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Countdown to No Way Out
By SLAM! Wrestling Staff




Souled Out returns for another year of PPV...oh wait, sorry, wrong nWo.

No Way Out is back with an intriguing card. It's hard to believe, but we're getting four title bouts here, plus a hot number one contender's match and a little grudge match.

On paper that sounds great. Can it deliver in the ring, though? Only one way to find out - tune in this Sunday.


 
MAIN EVENT: WORLD HEAVYWEIGHT TITLE MATCH

Kurt Angle vs. Undertaker
 


SLAM! Predictions

Bob Kapur

More than anything, the fact that they've had to book the top two faces on Smackdown against each other just highlights some of the poor booking choices the company has made lately. Angle is always solid, and will have a better WrestleMania match with either Rey or Randy than Taker could have, so he's my pick.

Chris Sokol

Well, considering Undertaker has his plate full with Mark Henry, expect a disqualification finish or something along those lines to absolutely destroy the ending to this match. Maybe after Wrestlemania, Henry can take a hike, as he does absolutely nothing as a face or a heel. Angle will steer clear from this and head towards 'Mania and 'Taker seeks to destroy WWE's strongman.

Jon Waldman

I don't think there's any question that Angle wins here. The only question is whether 'Taker will actually wrestle here. My feeling is yes. The match of the year winner for me a couple years ago was these two on Smackdown, and hey, Angle backed up my claim on 'Taker's DVD as it being a great match. I expect this one to hover around the six mark until outside interference causes a DQ.

Greg Oliver

Kurt Angle will retain the title, but how? I expect a decent match, with 'Taker actually trying instead of doing the regular stuff. He'll tap to the Ankle Lock.

Lewis Curry

Should be a great match but I also think there will be interference towards the finish. It has a chance to be up there with Benoit-Sullivan, Southern Boys-Midnights, Rey-Malenko, and Sting-Flair classics for great matches in Baltimore history. Angle will retain, no matter what. Henry interferes with Daivari. Angle-Rey III WM should be a classsic.


#1 CONTENDER'S MATCH

Rey Mysterio Jr. vs. Randy Orton


SLAM! Predictions

Bob Kapur

So many people have condemned the use of Eddie's name to advance this storyline, so no point in my saying anything about it either way. I've never bought Rey as a world title main-eventer, so I feel that Randy should get the win; but I think the company will bow down to the huge backlash they're getting and have Rey go over.

Chris Sokol

I am probably one of the only people who feels this way, but Rey Mysterio should in no way, shape, or form be in a Heavyweight title match. He is a talented wrestler, no doubt about that. He has a strong following, that's a given; but he just doesn't fit in the WrestleMania main event. Orton has this one in the bag, as he is on a tear once again and will provide another classic match with Kurt Angle at 'Mania.

Jon Waldman

Well, given Randy's comment about Eddie not being able to come back to life, I almost wish that WWE has thrown the biggest swerve ever and for Latino Heat not to have died but have gone into seclusion while this angle played itself out, a la the Sandman/Dreamer angle, then return here. Unfortunately, that's wishful thinking. Damn I miss Latino Heat. Instead, however, we'll get some lying, cheating and stealing courtesy of Chavito, getting Mysterio the win. Orton will then claim the W was unfair and will be inserted into the WM match for a three-way.

Greg Oliver

It's great to put heat on Orton and all as the bad guy, but at what expense? After all they've done over Eddie Guerrero, it would be insane to have Orton beat Mysterio. Rey Rey takes it.

Lewis Curry
This should be a very good to great match. Rey is the "ultimate underdog" in most cases but if and/or when Vickie and Chavo get involved, and they will, Rey will win. Then we will have three way for WM. Rey wins. 20-25 min should burn the place down.


UNITED STATES TITLE MATCH

Chris Benoit vs. Booker T


SLAM! Predictions

Bob Kapur

Was that whole deal where Orton acted as Booker's substitute in the best-of-seven series just done as a way to push Randy? Even if so, I think they could have done it without giving Booker the belt - they had to have known he would still be too injured to defend it. So why cool down Benoit's heat in the process? Stupid. Benoit wins.

Chris Sokol

Another easy prediction here, as Boogeyman has already started something with Booker T, and will look to perpetuate it by costing the Booker Man his shot at the United States Championship. On to the Boogeyman -- he is one of the best characters on the current WWE roster.

Jon Waldman

There's no way Benoit can win here. Ending a feud so close to 'Mania never happens. There will be some interefrence here, leading to a six-man for the U.S. Title at 'Mania, with the popular Money in the Bank stip added.

Greg Oliver

At the press conference for No Way Out, Booker said he was only 75% or so. He's being rushed back both in reality and in storyline, yet I see him escaping with the belt and therefore Benoit's win of the belt at WrestleMania will mean even more.

Lewis Curry

Should be pretty good if Booker is on his game. History coming in will say this will be a title change. Finlay should or will be involved in this match somehow. Winner is Benoit setting up for three way for WM for U.S. title. This should go 15-18 min.


 

UNDERCARD

 


SLAM! Predictions

Bob Kapur

Matt Hardy v.2/??? vs. MNM - Animal is the smart bet as Hardy's partner. MNM retain.
Cruiserweight Invitational -
Paul London is my favourite wrestler on Smackdown, so I have to go with him.
Lashley vs. JBL - The Lashley juggernaut rolls onward.

Chris Sokol

Matt Hardy v.2/??? vs. MNM - Hardy has to win a match eventually.
Cruiserweight Invitational -
Is Kid Kash in it? I'll take him.
Lashley vs. JBL -
The Next Big Lashley takes it here.

Jon Waldman

Matt Hardy v.2/??? vs. MNM - We all know that Animal is the partner here... at the start. Once he loses the bout though, Hardy will turn with a returning Jeff.
Cruiserweight Invitational -
Helms will likely win here. The question is this - is there a Cruiser lying in wait for the 'Mania match? I think so. Look out Helms, you're going to get Punk'd.
Lashley vs. JBL -
Winner here goes into the U.S. Title/Money in the Bank match. Winner is Lashley.

Greg Oliver

Matt Hardy v.2/??? vs. MNM - Could it be Jeff Hardy? Hardly. MNM win.
Cruiserweight Invitational -
Talk about a wasted belt and wasted talent. Kid Kash wins.
Lashley vs. JBL -
How many jobs will JBL do? One more on Sunday at least.

Lewis Curry

Matt Hardy v.2/??? vs. MNM - If things work out this could be Jeff Hardy's comeback. If not, I expect our friend the Boogeyman to show up and be Matt's partner. This could be an okay match. I can't wait for Melina's entrance. WOW! MNM retains.
Cruiserweight Invitational -
Helms will not retain. Kash takes his strap back.



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  • Pre-rder WWE No Way Out 2006 DVD

    -- compiled by Jon Waldman