TJRWrestling WWE WrestleMania 39 Preview
It’s WrestleMania 39 time with Roman Reigns and Cody Rhodes headlining two nights of action with 13 announced matches in front of huge crowds in Los Angeles!
John: I will keep this brief because this preview is over 10,000 words. The name “WrestleMania” sells itself. I’m excited to see what Triple H has in store for us with his first WrestleMania as the man in charge of the creative team. The lineup is very good with so many amazing matches, there are so many long-term stories and 13 matches on the card means we’ll see a lot of different things. I think in terms of match quality, it really will be one of the best WrestleManias ever and if there are surprises like Steve Austin, The Rock, Randy Orton making his return and other things then that’s going to add to the fun as well.
Joining me for the preview are TJRWrestling writers Joel McIntyre, Matthew Fowler, Kelly Dishnow Alex Podgorski, and Kristian Thompson.
Kristian: I’ll be honest with you. I was significantly more excited about WrestleMania about a month ago when all of the marquee matches were being put together. Since then, the additional matches have not really added much to the card at all. The build to the main matches have still been great, but logical booking decisions such as ensuring the Fatal-4-Way tag matches mean something just haven’t been followed through here. It is a very busy time to be a wrestling fan and I wish Mania would hold off just one more week until I was on Easter holidays but alas I will have to try and catch the Sunday night show after work (Monday lunchtime here in Australia) and try to go spoiler less which is always a huge challenge if you have wrestling-mad friends! Reigns vs Rhodes and the Tag Team Championship match are enough to have me invested for this WrestleMania and I look forward to little gems in the midcard shining through. Hopefully we also get a surprise or two.
WRESTLEMANIA SATURDAY, APRIL 1ST
United States Championship: Austin Theory (c) vs. John Cena
Joel: This is a tough one. Before last week, I was sure Austin Theory was winning this match. He needs to. He’s the future of the company. However, when they announced it was opening the show, it made me pause. Of course, it could be because Cena needs to get out of there quickly so he can get back to a movie set or something. I also know WWE likes to start WrestleMania hot with a babyface winning. So I’m going to go out on a limb here and go with Cena but If he does win, I doubt he makes it past the Raw after WrestleMania with the title.
Winner: John Cena
Matthew: The biggest star in wrestling over the last 20 years opening WrestleMania is a great call, and will start the show off on a very high note. Added to that is the fact that John Cena will also be facing a man that they are hoping can be a top star for the next 20 years. This match feels like a golden opportunity for Cena to “pass the torch” to the next generation, and that is exactly what I expect to happen. I predict Theory to defeat Cena clean here and perhaps even make him tap out, cementing him as a top guy in the company for years to come.
Winner: Austin Theory
Kelly: This is going first because Cena likely has a plane to catch. I don’t expect it to be much over 10 minutes. I’m sure Cena will have a way to pump the crowd up for this but I wouldn’t have picked this as the opener. Cena is just here to give Theory a credible win.
Winner – Austin Theory
Alex: This one’s a no-brainer. Cena has come back for his WrestleMania program and nothing more. He’s not going to carry the US title going forward, so from this we can conclude that he’s not winning.
The bigger question is what kind of match will this be? Will it be a bog-standard competitive back-and-forth battle? Will it turn ultraviolent with referee stoppage, restarts, and end with a cheap finish? Or will Theory surprise everyone watching with a dominant squash that will make Cena question himself for the first time in…possibly ever?
Anything’s possible at WrestleMania. But one thing’s for sure: Theory’s winning since Cena isn’t coming back. He has become the very thing he condemned a decade ago: he has become Dwayne Johnson, only without the famous eyebrow. And because of that, we can conclude that he’ll be back to shooting films within a day of getting beat by Theory.
Winner and STILL United States Champion: Austin Theory
Kristian: Not that I was clambering to see a Cena return, but if it was to be the case then Theory wasn’t even in my top-ten wrestlers for him to face at Mania. This tells you that Cena is there to put over Theory and give him a huge moment early on in his career. To be honest, he probably deserves a win over Cena after the debacle that was his MITB cash-in. This will be a hot opening to the show and I expect Theory to get the job done.
