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WWE Payback 2020 predictions

WWE returns to pay-per-view (PPV) — if your cable provider is carrying the event, of course — tomorrow night (Sun., Aug. 30, 2020) from the Amway Center in Orlando, Florida, with its Payback event starting at 6:00 pm ET with the Kickoff show leading right on into the main course at 7 pm ET on the WWE Network.

Luckily for you Cagesiders, our staff of learned wrestling blowhards is here to help figure out just how the event is going to play out with predictions for each match on the card.

Let’s get to it.

Payback predictions

Bray Wyatt vs. Roman Reigns vs. Braun Strowman

Geno Mrosko: WWE has been needing a big star to lead the charge. That big star is here, and he’s got a big time manager with him this time. Pick: Roman Reigns

Sean Rueter: You know, after that SmackDown ending, nothing will surprise me. We’re probably about to find Brock’s been Huskus all this time. Actually, Braun winning would surprise me. Nothing else though. Pick: Bray Wyatt

Kyle Decker: I don’t think the Big Dog wins it back right away. The triple threat allows a “Fiend pins Strowman deal” so they can concentrate on Bray vs. Roman for a month or so. Pick: Bray Wyatt

Rev. Claire Elizabeth: Oh lord, I am so happy to have Roman Reigns back, weird teeth or not. Not one hundred percent sure why they’re using Bray as a transitional champ, but let’s get that belt on the Big Dog! Pick: Roman Reigns

Cain A. Knight: Roman Reigns already spoiled this one for us on SmackDown, with Paul Heyman sitting there right next to him. Pick: Roman Reigns

Stella Cheeks: Roman Reigns has aligned himself with Paul Heyman. This one’s a no brainer. Pick: Roman Reigns

Bayley & Sasha Banks vs. Shayna Baszler & Nia Jax

Geno Mrosko: It’s pretty clear where this is headed, and they need just one or two more major events to get there. This one will be one of those major events. Pick: Shayna Baszler & Nia Jax

Sean Rueter: We didn’t wait all this time just to have the feud start with a loss to The Bar-ettes, did we? No ma’ams. Pick: Bayley & Sasha Banks

Kyle Decker: How fast do the Role Models fall apart? Let’s say they’re going to stretch the feud to WrestleMania. If that’s the case, I don’t think they drop the titles this soon after losing another of their belts. Pick: The Golden Role Models

Rev. Claire Elizabeth: I feel like it’s been a minute since we had a proper odd-couple tag title reign, and we’ve certainly never had one with the women’s belts, given how new they are, so I’m all for it. Only question for me is are they really going to push the Golden Role Models’ breakup or is this yet another fakeout? I’m taking the bet. Pick: Shayna Baszler & Nia Jax

Cain A. Knight: If Banks and Bayley lose, then they can’t appear on Raw anymore, at least not until WWE remembers they created a convoluted Brand Invitational rule a few months ago. Pick: Nia Jax & Shayna Baszler

Stella Cheeks: This has to be the catalyst to Bayley vs. Banks 2.0, right? It’s been teased for what seems like my entire life now, but this time it feels different. The build is there. They just have to pull the trigger and from the look on Sasha’s face during SmackDown, she’s ready for it. Also, Nia Jax & Shayna Baszler as co-champions has buddy cop movie written all over it and I want that. Pick: Nia Jax & Shayna Baszler

Keith Lee vs. Randy Orton

Geno Mrosko: If they genuinely want Lee to be a star on the main roster, they can’t book him in this match and beat him right away. It’s bad enough what they did on Raw this week. Orton is a heel, he’s a long established star, he can put the new guy over. Pick: Keith Lee

Sean Rueter: Can we pick one of those “things break down, people brawl to the back, then Claire loses it in the live blog because they don’t announce the decision” deals? Cause I want to pick “things break down, people brawl to the back, then Claire loses it in the live blog because they don’t announce the decision.” I can’t? Well then, this is under protest... Pick: Randy Orton

Kyle Decker: Keith Lee isn’t beating Randy Orton. The best he can hope for is a DQ when his friend Drew McIntyre interrupts wearing a helmet because of his skull fracture. But I think it’s a “good effort but no luck in the end” showing for Lee. Pick: Randy Orton

Rev. Claire Elizabeth: OH, BASK IN HIS GLORY! Orton’s sticking around the WWE Championship scene, sure, but the Legend Killer shouldn’t kill this one quite so soon. Drew McIntyre makes a miraculous recovery, shows up at a key moment, one Spirit Bomb and Orton’s whole life changes, and I get to bask in my man Henry T. Casey marking out on Twitter. Pick: Keith Lee.

