The Story So far
By the end of the sixth season, the various plot strands were finally beginning to converge as Daenerys Targaryen set sail for Westeros, with some major new allies in tow. Jon Snow and Sansa Stark had finally been reunited in Winterfell after defeating the beastly Ramsey in an epic battle and then feeding him to his own dogs. Bran was becoming increasingly powerful, Arya was on the warpath after completing her training and Cersei Lannister even managed to shock her brother Jaime with her vengeful mass murder in King’s Landing. Beyond the Wall, the Night King and his army of White Walkers were continuing to gather menacingly, undoubtedly the main threat to a peaceful future in the Seven Kingdoms.
The long list of potential rulers of Westeros reflects the fact that you should always expect the unexpected from A Song of Ice and Fire author George R. R. Martin, and the biggest surprise of all would probably be if there was not a twist at the end of the whole saga. One king was slain to kick off all the drama, and the prospect of another little-known traitor stepping up in the final few minutes of the series to dethrone one of the key protagonists is surely a possibility. In this respect, ‘littlefinger’ Petyr Baelish is a real contender to manipulate his way right to the Iron Throne, and looks especially worth a punt at odds of 11/1.
There are certain characters who can be virtually ruled out, despite what the bookies say. Someone like Davos Seaworth, for example, is a lieutenant rather than a leader and has too much nobility to ‘play the Game of Thrones’. Sansa, Arya and Bran Stark may all feel they have a birthright, and the same goes for Cersei, Jaime and Tyrion Lannister, but there is such a divide between the two houses that the people of Westeros would never unite under either banner. Jon Snow’s lineage was finally revealed in the last series and he perhaps has more claim to the throne than anyone, coming from a joint Stark and Targaryen background, but would Daenerys and her followers really bow down to anyone else?
Winter is coming, though, and Daenerys and her dragons surely hold the key to defeating the White Walkers, in what is building up to be the final showdown between ice and fire. A victory for the Night King cannot be ruled out, and it would be a typical Martin twist to have the so-called villain come out on top, but a more satisfying ending would be for the White Walkers to be vanquished. Perhaps either Daenerys or Jon will fall in the final battle as well, leaving the other to reign over Westeros. As Jon has already died once and come back, maybe this time he will be the last one standing.
- Sports.net’s top tip: Jon Snow to rule Westeros - 3/1 l
*Please note, odds may fluctuate.