Follow Mr. Tito on Twitter.com: @titowrestling
MR. TITO STRIKES BACK - WWE Wrestlemania 33 Predictions and More
By Mr. Tito
Mar 27, 2017 - 12:06:13 AM
Welcome back to the EXCELLENCE IN COLUMN WRITING by yours truly, Mr. Tito, exclusively here at LordsofPain.net / WrestlingHeadlines.com. It's WRESTLEMANIA week, as I'm going to deliver my Wrestlemania 33 predictions column before RAW and Smackdown air... I have a full weekend of columns ahead of me, so thus I'm getting the Wrestlemania predictions column out of the way now... Plus, WWE will mail this week's show in to ensure nobody gets hurt.
First and foremost, my condolences to the family of former WWE announcer and VP of talent relations, Jim Ross, for the loss of Ross's wife Jan. I wish him the absolute best... Jim Ross and his amazing contributions to the business is one of my favorite things about pro wrestling. I don't know where wrestling would be without him during the late 1990s and early 2000s.
As of March 26th, 2017, here is the current Wrestlemania 33 card:
- Andre the Giant Battle Royal
- RAW Tag Titles Triple Threat: Gallows/Anderson (c) vs. Sheamus/Cesaro vs. Enzo/Big Cass
- Cruiserweight Title: Neville (c) vs. Austin Aries
- Smackdown Women's Title: Alexa Bliss (c) vs. Mickie James vs. Carmella vs. Natalya vs. Becky Lynch (other participatings may join?)
- RAW Women's Title Fatal 4 Way: Bayley (c) vs. Sasha Banks vs. Charlotte vs. Nia JAx
- Intercontinental Title: Dean Ambrose (c) vs. Baron Corbin
- US Title: Chris Jericho (c) vs. Kevin Owens
- Mixed Tag: John Cena/Nikki Bella vs. Miz/Maryse
- AJ Styles vs. Shane McMahon
- Triple H vs. Seth Rollins
- Roman Reigns vs. Undertaker
- WWE Title: Bray Wyatt (c) vs. Randy Orton
- WWE Universal Title: Bill Goldberg (c) vs. Brock Lesnar
That is a BIG card... But does it have the potential to be a GREAT card?
In my opinion, this year's Wrestlemania is loaded with more stars BUT it has the wrong match-ups. Sorry, but Bill Goldberg isn't going to become a miracle worker against Brock Lesnar. Sorry, but I have zero desire to see another under 2 minute match between those two. Furthermore, the Undertaker needs surgery after Wrestlemania and Roman Reigns isn't exactly the guy who could carry an older wrestler... Unless the match is converted to a no-dq match in which Roman falls through multiple tables and takes dangerous bumps. That's the only way Roman looks decent... Meanwhile, world class wrestler AJ Styles gets to wrestle a backyard wrestler named Shane McMahon. That's a JOKE... Meanwhile, because they waited from August to December to even notice they were feuding, I have zero hype towards Triple H vs. Seth Rollins. Just no real heat there.
Multi-person matches for both Women's Title and the RAW Tag Titles... Why? Because the Creative Teams could not come up with strong midcard feuds and for the ridiculous reason of getting more people onto the Wrestlemania payday. Sorry, but in my opinion, the Wrestlemania payoff should be a reward for hard work and not an entitlement. It's sad when the Cruiserweight Division actually has a legit one-on-one match up and the division is better for it. Gee, imagine that.
I figure that Dean Ambrose vs. Baron Corbin and Chris Jericho vs. Kevin Owens will be, like clockwork, good matches... Almost expected so even if they kick it into an extra gear, it's expected. In my opinion, the REAL show stealing kind of match could be Bray Wyatt vs. Randy Orton. Hopefully, Wyatt observed how Styles and Harper pulled great matches out of Orton (i.e. aggressively going after him, making him sell). Hopefully, Orton is up for doing business and making Bray Wyatt into a strong champion. Wrestlemania 33 could be the night that firmly makes Bray Wyatt into a major superstar for the Smackdown brand for years to come.
