News Unpredictably short title reigns are sometimes a good thing

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When a WWE pay-per-view (PPV) event is on the horizon, the staff of Cageside Seats usually offers predictions for all of the advertised matches on the card. This data can be used to calculate a simple predictability rating for any event.

Six different staff members predicted the winners for the matches that took place on Oct. 25 at Hell in a Cell 2020. Staff members received credit for a correct prediction of the winner of any match, even if they were wrong about the context of that victory.

The Cageside Seats match preview articles for Hell in a Cell also offered polls allowing Cagesiders the chance to weigh in with their predictions.

The following chart contains the prediction results for these matches. The leftmost column includes the match list. Below each staff member’s name, the number “1” is a correct prediction and the number “0” is an incorrect prediction. Empty boxes indicate where no prediction data was available. The rightmost column contains the overall predictability rating for every match, and the very last row shows the overall accuracy of each individual staff member.

Even though Bobby Lashley vs. SLAPJACK was the greatest match in the history of our sport, it’s omitted here because it was not advertised in advance of the event. The pre-show match between R-Truth and Drew Gulak was also not advertised early enough to be included in the results.

The line for Otis’ match can be interpreted as follows: “3 out of 7 predictions for Otis vs. Miz were correct, which is a predictability rating of 42.9%.”


These numbers add up to 22 correct predictions and 13 incorrect predictions, which means the overall predictability rating for Hell in a Cell 2020 is 62.9%.

This decreases the overall predictability rating for 2020 WWE PPVs from 65.7% down to 65.5% (329 correct vs. 173 incorrect predictions). For comparison’s sake, the overall predictability ratings each year from from 2015 through 2019 were 63.4%, 61.1%, 61.6%, 58.7%, and 63.7%, respectively.

Now here are the voting percentages from the Cageside community polls for the winners of these matches:

  • 91%: Roman Reigns over Jey Uso
  • 60%: Elias over Jeff Hardy
  • 40%: The Miz over Otis
  • 69%: Sasha Banks over Bayley
  • 44%: Randy Orton over Drew McIntyre

This event ended in something of a surprise when Randy Orton defeated Drew McIntyre to win the WWE championship. There were rumors that the plan was for Orton to hold the title until he fights Edge next year at WrestleMania 37. Yet here we are three weeks later, and Drew has already reclaimed the gold from Randy.

So, why exactly did Orton win at Hell in a Cell if he was just going to drop it back to McIntyre a few weeks later? Maybe Vince McMahon changed course when he realized a Survivor Series main event between Orton and Roman Reigns was not an adequate attraction? Perhaps the Hell in a Cell booking was just a way to extend their feud with the goal of popping a Raw rating for Drew’s revenge? Maybe it’s because McIntyre’s title loss was a better way to lead him into adopting an entrance with a giant sword that causes eruptions of flame?

Not every title reigns needs to be a long one, and prior to Orton’s 22 day reign here, we haven’t had a short WWE championship reign in 3.5 years. Coincidentally, the last brief reign also belongs to Orton, when he only held the title for 49 days following his victory over Bray Wyatt in 2017 at WrestleMania 33. None of the six champions in between held the title for anything short of 145 days, per CageMatch’s database.

McIntyre’s title reign was getting a bit long in the tooth due to a lack of interesting opponents. The title loss here allowed him to add a giant sword to his entrance, start some trouble with Roman Reigns, and reignite a friendship with Sheamus. The outcome at Hell in a Cell was not the easiest result to see coming, but at the end of the day, I’d say everything worked out well.

The only other match on the card that caused prediction trouble was Otis losing the Money in the Bank briefcase against The Miz. This outcome created something close to a 50-50 split among the Cageside Staff as well as the community voters, so it wasn’t a major upset. But unlike wins for Roman Reigns and Sasha Banks, this story had multiple plausible paths to take, which made it harder to know which direction WWE was headed in.

The staff of Cageside Seats had a decent night with predicting the winners at Hell in a Cell 2020. How did you fare, Cagesiders?

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Shole

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I rather see a longer tho, I do prefer someone there for a long time and then an epic battle. But indeed sometimes a short title rein is enjoyable to watch, as it keeps you on your toes.
 

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