Yes wrestling fans, the moment has almost arrived. This Friday, we will see the beginning of a new partnership between Saudi Arabia and WWE. At 12:00pm EST, WWE will be showcasing the “Greatest Royal Rumble”, a standard live event turned super-card on steroids.
Who will come out on top? Let’s break it down with The Game Changer Sport Network’s prediction for WWE’s: The Greatest Royal Rumble!
#1: The Bludgeon Brothers (Harper and Rowan) vs.The Usos (Jey and Jimmy Uso) for the SmackDown Tag Team Championships.
Projected Winner: The Bludgeon Brothers.
With The Bludgeon Brothers only recently capturing the titles at Wrestlemaina 34, one can be pretty secure that they will walk out with the straps on Friday. While the Uso’s will most likely be over like crazy with the face-friendly crowd, the WWE should be focusing on the larger plans for The Bludgeon Brothers. The two former Wyatt disciples are arguably the most dominant duo in WWE, and WWE should not try and stop that heat.
#2: Jeff Hardy (c) vs. Jinder Mahal for the United States Championship
Projected winner: Jeff Hardy
The WWE Superstar Shake up simultaneously brought the US title to Raw and sent it back to SmackDown in the course of two days, with Mahal dropping the title to Hardy two weeks ago on Monday Night Raw. It is safe to say that Jeff Hardy will retain the championship in a classic “small and fast face v bigger-brawler with a manager heel” match.
Hardy and Mahal seemed to have good chemistry in their title match on Raw, so they will look to try and repeat that again. This will most likely setup Mahal to try other ventures on Raw, with a possible attempt to position himself in the IC title picture. While anything can happen with one half of the BollyWood boys at ringside, as far as this observer is conserved, the title will be staying on SmackDown.
#3: Bray Wyatt and Matt Hardy vs. Cesaro and Sheamus – Tournament final for the vacant Raw Tag Team Championships.
Projected winners: The Deleter of Worlds (Matt Hardy and Bray Wyatt)
Once again, this match is a victim of the Superstar Shake up. With the Bar (Sheamus and Cesaro) now on SmackDown, it is almost a given that the only Raw tag team in the match will walk out with the RAW tag team titles. The match will surely be entertaining, with Hardy and Wyatt pulling all kinds of Woken antics with the Bar and the crowd alike. The Bar will bring a hard hitting nature to the match, but will mostly likely come up short, and look for greener pastures on SmackDown’s dense tag team division.
#4: Cedric Alexander (c) vs. Kalisto for the Cruiserweight Championship
Projected Winner: Cedric Alexander.
205 Live has come along way from its days of being held hostage by Enzo Amore, and with Cedric Alexander being crowned Cruiserweight Champ at this past WrestleMania, the new era of the 205 Live division is officially in full swing. With the original match between him and Buddy Murphy being scrapped due to Murphy’s recent suspension from competition, (handed out by 205 Live GM Drake Maverick); a gauntlet match was held on 205 Live to decide the next challenger. With that said, former champion Kalisto came out on top and is primed and ready for a second run with the title.
The match will undoubtedly be a fun and fast paced affair; filled with high energy offense, and plenty of dives in and out of the ring. However, regardless of who would have faced the Champ; Alexander is walking out as the winner. Cedric is slated to be the man on 205 until further notice.
#5: Seth Rollins (c) vs. Finn Bálor vs. Samoa Joe vs. The Miz – Ladder match for the Intercontinental Championship.
Projected Winner: Seth Rollins
One might be noticing a trend while reading these predictions, the champs almost always retain (We will get to the outlier later); and that would be true. That is simply due to the fact of what this show is. Rollins is still a fresh face for the IC title, after defeating The Miz and Balor to win the title at WM 34.
With that said, Monday Night Rollins will be rolling right along to the next Monday Night Raw with the title in hand. With the Miz moving to SmackDown, Samoa Joe doing the same AND setting up a major match with Roman at Backlash, Finn becomes the only other option for a new champ. However, with all these variables, it seems as though Seth retaining is a foregone conclusion.
#6: John Cena vs. Triple H
Projected Winner: John Cena
It’s a foreign country; his opponent is part-timer Triple H…need we say more. While on paper a match between Triple H and John Cena seems like it would be a big deal, instead it feels so lifeless. There is zero build to this match, with only the fan’s past memories to provide some context and attempt to drum up a story for themselves. It will likely break down into a traditional Super Cena, taking on the tyrannical Triple H. If anything, this match serves as the reminder that this was only supposed to be a Live Event at one point.
The CeNation will be glowing, as John Cena will have a classic come from behind victory over the older COO. The match will serve as a way for Cena to lick his wounds from the absolute squash match that was his bout with Undertaker.
