The Brand Extension Draft has come and gone as battle lines were drawn between Monday Night Raw and SmackDown Live. And what better event to help usher in this new company experiment than WWE Battleground?
This Sunday in Washington, D.C., Superstars from Raw and SmackDown will look to prove their worth to each of their respective brands from a town that could not be more fitting for a battle between Red and Blue.
The biggest question heading into Battleground pertains to the WWE Championship and which brand will hold the belt high at night's end? Dean Ambrose (SmackDown) will defend the strap against Seth Rollins and Roman Reigns (both from Raw).
This Triple Threat match between the three former members of The Shield proves that WWE made the right choice when placing the trio together and having them run through the roster. Seth Rollins, Dean Ambrose, and Roman Reigns have arrived in a big way.
As we prepare for the first post-Draft event of the New Era, we provide you with 10 bold predictions for WWE Battleground:
10. Kevin Owens and Sami Zayn Will Steal the Show
Is this really a prediction or more of a guarantee? While Battleground card is full of potential, there is no doubting which match will steal the show. That match being the "final battle" between Kevin Owens and Sami Zayn.
In all honesty, fans could watch Kevin Owens and Sami Zayn wrestle on every episode of Monday Night Raw and every Pay-Per-View event for the remainder of the year and never grow tired of the pairing.
While the general feeling had Kevin Owens and Sami Zayn going their separate ways in the Draft, both were selected as members of Raw. Therefore, this feud could be revisited somewhere down the line.
9. United States Championship Will Head to SmackDown
With Rusev being drafted to Monday Night Raw, "The Bulgarian Brute" would bring along not only Lana but the WWE United States Championship as well. However, will the title remain with the Red Brand?
This Sunday, late-round selection for SmackDown Live, Zack Ryder will challenge Rusev for the United States Championship in an effort to once again hold a title in WWE and bring back some glory for the Blue Brand.
With the underdog feeling of SmackDown Live, it would make sense for Zack Ryder to capture the United States Championship and bring the title over to Shane McMahon's side of the company.
8. Intercontinental Championship Will Head to Raw
Prior to selecting The Miz on Tuesday night, Daniel Bryan make it clear to the crowd that Miz was not a choice he wanted to make but felt he needed to make as SmackDown Live was lacking gold at that point.
To simply lock up the Intercontinental Championship, Daniel Bryan would announce the selection of The Miz as well as his wife Maryse. Of course, that does not mean the title will remain with the brand.
If WWE are going to "Make Darren Young Great Again" then Young needs a big victory. And what better way than having Young defeat The Miz for the Intercontinental Championship and take the title over to Monday Night Raw?
7. Becky Lynch and Natalya Will Impress
It would have been ideal for Becky Lynch to remain with Charlotte and Sasha Banks on Monday Night Raw as the three women who helped kick-start the female shift in WWE have always worked well together.
However, Becky Lynch was the first woman drafted to SmackDown Live and with that comes a whole new responsibility. With the WWE Women's Championship on Raw, there will be more emphasis placed on the female talent of the Red Brand.
This leaves Becky Lynch in a position to help make the women of SmackDown matter. The best way to accomplish this? Great matches. This Sunday Lynch will face Natalya - a seasoned veteran and strong wrestler - and the duo are bound to impress.
6. Bray Wyatt Will Walk Away from His Family
During the Draft, The Wyatt Family were selected to different brands. Bray Wyatt and Erick Rowan will suit-up for Shane McMahon while Braun Strowman will head off on his own and work for Stephanie McMahon.
So what does this mean? Well, it looks at though The Wyatt Family as we know it will disassemble. There have been rumours in the past stating that WWE were looking to push Braun Strowman and this could be the time (hopefully not).
At Battleground, The Wyatt Family and The New Day will compete in a Six-Man Tag Team match where Bray Wyatt is likely to do what he does best; tweak the system. Chances are Wyatt walks away from Erick Rowan and Braun Strowman.
5. Nia Jax Will Team with Sasha Banks
This Sunday, Sasha Banks will step into the ring with the WWE Women's Champion, Charlotte and her protégé Dana Brooke in a Tag Team match. However, "The Boss" is currently without partner.
On Draft night Nia Jax was selected to Monday Night Raw as one of the NXT talents set to make their main roster debut. And what better place for Jax to debut than Battleground? The situation is right.
Nia Jax can debut as a face by teaming with Sasha Banks, but quickly flip over to heel by the end of match. Win or lose, Jax would have a reason to turn on Banks as she establishes herself in the Women's Championship scene.
4. The Club Will Implode
A.J. Styles is heading to SmackDown Live, the right place for "The Phenomenal One." However, many were shocked when Karl Anderson and Luke Gallows were selected to Monday Night Raw.
While there remains a possibility that A.J. Styles, Karl Anderson, and Luke Gallows will stay true to their Club, it doesn't make much sense considering they compete on separate brands for the immediate future.
When The Club challenges John Cena, Enzo Amore and Big Cass at Battleground, expect Cena, Amore, and Cass to come out on top while The Club implodes middle of the ring. However, this will not be the end of the Styles/Cena feud.
3. Paul Heyman Will Appear
This Sunday, Randy Orton - newly acquired member of SmackDown Live - will make his long awaited return to WWE as a guest on The Highlight Reel with Chris Jericho in preparation with his match against Brock Lesnar at SummerSlam.
While Chris Jericho can certainly get things over with the crowd, nobody can sell a match better than Paul Heyman. Which is why an appearance from Heyman will help elevate the return of Randy Orton as well as boost interest levels in the match.
Randy Orton will try his best to keep up with two of the best talkers in the business but "The Viper" will come off sounding like his usual monotonous self, but we expect that. Lay out Chris Jericho with an RKO to end the segment and the people will be happy.
2. Roman Reigns Will Win the WWE Championship ... On One Condition
Roman Reigns is already walking into Washington as a heel on Sunday. No matter how hard WWE will try to convince their fans otherwise, Reigns is going to receive a massive amount of heat while Seth Rollins (the actual heel) will receive praise.
Why not make the turn and why not do it now? Nobody wants to watch Roman Reigns capture the WWE Championship in clean fashion. The people have seen babyface Reigns with the gold and they did not approve.
However, if WWE should decide to turn Roman Reigns heel on Sunday and walk out as WWE Champion, then we have interest. This would work best by having Reigns claim the title in controversial fashion and then attack Dean Ambrose afterwards.
1. Seth Rollins Will Win the WWE Championship
Dean Ambrose looks good as WWE Champion but the first event post-Draft needs to make an immediate impact. The WWE Championship should change hands on Sunday and make its way over to Monday Night Raw.
Should the aforementioned Roman Reigns heel turn and championship victory not occur, then obviously Seth Rollins winning the title would be a great choice. Rollins was the first overall pick for a reason, now make it count.
This would also leave SmackDown Live without a top champion. Once again contributing to the underdog status of the brand. Meanwhile, Stephanie McMahon and Raw will boast their superiority.
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