Winner AND STILL United States Champion: Austin Theory
John: Put over the younger guy that’s going to be there for the next 15-20 years or put over the older guy that is considered the greatest of all time? I think the obvious answer is Theory winning because I don’t know when Cena will be wrestling again. I hope Cena has a good showing here although if you think about his last match in December, he only took one or two bumps. That was a tag team match, though, so he could be protected a bit. This time, it will probably be in the 10-13 minute range. I don’t see Cena going that long. Theory should win and if it’s cheap then that’s certainly fine too.
Winner: Austin Theory
Men’s Fatal 4-Way Tag Team Match: The Street Profits vs. Braun Strowman & Ricochet vs. Alpha Academy vs. Viking Raiders
Joel: Good match to get everybody on the card but virtually no build. I’m going with the Street Profits.
Winners: Street Profits
Matthew: It’s hard to get excited about this match without any sort of storyline going into it. I’m going Strowman and Ricochet winning this one.
Winner: Braun Strowman and Ricochet
Kelly: If it were me, I would have opened with this match. This should be really good. Gable will look strong here but the split from Otis will get into motion here. The Street Profits will have yet another strong outing, but I do not see them winning. They are also likely heading for Splitsville, likely in the upcoming Draft (if there is one). The Profits have looked great in singles matches lately, so I expect that to continue here.
That leaves us with The Viking Raiders and the Strowman/Ricochet team. Both teams could use a solid win here. This will likely be your Smackdown Tag Team Championship feud once the titles get split, perhaps at Backlash. As for the winner here, I’ll have to flip a coin.
Winners – The Viking Raiders
Alex: Assuming this match takes place immediately after the “hot opener” between Theory and Cena, we can conclude that this match will serve as a “bring down match” to reduce the heat from the first one and get fans ready for the next one.
In all honesty, this match really means nothing. It’s not for any title, it there are no other major stakes, and the story behind it is pretty much nonexistent. It’s another one of those ‘put as many people on the card as we can’ matches that no one should care about.
This will probably go around ten minutes with RAW-or-SmackDown-level wrestling. it will be average, bland, and forgettable. I don’t see anything spectacular happening here, regardless of the names involved.
Then again, I’ve been wrong in the past and I’d like to be proven wrong again here.
Winners: Braun Strowman and Ricochet (because, big man)
Kristian: Lots of men added to the card but little reward other than a spot on the show. They’re all great teams that deserve a little carrot such as a future title match if they were to win. The Street Profits have been consistently great over the last year but management are also high on the Strowman/Ricochet team. Could they pull a surprise and allow Gable to have a WrestleMania moment after so many honourable losses on Raw over the last six months? Probably not, so I’ll select the Street Profits.
Winners: The Street Profits
John: I like all four teams here. Hopefully the winners get a title shot at Backlash or something along those lines. Alpha Academy seems destined for a split with Otis doing the modeling thing, so maybe Gable gets a bit of a push in singles. I don’t know if The Street Profits will split in the next draft or if they will get another title push. Viking Raiders have done well as heels. I like the babyface team of Braun & Ricochet. They were just put together in the last few months without nothing else going on, but I think they work well as a team. I’m going with Braun & Ricochet as the babyface winners here.
Winners: Braun Strowman & Ricochet
Rey Mysterio vs. Dominik Mysterio
Joel: I can’t remember a wrestler in recent memory who has benefited more from a character shift than Dominik Mysterio. Him turning heel at Clash at the Castle last year was the best decision he could have made. The build to this match has been fantastic. Say what you want but Dominik has shined in this new role. Easily one of the most improved talents of the last year. Waiting until last week for Rey to strike Dom was brilliant. It’s been great. With Rey going into the Hall of Fame the night before, it would make sense to have him get the win here. But I think Dom needs it way more. I’m going with Dom.
