In much the same way Money In The Bank follows WrestleMania to try and make it seem like the next biggest show ever is just as important as the last one, Clash Of Champions often smacks of WWE trying to pretend like the product's got some pre-SummerSlam heat.
It's the time of year most associated with slumps in wrestling. A time of year where there's nothing so immediately pressing between the ropes that people will pick buying tickets, t-shirts or pay-per-views instead of squirrelling away some disposable income for the holiday season. A time Vince McMahon advised Chris Jericho to advise Cody and The Young Bucks not to promote ALL IN during because of it might not draw.
That show shifted the old Autumnal paradigm back in 2018, and AEW pounced on this period to run both ALL OUT and debut Dynamite the following year. But here, 12 months on in the hellscape known as 2020, all the rules have changed.
Seth Rollins had two belts to defend this time last year, but isn't even challenging for one on Sunday. Roman Reigns wasn't fighting for a title in 2019. 12 months later and he's the hottest heel in the WWE Universe and sporting the belt that bears its name. Bayley's axed her pony tail, her inflatable tube men and her friendship with Sasha Banks. 'The Boss' challenged Becky Lynch last year, but is too storyline injured to compete here.
It's all different. So why then, does so much of this show feel familiar...?