Something big is going to go down with The Judgement Day at WWE Payback and there’s no telling where lines will be drawn.
WWE Payback 2023 is on the horizon, kicking off in a few hours. One of the main storylines heading into the PPV is the continued strife within The Judgement Day. Damian Priest and Finn Balor can’t seem to come to terms with who is the driving force of the group. Rhea Ripley demanded that they come out of the show with titles, and there’s a good chance that will happen – with or without the tag team titles.
Balor and Priest are challenging Sami Zayn and Kevin Owens for the Undisputed WWE Tag Team Titles. Zayn and Owens’s storyline continues, even as some feign that they’ve lost momentum since WWE WrestleMania. As the division continues to build itself out, this is the focus for the group. How is this going to go down at Payback?
Expect Priest and Balor to lose to Zayn and Owens. JD McDonagh is going to get involved, but his presence will cost Balor and Priest the chance to win. The moment that Ripley demanded would have passed, but what if Priest cashes in on Rollins later in the evening? The goal is to leave the PPV with a championship, but she never said which.
Remember, the angle between Shinsuke Nakamura and Seth Rollins is built around the idea that Rollins has an injured back. Nakamura is going to spend most of the match focused on that body part, but expectations are low for him to pick up the W. As Rollins is doing the typical struggle back to his feet, Priest’s music will hit, and down to the ring he will come. But what could happen after that creates an interesting space.
Priest could very well walk out of Payback as the WWE World Heavyweight Champion. He’s been well-booked and protected in a sense during his run on the main roster. This is Triple H’s first booking with the Money in the Bank briefcase and few expect him to mess things up with a failed cash-in. Seeing Priest get established as a main-event attraction would be a huge deal, as he’d be one of the few fresh faces built up to that level in a long time. Seeing him be the man to take the title off Rollins and continue to establish it as a worthy championship is a story many would want to see.
But what if McDonaugh and Balor were to cost him his cash-in? It’s clear that this angle is going to end with Balor and McDonaugh on the same side but will that be in or out of The Judgement Day? Is Priest the one that is going to be sent packing sooner, rather than later? That could happen either with or without the championship. That faction is being pushed as a focal point for WWE television, while all things Bloodline remain top billing on SmackDown.
Those branching paths are part of what makes this angle so interesting and something to watch. Expect a major turn to happen at Payback and there are several ways it could go down.