Winner: Dominik Mysterio
Matthew: This match has had an incredible build, with the crowd popping huge when Rey finally punched Dominik and accepted the match. Dominik has really approved as a heel, and is finally not just Rey Mysterio’s kid. Rey is likely retiring in the next few years, and I am sure he will want to help his son however he can before then. Therefore, I will go with Dominik cheating and getting the win here.
Winner: Dominik Mysterio
Kelly: This feud has been done really well. Dominik has really grown as a character by being placed in Judgment Day. It’s been amazing the transformation that he has undergone right before our eyes. When they split, I thought it was a little too soon and have been glad to have been proven wrong. I don’t think Rey is ready to hang up the mask, so I doubt he is going to lose here. The story should be that beating Rey is the one thing that Dominik hasn’t done and when he gets that win, he also retires his dad. Rey will make Dominik look great in defeat though.
Winner – Rey Mysterio
Alex: I’m seriously disappointed that this isn’t a luchas de apuestas situation. Dominik’s resentment towards his father was built on his claim that Rey cared about his career more than his family. There was a segment on SmackDown recently where Rey asked Dominik to stand by his side as he got inducted into the WWE Hall of Fame. That was the PERFECT opportunity for Dominik to say something along the lines of “you put this [the mask] ahead of your own family” or “I want my father, not Rey Mysterio”.
Anyway, I’m expecting a lot here. Dominik will be in the ring with a living legend, a Hall of Famer, and in my opinion, the greatest wrestling prodigy of the past thirty years. The pressure on him will be monumental. But don’t expect him to out-do his father at what he does best. No, Dominik’s going to get monster heat by being everything his father isn’t. He’ll be slow and plodding in the ring. He’ll bail to the floor several times to catch his breath. He’ll act all lackadaisical and do the bare minimum. Essentially he’ll be a heel version of Orange Cassidy and will get boos instead of cheers.
And yet, I’m hoping Dominik wins. Rey is still a massive hero for many people and to be honest there are too many people out there trying to be heroes and not enough trying to be villains. There needs to be someone for fans to really loathe and hate and want to see get destroyed by the good guys. And who better to do that than the ungrateful son of a legend that doesn’t give a damn about everything his father sacrificed for him?
Winner: Dominik Mysterio
Kristian: Even though this has obviously been coming as a WrestleMania showdown between father and son, I have enjoyed the way that it has played out. Rey has often been criticised online for his mediocre acting skills, but I think his work during this program has been very good. Dom knows how to draw heat. Initially it was in a ‘he’s so bad, let’s boo him’ way but now it’s genuine heel heat. The hilarious prison storyline that they ran and the way he portrayed that, has helped that significantly.
I’m interested how they book the finish to this. I think it could go two ways. On one hand, Rey wins clean and Dom realises what a jerk he’s been and they hug it out at the end. Or perhaps they go the WM 19 route (HBK/Y2J) and Rey still wins but Dom hits the low blow or some other nefarious measure afterwards. It would be huge for Dom to win, but I think Rey having his Hall of Fame moment and big WrestleMania match points to a win for the father over the son.
Winner: Rey Mysterio
John: This entire storyline has been another example of the current creative team led by Triple H taking their time and not rushing through things. Dominik turned on his dad in September and they only announced the first match between them a few weeks ago. In other eras of WWE booking, they would have done the match way too early. I’m glad they waited for WrestleMania on the same weekend when Rey is being inducted into the WWE Hall of Fame. Dominik has improved so much in the last six months. Kudos to him for working hard, getting better and earning a bigger role in the company.
Based on the story, maybe you could say Rey deserves to kick Dom’s ass and teach his son a lesson about respect. However, I think Dominik has a very bright future in WWE, so having him beat his dad at WrestleMania is something he can brag about for many years. I think Dominik should win and I think he will. They can do a rematch at Backlash that Rey might win, but it’s more important for Dominik to win at WrestleMania. It probably will be cheap, which is certainly fine with me.
