WWE Hell in a Cell 2015
October 25, 2015
Staples Center
Los Angeles, CA
Watch for free: WWENetwork

Meet our Preview crew: 

  • Rob McCarron (@ShakeThemRopes): Co-host of Voices of Wrestling’s Shake Them Ropes podcast, a weekly show focusing on the world of WWE and American wrestling both past and present.
  • Sean Flynn (@spiffie6123): Voices of Wrestling’s Raw reviewer (currently on a few week hiatus)
  • Ru Gunn (@doctordala): Voices of Wrestling’s permanent and never hiatus-ing SmackDown reviewer.

Dolph Ziggler & Cesaro & Neville vs. Rusev & Sheamus & King Barrett

Rob McCarron: I’m only 90% confident that this match will actually happen, as Ziggler could easily be moved to the main card in a match with Breeze. However, Breeze playing a part in Team Ziggler’s loss also plays well to the future.

Prediction: Rusev & Sheamus & King Barrett

Sean Flynn: Could this match combine more talent with less direction or reason to care about anything that happens here? The most exciting thing here is to guess which person may be appearing again during the main show. Since Lana keeps posting photos of her and Rusev let’s say he ends up eating the pin and being laughed at by Vince.

Prediction: Dolph Ziggler& Cesaro & Neville

Ru Gunn: There’s a potential for this to be a really excellent, enjoyable bout; with Rusev and Ziggler shedding the shackles of the love-quadrilateral that’s haunted their interactions for months now. All the participants here have adequate-to-exceptional in-ring prowess in the right circumstances, so I’m hoping that they’ll appear more motivated than they have on SmackDown lately– am particularly anticipating Cesaro and Neville will deliver. Plotwise, the men are freewheeling, so perhaps an interference (Tyler Breeze?) will prompt a story development here.

Prediction: Dolph Ziggler & Cesaro & Neville

WWE Intercontinental Championship
Kevin Owens © vs. Ryback

Rob McCarron: Ryback is a guy that could shine, and succeed, with the removal of the upper card log jam in the absence of John Cena and Randy Orton. Will he get the chance, again, though? He could whether he wins or loses this match. With a babyface heavy theme on this show, in my prognostication, I think this is the best place for balance.

Prediction: Kevin Owens

Sean Flynn: I may have been gone briefly, but I did not give up my seat on the Ryback bandwagon. And Kevin Owens can make anyone look good. This match really needs to be 10 minutes of a kid smashing two action figures together, followed by Owens being cunning and winning. With Cena supposedly heading out for a while, I could think of worse ideas than letting the IC belt be the wrestling title on Raw for a couple months.

Prediction: Kevin Owens

Ru Gunn: While 5 matches on this card have combinations of wrestlers that previously fought at Night of Champions, two of the matches are just straight-up rematches, and this is one of them. As much as Owens seems to be trying to inject personality into this nothing-feud, it’s not massively clear why their last match didn’t resolve their beef (and halt Ryback’s claim to title shots), so it’s hard to keep interested. Not expecting anything massively different from their NoC showing here. Owens needs to be facing someone who brings out the best in him– a complex, flawed, babyface. Ryback needs to be back with Curtis Axel.

Prediction: Kevin Owens

WWE Divas Championship
Charlotte © vs. Nikki Bella

Rob McCarron: The best wrestler and performer in this match should win. She won’t, though. Nikki has been the most protected regular wrestler on this roster outside of John Cena, and Charlotte hasn’t exactly lit any fire under the division with her title win. Those factors combined make Nikki a realistic option. However, if the focus is continually forced on faction warfare over a battle for the Divas Championship, the result of this match just doesn’t make any difference.

Prediction: Charlotte

Sean Flynn: I’m hating myself for saying this, but at this point they’d be better off putting the title back on Nikki, resetting the division with people chasing her, stacking the bodies neatly in the cellar, leaving one at a time, and pretending the last few months never happened. Their only angle that would seemingly have any juice would be Sasha Banks going full bore after Nikki, so I say we begin that path.

Prediction: Nikki Bella

Ru Gunn: As I outlined after SmackDown this week, I’m completely stumped about what’s going on in the Divas’ division; who we’re supposed to be rooting for (passive-aggressive, mean Charlotte, or passive-aggressive, mean Nikki?); and whether the outcome matters at all. If Charlotte retains then do the Bellas just wither away into nothingness? I’m predicting this show will be heavy on feud-beginning interference so perhaps a third party causes a DQ.

