Mike Rebooks The Road to WWE WrestleMania XXXII – Part Four – Fastlane 2016
By Michael Fitzgerald on 31st May 2023
Happy Wednesday Everyone!
We’re continuing my current rebooking arc this week, as we go from Survivor Series 2015 all the way up to WrestleMania XXXII.
Last week we booked Royal Rumble 2016, and I’ll post the results after the break line for those who would like to be easily caught up to where we are in this six part arc. You can also read the full article in my archives should you wish to.
We left the Royal Rumble show with Dean Ambrose picking up the win in the Rumble match itself to earn a place in the Main Event of WrestleMania XXXII. Roman Reigns successfully defended his WWE Title on the show as well, but he ended up in a post-match face-off with The Undertaker, leading to the inevitable match between them being booked.
Charlotte Flair is still the WWE Women’s Champion, but she is getting increasingly more paranoid and desperate to hang onto it, as is Kevin Owens with his Intercontinental Title. I’m going to finally do something with Alberto Del Rio and the United States Title on this show as well, as I’ve been neglecting it since I began the arc and he’s yet to defend it on pay per view since I took over.
You can view the real card for the event by clicking below;
Results from WWE Royal Rumble 2016
Winners are in BOLD
Naomi and Tamina Vs Sasha Banks and NXT Women’s Champ Bayley
10 Minutes. Clean submission (Banks taps out Naomi)
WWE Women’s Title
Champ: Charlotte Flair Vs Becky Lynch
15 Minutes. Dirty pin (feet on the ropes)
WWE Tag Team Titles
Champs: The New Day (Big E and Kofi) w/ Xavier Woods Vs The League of Nations (Barrett and Del Rio) w/ Rusev
15 Minutes. Reversed small package (Kofi pins ADR)
Champ: Roman Reigns Vs Dolph Ziggler
15 Minutes. Clean pin
Royal Rumble Match
60 Minutes. Dean Ambrose wins, last eliminating Chris Jericho
Okay, now that I’ve reminded you of the results of the previous show, let’s move on to Fastlane 2016!
WWE United States Title
Champ: Alberto Del Rio Vs AJ Styles
I’ve neglected this belt since starting this arc, mainly because I’ve had Del Rio focusing on a feud against The New Day. Kofi Kingston pinned ADR back at the Royal Rumble and then AJ Styles threw ADR out of the Royal Rumble Match itself, so arguably both would have a claim to the belt. Seeing as Kofi pinned ADR at the Rumble, we’ll have the two match up together on television, with Del Rio picking up the win with an arm bar. Del Rio will refuse to release the hold following the match though, whilst his buddies prevent Xavier Woods and Big E from making the save. This will lead to AJ Styles running down to make the save and then laying down his own claim for the Title, setting up this match for Fastlane 2016.
The match itself will get a decent chunk of time and Styles will be given plenty of opportunity to showcase himself to WWE fans that might not be that familiar with him or his work. Del Rio will go to his usual MO of targeting the arm and working some holds, which will momentarily put Styles in a position where he might lose when his arm gives out on a Styles Clash attempt. However, Styles will fight through that and will eventually manage to successfully deliver the Phenomenal Forearm and pin Del Rio’s shoulders to the mat for a three count. Del Rio and his cronies in The League of Nations will try a beat down on Styles following the match, but The New Day will return the favour and help Styles out in order to set up an 8 Man Tag on the next big event.
Emma and Dana Brooke Vs Nattie Neidhart and Brie Bella
WWE was doing a storyline at the time where Total Divas stars like Neidhart and Bella were getting on the wrong side of some of the women who didn’t star on the show. An adaptation of this might have some legs as a secondary storyline in the women’s division, so we’ll tap into it here, with Emma and Dana Brooke jumping from NXT over to the main roster to complain about the focus being given to the likes of Bella, possibly leading to them forming some alliances with other Heels on the roster. Emma had probably done everything there was to do in NXT by this stage anyway, and though Brooke is green and possibly needed more time in development, Emma is a competent wrestler who can carry her in a team setting.
The match here will see Emma and Brooke cut the ring in half and put a beating on Bella until it’s time for Neidhart to get the hot tag. Neidhart will get The Sharpshooter on Brooke and cause her to tap out, but it will actually be Emma who is the legal competitor at the time, meaning that the submission will not count. As the ref is trying to explain this to Neidhart; Emma will attack Neidhart from behind and pick up the victory whilst a recovered Brooke holds Bella at bay. The Total Divas will lose this battle, but the war will continue.