Winner: Dominik Mysterio
Trish Stratus, Becky Lynch & Lita vs. Damage CTRL – Bayley, IYO SKY & Dakota Kai
Joel: It is probably the best built women’s match on the card. Becky Lynch has been feuding with Damage CTRL essentially since she returned at War Games. It’s been somewhat of a slow build but I’ve enjoyed most of it. It’s great seeing Lita and Trish back. I feel a Trish heel turn coming. I’m not sure if it’s coming in this match but its coming.
Matthew: Common sense would state that Lita and Trish Stratus are not both returning to the company to lose. However, that is exactly what I am going to predict will happen in this match. I believe that Stratus will turn on Lita and Lynch and shockingly join Damage CTRL. This will lead to both Damage CTRL winning and a future tag match between Lita and Lynch facing Stratus and Bayley.
Winner: Damage CTRL
Kelly: When you look at the overall presentation, what has Damage CTRL really done? Two time Women’s Tag Team Champions in a division of three teams really isn’t all that special. Bayley has consistently lost in the big matches. I think it might be time to move on from Damage CTRL and find something better for all three of them. Team Becky should get the win here to go strong into their Women’s Tag Team Championship match against the Women’s Showcase winners, likely at Backlash. I doubt Trish turns heel here. They’ll likely save that to cost the tag titles instead.
Winners – Trish Stratus, Becky Lynch, and Lita
Alex: This is one of the most predictable matches on the card. Just look at that babyface line-up. Becky Lynch, Lita and Trish Stratus. I don’t need to say anymore.
Even though one could argue that Damage CTRL are the better wrestlers, they’re not winning. This is the “attraction match” meant to draw and not necessarily deliver. The action in the ring will be average, especially since Trish and Lita haven’t wrestled for some time. But again, this is another nostalgia match meant for casual and lapsed fans to go back in time for one night.
This’ll probably go 12-15 minutes with Becky Lynch getting the pin for her side. Nothing special but nothing bad, either.
Winners: Trish Stratus, Becky Lynch & Lita
Kristian: This has been a fun blast-from-the-past type storyline, but I feel it’s lacking a little bit. A Tag Team Championship match with Trish in the corner would’ve had more meaning to it, but Trish out of retirement is the angle they’ve gone for and that’s fine. Even Trish vs. Bayley could’ve worked as Trish has targeted her a bit since returning. Anyway, this is what we have and I feel a sneaky Stratus heel turn and Damage CTRL to get the win.
Winners: Damage CTRL
John: Most of the feud has seen the babyface trio of Becky, Lita & Trish in control for much of it. Becky & Lita won the Women’s Tag Team Titles because of Trish, they got the advantage in most of the brawls between two sides and Becky just beat IYO SKY on Raw too. The heels did get to beat up Trish one week on Raw, but that was it. We all know about the rumored Trish heel turn. My guess they set it up by having some miscommunication spot in the match. Maybe Lynch kicks Trish by mistake leading to Bayley hitting her finish on Trish for the win. Then you can have Trish angry about it and saying she should be the Tag Team Champion with her best friend Lita, not Becky. From there, then they can build to SummerSlam and anything they want to do before that.
With that said, maybe the Trish heel turn rumors are not true. I honestly have no idea and I like not knowing things. I could see Becky, Trish & Lita winning in under ten minutes convincingly. I just think if Damage CTRL is going to continue to be a thing, then they could really use a win here.
Winners: Damage CTRL
Seth “Freakin” Rollins vs. Logan Paul
Joel: I was not on board with Logan Paul getting these big matches with main event guys. I thought he should stay as a novelty feuding with guys like The Miz. However, he overdelivered against Roman Reigns and he shined in the Royal Rumble. He’s proven he can go and he’s especially good now that he’s embraced the fact that the fans don’t like him instead of trying to force a face run. I was thinking Logan Paul here but after he’s knocked Seth out twice in recent weeks, I think it’s gotta be setting up for a Rollins win.
