It sounds like Iris is relying too much on raw power while disregarding the fact that she also needs brains to win battles.
Because nobody else has a pseudo-legendary on hand that they can abuse like crazy?
I still think this'll come down to Iris vs Trip in the finals. Trip has already defeated Ash a few times, with Ash only tying with him at best. This rivalry is practically set up already for the final stretch, so Trip beating Ash in the finals would be awfully redundant at this point. This will do nothing to change or enhance the elements of this dull-as-shit rivalry because it'll have been something that we've already seen multiple times before. In fact, letting Trip battle Alder and having him lose would probably just damage Trip's credibility even further. It'd be like there being no full battle following Paul's defeat by Brandon, and immediately after that squash Ash would beat him in the League. That would be disjointed and make it even harder to take Trip seriously (and make us all groan at the fact that Ash actually has trouble defeating this guy, AGAIN).
Trip did express an interest in battling Iris way back, and now that she has an uberdragon they can have that battle now. Not that I really care, and Trip vs Iris being the finals is seriously the last thing I want to see coming out of this tournament... but as it's been said, there's no real point to having Dawn battle Trip. They have nothing to do with each other. Dawn's been given shitloads of episodes to feature in before this tournament, so being eliminated by round two is feasible since that still gives her screentime on the sidelines, where more importantly Piplup can be used however the staff wishes. This is not really comparable to the Wallace Cup, which was made with the intent of getting Dawn's groove back through May. Dawn has nothing to do with this tournament and has nothing to gain nor lose from it, so this won't reflect badly on her character in any way and won't bone her for screentime because, well, spectator screentime is a thing.
Which is why I strongly believe this tournament is just a cheap stunt to homage some things about the BW2 games. And hah, "World" tournament indeed. Only two foreigners are actually in the tournament proper (Ash and Dawn) that we know of. Unless the CotDs in this are explicitly stated to be from other regions when they're up, this whole tournament really will be a huge lie. :P
Why would Dawn lose in only the second round? If Iris vs. Dawn was the semifinals I could see Dawn losing, but it seems way too early to me. What was the point of even bringing Dawn back to enter this tournament then? Why didn't the writers have her leave before the tournament if she had no purpose here?
May vs. Dawn happened in the finals for a reason, they even had May defeat Zoey, Dawn's main rival of the series. I think that proves they wouldn't bring an old character back to lose early.
You would think Cynthia would be able to get wayyyy more trainers than just 16 to get in on this. I'm sure more than 16 would have entered something like this if it is really a "World Tournament." Fail. What a flop of a tournament, tbh.
We've been over this... like, at least a few times already by this point. Again, I have to stress that I would love nothing more than to see Dawn completely destroy Iris in this battle (actually, only thing I'd love more than that is if this were Paul; thank god he's not in this to have his character mauled), but this tournament for how it relates to Dawn in particular is nothing like the Wallace Cup. Dawn has no depression to overcome, this tournament will not earn her a ribbon that can be used for any region, and all in all will have nothing to do with Dawn's progression as a Coordinator. She has nothing to gain and nothing to lose. Since she's facing Iris, we know Dawn is winning at least one battle here, so it isn't a total waste for her to lose in the second round.
Also, as I said, Dawn promotion is really Piplup promotion in disguise. I'd bet Dawn will win her first battle with Piplup, so having her lose with Mamoswine won't reflect badly on Piplup at all. And even after losing, Dawn (and more importantly that insult to all real penguins across the world) will still get copious amounts of screentime by sitting in the sidelines with Piplup doing stupid shit to draw attention. My bet's on the cheerleading costume that it will probably get Axew and/or Oshawott in on.
While Dawn was primarily brought back for the tournament, the tournament is not the only thing Dawn has been part of. She's got a nice bundle of episodes completely unrelated to the tournament where she's gotten to shine, and that's just as much promotion in the fillers as it will be in the tournament arc. So Dawn's gotten ample screentime and spotlight already; her utter lack of reason for being in the tournament means Dawn is not entitled to make it all the way to the semi-finals or something. She and her Pokemon (the ones the staff cares to promote, anyway) have already been utilized well enough so that Dawn's return was not utterly pointless. It all seems nicely (horribly) set up that Dawn can lose but still not come off as wasted.
One thing to also consider is the likelihood that Dawn will play a role in assisting Iris with her Dragonite issues because she can relate to them through Mamoswine, whom she's using (non-coincidentally) for their battle. They're established to be buddies now, so I can easily see Dawn helping Iris out with this issue. And just like how Cilan tends to get hoisted by his own petard by doing Evaluation Times in the middle of his battles, Dawn's generosity will likely become her undoing. It's another element that will surely bother me in regards to Dragonite, should this happen.
So yes, I do want Dawn to win. I really do. But I'm not going to exaggerate her "importance" to this saga; we all know Piplup >>>>>> Dawn as far as the powers that be are concerned, and this match ain't Piplup. Combine that with the myriad of bullshit that is Iris' story and her Pokemon, and I see Dawn losing being very, very possible.
Note how I'm not saying any of this will DEFINITELY happen. That's because I'm not a psychic. I'm just going off my gut instincts here. With this series, they usually do not fail me (but I do wish they could...). That's just my take on all this.
I believe that actually Dawn will win. I mean, we've had this disobeying thing a couple of times and sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn't. It worked the past round, and in general, Iris has been portrayed as trainer with a lot of luck and whose Pokémon are (or have been) overpowered: Axew, Excadrill and now Dragonite. I think the writers will try to take that away from Iris just for a second, and let her lose against Dawn. They really can't show a person who is flawless and has no mistakes when it comes to battling (except for Champions and Elite Four members) so it'd be nice. Also, remember she won the first Don Tournament. She has been given enough glory.
The path of a pseudo-champion.
SuBuWriMo total: 3588 words.
Holding out hope for logic to work this tournament out properly is a path that will only lead to disappointment and despair.
The only good thing I can see coming from Iris winning this battle is that it might mean she's facing Ash again in the final, only this time he manages to defeat her. Of course, if he's stuck using Leavanny, then he'll be the one with the huge type disadvantage, just like the Don Battle Final, (Dragonite's Flamethrower won't make things any easier) but type logic already seems to have been thrown out of the window, so I just want to see Iris get a taste of her own medicine and for Ash to finally defeat her in a battle.
Who is this git?
Excadrill. Got a problem?