To Be Determined – Hellish Night of Champions

In preparation for this Sunday’s Rasslin’ Roundtable, I was going over the card for the WWE Hell in a Cell, the newly named October pay per view event, and suddenly I wasn’t sure which PPV it actually is. Will it be Hell in a Cell or Night of Champions all over again?

7 of the 8 matches on the card are title matches. The only championships that will not be defended on Sunday are the ECW Championship and the Women’s Championship, which is currently on Smackdown, in case you’re like me and can’t remember which title belongs to which show on any given time. Not only that, the three advertised main events are all rematches from last month’s event, with the DX-Legacy match being a rematch from the last two events. When we take all of that into consideration, it’s pretty clear that Hell in a Cell combines two of WWE’s biggest problems – too many pay per views and too many titles.

With the addition of more PPV events, one would have assumed that more wrestlers would make it to the card on a more regular base. But the addition of more titles counterbalanced that opportunity and it seems like those who are not involved in championship (or DX) feuds can’t make it to Sunday nights. Take John Morrison for example. Since he moved to Smackdown, JR has been pimping him as the greatest young star of our generation, even comparing him to a young Shawn Michaels. Yet, even with all this (justified) praise WWE could not find a PPV slot for Morrison on five straight events. It did not matter that he was mixing it with main-eventers and delivering spectacular matches on TV on a weekly base. They couldn’t find a significant feud with him so he was left out.

But it’s not only PPV events. It’s hard to see good, interesting feuds these days that don’t involve championships (Again, DX excluded). On Smackdown there is only one such feud – Drew McIntyre vs. R-Truth. On Raw it’s even worse since those who are not involved in championship feuds or with DX are either comedy acts (Santino, Chavo) or horribly misused (Evan Bourne).

And then there is ECW. That brand has the talent and actually has a couple of good non-title feuds with Benjamin/Sheamus and Burchill/Goldust can’t even get its own title match on PPV on a regular basis, so how can that brand expect a non-title match on PPV?

Granted, Not all feuds deserve a PPV slot. If they put Chavo vs. Hornswoggle on PPV I’d probably want to kill myself. But WWE needs to be able to develop real feuds that do not involve titles. Not all PPV events can be filled with title matches since title feuds are often long and the card simply duplicate themselves. They already have on Night of Champions in July, that’s enough.