Winner: Seth Rollins
Matthew: Logan Paul has picked up the wrestling business quicker than almost anyone in history, and has shown he is an incredible athlete. Therefore, I am very excited to see what Paul will be able to do against one of the greatest wrestlers in the world in Seth “Freakin” Rollins. I expect both of these guys to try to steal the show, and they may very well do it. As for who will win, I will go with Rollins as I don’t know if Paul will still be around after this match.
Winner: Seth Rollins
Kelly: Logan Paul has impressed me. He can go and is willing to put the training in. I also saw something where his contract is up at WrestleMania. I don’t foresee this as being their only match. This could easily be a nice three match feud. I would have Rollins go over here, Paul at Backlash, and a rubber match at Money in the Bank. Yeah, I like that.
Winner – Seth “Freakin” Rollins
Alex: Rumor has it that Logan Paul’s contract is coming up at WrestleMania and there haven’t been any updates on whether he’s re-signing. Because of that, I’m going with a Seth Rollins win. But the big question is, how competitive this match will be.
Logan Paul has exceeded every expectation I had of him. He has done way better at being a pro wrestler than I thought he would. He looks like he belongs in the ring. The only problem, though, is that he doesn’t align as either a face or a heel. He’s just a guy getting attention by doing whatever. That might work in whatever universe he comes from, but in wrestling it’s hard to really get behind someone when they’re a clichéd “shades of grey tweener” that gets both cheers and boos.
Anyway, since both guys will get mixed reactions, this match will have noise but not heat. Paul will definitely do something ludicrous to show off what he’s learned and Rollins will sell for him like crazy. But in the end, I see Rollins pulling something dastardly to steal a win from Paul and leave WrestleMania the victor.
It’s not the dominant win the guy whose been wrestling for twenty years should get against a guy who has only had four matches, but I’m sure some people out there will be entertaining by whatever chaos unfolds here.
Winner: Seth Rollins
Kristian: This could genuinely be the best match on night 1. One year ago if I said that about a Logan Paul match, everyone would call me crazy. He’s so naturally talented in the ring and on the mic, that everything he does just clicks. Pitting him up against Rollins was an instant recipe for success. You can tell Seth is enjoying himself, even though he probably deserves a higher place on the card. I think Rollins wins as the seasoned veteran, in what should be a fantastic athletic contest.
Winner: Seth Rollins
John: They should have a good match with a hot crowd that is strongly behind Rollins. Logan Paul has done well in his previous WWE matches, so I have no reason to believe this would be a disappointment. Rollins is one of the top guys that always has tremendous matches. Maybe Rollins will be even more motivated because he probably thinks he should be in a main event position too. I’d love to see a main event push for Rollins again.
Most of the feud has seen Paul in control. It started with Paul eliminating Seth in the Royal Rumble, then he cost Seth in the Elimination Chamber match and Paul knocked out Seth twice with cheap shot punches too. Rollins has been selling the whole way in this feud. It should be a win by Rollins although I think Paul will come close to winning a few times. Maybe they do an even bigger than usual version of The Stomp to end it too. Seth should win.
Winner: Seth “Freakin” Rollins
SmackDown Women’s Championship: Charlotte Flair (c) vs. Rhea Ripley
Joel: This feud had been lacking for weeks. They really picked up the intensity last week with the physicality and brawl. I think this is their chance to make good on the mistake of three years ago when Charlotte won the NXT Title from Rhea. This is their chance to rewrite history. I think they will. Rhea Ripley has been on fire for months and I think it culminates here.
Winner: Rhea Ripley
Matthew: Both of these women are incredible and they will likely have a incredible match and perhaps one of the best women’s matches ever. However, I believe it would be doing both of these women a disservice to have them try to follow the tag title match. The crowd will be emotionally exhausted after that match, and it is going to be difficult if not impossible for Flair and Ripley to get them excited for this match. Nevertheless, this match will likely end the show, and like I already said will be incredible. As for who wins I will go with Ripley, as she feels like she is truly ready to go to the next level.
