In just one more day, the WWE Universe will be witnessing SmackDown Live's final brand-exclusive pay-per-view of the year, Clash of Champions. As is the tradition with this PPV, all of the blue brand's titles will be on the line on Sunday night at the TD Garden in Boston. But as you've probably noticed, most of the attention appears to be on a non-title, tag team match pitting four of SmackDown's biggest stars against each other. Kevin Owens and Sami Zayn fight for their jobs against Randy Orton and Shinsuke Nakamura, with both SmackDown Commissioner Shane McMahon and GM Daniel Bryan as special guest referees.
With that in mind, many of the rumors in this list will focus on the people involved in this one main event match. But keep in mind that these are just rumors, speculation, and/or potential match outcomes, and that nothing remains confirmed in the lead-up to Clash of Champions.
5. Dolph Ziggler Leaving WWE Soon
By now, the writing should be on the wall for the WWE Universe – there's a good chance Dolph Ziggler's days in the WWE are numbered. His late inclusion in the United States Championship match featuring Baron Corbin and Bobby Roode likely does not point to the Show-off winning the title. Instead, it looks like Ziggler will be there as the "fall guy" for whomever is booked to win the U.S. Championship at Clash of Champions.
In a recent appearance on Edge and Christian's Pod of Awesomeness, Ziggler hinted at having limited time to make a decision on his future in the WWE. This could suggest he may soon choose not to re-sign with the company, and point to a series of jobs as he prepares to leave the WWE after over a decade of loyal service.
4. Jinder Mahal As Two-Time WWE Champion
Up to now, this is something that a lot of WWE fans are fearing. Even with the recent signs of turmoil between Jinder Mahal and his loyal lackeys The Singh Brothers, even with his loss to Triple H in front of his "home crowd" at an Indian house show; many people are concerned that the Modern-Day Maharaja may be due for a second WWE Championship reign. As if those six months with him as champ weren't enough.
To be fair, the last time there was serious buzz about Mahal becoming a two-time WWE Champion was in October, when he was advertised for an Indian WWE Live show as such. That house show has come and gone, and most prognosticators have AJ Styles retaining against Mahal at Clash of Champions, but the lingering fear remains among many a fan.
3. Heel Turn Out Of Nowhere?
Now this one may be a bit of a longshot, and it may be more fantasy booking than actual rumor. But think of it this way – many believe Shane McMahon is due for a heel turn, others think that Daniel Bryan seemingly siding with Kevin Owens and Sami Zayn could have him turning heel to ensure that they keep their jobs. But could Randy Orton be the one turning on Shinsuke Nakamura, thereby setting Owens and Zayn up for victory?
According to Bleacher Report, this would be the best way for Orton to finally return to his forte and start working as a bad guy once again, while also setting up an Orton vs. Nakamura feud that could do both men, especially Nakamura, some much-needed favors. Again, it's a longshot, but one thing's almost sure – somebody's turning heel before Clash of Champions' main event is over and done with.
2. Daniel Bryan To Make In-Ring Comeback?
It’s something that seems to be quite obvious to anyone who’s been paying attention to SmackDown Live in recent weeks – there’s a lot of tension building between Shane McMahon and Daniel Bryan, particularly over their handling of the Kevin Owens and Sami Zayn situation. But what makes things interesting is the rumor that this may lead to Bryan making the in-ring comeback the WWE Universe has long wanted to see, with Shane as his opponent.
Still, you might not want to get your hopes up too high. According to Cageside Seats, the feud will likely push forward even if Bryan doesn’t get cleared to wrestle, which means he could have someone wrestle in his place. Whether this is Owens, Zayn, Nakamura, or someone else we don't know, but it's best to keep those expectations reasonable for the meantime.
1. Clash Of Champions Main Event May Have Been Spoiled
WWE might have accidentally spilled the beans on the results of Clash of Champions’ main event – Kevin Owens and Sami Zayn vs. Randy Orton and Shinsuke Nakamura. They revealed the roster for the upcoming Facebook tournament, the Mixed Match Challenge, with Zayn’s name included in the SmackDown lineup. That could mean he and Owens will be going over, based on the stipulation that both men will be fired from the WWE if they lose to Orton and Nakamura.
Of course, there’s a chance KO and Zayn may lose the match and their jobsut . But since when has WWE been good in making sure that wrestlers who are fired in storyline, remain fired for an extended period of time?