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Posted in: Requesting Flyby
REQUESTING FLYBY: Hell In A Cell- A More Interesting PPV Than You Think (PLUS PREDICTIONS)
By Maverick
Oct 21, 2014 - 5:24:54 PM

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Hell In A Cell: A More Interesting PPV Than You Think (PLUS PREDICTIONS)

As I’m sure you’re all aware by now, I take something of a more positive view of the product WWE is currently putting out than the majority of columnists on this and other sites. I won’t deny that there have been some issues with Monday Night Raw over the past couple of pay-per-view builds, but in all honesty, most of those issues are, in my opinion, to do with the three hour format being unwieldy and difficult to write well consistently, as opposed to there being some kind of incurable cancer at the heart of Titan Towers. With all that being said, I guess I have to acknowledge the reality that many of you are feeling somewhere between jaded and pissed off beyond belief, but in my view, there are plenty of reasons why you should watch Hell In A Cell on the WWE Network for NINE NINEDY NINE (or if you’re a sad, put upon Brit like myself, on Sky at midnight for fifteen quid). The go home show convinced me that there are a number of intriguing possibilities and hints for the forthcoming Wrestlemania season in play here.

Firstly, we have the marquee match up everybody is desperate to see, Dean Ambrose vs. Seth Rollins inside the cell. This is probably the first time since DX vs. Legacy that a match at the eponymous pay-per-view has warranted the cell, and in all honesty, it’s probably the best use of the cell since Foley and Trips in 2000. I think that highly of the former Shield members’ feud. Ambrose has carried Raw on his back for the past five weeks, with endless entertaining skits: from the moment he stood next to a smug Seth Rollins in the audience without Seth realising he was there, to moonlighting as a hot dog vendor, to massacring a dummy version of the Architect on live television. Rollins, meanwhile, has played the cerebral heel rocked by his opponent’s unpredictability to perfection, also involving himself in a series of excellent TV matches with the likes of Jack Swagger. The potential is there for this to be match of the year, and perhaps even match of the decade. These two are that hot, and that good, and I hope they tear each other to pieces. Having Mick Foley show up to put the young studs over and also remind us all of the cell’s significance was a genius move, and Mrs Foley’s Baby Boy performed his role to absolute perfection. I really am frothing at the mouth to see this bout, and I envisage this being Dean Ambrose’s big night. There may be a case for keeping him at arm’s length a while longer, but as hot as he is right now, and with Seth having the consolation of the briefcase, I foresee a win for the Lunatic Fringe.

When John Cena became involved in the Rollins/Ambrose feud, like most, I was deeply irritated. However, as things played out and Orton also became involved, with the loser of the Cena vs. Ambrose contract on a pole match going into a cell match with Orton, I became more keen on the idea. By the time Triple H added the number one contendership stipulation and Paul Heyman arrived to remind them both that their decade long rivalry means nothing to Brock Lesnar, I was entirely sold. It helps that Randy has got some ridiculously awesome mainstream viral exposure over the RKO Vines and suddenly looks set to enjoy a career renaissance (see Tito’s column from Saturday for more on that subject). His passionate promo at the top of the hour was mic work to rank alongside the best he’s done, namely that done when he was developing the 2009 Viper character, and there’s always this part of me that believes that Cena and Orton will have a classic to set alongside their Ironman match at some point. The TLC unification match was almost the one- it had the profile and the build- but neither man was entirely comfortable in that environment. In the cell though? They could nail it. Granted, their 2009 cell effort was lukewarm, but that was the height of PG. The company has notably relaxed in terms of allowing more over the top violence again, so this could be very good. I know many of you will be cynical- and I know the Rumble title match was a stinker, and I know they’ve wrestled over twenty times- but like it or not, these two have defined an era together and that automatically makes them facing off interesting to me, because I want to see if they can actually put all that history into a match and shut up the critics. Certainly, they will be motivated to do so. With the RKO out of nowhere as over as it has been in years thanks to the internet, and with the need for a fresh opponent for Brock, expect The Apex Predator to hit a ridiculous RKO from some impossible situation and get the win. Expect a face turn, a loss to Brock, and a programme against Rollins with Hunter as chief goader to follow, despite the apparent spoiler that Cena is due to win and still face Brock. I see an audible being called there.

Admittedly, WWE seem to have focused on the wrong midcard feuds this month, with Sheamus vs. The Miz and The Usos vs. Gold and Stardust taking precedence over Ziggler vs. Cesaro. Having said that, when it comes to in ring performance, one could argue that nobody has been as consistent as the sons of Rikishi and the sons of the American Dream over the past year. The storyline and the writing may suck- endless six mans does not a feud make- but when that bell rings, there will be a very decent tag affair being wrestled, we can be quite sure of that. I see Gold and Stardust retaining and perhaps a new team stepping into the breach to challenge them...that is, if there are any other teams around. Maybe Callisto and Fake Cara could step up from the NXT roster. That could be fun. In the midcard singles belt wars, Sheamus has struggled to make anybody interested in anything he does- the man is so irrelevant it actually hurts- but at least Miz and especially Sandow have been entertaining in their roles. It seems that we might be building towards an eventual Sandow face turn against his employer, which would be a cool story to see unfold, and would give extra narrative impetus to the middle of the card. This Sunday, I can see Miz winning the title with “Mizdow” interference to set up that eventual turn of events. The Celtic Warrior has done nothing with the belt, anyway. Ziggles and Swiss Death seem to have been sent to Smackdown to wrestle their match, but I suppose there is still a possibility that they will end up being added late to the card. We’ll see. Their match on Raw last night was sublime. Imagine what they could do in a feature spot? Ziggler to retain there, if it makes it onto the show.

Rounding out the card is the Bulgarian Brute against the World’s Largest Athlete and two (count ‘em) divas matches. I have enjoyed Rusev’s push since its inception, I have to say. There’s something so brilliantly old school about it. Having run over total jabronis (Truth, Woods, Cara), a young midcarder just leaving his first push (Big E), an established midcarder who got hot at the right time (Swagger), and a veteran big man (Henry), the Eastern European has been booked painstakingly and strongly, although he has had moments of genuine struggle against his last two opponents that have made the whole experience more enjoyable than simply having him squash everyone he faces. Now he is stepping up to face a former main eventer in The Big Show, a man who it is always possible to book in a beastly manner at a moment’s notice. The excellent acting chops of Show were put to good use last night as he showed sadness and anger over Rusev kicking the plant soldier in the mush and giving him a “concussion” just after Wight seemed to have won the day with his exchanging the giant Russian flag for the American one. Rusev will win this one, I would think, though a non-finish to keep this going another month is a possibility too. Paige and AJ, meanwhile, have been entertaining the hell out of me with their psychological warfare and their wrestling chops inside that squared circle. I suppose the question is, where do they go from here? Whoever wins, one would have to assume that they will move on afterwards. I’ll go AJ to retain, simply because I can see heel Nikki Bella getting a renewed push after beating her sister and making her her personal slave, which is what I assume will be the outcome of that bout. There would surely be no point in having the face boss the heel around, though this is WWE we’re talking about, so you never know.

So, I hope you’ll re-consider any thought you might have that this will be a dull pay-per-view. Both the cell matches are intriguing in different ways, while the undercard is solid, if not spectacular, but promises to deliver in support of the headlining bouts, which is just as it should be. What are your predictions for the show? Are you excited? Be sure to let me know below, and don’t forget to check out ATTITUDE on Thursday (King of the Ring 2000 this week).

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And in closing, as always, this is Maverick, requesting flyby!