Winner: Rhea Ripley
Kelly: I feel like the only build for this match was Ripley winning the Royal Rumble. They’ve only had a couple of interactions in the months since the Rumble. Ripley is the only person eligible for the Grand Slam and giving it to her at WrestleMania is only fitting.
Winner – Rhea Ripley
Alex: I’ve watched so many “competitive” matches in WWE and elsewhere that, for once, I’d like to see a champion get mauled in under five minutes Brock Lesnar style.
To be honest, Charlotte just doesn’t do anything for me. She comes across as robotic in her promos and in the ring. The stench of nepotism is so strong on her I’m surprised none of the other women have suffocated from it. And while she has been okay in the ring, I haven’t seen anything from her that I haven’t seen from so many other women before her.
I really think that Ripley needs to rip Charlotte apart (pun intended) and bring the Judgment Day some gold. There is plenty of support behind her and I think that her demolishing Charlotte would send a huge message. With this notion of the Four Horsewomen being in a class of their own, it makes sense for one of these Horsewomen to lose in such a devastating fashion. Ripley would come off as an even bigger star and find herself on Flair’s level.
The women’s division in WWE needs to build for the future and to me, Charlotte is too much of the past to carry anymore gold.
Winner and NEW SmackDown Women’s Champion: Rhea Ripley
Kristian: I was far more invested in their match for the NXT Championship a few WrestleManias ago. Here, the dynamic is strange because Flair is a face that is hard to watch in that role and Ripley is very busy with the Judgement Day on Raw. I would’ve preferred Ripley vs Belair which made far more sense to me as they are on the same show.
I was happy for Ronda Rousey to hold the title up to Mania and defend it against someone, but of course Flair saunters on back and takes the title when she pleases. I really hope Ripley wins because she has been fantastic over the last year and deserves a big victory and moment like this.
Winner AND NEW SmackDown Women’s Champion: Rhea Ripley
John: They had that one good brawl a few weeks back to get me more excited about the match. Charlotte as a face isn’t that interesting, but she does have the credibility of being a 14-time Women’s Champion (that’s Raw & Smackdown, not counting two in NXT). It wouldn’t shock me if she gets to 17 title reigns (to pass John Cena and her father Ric Flair) within the next two years. She can probably set the record at a WrestleMania.
As for this match, Ripley getting the win makes a lot of sense. It’s not like Charlotte has defended the title a lot or had some epic title reign that needs to continue. Ripley is talented, she’s part of a good heel stable called The Judgment Day and that group needs a champion. It should be her. I think they’ll have long match that goes about 20 minutes, the crowd will get into it by the end and Ripley will probably get some cheers for winning just because she’s a cool heel.
Winner AND NEW SmackDown Women’s Champion: Rhea Ripley
Undisputed WWE Tag Team Championships: The Usos (c) vs. Kevin Owens & Sami Zayn
Joel: Hopefully it’s two years in a row main eventing for Kevin Owens. The story between him, Sami, and The Usos has been near perfect. The reaction to them reuniting was electric. This is the best built story on the entire card. The record setting reign of the Usos, Sami’s bloodline story, it’s all led to this. And I think it is going to lead to the Usos falling at the hands of Sami Zayn and Kevin Owens.
Winners: Sami Zayn/Kevin Owens
Matthew: This may be the most anticipated tag team match in at least the last ten years of wrestling. The story that these four men have helped tell over the last year has been incredible, and reminded me why I fell in love with this business in the first place. No matter the outcome of this match, all four competitors are coming out of it bigger stars. As for who does win, I will go with Owens and Zayn to get the win, and end The Usos historic reign.
Winners: Sami Zayn and Kevin Owens
Kelly: This match is going to be off the hook insane. We really need to credit Zayn for saving The Bloodline story. They were getting rather stale and repetitive when he was added for a little comedic relief. What happened instead, was the unexpected growth of Zayn. Sami Zayn 2023 is what happens when you get something the gains traction organically and is allowed to flourish. It has been an amazing journey with Zayn this past year and I can’t wait to see what the next couple of months hold for him. Owens and Zayn holding the titles in the ring together to close out the show would give off that great ending (at the time) when Eddie Guerrero and that Chris guy were holding their world championships in the ring together at WrestleMania 20. This will be something special.
