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I was gearing up to write a fairly long, detailed post this week about NXT and how Vince McMahon is ruining the universe, but I ended up not writing anything, as I had no motivation to do so. Alas. Maybe that will show up sometime in the next couple of weeks. But since it’s time for yet another WWE Pay-Per-View show, I must write a picks entry.

Thanks to some dunderheaded decision-making by WWE executives, we’ve received only two weeks between the last PPV and Hell in a Cell. As a result, there are only five announced matches on the card and virtually no build to any of these matches. This whole show just feels tossed together rather than slowly built up so that the fans actually have invested some emotion in the show. As such, we’re getting one, maybe two matches where the fans will actually care about the outcome. Maybe. Let’s get this over with.

Unified Divas Championship Match – Michelle McCool (c) vs. Natalya

Hmmm…doesn’t this seem familiar? Oh, yes, it’s the exact same match we had a little over two years ago to crown the inaugural Divas Champion. And since the Womens Championship has apparently been retired, never to be seen again, we’re stuck with the hilariously hideous butterfly belt, otherwise known as the Divas Championship. It isn’t as horrifying as the WWE Tag Team Championships, but it’s up there in terms of ugliness. Anyway, it feels like no one will ever derail LayCool, and that saddens me. Michelle McCool finally did something I approved of on Smackdown’s SyFy premiere when she kicked Hornswoggle right in the face, but besides that, she’s been nothing more than annoying over the past few years. With the seemingly inevitable break-up of the Hart Dynasty (why?), Natalya’s chances of ever making an impact on WWE programming are slim to nil, and slim just left the building. It’s a shame, as she’s probably the most talented in-ring woman Vince has in his company. I would much prefer Nattie to win the title just so we don’t have to endure any more of those torturous LayCool promos, backstage segments, and guest commentator spots. But that won’t happen, especially since there are two championship belts. Michelle McCool wins and retains the most pointless championship in the world.

United States Championship Triple Threat Submissions Count Anywhere Match – Bryan Danielson (c) vs. The Miz vs. John Morrison

Wow, didn’t this match feel completely thrown together at the last minute? (The answer you are looking for is yes) My favorite part of this feud is that Danielson is now using the Ride of the Valkyries as his new entrance theme. It is so completely epic that I instinctively fling my arms up in the air every time it plays. What makes it even more awesome is how much Michael Cole hates it, despite the fact that his broadcast colleague, Jerry Lawler, uses classical music as his entrance theme (Pictures at an Exhibition, to be exact). Hypocrisy, thy name is Cole. But I digress. This whole ugly mess feels like a vehicle to the reunification of Miz and Morrison as a tag team. Morrison’s been growing out his facial hair, which, in the WWE, means that he is evil or about to become evil. Morrison’s career has become stagnant, and Miz is somehow still being pushed despite a lack of in-ring talent. But together, they form a team that could rule the world. Maybe I’m just reading too much into this. Anyway, since it’s a submissions count anywhere, and the only one of the competitors in this match who even bothers to USE submissions is Danielson, I think it’s a pretty easy conclusion to come to that Bryan Danielson wins and retains his United States Championship. I’d love to see Danielson vs. Kaval to unify the US and Intercontinental Championships at some point in the future, but the way Kaval is being buried, I doubt that will ever happen.

John Cena vs. Wade Barrett in a Pile of Stipulations Match

If Cena wins, Nexus disbands. If Barrett wins, Cena must join Nexus. Didn’t we see a similar stipulation about two years prior in another company that took its name from a former WWE tag team? Oh, yes, of course, I remember now! TNA did this when Christian was forced to join the Main Event Mafia, but instead got his ass handed to him in order for him to leave the company and resign with WWE. And let’s not forget Rey Mysterio’s feud with the now-defunct Straight Edge Society. These kinds of matches only go one way: the person who would be forced to join an opposing faction if he loses ends up winning. Except for Christian, but that’s because he was leaving the company. Nexus has had a…decent run on Raw, but it’s time to send them packing back to FCW. Justin Gabriel has shown immense promise, so I’d keep him on the main roster, but the rest I’m merely “meh” about or less. Besides, would you bet against John Cena? I wouldn’t. Even though I feel as though his best years in the ring have already passed him by, I can’t bring myself to pick his opponent, whomever he may be. John Cena wins and send Heath Slater back to being the mascot for Wendy’s.

World Heavyweight Championship Hell in a Cell Match – Kane (c) vs. The Undertaker w/Paul Bearer

Bringing Paul Bearer back was probably the markiest moment I’ve had in the nearly five years since I returned to watching WWE in 2006. Sadly, he hasn’t received any mic time, so we haven’t gotten any awesome Bearer promos. But there was likely no way for Undertaker to return to his former glory given the storyline. This should be the main event, but probably won’t be for some reason. This has definitely been WWE’s best feud of the year, and it makes picking the winner that much more difficult. Which is actually a good sign that the feud is strong. I don’t believe this feud is over just yet, but I do think that with Paul Bearer in the fold and Taker seemingly back to 100%, we may see a title change. I’ll go ahead and pick The Undertaker to win and begin his eighth World Title reign. This will probably be the best match of the night, so I hope they don’t start the show with it like they did with Taker’s match last year. I hope this next match starts the show.

WWE Championship Hell in a Cell Match – Randy Orton (c) vs. Sheamus

I was watching Deal or No Deal yesterday (because I have no life), and they had Rick Achberger, better known as The Sign Guy, competing for money, and Randy Orton was one of the surprise guest stars during the show (the others were Edge, John Cena, and Bobby Lashley). The show was from 2007, before Wrestlemania, and what surprised me most is how sane Orton looked. Yes, the entire point of those last few sentences was to mention how awful Randy Orton looks nowadays. He may have seemingly had a lack of scruples back then, but at least he looked like a normal guy. Now he just looks creepy. I still haven’t figured out why he’s so popular right now, but at least he’s a better champion than Sheamus. Hopefully this match will end the feud and (I pray) let somebody new and exciting into the main event. And I’m not talking about The Miz. I don’t particularly like Orton as champion, but for this match, I’ll pick Randy Orton to win and retain the WWE Championship.

So that’s Hell in a Cell. I’d expect at least one extra match since five matches is not enough for a card on a PPV event. Unless they’re all really good matches, which I’m not really expecting. Check back in in a couple of days for Hell in a Cell results, and soon I’ll be writing a diatribe directed towards Vince McMahon. Until then, stay cool everyone!

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