so that when they meet in a full-blooded showdown sometime in the future they can look back to this month as a foundation upon which to build, rather than an impressive accomplishment they need to (struggle to) beat. In light of the moral alignments of both characters, and in the hope that they will meet in the future again, as well as in recognition of Bliss’s continuing bitterness toward her more vaunted contemporaries, I could comfortably see the MNR Women’s Champion using her smarts to try outmanoeuvre her taller, stronger, more athletic opponent, only to find the Dirtiest Daughter in the Game (erm…I might not use that nickname again…) has the greater natural inclination towards shortcuts. Though a heroine, I’d love to see Charlotte beat Bliss at her own game, cranking up the hostility for a future showdown.

Women’s Team Raw vs. Women’s Team Smackdown has an impressive collection of talent on show. It’s hard for me to not believe the entire scenario is going to be another instance of a typical Survivor Series platform performance for MNR’s Asuka, though. She can demonstrate why she’s dangerous, all without touching a single MNR future rival. It’s the perfect set-up. Should SDL’s majority division be the means by which to reach that end? Well I don’t really care, but some might. Nonetheless, I anticipate SDL being well on its way toward a clean sweep until Asuka demonstrates her dominance to emerge as a sole survivor.

Men’s Team Raw vs. Men’s Team Smackdown is no easier to figure out either, though for the opposite reason: there’s so many plots and subplots surrounding this litany of big name talent that I’d be impressed if anyone can accurately predict anything close to how it’ll end! I expect near-Attitude Era levels of shenanigans, with the likes of Jason Jordan, Kane, Kevin Owens, Sami Zayn and maybe even Daniel Bryan all making their presence felt in one way or another; and, I expect, in at least one instance, decisively so. It seems likely that the seeds for Triple H vs. Kurt Angle will be sewn here too. Might Stephanie McMahon make an appearance? I’ll save my griping about part-timer prevalence for the podcast later tonight, but I do sincerely hope the focus of this epic bout is fixed firmly on the more contemporary talents involved. As for an official prediction? Well, let’s see how many I get right here…

Kane will eliminate Strowman with furious vengeance. Owens and Zayn will have some form of confrontation with Cena and Orton, writing both out. Joe and Nakamura will revisit their beef. Triple H and Kurt Angle will likely be responsible for taking each other out. Let’s go wild and say Daniel Bryan will inadvertently cost Shane his spot in proceedings. Finally, Bálor will emerge the sole survivor with a pin fall of last remaining SDL team member Bobby Roode.

Oh, and as for Enzo Amore vs. Kalisto…I don’t care. Hopefully Neville shows up and tears them both limb from limb.

So there you have it folks! My official predictions; I’ve realised I’ve completely contradicted myself and predicted an MNR Series this year, so let’s see how much egg I have on my face come Monday morning. I’ll be talking more about each of these matches – and the curious design of the card and its build – later tonight on the next instalment of The Right Side of the Pond, set to air shortly on Lords of Pain Radio to kick your Survivor Series weekend off right! The Right Side of the Pond airs only on LOP Radio every Friday night, 9pm GMT / 5pm EST, or can be listened to on demand at any time via BlogTalkRadio or on iTunes, so be sure to check it out!

In the meantime, share with me your predictions for Sunday’s big show (and throw in NXT too, for fun!) in the comments below or over on social media!

Don’t forget to pick up your copy of my book, 101 WWE Matches To See Before You Die, from the LOP Store or Amazon today! Simply click here to find mine and a host of other books and merchandise on offer, all courtesy of LOP, or on the icon to the left to be taken directly to Amazon!

Click here to add me on Facebook!

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