Winners – Kevin Owens and Sami Zayn
Alex: This is going to be nuts.
Ahead of this show I’ve been watching some old Owens vs. Zayn/Steen vs. Generico matches and I know what these men are capable of. And while there’s no chance that we’ll see the same sort of ultraviolence that these two dished out on each other in their ROH days, I think that this match has the potential to be Match of the Night or possibly Match of the Weekend.
The Usos are great spot wrestlers, Owens is experienced in the indy style, and Zayn is still on a hot streak. He isn’t as molten as he was at Elimination Chamber, but by no means should this match be seen as a consolation prize.
This match is huge. Owens and Zayn have the potential to end the Usos’ record-breaking tag team run and breathe new life into a tag team division that has been on death’s door in WWE for years. Give these two teams 20 minutes at least and you’ll have one of the best matches of the year. I’m looking forward to it and so should you.
Winners and NEW Undisputed WWE Tag Team Champions: Kevin Owens & Sami Zayn
Kristian: I feel like this should headline night 1. It certainly deserves to be the main event on the first night in my opinion. What a classic storyline this has been. I have been a massive fan of the Bloodline ever since Roman Reigns turned heel (I’ll cover that more below!). His entourage have all had their starring roles along the way. Jey Uso’s profile has ascended to tremendous heights during this time and finally turning on Sami was so brutal to watch, yet it ensured we would get this match which is what so many people wanted.
I wasn’t a huge fan of how they tried to explain Owens teaming with Zayn at last. He kind of just blew him off for a few weeks and then finally helped him. Sure, they showed a few clips of Sami kicking him at Survivor Series, but I think we need to see a lot more anger from KO. It’s kind of like they dragged it out so long, then they only had 3 weeks until WrestleMania, so they just had to pull the trigger. That’s my only criticism about the whole story, as the rise of Zayn has been tremendous fun to watch. Watching him get his revenge on the Usos and become a Tag Team Champion will be an emotional moment for a lot of people watching. This should be the closing memory of Saturday night.
Winners AND NEW Undisputed Tag Team Champions: Kevin Owens and Sami Zayn
John: This is my second favorite match on the entire WrestleMania card other than the Sunday main event and I really hope this is the Saturday main event. My only complaint for this is I would have had Kevin & Sami win a match or two to earn the title shot. I know they explained it in the promo with Jimmy saying that Kevin & Sami didn’t deserve it while Jey said it’s okay because they can solve The Bloodline’s “Kevin & Sami Problem” by winning this match. However, maybe they could have done a Tag Team Gauntlet Match or something for a title shot where Owens & Zayn pick up some wins to show how dangerous they are as a team. That’s all I’m saying. It’s not a major complaint, believe me. Just saying for the purposes of earning title shots, I would have wanted to see that on the build to this match.
In terms of the story, I’m all on board with WWE calling this one of the greatest tag team matches in WWE history. The Usos have been the Tag Team Champions (Smackdown at least) since July 2021, they won the Raw Tag Team Titles in May 2022 and they go into this with the longest tag team title reign of all time. Jey & Jimmy have both done phenomenal work as characters as well with Jey as the conflicted member of The Bloodline that is loyal to the group again, but then if they lose, what happens? We don’t know. We could see Jey break off as a singles face and maybe a rivalry with his brother Jimmy. Not only that, but Jey facing Roman Reigns down the road as well. The Usos are incredible performers and really are one of the best tag teams in WWE history. They have the longevity, the title reigns, the strong storyline work as part of The Bloodline and with this match, they could have that truly memorable moment to cement their legacy.
