Step into the Fairy circle
Ah ha, a mere 1v1 battle...
I don't know whether to think they view Trip as a mistake and want to be done with him quickly, or are rushing so something else that will appear later in the League can come sooner. Perhaps both.
Anything with a short form battle format favours one powerful Pokemon over a balanced team - Trip and Ash have balanced teams, while Stephan and Bianca, who will likely both go further than Trip in the tournament, have been shown almost exclusively using one Pokemon.
Why spend all of BW setting up (however badly) three rivalries when they'll all be thrown under the bus for someone introduced at the last minute. There's how I'd like things to go, but then there's just what's good storytelling - deciding anything of the importance of a league with a one on one battle isn't that, no matter who it is.
Step into the Fairy circle
I'm very worried that Ash will win in the one league where his achievement will seem the smallest, especially after losing in Sinnoh where his strength and training were at their highest.
Electivire vs Pikachu match where Paul mentioned a thing that happened in that battle that was just like a scenario in their first battle at the beginning of DP). It's astounding how little material they've had for Ash and Trip's rivalry... which makes sense why they're getting Trip out of the way first, I guess. Like Kenny before him, I love it when the writers do things that tell us they're apologizing for making us sit through a crappy rivalry and a crappy character. It almost makes me think they'll learn from their mistakes after this League.
It's amazing, really. I'd been saying for months that I wished the League would get Ash/Trip out of the way first thing and barely make it last any time (since they're squeezing it into an episode that will surely mostly be about the League's opening ceremony and one other episode that will likely also have some other B-plot going on), but I never believed they would actually follow through with my wish. I assumed they'd think they could make this "rivalry" out to be even remotely deserving of the treatment Ash/Paul got, and Trip doing any better than Top 16 would cause me to never stop bitching. But for once I turned out to be right about something in Best Wishes and it doesn't agonize me that they proved me right! :O Still, it's a pity that their best way to hype Ash vs Trip is the fact that Serperior is fast. Ash has been a notorious speed demon, glass-cannon-using guy for the entire series. "Oh noez how will Ash ever find a way to outmatch Serperior's speed... oh wait he has Pikachu"
I really really hope this 1v1 crap is just contained to Ash vs Trip, but I'm not getting my hopes up. It doesn't bother me for this battle because that's all Trip deserves, but I'll be bummed if the only proper League battles we get are from Eevee guy and/or Kotetsu. D: Emboar appearing this soon also bums me out. Bianca was my dark horse pick for winning the League. Now I'll just have to go with the obvious choice of "guy who was just introduced before the League". Still, I'd rather have that than Ash winning the League. For the first time in the entire series I really think Ash doesn't deserve to win or go any further in than he has before. Now that this is out of the way, I couldn't care less who beats Ash.
^^Stephan could be the dark horse if you despise Virgil and Kotetsu so much.
I'd be surprised if Stephan won this. He already had his moment of glory with the Donamite tournament back in March/April. I can't see lightning striking twice for him, particularly when there are two fresh rivals they'll presumably want to pimp.
I will be disappointed if the Bianca match is 1 on 1. Not merely because I'm totally bored with these 1 on 1 match-ups, thanks to the overflow of mini-tournaments throughout Unova (though that too) but because I was hopeful that we'd finally see her Escavalier again. I really hope that it'll show up again somewhere down the road, and we get to see how far she's gotten with it. Otherwise, what was the point of giving it to her in first place, if she's going to rely on Emboar as her sole powerhouse, and nothing else? They could just as easily have used a couple of COTDs to showcase the Shelmet/Karrablast trade evolution, if that was the sole intention there.
So do we know that it is Ash vs Bianca next? or are we just assuming because Emboar is appearing?
Pignite evolving I doubt they'll do it.