5 Reasons I’m Excited About WWE in 2018

To say that parts of 2017 were a creative booking mess would be putting it lightly. WWE repeatedly backed themselves into corners they were unable to get out of with confusing angles, badly positioned superstars and not continuing storylines.
Despite this there were plenty of positives to come out of the year, and as we enter 2018 the path ahead looks very promising within the company, so here are 5 things that I’m personally excited for in WWE this year.

Balor Club

I’ve been calling for WWE to do something with Anderson & Gallows for months, and it’s been frustrating. You had two really cool, charismatic guys known for the ‘too sweet’ and they weren’t giving them anything to do.
They suddenly started calling their opponents ‘nerds’, which was fine, but that was only a sample of what they should be doing. Afterall, WWE owns the ‘too sweet’ trademark and instead of letting Anderson/Gallows make it their gimmick, they sat back as the talented Bullet Club made a name for themselves from it.
Now in 2018 Finn Balor had found his identity and has been injected with the life and charisma we all know he has.
As a group, these 3 bounce from each other and they just ooze personality, and it won’t be long before the trio are the most popular guys in the roster that people of all ages love to imitate.
To not capitalise on something like this would be foolish, and the possibilities of the three of them are endless, and I expect them to change to a cocky, arrogant trio that fans love to loathe.
Balor Club merchandise will be a hot seller, and Gallows & Anderson will be one of the hottest teams of the year which would also coincide with Finn himself getting back into the hunt for the Universal Title, a championship he in fact, never lost.

The Tag Team Division

Has tag team wrestling ever been at a higher standard as it is now? Sure you had the characters such as Too Cool and The Dudley Boyz back in the Attitude Era, but the tag teams you have in the company at the moment, the quality of wrestling is beyond anything we’ve seen in recent years.
WWE are finally starting to see that stability is key to tag teams, and where with many teams they’ve lost creativity and split them up, they’ve been able to keep teams like The Uso’s, The New Day and Sheamus & Cesaro together for quite some time.
Speaking of Jimmy & Jey Uso, they were possibly the best tag team of the year in 2017, their new attitudes were a breath of fresh air and much needed for the duo, who went on to establish themselves as again one of if not the best tag teams of the modern era.
We enter the year with not only the Samoan brothers in the tag division, but the incredibly athletic duo of Chad Gable & Shelton Benjamin, the powerhouse pairing of Harper & Rowen (have WWE finally found their way with The Bludgun Brother?), the entertaining Breezango and then of course on Raw the unlikely pairings of Rollins and Jordan as well as Dash & Dawson making The Revival.
We’re currently spoiled for talent and I hope to see many of the previously mentioned teams given an opportunity with the gold.

Carmella

What a last 6 months she’s had since winning the first ever Women’s Money In The Bank, improving week by week. Her unique character is an ideal fit for the women’s division, and especially Smackdown Live where she has appeared from the shadows to take centre stage on many occasion.

It’s only a matter of time before the ‘Princess of Staten Island’ pulls the trigger, or rather, cashes in, and activates her biggest achievement to date in becoming the WWE Women’s Champion, and well deserved at that.
A year ago not many people would have backed her to be in the position she’s currently in, and certainly not when she was originally drafted from NXT, which caught a lot of people off guard, but her hard work and perseverance has paid off and she is definitely one of the most exciting things about the WWE product today.
Eyebrows were raised at her pairing with James Ellsworth, which in fact ended up being something else she was able to take and run with, credit to both Ellsworth and Carmella.
She is a must watch for 2018, and even if her Money In The Bank cash in doesn’t go the way she wants, you’d be a fool to count her out of being a Women’s Champion by the end of the year.

The WWE Universal Title

Ok, this one is quite a sore subject for me, as I really can’t stand the fact it’s around so little. People say “oh but it’s more prestigious this way”, which I think is complete garbage as I just find the title irrelevant at the moment.
I sat there in the crowd at Wrestlemania 33 to witness Brock Lesnar defeat Goldberg for the title and I thought then, one person who hardly appears has lost to another guy who hardly appears.

Lesnar isn’t an attraction for me, seeing him doesn’t excite me, it just makes me resent the fact that he’s dismantled the Universal Title’s meaning. I mean, I really dislike Kevin Owens, but at least when he held the title it was defended, it appeared on the shows and the main event scene was interesting.
Now, unless you’re a ‘big guy’ you can’t really see anyone beating the part time ‘Beast’.
This is why Finn Balor has had to wait so long and see his character fade away somewhat, because Lesnar is champion. Had Rollins, Ambrose, Reigns, Joe or anyone else been the champion he would have been able to get back in the title hunt just like Seth himself did after his long term injury.

Rumour has it that Brock Lesnar will be dropping the title and taking time away from WWE after Wrestlemania (time away from time away?) so whoever his opponent is would be the strong favourite to become the new champion. Whoever that may be, we’ll see the Universal Title on a weekly basis, actual feuds involving the wrestlers themselves on the tv shows and that feeling of unpredictability will be back.
I like Lesnar, this isn’t an anti Brock thing, I just think when he holds any major title it hurts the WWE shows. Pay Per View events without a main event title match, thrown together matches to make up for the fact that he’s absent and superstars without any real purpose.
Hopefully this is all about to change.

The Shield

It’s safe to say, the return of Dean Ambrose, Seth Rollins & Roman Reigns as The Shield in the later part of 2017, was a bit of a disaster. Failure would be a harsh word, as because of reasons out of their control, Reigns was out with an illness at the worst time right before their big in ring return at the TLC pay per view, being oddly replaced by Kurt Angle. Now before they can gain any sort of momentum, Dean Ambrose has been struck down with an injury which could keep him out of action until after Wrestlemania 34.
Now this will give the creative a chance to reflect, take a step back and really plan something good for their return. I don’t want to see them throw 3 random guys together for them to beat, I don’t want to see against the odds wins for the sake of it, I would like cleverly built programmes with other superstars.
The obvious choice coming back, is for The Shield to face a heel stable of Finn Balor, Luke Gallows & Karl Anderson as Balor Club. The fans will get behind Roman once more if they see he’s being booked accordingly, as not as an overpowering tough guy. I’ve never had a problem with him myself, but as part of The Shield even the smarkiest of fans can’t help but cheer for him.
The oddness of Triple H teaming with Seth & Dean at house shows (especially since Triple H was the person that split them up in the first place and had just faced Rollins at Wrestlemania 33) as well as the strange pairing with Kurt Angle were obviously just desperate attempts to make up to the fans that The Shield return had to be delayed.
I did say in 2017 I wanted Seth Rollins to be a huge part of the Universal Title scene, but obviously with Brock Lesnar holding the belt, it’s unlikely that’ll happen any time soon. For now, we have Rollins teaming to form an unlikely duo with Jason Jordan, with the two winning the Raw Tag Team Titles at their first attempt, despite not being fully accepting of each other. The clear wedge of Jordan between Rollins & Reigns will surely end up boiling over with either Jordan turning on Rollins or Ambrose himself returning to reclaim his place in the group.
I’m excited to see what 2018 holds for the trio once they reform, and how far WWE are willing to let them go, with their popularity still incredibly high despite their 3 year hiatus.
I think a previously mentioned feud with Balor Club would be able to headline events for months, and leave fans full of praise and wanting more from the teams, but you could also have each take turns in having shots at single titles, with Reigns the current Intercontinental Champion.
I just hope the creative team leave it a while before pulling the trigger on a Dean Ambrose heel turn which I think was one of the big reasons they reunited them in the first place.