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‘Game Of Thrones': Predictions For Tonight’s Battle Between ‘The Mountain And The Viper’

Let the battle begin!

When you participate in trial by combat, you win or you die — there is no middle ground.

Tonight, “Game of Thrones” arrives at the long-awaited duel between The Red Viper of Dorne and the Mountain That Rides. In Oberyn Martell’s corner, we have a man with justice on his mind, and vengeance in his heart. In Gregor Clegane’s corner, we have a man who simply loves killing stuff.

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Who will emerge victorious? And what will happen to Tyrion in either scenario? Here are some predictions for the outcome of tonight’s episode, “The Mountain and the Viper”:

If The Red Viper Wins…
The Internet will explode with glee. He’s the sexiest new character on the show by leaps and bounds (with apologies to Daario), he’s defending our boy Tyrion, and he has a score to settle. The happy outcome is a win in the Oberyn column.

If The Mountain Wins…
The Internet will explode with horror. It will be a sudden and tragic end for a great new character like Oberyn. But it’ll also be a bloodbath, presumably, so that’s kind of cool.

If The Red Viper Wins…
Then Tyrion’s options are wide open. The Imp could go just about anywhere. He could travel with Oberyn back to Dorne. He could go to Casterly Rock and steer clear of King’s Landing. He could find out about Sansa’s location and seek her out in the Eyrie. He could go north to Winterfell and hang with the Boltons, or help Jon Snow on the Wall. The sky is the limit, and every option contains great story potential.

If The Mountain Wins…
Then Tyrion is screwed. If he’s on the losing side of the trial by combat, then it’ll take nothing short of a miracle to get Tyrion Lannister out of season four with his head still on his shoulders.

If The Red Viper Wins…
Then things are going to be tense between King’s Landing and Dorne. Even more so than usual. Oberyn serves on the King’s small council, he presided over Tyrion’s trial, and then he turns his back on those causes to throw a hand grenade in the Lannisters’ plans? That’s not something that Tywin Lannister will be soon to forgive. If Oberyn wins, the bad blood between the Lannisters and the Martells will boil over.

If The Mountain Wins…
Things will still be very tense between King’s Landing and Dorne. The Lannisters are already responsible for the deaths of Oberyn’s sister and her children. If the Mountain beats Oberyn, then the Lannisters have even more Dornish blood on their hands, and that’s not going to sit well with the folks down in Sunspear. In other words, no matter how it shakes out, expect the feud between the Lannisters and Martells to intensify thanks to Oberyn’s decision to defend Tyrion.

Whoever Wins…
There will be blood. If Oberyn wins, if the Mountain wins… it doesn’t matter. “Game of Thrones” will deliver on some edge-of-your-seat action and drama tonight, and the outcome is almost irrelevant compared to the thrills we’re in store for. Get excited.

Who do you think will win between the Red Viper and the Mountain?

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@roundhoward