I'll be honest here... The match that I'm most looking forward to is John Cena/Nikki Bella vs. Miz/Maryse. Wrestlemania 33 should have featured Undertaker vs. John Cena, as that was the original plan during late 2016 until it was changed just before Royal Rumble 2017. However, the Miz lucked out and landed the superstar in a fascinating mixed tag match. Not so much for Cena or Nikki Bella, but Miz and Maryse have been ON FIRE for the last year. When Maryse made her return, she was silent at ringside and didn't add to Miz's character... Then, slowly but surely, she began to interfere in Miz's matches. Then, the Talking Smack segment where Miz verbally thrashed Daniel Bryan. Miz was once that corporate spokesperson for the WWE who didn't take risks or chances and did everything by the WWE's script. Too phony for my tastes... But since Talking Smack, the Miz has been free to become a great wrestler.
From my July 24th, 2016 Column, I gave my RAW/Smackdown DRAFT thoughts but I went into great detail about 1 disappointing Smackdown draft pick, the Miz. However, I gave an optimistic view on him and made suggestions on how to fix him. Though my suggestions on HOW to do that were different than how WWE executed it with the Talking Smack promo on Bryan, what I said initially about Miz before the Brand Extension was spot on:
But, there is ONE GUY drafted to the Smackdown roster that I've had issue with: the Miz.
OK - Think about my criticisms of Roman Reigns... He's a manufactured entity from WWE Corporate and forced to the main event despite what the fans want. Ditto with the Miz. From day one, he has given off the appearance of being a WWE Corporate guy. He's what the Marketing Department of the WWE Corporation WANTS YOU TO LIKE. The image, the "Awesome" catchphrase, the awful music, and the repeat attempts to redefine his character are markings of a manufactured entity and not something that the fans organically can get behind. Everything with the Miz is about image, image, image... Sure, that is very important and so is having GOOD microphone skills. But to appear as completely synthetic and unauthentic as the Miz appears doesn't appeal to the fans. The Miz was WWE Champion during late 2010 and early 2011, even successfully defending his WWE Title against John Cena at Wrestlemania 27. What has happened since Wrestlemania 27? Well, RAW ratings and attendance dropped with Miz as WWE Champion so the belt was thrown back to John Cena... Miz has been a midcarder ever since although he gets many, many midcard title shots.
And this WWE Films subsidized movie career... I'm sure the guy works hard, don't get me wrong... I'm sure he takes his work very seriously... But how has he earned the movie opportunities? Since his Wrestlemania 27 victory, his wrestling career has been going downhill. You would THINK that movie roles would go to more drawing wrestlers, right?
There is the feeling with the Miz, just like Roman Reigns, that he's handed everything to him by WWE Corporate. Miz is the guy that the WWE Corporation WANTS you to like, but not who you really like. And because WWE Corporate takes care of the Miz with many pushes and opportunities, I believe that his in-ring work has suffered. Look, Miz has some legitimate in-ring talent. He's a great athlete and he clearly works hard... AJ Style praised him HEAVILY on Steve Austin's Podcast for being legitimately tough. But what I think is missing from the Miz in and out of the ring is Psychology. If you watch Miz's match, his moves are crisp and the matches are very tight. The problem, though, is his LACK of emotion in the ring... He's very robotic in the ring. He's not providing any rhyme or reason for WHY he hits certain wrestling moves, not attempting to draw heat against his opponents, and not trying to get any response from fans in attendance. He should show emotion, cause his opponent to react emotionally to him, and then convince the fans to root or boo him during matches. Instead... *silence*.
The impression I get with the Miz is that he's told what to do on everything by WWE Corporate. Look at this whole Hollywood gimmick. It's so fake and with his matches not delivering, there's no heat for the character at all... Then, you throw his super hot wife Maryse with him and nobody cares. Shouldn't they be envious that he has a Playboy-esque model as a manager? Nope... Crickets. Because again, he's synthetic as a WWE Superstar and by extension, so is she.
Sooooooooooooooo.... How do you fix the Miz?
Simple. Make him ANTI-Corporate.
