With WWE’s WrestleMania 33 pay-per-view now under two months away, rumors and spoilers for what might go down in Orlando, Florida are picking up steam. The latest involves the situation with 2017 Royal Rumble match winner Randy Orton and the new WWE World Heavyweight Champion Bray Wyatt. With the remaining two Wyatt Family members still together, Orton revealed plans on Tuesday for WrestleMania that made fans scratch their heads. However, another recent development is pointing towards something big still happening on “the grandest stage of them all.” Could the latest WWE rumors prove true for an even bigger championship match than anticipated?
On next Tuesday, SmackDown Live will hold a special battle royal to determine who will face Bray Wyatt for the WWE World Heavyweight title at Mania. Potential spoilers may occur based on the recent wrestling rumor mill, so fans who want to be surprised probably want to hold off from reading any further. According to Cageside Seats, one would have to think that Luke Harper is a strong pick to win that battle royal. Based on the recent story with Bray basically kicking Harper out of the family, and the match involving Orton vs. Harper, one might piece together what’s on the way.
The Viper seems to have a plan in place for how and when he’ll make his big move. He had a feud that started with Wyatt months ago, but it never really went in his favor. After the continuous mind games from Bray, Orton eventually decided that if “you can’t beat em’, join em'” and sided with the Wyatts. From there, things seemed to go on an upward path as Orton helped them capture the tag team titles.
However, tensions continued to build between Bray’s top disciple, Harper, and his newest protege, Orton. That would cost them the tag titles in a match against American Alpha. Eventually, the two stars fought with Orton gaining the edge. He’d go on to win the Royal Rumble, but Harper hit Sister Abigail on Wyatt in the match, setting up more to come. Things continued as all three superstars were in action at the next SmackDown brand pay-per-view, Elimination Chamber.
Orton took care of business by putting down Harper with an RKO at the Elimination Chamber. Not much longer after that match, his “master” Bray Wyatt became the brand new WWE World Heavyweight Champion, defeating John Cena and then AJ Styles inside the chamber. The event closed with Wyatt looking towards the WrestleMania banner and Orton simply staring from the ramp towards the ring to leave fans wondering what was up.
— WWE (@WWE) February 15, 2017
Harper showed up once again on Tuesday’s SmackDown Live and attacked Bray ahead of his main event championship defense against AJ Styles and John Cena. Despite the beatdown, Bray still managed to survive Cena and Styles to retain his title. The close of the show saw Orton arrive out and inform his “master” that as the “servant” he will not face him for the title at WrestleMania 33. That shocked a lot of fans, although Orton is well known for shocking people out of nowhere with his vicious finisher, the RKO.
That has led to a special battle royal which will determine the new No. 1 contender for Bray’s title at WrestleMania. Even though there are no named participants yet, Harper seems the most likely superstar to win the battle royal on Tuesday’s SmackDown Live, which would lead to Harper taking on Bray at WrestleMania 33. Orton will then set his plan in motion, claiming he’ll also enter the WrestleMania match to help his “master” make sure the title stays where it should be.
As of this report, the Paddy Power sportsbook lists WWE betting odds with Orton as the overall favorite at 3 to 10 odds to have the World Heavyweight Championship when Mania ends. Bray Wyatt is a 13 to 8 favorite, while Luke Harper is third with odds of 6 to 1. Other superstars on the list include John Cena, AJ Styles, and The Miz, but they all seem destined for different matches on the WrestleMania card.
The triple threat match for the World Heavyweight title seems like a smart bet based on all of the above. The motives are certainly there, and this could help give Harper more of a push with the fans as the story progresses on SmackDown in the coming weeks. Meanwhile, Randy Orton’s master plan all along has probably been to strike against Bray when he’s least expecting it. The saying, “Keep your friends close but your enemies closer” is most likely the mantra Orton has been operating by this entire time as he looks towards another big WrestleMania moment.
[Featured Image by WWE]