The Fantasy Book on Fantasy Feuds (Balor Versus Styles and Beyond)

Good day, sunshine. You may (or may not) have noticed there was no Fantasy Book column last week. The reason for this is quite simple – I didn’t write one. Oh, I planned on writing one but the WWE stole my thunder. How so? Well, my idea for last week’s Fantasy Book was to examine what might be some of the most intriguing potential feuds still out there. Not dream matches necessarily, but dream storylines between characters.

And then Bray Wyatt got sick. And they threw AJ Styles into a match with Finn Balor. And so help me, that was the exact example I was going to use for my column! I was mad they just threw away that match on a sub-par PPV with no build and no time dedicated to creating something epic.

Now, a week later, I have decided to write the column anyway. So, here is my take on how the WWE should have created an AJ Styles/Finn Balor storyline.

We would start out with acknowledging that the Bullet Club is a thing that exists. Instead of hinting at it and talking about it without naming it, the announcers would be allowed to speak its name. And the WWE shouldn’t be worried about people going to look elsewhere and not watching their programming because it could be done in a way to make it look like the WWE is where the leaders of the Bullet Club want to be.

Finn Balor could start talking on Raw about how the Balor Club is an extension of the Bullet Club. He could say that he created the Bullet Club and found a calling in leading them. Now he wishes to lead the Balor Club, and he will lead by example. He could even start showing some heelish tendencies, acting a bit more megamaniacal than we’ve seen before. He’d almost have a CM Punk-ish cult leader feel develop to his character.

More importantly though, Balor would stop ignoring Karl Anderson and Luke Gallows. Anderson and Gallows would start hanging out with Balor, coming to the ring with him for his matches, interfering on his behalf, etc. The immediate rub would be followed by Anderson and Gallows regaining some of their tough guy personae.

The Balor Club would gain strength on Raw with Anderson and Gallows possibly winning the tag titles and Finn winning the Intercontinental title.

Meanwhile, over on Smackdown Live, AJ Styles would begin to comment on Finn Balor and what he is doing over on Raw. He could even call Anderson and Gallows traitors, that they hung out with him a lot longer than they did with Balor. He will talk about how even though Balor started the Bullet Club, they didn’t become the worldwide superstars they were until they had a phenomenal leader, namely himself.

Styles would continue to talk about how Balor was good, but he wasn’t phenomenal. Styles would taunt Balor on the mic and on social media for several weeks. In fact, the two men would continue to needle each other through promos, interviews, tweets, etc. Eventually, Styles would make a challenge to Balor for Survivor Series. Balor would accept and we would have a match scheduled between the two former Bullet Club leaders.

At Survivor Series, Balor and Styles would put on an excellent match. Styles faced distractions several times by Anderson and Gallows, but was able to hang on. After a half hour or so match, Styles would counter a Coup De Grace into a Calf Crusher. Before Balor could tap out, Anderson and Gallows would rush the ring and attack Styles. Styles would win via disqualification, but the beatdown would continue.

Before Anderson and Gallows could hit the Magic Killer, the Guerillas of Destiny would come charging out of the back. Tama Tonga and Tanga Loa would hit the ring and chase off the three Balor Club members. Styles would grab a mic and announce he brought his own backup in the form of the G.O.D.

Both groups would continue verbal and physical attacks on each others’ shows for several weeks after. During that time, the G.O.D. could win the Smackdown tag titles and Styles could regain the US title. Now, towards the end of the year, Balor would challenge Styles to a match at the Royal Rumble. This time it would be Balor, Anderson, and Gallows versus Styles, Tonga, and Loa.

At the Rumble, this 6 man match would be crazy and exciting and fast. Just as it looked like the Balor Club might get a victory, Adam Cole would come through the crowd and attack both teams. With him would be two men in masks who did not look like reDRagon. Cole and these masked men would start superkicking everyone in sight, even yelling that it was a party. Then, to the shock of almost everyone in the arena, Cole would pull off his partners masks to reveal Matt and Nick Jackson, the Young Bucks.

Cole will then present a special edition of Story Time. He will remind Balor and Styles that they are not the only two who have led Bullet Club. Cole will point out his leadership stateside of the Bullet Club. He would say that just because he was in NXT to not count him out or short-shrift him. And these guys (pointing at the Bucks), like having fun, so he invited them to a superkick party.

This would then become a 3-brand feud. Attacks could come on any of the main shows or on NXT shows. It could be one group attack or two groups attack. The possibilities are very large.

If there is another PPV between the Royal Rumble and WrestleMania like there normally is, they could have a specialty 9-man, 3-team match between Finn Balor, Karl Anderson, and Luke Gallows versus AJ Styles, Tama Tonga, and Tanga Loa versus Adam Cole, Matt Jackson, and Nick Jackson.

After a grueling match which ends with the Young Bucks hitting an IndyDriver on AJ Styles for the pin, we would see Cody Rhodes appear at the top of the ramp, slow clapping. Cody would signal backstage to someone to come on out. Joining him on stage would be Adam Page and Marty Scurll.

As everyone in the ring, in various states of exhaustion, look up the ramp, Kenny Omega, Bad Luck Fale, and Chase Owens attacks from through the crowd. It is easy pickings at that point. Omega grabs a microphone and announces that everyone else are FORMER members of Bullet Club, but the three standing in the ring are the CURRENT Bullet Club, and they are here in WWE.

We will be told in the coming weeks that Omega, Fale, and Owens have been signed by the WWE, but have not been assigned to a brand. We will also learn that Cody Rhodes, Page, and Scurll have not been signed, but are in negotiations with WWE (which can extend beyond WrestleMania). Omega, Fale, and Owens will show up on Raw, Smackdown, and NXT threatening everyone and laying out two challenges for WrestleMania.

At WrestleMania we will have two four-corner matches. The first will involve the tag teams: Anderson and Gallows versus G.O.D. versus Young Bucks versus Bad Luck Fale and Chase Owens. The second will involve the four men who have claimed leadership of Bullet Club over the years: Finn Balor versus AJ Styles versus Adam Cole versus Kenny Omega.

How is that for a WrestleMania moment?


Until next week…


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