That Talking Smack segment single-handedly broke that Corporate spokesperson mold and gave him the absurd amount of confidence needed to become a potential Main Eventer for the Smackdown brand. Maryse began to act like a legitimate heel manager, too, which poured on additional heat. Miz has been excellent on his promos, stronger in the ring, and has given the WWE its best heel in a long, long time... Someone who draws legitimate heat and is absolutely hated. Now, the WWE has added another dimension with Maryse. They are letting her do more and tada, she has REAL talent. That promo she cut on Nikki was badass and her portrayal of Nikki on the Total Bellas was hysterical! On top of possibly being the hottest chick in the WWE (by a margin, too), she has personality that adds to the Miz.
This Cena/Nikki vs. Miz/Maryse feud has real heat and I wonder how much John Cena is seething from Miz and Maryse's promos. Their feud (following the Natalya feud) has ripped the kayfabe scab off of how Cena and Nikki are dating in real life. Furthermore, Miz and Maryse have dumped more gasoline on pressuring Cena to actually marry Nikki Bella. Cena is a guy who was very protective of his personal life and you can tell he is uncomfortable with his appearances on Total Divas/Total Bellas. The Miz has been ON FIRE with his promos against John Cena and has been fearless. That confidence gained from that Talking Smack episode against Bryan continues to grow and grow.
The question is this... Will the WWE pull the trigger on the Miz and have him BEAT John Cena at Wrestlemania 33? Or will we have to wait for a SummerSlam 2017 singles match or something like that to do the honors? After all, Cena loves to put over wrestlers at SummerSlam...
Mr. Tito's PHAT WWE WRESTLEMANIA 33 PREDICTIONS
Doing my usual "WHO SHOULD WIN / WHO WILL WIN" format... And again, I'm making my predictions before RAW/Smackdown airs this week.
Andre the Giant Battle Royal
I don't see much coming out of this match other than either rewarding Big Show for getting in decent shape and sort of pushing him after Wrestlemania or the more probable feather in the cap of Braun Strowman. I don't know who else could win this...
WHO SHOULD WIN / WHO WILL WIN: Braun Strowman
RAW Tag Titles Triple Threat: Gallows/Anderson (c) vs. Sheamus/Cesaro vs. Enzo/Big Cass
How is the New Day not involved in this match? Yeah, just the team who beat Demolition's 25 year old Tag Title length record... Let's make them hosts of Wrestlemania 33 instead. What a waste of talent and kinda makes this match look weak without them. Honestly, I feel nothing for all 3 teams involved.
WHO SHOULD WIN: Anderson & Gallows. After Wrestlemania, re-push the New Day against them.
WHO WILL WIN: Enzo and Big Cass. I think that WWE will try them as a babyface championship team and see how it goes. Cass isn't quite ready for a singles career, yet.
Cruiserweight Title: Neville (c) vs. Austin Aries
This is an interesting match-up and I figure it will be one of the top matches of the night. Funny how a one-on-one match looks so good for a midcard title. My thinking here is that I don't know how serious WWE is in pushing Aries. Neville joined the Cruiserweight Division as a company man and didn't put up much of a fuss. Therefore, I sense that the WWE will reward Neville for that. Plus, I don't see WWE rewarding Aries on his first Wrestlemania.
WHO SHOULD WIN / WHO WILL WIN: Neville as a reward for joining the Cruiserweight Division
Smackdown Women's Title: Alexa Bliss (c) vs. Mickie James vs. Carmella vs. Natalya vs. Becky Lynch (other participants may join?)
Should be called "Women's Title Clusterf**k", as other female wrestlers may be added to this match. Seriously, the Smackdown Creative Team who has made the Women's Division look amazing for the past year cannot get a single one-on-one match out of them? Be very aware of who else might get added to this match whether it's an older name coming back or the returning Eva Marie. Hell, Asuka... Why not?
WHO SHOULD WIN / WHO WILL WIN: Alexa Bliss, only because the match, itself, admits that it doesn't know who should defeat her.
RAW Women's Title Fatal 4 Way: Bayley (c) vs. Sasha Banks vs. Charlotte vs. Nia Jax
The WWE has been leaning towards turning Sasha Banks into a heel for a while now and I believe we may see it against Bayley. Match will appear to be Banks/Bayley vs. Charlotte/Jax but at the right moment, Banks turns on Bayley to become Women's Champion. From there, I believe that Charlotte will be flipped into a babyface...