Promo segment with Chris Jericho
Jericho finished as the runner up in the Royal Rumble Match and also managed to eliminate Brock Lesnar in the match itself, so he will join us here for some interview time. The gist of the segment will be that Jericho wants a Title shot and that he’s challenging the winner of the Main Event for a match in Canada at the Roadblock WWE Network special. Jericho will mention in passing that he eliminated Lesnar as part of the pitch for why he should get the Title shot. Stephanie McMahon will come down and agree that, even though she doesn’t like Jericho, him getting a Title shot at Roadblock is probably “Best for Business”, so she’ll sanction it. Jericho will at first thank Stephanie but then go into his “trash bag” routine for some laughs before getting serious and stating that he will be the next WWE Champion at Roadblock.
WWE Intercontinental Title
Open Challenge for anyone BUT Sami Zayn
Champ: Kevin Owens Vs Mr. Kennedy
Sami Zayn made a surprise appearance in the Royal Rumble Match and yeeted his NXT rival and former friend Owens over the top to eliminate him. Zayn will naturally want a shot at the Intercontinental Title following that, but Owens will refuse to grant him one and The Authority will back him up by saying that Zayn doesn’t deserve one. Just for an extra bit of snide on Owens’ part, he will start giving out open challenges for the belt, with the proviso being that Zayn is not allowed to accept them.
This can be a way to give some mid-card guys a shot at a belt and deliver some interesting matches you might not normally see, and it can also be used to bring in outside wrestlers for a shot here or there as well, which is why we have Mr. Kennedy answering for Fastlane. Owens Vs Kennedy is a fresh match as far as I’m aware and we can bring in Kennedy for a one shot with the idea being that if he impresses and gets himself over then he might be able to get a full-time gig out of it. I think most of the fan base will remember him and his initial entrance should get a pop if nothing else.
Kennedy will get a decent chunk of offence in the match, with Owens at first being thrown off at having to wrestle someone who isn’t a current roster member. Kennedy can get a couple of near falls and even try to out snide Owens at certain points, seeing as he’s a self-professed a$$-hole who wouldn’t have any qualms using underhanded tactics. Owens will eventually prevail though for a clean pin, although his post-match celebrations will be cut short as Sami Zayn will run down to the ring and lay the Champ out with the Helluva Kick.
The Miz and Tyler Breeze w/ Summer Rae Vs Cody Rhodes and Dolph Ziggler
This match is a continuation of two feuds that Ziggler has been dealing with, as both Miz and Breeze have some previous history with him. Rhodes is more part of this one because we could do with giving him a pay per view outing in order to keep him in everyone’s consciousness, so he can get into a skirmish the Heels on television and it can lead to Ziggler helping out and a tag match being booked.
The match will see Miz and Breeze’s alliance start to falter a bit due to both of them being noted egomaniacs who yearn to be the centre of attention. Rhodes and Ziggler have noted ego’s as well of course, but they will be able to park them long enough in order to pick up the victory when Rhodes catches Breeze with a Disaster Kick following an argument between the two Heels.
WWE Women’s Title
Champ: Charlotte Flair Vs Sasha Banks
Flair betrayed her tag partner and friend Becky Lynch during the build-up to the Royal Rumble and then defeated Lynch by using underhanded tactics in order to retain her Women’s Title at the event itself. Sasha Banks has plenty of history with Flair dating back to their time in NXT together, and after finally putting her feud with Naomi and Tamina behind her, Banks will now be looking to get one up on Flair and take the Title from her.
Just as she struggled to handle Lynch at Royal Rumble, Flair will have similar issues with Banks here at Fastlane, as Banks will get the better of Flair on numerous occasions during the bout. Flair will eventually manage to garner some control, but she won’t be able to put Banks away and Banks will soon be making a comeback. As against Lynch however, Flair will use nefarious tactics (hey, it runs in the family after all) and will end up throwing Banks into an unprotected turnbuckle whilst the referee’s attention is distracted by removing Flair’s belt from the ring, leading to a cheap pin fall victory for the Champion.
Flair will be all set to attack Banks further following the bout’s conclusion, but Becky Lynch will have none of that and will run down to the ring in order to chase Flair away. Banks and Lynch will face-off following that, as neither really likes the other, and Lynch will eventually pass Banks the removed turnbuckle pad before leaving. Banks will chastise the ref and throw the pad at them before skulking to the back, with it being clear that this matter isn’t over.