Cain A. Knight: Lee won’t be limitless in the hands of Vince McMahon. Vince is going to give the win to the guy whose body he worships, not the guy whose body he wants to hide. Pick: Randy Orton

Stella Cheeks: Sadly, it seems as though Lee is destined to get sidelined rather quickly by McMahon. They changed his unique music to a generic theme and made him cover up his belly (booo). Plus, Randy Orton is still on track to win the WWE Championship. This is just a pit stop. Pick: Randy Orton

Apollo Crews vs. Bobby Lashley

Geno Mrosko: Lashley is the final boss of The Hurt Business and there’s every reason to think he’ll be winning here. Pick: Bobby Lashley

Sean Rueter: Wasn’t that long ago I thought they had big plans for The Hurt Business. But before that, I thought they had big plans for Zelina Vega, Andrade & Angel Garza. Pick: Apollo Crews

Kyle Decker: Lashley is a different caliber of athlete than MVP was. Crews isn’t ready for that. Pick: Bobby Lashley

Rev. Claire Elizabeth: There’s merit in continuing to build Apollo Crews, but I feel like coming up short again is going to be the end of the Hurt Business, so I see it as either we belt Lashley or get off the pot. Pick: Bobby Lashley

Cain A. Knight: Crews was always going to drop this title to Lashley. The babyface actually getting one over on the heel in arm wrestling sealed Apollo’s fate, even though the winner of this match was never in doubt to begin with. Pick: Bobby Lashley

Stella Cheeks: Is this a real match or an arm wrestling match? I suppose at this point it doesn’t matter. Pick: Bobby Lashley

Dominik & Rey Mysterio vs. Seth Rollins & Murphy

Geno Mrosko: I’m guessing we get more RETRIBUTION involvement here that gives the heels yet another victory. Pick: Seth Rollins & Murphy

Sean Rueter: Why continue it on Monday if the heels lose here? Pick: Seth Rollins & Murphy

Kyle Decker: We getting that Dom heel turn here? Is that why they’re re-running this match less than a week later? It’s probably more creative laziness but whatevs. I’ll say heel turn. Pick: Seth Rollins & Murphy

Rev. Claire Elizabeth: It’s a bad sign that I can’t actually remember how their Raw match ended and I liveblogged the thing. I dunno, and I’m not looking it up. Babyfaces win on PPV? Pick: Dominik & Rey Mysterio

Cain A. Knight: Murphy should be here to take the pin, but WWE sure loves to humiliate and torment Rey Mysterio, so it’s not a sure thing. Pick: Rey & Dominik Mysterio

Stella Cheeks: Are we still doing this? I guess Rey & Dominik win because they get bonus “we’re related” points. What is the end game in this feud? Is this purgatory??? Pick: Rey & Dominik Mysterio

Matt Riddle vs. Baron Corbin

Geno Mrosko: Holy wow, I don’t care at all. Pick: Matt Riddle

Sean Rueter: If you really think this guy is gonna be big for you, you can’t have him lose his PPV debut to the upper card gatekeeper, can you? Don’t answer that. Pick: Matt Riddle

Kyle Decker: They like Riddle. But they always like Corbin more. Pick: Baron Corbin

Rev. Claire Elizabeth: WWE loves two things above all— giving mediocre heels wins they don’t need, and denying would-be rising babyfaces the key wins they need to move up the card. Pick: King Baron Corbin

Cain A. Knight: Shorty G would be better off joining RETRIBUTION than sticking around as the incompetent buffoon trying to collect a king’s ransom. Maybe a new heel shows up to help Corbin win and then collect the ransom, which I assume is a giant vat of dog food. Pick: King Corbin

Stella Cheeks: I hope Retribution shows up and fake chainsaws both these fools. Regardless, I suspect this is the beginning of one of those endless Baron Corbin feuds. This is just the beginning. Pick: No one due to disqualification

That’s how we see the card playing out.


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