WHO SHOULD WIN: Bayley and with a definitive win to put her over strong as Women's Champion.
WHO WILL WIN: Sasha Banks by turning on Bayley.
Intercontinental Title: Dean Ambrose (c) vs. Baron Corbin
I really like this feud... Just has that intensity among the two characters that you can't quite script... Just feels like both wrestlers are letting loose and we, as fans, are the beneficiaries of that. Who will win is up to where the WWE wants to take Dean Ambrose for the rest of the year. He went from WWE Champion to Intercontinental Champion within the same year.
WHO SHOULD WIN: Dean Ambrose... Like I said, he's a former WWE Champion.
WHO WILL WIN: Baron Corbin, as the WWE will attempt to make him into a star to build off of last year's Andre the Giant win.
US Title: Chris Jericho (c) vs. Kevin Owens
Seems too obvious that Chris Jericho is going to lose because he'll be touring with Fozzy... However, he's the babyface in this match... Shouldn't he have some form of redemption here? Owens attacked him despite Jericho's gestures as a friend. Jericho should get revenge for those brutal attacks by Owens. However, again, Jericho is going on tour after Wrestlemania.
WHO SHOULD WIN: Kevin Owens as Jericho will be leaving after Wrestlemania. Big Wrestlemania moment helps Owens in the long-run.
WHO WILL WIN: Chris Jericho and only because I believe Jericho and Owens wrestle again on RAW as a rematch. I believe that WWE wants to reward Jericho for his work in the past year and stepping up as a veteran when they needed him.
Mixed Tag: John Cena/Nikki Bella vs. Miz/Maryse
Lots of interesting angles in this match... Reportedly, Nikki Bella may retire after this match. Would the WWE attempt to reward Nikki for her efforts on Total Divas/Total Bellas? Technically speaking, Maryse is no longer a full-time wrestler and should be considered the weak link in this match. However, John Cena is leaving for more Hollywood opportunities following Wrestlemania 33. Would the WWE have Miz pinning John Cena? I could foresee Cena winning here and setting up a one-on-one Cena vs. Miz match at SummerSlam 2017 instead.
WHO SHOULD WIN: Miz & Maryse with Miz getting the clean pin on John Cena.
WHO WILL WIN: John Cena & Nikki Bella as a swan song "thank you" to Nikki and to possibly set up Miz vs. Cena at SummerSlam 2017. Plus, WWE wants John Cena back for future events. Just because Cena is getting Hollywood opportunities doesn't mean that the WWE wants to avoid using him as a part-timer.
AJ Styles vs. Shane McMahon
FINGER OF SHAME for this match even happening. I'm sure that AJ Styles will put on a show to make this match look spectacular. No doubt... But we're getting robbed of seeing another Cena match or AJ Styles being used elsewhere. I just wish that the WWE would have handed Shawn Michaels a larger pile of money to come back to wrestle Styles.
WHO SHOULD WIN / WHO WILL WIN: AJ Styles. It better happen.
Triple H vs. Seth Rollins
Let's see here... Has Samoa Joe been booked for Wrestlemania 33? I don't see him on the card... I think you're going to see an alliance of Triple H's NXT call-ups continuing to form and showing their loyalties to him. Additionally, I believe that Rollins may need some additional time off to heal that knee. I wouldn't doubt that this match is somewhat short because of that knee injury.
WHO SHOULD WIN: Seth Rollins. See Randy Orton, as failing to drive a stake into Triple H has been a bad thing in a wrestler's career.
WHO WILL WIN: Triple H via Samoa Joe help.
Roman Reigns vs. Undertaker
I would not place this match anywhere near the Main Event... Fans are going to attack Roman Reigns and it's going to look bad. Undertaker is badly injured and needs surgery (or to retire). The expectation is that the Undertaker endures his 2nd loss here... But does the WWE turn Roman heel here? It would be HUGE if Reigns viciously attacked the Undertaker and put him out for good. However, Vince McMahon wants Roman to become the #1 babyface. Unless you've been under a rock for the last 3 years, WWE has been positioning Roman to take over Cena's #1 babyface slot. I just don't see it happening on the heel front, but what I do see is Roman Reigns getting a definitive win here and a MEGA PUSH towards the WWE Universal Title to happen for the rest of the summer.
