WWE’s annual pay-per-view event Clash of Champions, where every title across the Raw and SmackDown brands must be defended, goes down this Sunday from the ThunderDome inside Orlando’s Amway Center. Nine championship matches in total will take place as part of this year’s stacked card.
The WWE championship will be defended when Drew McIntyre puts the title up against Randy Orton in an ambulance match. This headliner came about after both men sent the other to the hospital on the heels of McIntyre defeating Orton at SummerSlam. In the other world title match on the card, the universal championship will be on the line as Roman Reigns faces cousin Jey Uso.
On the women’s side, Bayley will defend the SmackDown title against Nikki Cross, who had also challenged for the title at Extreme Rules over the summer. Meanwhile, Raw women’s champion Asuka will battle Zelina Vega on the kickoff show.
Clash of Champions will begin at 7 p.m. ET with the show expected to last approximately three hours, not counting the kickoff show, which starts one hour prior to the main card at 6 p.m. CBS Sports will be with you the entire way on Sunday with live results, highlights and analysis.
Let’s take a closer look at who our CBS Sports experts predict will come out on top at WWE Clash of Champions.
2020 WWE Clash of Champions predictions
Raw Women’s Championship: Asuka (c) vs. Zelina Vega (Kickoff Show)
Look, there’s just no way Asuka drops the title to Vega. WWE painted itself into a corner where every title needed to be defended on this PPV, and it needed an intermediate opponent for Asuka so it did not waste a bigger storyline on a short feud. Vega’s sudden decision to wrestle again and challenge for the title — not to mention this match being on the kickoff show — is further proof that there’s no reason to believe the title will change hands. Asuka will win handily — hopefully quickly — and move on to better things (though it is good to see Vega wrestling again). Pick: Asuka retains the title — Adam Silverstein (also Brent Brookhouse)
SmackDown Tag Team Championship: Shinsuke Nakamura & Cesaro (c) vs. Lucha House Party
The story with Lucha House Party seems focused on a breakup of the team, with Kalisto growing increasingly frustrated every time his squad doesn’t pick up a victory. A loss here spurs that story forward, and there hasn’t really been enough build to a potential title loss for Nakamura and Cesaro. All that said, the tag division is a mess right now, and it’s not out of the realm of possibility that the titles do change hands, even if that seems unlikely. Pick: Nakamura & Cesaro retain the titles — Brookhouse (also Silverstein)
Raw Tag Team Championship: The Street Profits (c) vs. Andrade & Angel Garza
Just as with SmackDown, Raw’s tag division is a mess. The Street Profits have had a long title run, holding the titles for more than 200 days. Still, they have five title defenses during that time, and Clash of Champions will only be the second time they’ve defended the belts since June. Andrade and Garza seemed to have broken up as a team, yet worked fine together in winning a triple threat to earn a title shot and their issues may have been more focused on allowing Vega to break off and do her own thing. If nothing else, a title change here would freshen things up in the stale division. Pick: Andrade & Angel Garza win the titles — Brookhouse (also Silverstein)
Women’s Tag Team Championship: Shayna Baszler & Nia Jax (c) vs. The Riott Squad
Unlike the Raw women’s title match, the Riott Squad are legitimate contenders for these straps. I could see a change here if the goal was simply to use Baszler & Jax as transitional champions — two wrestlers strong enough to beat Bayley & Sasha Banks but not good enough together to take down a real team. Ultimately, though, I feel like there’s more runway for Baszler & Jax together before their obvious and eventual split. Pick: Shayna Baszler & Nia Jax retain the titles — Silverstein (also Brookhouse)
United States Championship: Bobby Lashley (c) vs. Apollo Crews
It feels way too early to take the title off Lashley after he won it from Crews at Payback. In nearly a month since winning the belt, Lashley has yet to defend it. While Crews has been a consistent presence on Raw, Lashley and The Hurt Business are a true focal point right now. There’s no viable reason to have Crews go over in this match and every reason in the world to have Lashley remain champion. Pick: Bobby Lashley retains the title — Brookhouse (also Silverstein)
Intercontinental Championship: Jeff Hardy (c) vs. AJ Styles vs. Sami Zayn (Ladder Match)
This is a tough call because there are two good options here in Hardy and Zayn. Unfortunately, the title has been changing hands a lot recently with no one having longer than a two-month reign this year. While taking the title off Hardy may be a tough decision, it would vault him into universal championship contention. He would be a great foil for Roman Reigns. There are also a number of midcard faces to contend for the title, such as Matt Riddle and Big E. Only back a few weeks, Zayn is already back to his old self, not just on the mic but in the ring. His smug, condescending character winning this title without having to pin Hardy — maybe even lucking into it after Hardy and Styles take each other out — would be a fun moment, and he would do a great job with it. Pick: Sami Zayn wins the title — Silverstein (also Brookhouse)
SmackDown Women’s Championship: Bayley (c) vs. Nikki Cross
The decision to put Cross back in a title match after she failed to win the championship over the summer was odd, but really more a product of Bayley needing a stay-busy opponent as things continue to build toward the bigger program between Bayley and Sasha Banks. Cross isn’t winning the title here, though WWE did a good job of altering the story of her challenge to be that now she has a fair fight on her hands without having to worry about Banks at ringside. Pick: Bayley retains the title — Brookhouse (also Silverstein)
WWE Championship: Drew McIntyre (c) vs. Randy Orton (Ambulance Match)
It’s unfortunate that McIntyre’s coronation and entire reign have come during the pandemic without fans in attendance, but he’s nevertheless done a fantastic job as WWE champion. However, Orton is the hottest heel in the entire company right now, and he has nowhere further to go as the reemerged Legend Killer if he does not eventually take one of the two main titles. With this being an Ambulance Match, there is an easy out for McIntyre to lose without being pinned. And considering the go-home Raw ended with McIntyre attacking Retribution, I could see a scenario where they want … retribution. In a no-rules match like this, there are so many ways for McIntyre to lose the title without being hurt character-wise that it makes the most sense to do it now, even if he wins it back from Orton in a few months. Pick: Randy Orton wins the title — Silverstein (also Brookhouse)
Universal Championship: Roman Reigns (c) vs. Jey Uso
An unfortunate byproduct of a show where all titles have to be defended is that many of the matches have little drama in the outcome. The Reigns vs. Uso story is interesting, but Reigns isn’t dropping the title to his cousin. That is as close to a guarantee as you can get in a world title match. At least the ride to the finish should be a fun one. Pick: Roman Reigns retains the title — Brookhouse (also Silverstein)