Prediction: Charlotte

WWE Tag Team Championship
The New Day (c) vs. The Dudley Boyz

Rob McCarron: If the Dudley Boyz win, it’s the culmination to one of the most intriguing tag team storylines we’ve had in a long while. It also means they’re sticking around even further, and could usher in a crazy end of the year against the returning Usos, the New Day, Ascension, Lucha Dragons, or any new tag team potentially brought up from NXT. It could be wild. If the New Day wins, they continue to place at the top of the card on the heel side, and the Dudleys may be gone. What purpose do the Dudleys serve just sticking around and winning meaningly Raw tag matches outside of the title picture? I think a Dudleys win here, followed by a title rematch at TLC is the way I’d go.

Prediction: Dudley Boyz

Sean Flynn: If a Dudley Boyz title win is going to happen, it kind of has to happen at a show devoted to tables and other things, doesn’t it? It seems like such an obvious build I’d actually be a little surprised if they do it. But I’m going to be an optimist and say that WWE can be patient enough and let New Day keep doing their thing for another 6-7 weeks until they finally culminate at TLC with all the members of New Day going through tables.

Prediction: New Day

Ru Gunn: The Dudley Boyz have already overstayed their welcome, but have at least been fairly charming and inoffensive during their nostalgia-trip (and most importantly, have graced us with their appearance on SmackDown, which is more than most on this card bothered to do). Presuming Woods is 100%, the New Day have had a dark offensive edge lately. We need a clean finish here after the DQ at Night Of Champions but neither direction really makes sense. I’m leaning towards the rubber match being at TLC as well, but with the Dudleys going in as champs.

Prediction: Dudley Boyz

WWE United States Championship
John Cena © vs. TBD

Rob McCarron: The realistic options for John Cena’s opponent are limited to three, and four if we move the goalposts a bit. Dean Ambrose is most likely, especially with his original spot on the card no longer in place. However, WWE had to have an idea for Cena for this show weeks ago, right? If that was the case, Ambrose probably wasn’t it at the time. Does Orton’s absence force a change, or will WWE stick with whatever original plan they hopefully had? What could that original plan be? Realistic option #2 – Daniel Bryan? How about the third choice, Big Show? Out on a limb, you could potentially pick a return like Del Rio or Carlito, but I think Dean Ambrose makes the most sense.

Prediction: Dean Ambrose

Sean Flynn: Top 10 choices for John Cena’s opponent in no particular order: Dolph Ziggler, Rusev, Cesaro, Daniel Bryan, Kevin Owens, Tyler Breeze, Alberto Del Rio, Sid, Dean Ambrose, Samoa Joe. In the end I don’t think it will matter, and it might seem crazy but I believe in riding the winning horse until it drops. So I say

Prediction: John Cena

Ru Gunn: It’s got to be Joelle Reigns, right? Just kidding. I’m stumped here. The best case scenario is a thrilling NXT debut (I’m rooting for Chad Gable: how good would that match be? They’d both have matching tiny towels), but it could easily be someone harrowingly anticlimactic like Big Show or cannon-fodder Dean Ambrose like McCarron predicted. This feels like it could be important because if Cena is taking personal time for the foreseeable, he needs to drop the title here. How good would Chad Gable carrying the US belt til Christmas be? Answer: very good.

Prediction: Joelle Reigns

WWE World Heavyweight Championship
Seth Rollins © vs. Kane

Rob McCarron: Undoubtedly, you have to assume this will be the match of the night. I have little doubt Kane can turn back the clock to 2006 and put on a mat based clinic with the young WWE Champion. If Seth is motivated, and willing to be carried, this should be a classic. As much as we all want Kane to win, though, I don’t know if a Demon title win is the right story to tell going into 2016. Of course, it would bring back legitimacy to the WWE Championship if Kane could capture the title, but Kane having his Director of Operations job on the line here leads me to think there are other plans. I wouldn’t be shocked if WWE ends up putting this match on last, as any other bouts have the near impossible task of following it with any chance of success.

