Clash of Champions 2016 was the Raw brand’s first attempt at an exclusive pay-per-view in the new era of split shows, and I have to say I preferred it much more than SmackDown’s Backlash.
All in all, every match was entertaining and it felt like it was a legitimate event with enough of a robust card to it where it wasn’t scraping the bottom of the barrel just to survive. In fact, this is currently one of my favorite events of the year so far, which is saying a lot.
However, if you want to check out my in-depth recap of what went down, that’s what the post-show podcast on Smack Talk is for, which you can find at the end of this article. For now, I want to focus on the 3-Count review, which is going to be built this time around the top three questions I have about the repercussions and consequences from this event.
1) What was the Motivation for Roman Reigns Winning?
Did WWE put the United States Championship on Roman Reigns as a means to keep him looking strong without having to put the main event on his shoulders, or is there an actual plan for this going forward? I’m holding out hope that this wasn’t some last minute decision just to pat Reigns on the back, but instead, the start of a heel turn.
The downside to Reigns as champion is if he stays babyface and continues to be booked as the same character that fans haven’t been receptive to for a long while. All that is going to accomplish is hurting the upper midcard division. However, if this can lead to a heel turn, there could be some fun in the mix.
Right now, there aren’t any heels who are big enough to defeat Reigns, but small enough not to be in the main event. Braun Strowman in a few months will likely be the only real option and Chris Jericho is the go-to guy if it happens sooner than later. A feud with Sheamus is something I’ll pass on. No thank you. When it comes to babyfaces, though, there’s Big Cass, Cesaro, and Sami Zayn. All three of those would be interesting feuds we haven’t seen for Reigns yet and they could all be great stories to tell if they overcame a juggernaut like a heel Reigns.
Is that the plan, or is WWE just giving Reigns another accolade because they like him, and that’s more important than the title situation, which they’ll figure out later?
2) How will the Best of Seven Series Conclude?
Sheamus and Cesaro had numerous matches before a Best of Seven Series was created. We all knew it would come down to a 3-3 tie, and that’s exactly what happened after WWE (for some reason) decided to go with the 3 Sheamus wins right off the bat, followed by 3 painfully predictable Cesaro victories.
Now that this final match was ruled a draw, though, how does it get resolved?
Does Mick Foley just simply announce another match for Monday Night Raw and it finishes there? Do they drag this out into Hell in a Cell and have some kind of a gimmick match to settle it for good? Last Man Standing would be a fun option, or if they wanted to poke fun at themselves, they could make it a Best 2-out-of-3-Falls Match just to play up the stipulation of the series.
With Kevin Owens holding the Universal Championship and Roman Reigns obtaining the United States Championship, both Cesaro and Sheamus have potential title matches lined up for them, as it was never stated which belt they would get a shot at. Now, we don’t even know when it will be determined who gets that match, but I’m curious what WWE’s answer will be.
3) When Will Triple H Make Another Appearance?
Having Chris Jericho cost Seth Rollins the Universal Championship match was a method to do the same thing that will happen down the line with Triple H, but not have to bring Triple H himself into the picture again. That can come at Hell in a Cell, Survivor Series, or even further in the future, but I have to imagine it will happen at one of those two events.
My guess is we see Rollins vs. Owens at both events, and Triple H doesn’t make an appearance until Survivor Series. Then again, just because that’s the bigger event doesn’t mean that’s when everything important has to go down. If Rollins and Owens are in a cage match, Triple H’s influence could be the outside factor that allows Owens to retain. On top of that, we don’t know if Triple H vs. Rollins will happen at WrestleMania or sooner, and it could take place as soon as Survivor Series, depending on when we see The Game again.
We know Rollins isn’t done with Owens, so the bigger question is when WWE will make the transition to Triple H being the one scheduled to fight Rollins instead of KO. His next appearance is going to dictate that, and if it happens at Hell in a Cell, Survivor Series or even on an episode of Raw, it will make a big impact on what’s to come for WrestleMania.
For more opinions on the show as a whole, check out the latest Pay-Per-Viewpoint edition of the Smark Out Moment wrestling podcast SMACK TALK:
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