WrestleMania Title Shot On The Line
Sheamus Vs Dean Ambrose
Dean Ambrose’s victory in the Royal Rumble Match should have ensured him a place in the Main Event of WrestleMania XXXII, but Triple H and The Authority are not going to just stand by and let that happen. Thus Triple H comes up with the scheme of forcing Ambrose to continually re-earn his Title shot in big matches, almost as if Ambrose is defending the #1 contender status like it is some kind of Title belt. Sheamus has been acting as a sort of hired gun for Triple H for months leading up to this and he’s still owed a favour for helping Roman Reigns dethrone Ambrose back at Survivor Series 2015, so Triple H will tell Sheamus that if he can defeat Ambrose here then the Title shot at Mania XXXII will be his.
Ambrose will secretly be quite happy at the booking of this match as he’s been wanting some payback on Sheamus anyway, so he’ll haul off right from the opening bell with the desire to punish and pummel Sheamus for the hand he played in Ambrose losing his belt. Sheamus will eventually gain the upper hand and will clobber Ambrose with his trademark snug offence, but Ambrose will weather the storm and will eventually topple Sheamus with a series of hard lariats punctuated by some Dirty Deeds. Ambrose retains his #1 contender status and earns a measure of revenge, but there will be more challenges to come on his road to WrestleMania XXXII.
No Holds Barred
Champ: Roman Reigns Vs The Undertaker
Undertaker is an imposing challenger for Reigns, almost to the point that The Authority didn’t want to book the match at all. However, Reigns is cocky enough to think he can handle it and thus declares that he’s happy for the match to go ahead. The build is mostly based around how this will be the toughest challenge Reigns has had since winning the belt due to Undertaker being an almost mythical figure in the world of WWE. Undertaker will want to win one last WWE Title and enter the Main Event of WrestleMania before hanging up his hat and cowl.
The match itself will see Reigns make use of the rules to swing plunder in an effort to put Undertaker away, with Undertaker managing to survive it all and keep coming. This will allow both wrestlers to use a bit of smoke and mirrors in order to make up for Undertaker’s physical limitations, whilst also showcasing a more aggressive side of Reigns in order to make him more threatening as Champion. Undertaker will persevere and will Choke Slam Reigns through the announce table outside the ring. However, pin falls can only take place in the ring, by which point Reigns will have recovered enough to kick out. Undertaker will seemingly have Reigns defeated as he preps for the Tombstone, but The League of Nations will show up, clearly at the behest of The Authority, in order to try and keep the belt on the chosen Authority Champion. Taker will manage to fight them off and even kick out of a Reigns Spear, but he won’t notice Triple H showing up with a big sledgehammer shot. Reigns will deliver another Spear and pick up the victory, standing above a broken Undertaker as Fastlane comes to an end.
I’m guessing the biggest complaint will be that Reigns needed help in order to win the Main Event, but he is still the Heel at the end of the day and I want a certain direction for WrestleMania that required Triple H to get involved here. Reigns still hits the final move on Taker to get the pin and he can now brag that he successfully defended his Title against Taker. With that win, we now have Reigns taking on Jericho at Roadblock, whilst Ambrose will have another challenger to contend with when it comes to retaining his WrestleMania Main Event status.
Charlotte Flair may hold a victory over both Becky Lynch and Sasha Banks, but both of those wins were skin-of-the-teeth situations and neither of those two wrestlers are in her rear-view mirror just yet. That issue will need to continue at Roadblock, as will the ongoing feud between Emma and the stars of Total Divas.
Miz and Ziggler still have beef, with Cody Rhodes now getting roped into it as well, although getting a win on pay per view can give Cody a bit of juice again. That issue can also continue on to Roadblock.
The League of Nations and The New Day are still battling with one another, with AJ Styles temporarily getting dragged into it, whilst Kevin Owens still has to deal with a persistent Sami Zayn who just won’t let their issue go. Owens will surely have another open challenge at Roadblock, and he might even get cheered seeing as the event is in Canada, but will Zayn make another appearance?
I hope you found this next part in the arc interesting. As always, I’m interested to see what you would do in a similar situation so please feel free to share those thoughts in the comments section.
I will hopefully see you all next week as the road to WrestleMania XXXII has to negotiate a Roadblock!