WWE Survivor Series is on the horizon, and this week, the rumor mill went into overdrive as elite Superstars found themselves the subject of rumor and speculation.
Just hours before a SmackDown Women's Championship match against Natalya, the Queen found herself in the headlines.
Then there are Kevin Owens and Sami Zayn, who may have been at the forefront of wrestling news sites for the last week. A new report has shone some light on the circumstances surrounding their dismissal from the European tour.
Finally, Paige is back and ready to return to action, but could a poor bit of decision-making prove a setback before she sets foot inside a ring?
Charlotte's Championship Future
While it may appear on the surface as if the last-second championship match between Charlotte and SmackDown women's champion Natalya may be an excuse to put the title on the former, that may not be the case, as reported by Randall Ortman of Cageside Seats.
"Charlotte may not be winning the SmackDown women's championship from Natalya on this week's show because WWE could be planning to have her win it at Starrcade with her father in attendance."
Another late title change just to alter a Survivor Series card that has undergone many changes already would be a booking mistake. It makes the company look unprepared for the show rather than creating a sense of "anything can happen."
Charlotte winning the title at Starrcade, in front of her father and friends, would be a greater and more unforgettable moment than if she were to win it on SmackDown in a match that fans are likely to forget by the time Sunday rolls around.
With all of the recent publicity paid to Ric Flair, thanks to the ESPN 30 for 30: Nature Boy special, it would behoove WWE to capitalize on it and have that family moment help define the special live event.
More on Kevin Owens and Sami Zayn
Just under a week after Kevin Owens and Sami Zayn were sent home from WWE's tour of the United Kingdom, the Wrestling Observer Newsletter (h/t Cageside Seats) has news on what may have happened to necessitate their dismissal.
"The latest Wrestling Observer Newsletter reports the belief isn't that Owens and Zayn went into business for themselves but rather it was a misunderstanding that grew out of control."
This should quell any thoughts or speculation that Owens and Zayn are unhappy or that they could be on their way out of WWE.
The question becomes whether there is any bitterness on the part of the Superstars themselves for having the reported "misunderstanding" cost them money and the opportunity to finish the tour.
Paige Return Nixed?
Amid reports that Paige would return to WWE programming this week, like this one from Mike Johnson of PWInsider.com, there was considerable excitement to see the Anti-Diva back on TV.
That excitement was enhanced significantly when the former Divas champion posted a picture of herself with Survivor Series captain Alicia Fox on her Instagram account, seemingly hinting at her involvement at the pay-per-view.
PWInsider.com (h/t Cageside Seats) cannot confirm reports but suggests that photo may have been at the root of Paige's absence from the November 13 episode of Raw.
"Though PWInsider noted they couldn’t confirm it, there’s a lot of talk that officials were not happy with Paige posting a pic with Alicia Fox to her Instagram, and that might have influenced them to go with Bayley for Sunday."
If that is the case, it is disappointing that WWE Creative nixed the much-anticipated return of Paige for what was an innocent social media post. The report from Johnson had been out for days by that point, and most had suspected it. A photo with a friend like Fox does nothing to hurt creative plans or lessen the effect her return would have had.
Does Bayley belong on that team? Probably, but the surprise of Paige would have added fire to a match that is not as hot as it should be.
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