WHO SHOULD WIN: The Undertaker unless Roman is truly turning heel. Roman is just an utter failure as a main event babyface.
WHO WILL WIN: Roman Reigns
WWE Title: Bray Wyatt (c) vs. Randy Orton
This match has real potential to become "Match of the Night"... Bray Wyatt just has to be aggressive against Randy Orton, like Harper and Styles before him, and this match could be electric. I can't help but wonder who is the true heel and true babyface in this match. Orton turned on Wyatt but Orton burned down Wyatt's family house... What kind of babyface move is that??? Almost seems like the WWE is performing another MEGA PUSH of Randy Orton, especially with Cena being absent following Wrestlemania 33. Why else would Randy Orton win Royal Rumble 2017? However, it could all have been performed just to put over Bray Wyatt HUGE.
WHO SHOULD WIN: Bray Wyatt
WHO WILL WIN: Randy Orton
WWE Universal Title: Bill Goldberg (c) vs. Brock Lesnar
Payback time... Goldberg is 2-0 against Brock Lesnar... I sense that WWE might have one last strong push for Lesnar or he'll be set up to lose against Roman Reigns in the future. Reportedly, Wrestlemania 34's early plans are to be headlined with Lesnar vs. Reigns... Now, will Lesnar be WWE Universal Champion for 1 entire year? Doubt it... But I believe that the Goldberg train is going to be derailed. You cannot do these short matches to keep hiding how Bill Goldberg cannot perform a longer match at the age of 50 years old.
WHO SHOULD WIN / WHO WILL WIN: Brock Lesnar... You know what would be a funny ending? If Paul Heyman distracted the referee and Rena Lesnar (Sable) appears in the ring to nutshot Bill Goldberg. But I figure they'll craft Goldberg missing an early spear and he'll pay for that.
I predict that Jim Cornette will behave. Why would he go up there when inducting the Rock N Roll Express and "shoot" on the WWE? Cornette will turn his "wrestler mode" on and be professional. Now, could we hear about wrestlers or backstage personnel that he's bashed confronting him in some way? Yeah, I see that happening... But on stage for the WWE Hall of Fame ceremony, he'll be have.
NXT Takeover Orlando Predictions
Being totally honest here, I've really been slacking on my NXT viewership. I've shifted from watching only RAW and NXT to watching only RAW and Smackdown since the Brand Extension. NXT's television shows have been a bit thin since the 2016 talent raids to fill the RAW and Smackdown rosters.
- Ember Moon defeats Asuka to become NXT Champion. I believe Asuka is joining the RAW roster following Wrestlemania 33 weekend.
- Andrade "Cien" Almas beats Aleister Black. Seems like NXT is hellbent on getting some momentum for Cien.
- I'm struggling to call the Authors of Pain vs. DIY vs. Revival match... I don't know where NXT is going, nor do I know who will join the main WWE roster after Wrestlemania 33. I could see any of the 3 teams jumping ship. I'll suggest that the Authors retain and that both Revival and DIY may get called up soon. If only we could see more Revival vs. DIY matches...
- Nakamura will defeat Bobby Roode for the NXT Title. I just don't see Nakamura joining the main roster but I can see WWE giving Roode a call-up. His persona is exactly what they want.
THE LAST WORD
That's all I have for now... If inspired, I may return during the week... I beat Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild on Thursday, as that damn game has consumed my free time since March 3rd.
But I have a few columns in the works...
(a) LoP Hall of Fame - Cannot mention who, but I'm inducting someone.
(b) LoP Fact of Fiction - Wrestlemania edition
(c) NXT Takeover Orlando Review
(d) Wrestlemania 33 Review
What usually happens is that RAW or Smackdown has something interesting or maybe news headlines will come out to bring me out of the woodwork. You never know...
SO JUST CHILL... 'TIL THE NEXT EPISODE!
Comments and feedback are welcome. Follow and Tweet me @titowrestling or login in below to post comments.
© Mr. Tito and LordsofPain.net/WrestlingHeadlines.com - 1998-2017