One of the biggest wrestling related stories of the weekend was the announcement that Dean Ambrose and Roman Reigns would be teaming with a mystery partner to take on the Wyatts (Bray, Harper, Stroganoff) at Night of Champions. On this weekend's NAIborhood podcast (available wherever NAIpod can be found), Doc Manson and I discussed it a bit, though I made the mistake of thinking the 6 man tag was at RAW, not NOC. My bad. Ryback would have made sense, but he won't be wrestling twice at Night of Champions.
People are still buzzing about the mystery so I thought that today, I'd lay out some of the likeliest, and of course, the unlikeliest options.
Rowan's been on the shelf for a while and is due back in November, though it wouldn't be at all surprising if he had recovered early. His role as "sheep" has been taken over by Braun, so it would make a lot of sense from a storyline perspective for Erick to join Dean and Roman at Night of Champions.
I don't think this is the answer, both because Rowan's likely still recovering and he's not really "big" enough for such a moment. As I mention this weekend, the next time we see Erick Rowan is either in NXT trying out a new gimmick (pair him with Solomon Crowe?) or on the "Future Endeavor" page on WWE.com.
I feel like I spent the entire weekend having to shoot down the "leaked" screenshot that everyone in the world seemed to buy into. If you're one of those people, go back and take a look at the whole image, including the text. Read it. It made NO sense, from a grammatical standpoint. Say what you will about WWE, but they usually proofread their writing for the website.
Still, this wouldn't be the worst option, I suppose. #TallAndTerrible isn't THAT bad.
Yes, yes he is. . . This isn't happening. . . I won't allow it.
Apparently there was seemingly the beginning of a Cesaro / Miz feud on Smackdown, but the Swiss Superman is currently not doing anything of note and is strong enough to be able to somewhat counteract the "Black Sheep".
This is the easiest option for WWE, and the one I think is most likely to happen. It cements Cesaro as a "periphery main event" babyface and its right in front of their noses. WWE enjoys lazy booking when it presents itself, and this is perfect.
We haven't seen Kane in a while, and everyone assumes when he makes his return it will be the masked Demon, not the corporate henchman.
This would be an odd place for him to come back - He would be ignoring Lesnar and Rollins completely and starting a feud for no rational reason, but when has logic and rational reasons ever stopped WWE?
Kane, in his mask, with a red and black Shield outfit? I'd watch it.
He was Bray Wyatt's first big feud and he's still somewhat active. Plus, he enjoys making "surprise returns" more than any other talent.
Jericho seems happy doing live events at random times, so I don't hold out a lot of hope for this one.
This is the pipe dream of fanboys and fangirls everywhere. Balor comes out in full Demon regalia and feuds with Bray.
Sounds nice, but WWE can't keep sending their NXT champions up to the main roster. Finn needs to stay in the developmental territory until they can build enough of a singles division around him. Sorry, friends.
A bunch of you just read that name and are saying "Who?", and that's exactly what happened when Braun Strowman made his appearance.
Miley is the other NXT big man that has yet to make a Full Sail appearance. He's the other guy in that picture at the top of this article, and really he's the one I want to focus on.
Just look at him. Not as tall as Braun, but certainly as powerful. His hands are bigger than Balor's head. He would make an instant impact just from a physical appearance standpoint and as long as he is even remotely capable in the ring, he'd be an excellent total surprise.
This is my dark horse. I'm hoping it's him.
We defined this scenario on the podcast as "Pie in Space" - Beyond pie in the sky, a total fantasy situation.
There isn't a lot of info on Bryan's health that I've been able to find, so its entirely possible (in a completely irrational way) to hope that he's healthy enough to wrestle and comes back IN FULL SHIELD GARB to take on his old foe Bray Wyatt.
Your ideal mystery partner is someone who can match up physically with Braun, OR the complete opposite of that - a David to Strowman's Goliath. Daniel Bryan would be that guy.
If Bryan is healthy, this is the perfect way to bring him back. The 6 man tag element allows him to ease in and not work too hard. Truthfully, Bryan's probably better off being in tag teams for the remainder of his career. If he has a career left.