#7 The Undertaker vs Rusev – Casket Match
Projected Winner: The Undertaker
The story of this match has about 0.00001% to do with the actual match. This saga began when the match was originally announced; after a brief TMZ debacle, where Rusev make disparaging statements about Undertakers’ age and worth-rate, Rusev was removed from the match and replaced with Chris Jericho.
The rumors of Rusev’s departure ran ramped, even as his popularly and new ‘Rusev Day” gimmick began to peek. Before long, WWE changed the match yet again, and Rusev was put back into it.
Was the original removal because of disapproval from the brass? Is having him in the match set him up for a “burial”? Who knows, but one thing is for sure; the Deadman from Death Valley will be walking tall by the end.
#8 AJ Styles (c) vs Shinsuke Nakamura for the WWE Championship
Projected Winner: AJ Styles
One of the few things that is similar with this special event and most WWE pay-per-views today is that the card is lengthy and dense. We are at #8 with two more matches to go. Nevertheless, we forge on.
After an interesting match with each other at WM 34, which left fans debating whether or not the match was good or bad; fans can all agree that the immediate Heel-Turn of Nakamura has been spectacular. Nakamura is a natural as a heel, and easy to get heat behind with his “Sorry, I don’t speak English” gimmick. With that said, it would make sense for WWE to save the title change for state side, either with Nakamura going over, or one of the new acquisitions from Raw. Possibly Joe.
However, a Nakamura win wouldn’t be totally surprising. But if you asked us to bet the house, we say AJ Styles retains by ways of a DQ finish; with Nakamura taking a shot downstairs. Sorry AJ.
#9 Brock Lesnar (c) vs Roman Regins – Steel Cage Match for the WWE Universal Championship
Projected Winner: Roman Regins (New Champ)
Finally! The streak of retained titles is over. Fitting that a streak would end with these two.
It isn’t too surprising, as there has been much speculation that Roman would be walking out of Saudi Arabia with the title in hand. The world was shocked when Roman was absolutely bludgeoned and blooded by the Beast Incarnate at WM34. While Roman did kick out of about 10,000 F5’s, the Empire fell to the former UFC champion. With that, rumors of when and why the decision was made exploded. Including an idea that the finish was changed during the match itself.
Regardless, WWE still very much wants Roman to be the guy, and the last thing he needs to do is conquer Lesnar. It truly is the last hill he needs to climb. With that, Saudi Arabia’s fans, like most foreign fans, will likely be much more positive and repetitive to Regins. In other words, the visual that WWE desperately wants; Regins standing tall after an all-out war with Brock and a roaring crowd cheering for him, is almost guaranteed with a friendly crowd. It’s in our opinion that WWE will see this as the moment to finally pull the trigger, and have Brock lose clean to Roman. With the match being a cage match, it also sets up the possibility of Roman escaping for a win. Protecting Brock from a squeaky clean loss, and still passing the torch to Roman.
#10) The Greatest Royal Rumble Match – 50 Man Royal Rumble Match.
Projected Winner: Braun Stroman
We have finally come to the match of which the show is named. The first ever 50-Man Royal Rumble match. It feels awkward to call it a Royal Rumble match, since the Royal Rumble is one of the secreted “Big Four”. However, WWE received a lot of money to come do a show, so they’ll call it whatever they want.
For us, Braun Strowman just feels like the right person. It is still unknown as to what exactly someone will receive along with the trophy; a title match, manager for a night, a ride in the Evolution helicopter, or maybe…just a trophy. Regardless, the winner will get to tack on being the winner of the largest Royal Rumble in history on their resume, and who could complain about that.
As said before, Braun seems like a sold choice, the big man has been on an absolute tare the past few months, culminating in winning the tag-team titles at Mania with the help of a 10 year old child named Nicholas, (who probably won’t be able to see the match because he will be in school). Strowman not winning the Andre the Giant Battle Royal was a surprise to many, and a win here would give something for Strowman to brag about, since WWE is still not sure of how to exactly bring him into the Raw Main Event; without having Roman lose to the much more over Strowman.
However others such as: Chris Jericho, Daniel Bryan, Bobby Lashley, and even John Cena are rumored winners as well. As of Tuesday afternoon, we are only aware of 21 out of the potential 50 who will be in said match. Leaving a lot of room for those on the card to pull double duty, some lower midcarders and jobbers to be thrown in as well, and maybe even some surprise returns. We will just have to wait and see…
How will the card shape up? Will the great experiment work? Will it be a classic or a bust? Let us know what YOU think! Stay tuned for more updates regarding the event, WWE news, and more here at The Game Changer Sports Network.