Prediction: Seth Rollins

Sean Flynn: Hey, it’s a World Championship match that is at best the fourth most hyped match of the night. The challenger wasn’t on the go home show of Raw, and the champion is busy hanging out with his old running buddies. I am pretty sure that the Demon Kane isn’t winning the title. So I’m saying that we get a few weeks going forward of other old Glenn Jacobs characters appearing. Monday night, Seth visits the dentist.

Prediction: Seth Rollins

Ru Gunn: The weight of this match has been indicated by the almost complete ignoring of any tension between the two men throughout the two go-home TV shows this week, with Seth instead getting involved in random other assortments of feuds. It’s clear that once again, the champion is playing second fiddle to the Undertaker, and this is probably his least interesting defence to date. What’s the best case scenario here? An amusing distraction? The return of J&J security?

Prediction: Seth Rollins

Hell in a Cell
Roman Reigns vs. Bray Wyatt

Rob McCarron: It’s a cage. It’s a cell. It is hell. Hell in a cell. Roman Reigns is trapping this pudgy, subculture superhero in his locker. This time, though, Roman will be in the locker with him to further the torment. Bray will need to bring back the hologram hijinx if he hopes to have any success against the former WrestleMania main eventer, Roman Reigns.

Prediction: Roman Reigns

Sean Flynn: This feud has been a long and winding road leading back to where it started and nobody gained anything from it. So the only hope now is for something truly wacky happening. I’m going to say that somehow Bray gets the advantage when a real live Sister Abigail appears. Hopefully it means Crazy Mary Dobson gets a full time job.

Prediction: Bray Wyatt

Ru Gunn: Fantasy booking: something outlandishly spooky happens here to credulous but beautiful father of the US champion, Roman Reigns; which leads to a Halloween stipulation blow-off on next week’s SmackDown, and then the feud ending decisively and never being mentioned again. Realistically, all members of the Wyatt clan get involved and Roman spears them all one by one and stands tall, looking Stronger Than Ever.

Prediction: Roman Reigns

Hell in a Cell
Undertaker vs. Brock Lesnar

Rob McCarron: While so many were concentrating on what match Brock may or may not have at WrestleMania 32, this main event was sneaking right up. With limited interaction this month leading up to the Cell match, Undertaker vs Brock 3 doesn’t have the special feel that the previous two matches did. Some could argue those two matches weren’t that anticipated to begin with, so imagine the situation we now find ourselves in. I think the result here could be super interesting, and I don’t exactly expect a win without any type of interference or wackiness for either man. Could Paul Heyman give up on Brock? Could Kane reform his partnership with Undertaker, potentially as WWE Champion? OMG what if Brock & Big Show vs Undertaker & Kane is our main event to sell out AT&T Stadium in Dallas come April? What a time to be alive!

Prediction: Undertaker

Sean Flynn: I’m kind of terrified of this match. Not because of quality concerns, though I think it’s not likely to be a very good match. Nor is it because I’m unhappy with the storyline, even though the way Lesnar seemed to be taking the heel spot on Monday is ludicrous and I can’t begin to fathom this line of thought. No, I’m worried that I’m going to watch a man be seriously harmed or die on live television. If the stories of how destroyed Taker has been after each of his last few matches is true, I have trouble seeing how he gets through this. Also, I have no clue how you book this and keep both of them strong for Mania. And oh God Big Show is going to get involved isn’t he?

Prediction: No Contest

Ru Gunn: Their last bout over-delivered, but I can’t help but think that thrice is pushing it. I don’t know the Undertaker any more: he’s a different man from the majestic, respected, Dead Man of the streak- so I find it hard to predict how he’s going to behave here. Reasonably, Lesnar should win, because anything else is ridiculous. Again I’m praying “be gentle”, which isn’t a fantastic way to feel about a main event.

Prediction: Brock Lesnar

Be sure to check out Voices of Wrestling after the event as our panel reviews the WWE Hell In A Cell PPV from top to bottom. You can watch the show for free by signing up to WWE Network. Sign up today and you also get WWE Breaking Ground free in your first month, as well! On Sunday night, after WWE Hell In A Cell, our Shake Them Ropes podcast goes live via YouTube. Watch and interact live with STR on Hell In A Cell, and subscribe to the channel for future live podcasts: STR Live Hell In A Cell Post Show on VOW YouTube

WWE Hell in a Cell 2015 Infographic (h/t Rukkus / @Rukkus) 


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