Hello again wrestling fans, and welcome again to the Wrestling Roundtable, this the final Roundtable of 2016. This week on the Roundtable, we talk about the greatest moments of 2016, the not so greatest moments, and what to expect in 2017. What are your bold predictions for 2017. Plus a little bit of current events to cap off the year. All this and much more.
1.AJ Styles- If there was a vote for the power rankings, this would easily be unanimous. What a year for the Phenominal one. Closes the year with a successful title defense on Smackdown against Dolph Ziggler, and Baron Corbin. Up next: John Cena at the Royal Rumble.
2.Roman Reigns- The US Champion now holds a pinfall victory over the Universal Champion, Kevin Owens. Can he do that again at the Royal Rumble to become a 4 time champ?
3.Braun Strowman- Can anyone stop Braun Strowman. He made Seth Rollins look like a rag doll during their match on Raw. What will he do to Sami Zayn in a last man standing match? I don’t like Zayn’s chances.
4.American Alpha- The new Smackdown LIVE tag team champions make their first appearance on the Power Rankings after defeating three other teams to capture the championship on Smackdown.
5.Baron Corbin- Corbin had such a great outing against Styles and Ziggler, mixed with a bad week for Kevin Owens, he slides in over the Universal Champion. Corbin is coming into 2017 on a high note.
1983- The Iron Sheik defeated Bob Backlund to capture the WWF Championship. It would be the Sheik’s first and only World title.
1993- Ric Flair defeated Vader for the WCW World Championship giving him his tenth championship. Flair had his career on the line against Vader’s title.
1999- Mankind wins his first ever WWE Championship, when he defeated The Rock on Raw.
What was your favorite and least favorite moment of 2016?
Steve: If I can speak freely, and I can because that’s what Im not paid to do. I don’t really have a favorite moment for 2016. This was a really down year for the WWE, not alot happened. The fans seemed to disappear, and the writing was just awful for the most part. I guess if I had to pick one, it would have to be the Sasha Banks vs Charlotte series of matches. Honestly, probably the only highlight of the year. My least favorite moment is easily the brand split. I was not a fan of it then, and after 5 months of it, I am not a fan of it now. Too many events, and too many lame storylines. They need to go back to one brand, with two shows.
Tyler: Favorite moment: NXT coming into its own, from just the developmental territory to legitimately the third main brand of the company, often times overshadowing RAW and Smackdown both
Which wrestler made leaps and bounds for his/her career in 2016?
Steve: Honestly, I have to say Charlotte. She started the year as the Divas Champion, and at Wrestlemania won the first ever WWE Womens World Championship by defeating Becky Lynch and Sasha Banks. She currently is undefeated in championship matches in Pay per view events throughout 2016, and has become a mainstay for the womens division. She has the attitude, as a great heel, and really is starting to come into her own. I don’t look at Charlotte as Ric Flair’s daughter anymore. She is already a 4 time womens champion in her short career. I think she has established herself as the best, and set herself a part from the competition.
Tyler: Jay Lethal. He became the first wrestler to hold both the ROH TV and World titles at the same time, and actually defended both as well.
Todd: James Ellsworth of course. He is 3-1 against A.J. Styles.
Chad: My pick is for the tag team of American Alpha; started the year as just another random pairing on NXT and won the NXT belts at Takeover: Dallas to becoming the SD Live Tag Champs!
Which wrestlers career took a decline over 2016, and can they rebound in 2017?
Steve: From no fault if his, I think John Cena takes the cake for having a down year, he rarely won a match all year, and lost three times to AJ Styles. He even lost cleanly on LIVE TV on an episode of Smackdown, losing clean to Dean Ambrose. That almost never happens to Cena, losing clean. Cena is approaching 40, and has other things outside of wrestling that is keeping him from in ring competition. Still, his wrestling career did take a decline in 2016.
Tyler: Bayley. She came from having matches of the year in NXT to doing arm wrestling on RAW, but with her upcoming program with Charlotte, she should come back nicely.
Todd: James Ellsworth but I think he will rebound and become the WWE Championin 2017.
Chad: I’d say John Cena but the fact he has a movie coming out in March is apparently qualification enough to be #1 Contender for the Title at the Royal Rumble. If that is the only grounds you need for a shot at the title Scarlett Johansson has a title coming out right before Wrestlemania where is her Women’s title shot? Which means he will rebound in 2017.
What are your bold predictions for 2017 for the WWE?
Steve: We just talked about one of them in the prior question. I think John Cena makes a final comeback and will finally win the WWE title for the 16th time. Whether that is at the Royal Rumble, or to give him one last Wrestlemania moment and win the title at Mania. Cena will be the champ one more time.
I also think that we will see the fall of TNA (and for real this time) Guys like the Hardy Boyz and Ethan Carter III will return to the WWE and make a name for themselves one more time on the big stage.
The WWE will eventually understand that the brand split stinks, and begin to unify titles once again to decombine the two shows.
Tyler: Barring a miracle (or Vince retiring) more of the same
Todd: John Cena will win his 16th title at the Royal Rumble to set up a title match against the Undertaker at Wrestlemania. NXT will go live on the WWE Network. Cruiserweights will be removed from Raw because that has been a complete failure and now with having their own show on the Network they will still have their chance to shine. TNA will go out of business. After Undertaker defeats John Cena at Wrestlemania to become the WWE Champion James Ellsworth will Challenge the Undertaker at the next PPV and defeat him to become the new WWE Champion.
Chad: John Cena will get another reign in time for Wrestlemania because he has a movie coming out in March; not because he deserves it or anything like that. Seriously FInn Balor; will come back and dominate Raw as the Universal Champion
The last two shows of 2016, Raw and Smackdown: Were they great shows to end the year?
Steve: Smackdown was great, you saw the return of John Cena, and also three amazing championship matches. The wrestling as far as the matches go were all very good. I actually watched Raw, Smackdown, and 405 LIVE all the way through without fast forwarding. This was the the first time Ive done this in awhile. Raw was not too bad. I thought the Reigns vs Owens match was a great match, but still I thought there was too much talking. They really hit a nerve with Charlotte vs Bayley. Could have been a show stealer, but instead you had to put Dana Brooke in the mix, and that ruined it for me. Overall, I was satisfied with both shows, but Smackdown is going into 2017 on top if you ask me.
Todd: Who cares. They have both been awful for the last year especially since the brand split. James Ellsworth was the bright spot of the WWE this year.
Chad: Good not great.
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