So, 2017 is but a few days old. Plenty of people are putting some predictions out there…and so am I!
That’s right folks. I am going to offer up some predictions for each month of the new year. Some are going to be off the wall or straight up goofy, and some will actually attempt to be serious. No matter what, we are going to have fun. Right? Right!
OK, on with the show!
It’s Rumble time, and what a Rumble we get. It’s the 30th anniversary edition, right? That’s what they tell us. We don’t want Roman winning it, and no one is suggesting he will. Ellsworth would be a more popular choice, but I am betting dollars to donuts he’s a non-fact0r too. Instead, we get a rapidly-healing Finn Balor making his surprise return, entering at #27 and leaving San Antonio as the #1 contender for Kevin Owens’ Universal Championship.
Yay, we get the Elimination Chamber back, and it’s as crazy as you’d expect. The Undertaker winds up winning the match, and the World Title, off of AJ Styles here, allowing The Dead Man one more title run, and one more main event at the big show.
Otherwise, February flies by, as all eyes are on Orlando.
Fastlane comes and goes, and once again, it’s still a horrible name for a PPV. But, it proves useful as we see feuds get lined up for WrestleMania in Orlando.
Ms. Rousey finally shows up in WWE, following her devastating UFC loss. Vince McMahon couldn’t resist the allure of a mega-match with Rousey and anyone on his roster. And there’s a looming mixed tag match for her too.
While last year Vince wanted to set an attendance record, this year they go for the longest WrestleMania ever, with McMahon caught telling staff he wants the programming to be on longer than the networks cover a Super Bowl. And, the fans eat it up.
The TakeOver event the night before is still a better overall show, though Lesnar/Goldberg, Rollins/Hunter and ‘Taker/Cena don’t disappoint. Shaq/Big Show is entirely forgettable, however.
On the Monday and Tuesday after, we have the main roster debuts of Asuka (SmackDown) and Bobby Roode (RAW), along with the Authors of Pain (SmackDown).
May gives us the SmackDown exclusive of Extreme Rules, and it’s here that Bray Wyatt pins Undertaker to finally become a world champion. The Authors of Pain destroy American Alpha and become one of the youngest tag team champions ever in the process. Oh, and Paige finally gets her life together and returns to WWE television, only to be hit on by James Ellsworth.
Money in the Bank happens, only WWE decides rather than making it exclusive for one brand or the other, it’s going to have one show for both, and each brand has a briefcase on the line. The twist? Each briefcase winner can choose which champion to chase. You could have both men cash in on the same champion at the same time even. And the winners this year? Samoa Joe on RAW, and Baron Corbin on SmackDown.
This is a month people just want to beat the heat. SummerSlam hype begins, of course, with a main event set between The Undertaker and Bray Wyatt, a re-match for the world championship.
Also in July, reports surface that CM Punk and WWE may have begun reconciling, with a potential blockbuster return in the works.
Speaking of big returns, SummerSlam gives us the return of Hulk Hogan to the WWE after some time in exile.
Also from SummerSlam, we see some history. Finn Balor wins to retain his Universal Title, but loses it when Samoa Joe cashes in. The Undertaker wins the World Championship back from Bray Wyatt, but loses it when Baron Corbin cashes in on him. Bet you never saw that coming, eh?
By now, Hulk Hogan has taken over as RAW general manager and things are…pretty much no different. But, we have Backlash and Clash of Champions to look forward to, so there’s that. Finn Balor and Samoa Joe take their feud into a steel cage (again) and what transpires is a near lock for match of the year.
After less than a month as champion, Corbin looks like top brass may have soured on his run, but he manages to retain in a triple threat match between himself, The Undertaker and Bray Wyatt.
With his last world title run over, Undertaker decides to reunite with Kane (traded from RAW) and chase tag team gold. But in order to do that, ‘Taker and Kane dismantle the New Wyatt Family at No Mercy.
Hell In A Cell gives us the rubber match between Joe and Finn, and as good as their bout last month was, this one blows it away. Helped, of course, by the amazing cell spots that will go down in history.
With his career winding down, Undertaker decides to captain one final Survivor Series team, as he and Kane team up with John Cena, Bray Wyatt and Baron Corbin to take on Team RAW, featuring Finn Balor, Samoa Joe, Kevin Owens, Braun Strowman and Sami Zayn. Team SmackDown wins, but not before some tension between Cena and Undertaker (as well as Strowman and Corbin), leaving us to wonder if any of those will face the Dead Man at WrestleMania 34. If he chooses to wrestle.
WWE decides that someone missed the Slammys, so they make a return.
Turns out no one missed them that much.
The Undertaker returns and announces that his match at WrestleMania 34 will be his last, and Vince McMahon responds by confirming that ‘Taker will headline the 2018 WWE Hall of Fame.
Your champions at the end of 2017 for RAW: Samoa Joe (Universal). Tye Dillinger (United States). The Revival (Tag team). Nia Jax (women)
For SmackDown: Baron Corbin (world title). The Miz (Intercontinental). Authors of Pain (tag) and Asuka (women’s).