As a Canadian, I love seeing my fellow Canadians Kevin & Sami together again. I know there are people predicting Kevin turning on Sami at some point because it always happens, but I think we should enjoy this for as long as it lasts. They have unbelievable chemistry together almost like they are brothers and I expect the crowd to be molten hot for them as soon as they get out there. Give this 20 minutes and we are going to talk about it as one of the best tag team matches in WWE history. I really think these guys are going to put on an incredible match. I’m so excited about it. The end result should be Kevin and Sami celebrating as the champions. From best friends that started 20 years ago to Tag Team Champions together.
Winners AND NEW Undisputed Tag Team Champions: Kevin Owens and Sami Zayn
WRESTLEMANIA SUNDAY, APRIL 2ND
Women’s Fatal 4-Way Tag Team Match: Raquel Rodriguez & Liv Morgan vs. Ronda Rousey & Shayna Baszler vs. Natalya & Shotzi vs. Sonya Deville & Chelsea Green
Joel: Just like the men, it’s a way to get more women on the card. I’m glad to see Chelsea Green here. She was never given a chance during her first run. I’m glad she’s getting it here. I think this is Ronda and Shayna’s match to lose though.
Winners: Ronda Rousey and Shayna Baszler
Matthew: I am happy that all these women get the opportunity to compete on the biggest show of the year, and likely get a big payday. However, I could not care less about this match, and it feels like just pointless filler on an already stacked card. I will go with Ronda Rousey and Baszler winning, as I can’t imagine Rousey falling even further than she already has
Winner: Ronda Rousey and Shayna Baszler
Kelly: This should be a really good match. Again, there are only two teams with any real chance here. Green is likely just in it to eat the fall. I like Rodriguez and Morgan as a team and they should hopefully get some time to develop and grow as a team. If they are allowed to do that, they could be tag champs by the end of summer. Rousey is hurt so she’s tagging with Baszler while she heals up. This is the team with the greatest chance of winning here. Once Rousey is healed up, they will be gunning for the tag team championship and will dethrone the current champs. Again, we are just establishing the next tag team title feud.
Winners – Ronda Rousey and Shayna Baszler
Alex: This match is identical to the men’s match: a largely thrown-together contest meant to add more names to the show. There has been such a match at WrestleMania for several years now and I think that’s a tradition/trend that should be done away with. WrestleMania should be about the company putting on its best, and alas this will not be the best of, well, anything.
This will probably go 12-15 minutes with bland action. The winners likely won’t get much booking or momentum leading into the following weeks, so this match will likely be forgotten by both the fans and the company by the end of April. It’s unfortunate, but that’s what happens when you put a match together without giving the audience a reason to care for it.
Winners: Ronda Rousey & Shayna Baszler (do I really need to explain why?)
Kristian: Here’s the regular ‘throw as many wrestlers on the card as possible’ match that we are so used to see in modern WrestleManias. The fact that they had qualifying matches for this and then make it a match that has no prize (other than appearing on the show) baffles me. Rousey and Baszler will win because if not, Rousey might have a tantrum and go home. They should announce that the winners get a title match on night 2 and also hold the Damage Ctrl match on night 1.
Winners: Shayna Baszler and Ronda Rousey
John: There should be a reward for the winners, so I hope that is announced. Give them a title shot at Backlash or something like that. Anyway, I’m happy that all of these wrestlers are on the WrestleMania card. Natalya missed a few months with a nose injury, so I’m glad she’s back while Shotzi gets to be at her first WrestleMania. The same goes for Raquel Rodriguez while Liv Morgan certainly deserves a spot. I think the Chelsea/Sonya team thrown together is fine I guess with Sonya replacing Carmella. The team of Baszler & Rousey should win and probably will win even though Rousey may be limited due to her legit arm injury. I think one of them submits Shotzi for the win. They should have a solid match, but due to a lack of story, it may be tough for the crowd to get into it.
Winners: Ronda Rousey & Shayna Baszler
Intercontinental Championship: GUNTHER (c) vs. Sheamus vs. Drew McIntyre
Joel: Gunther and Sheamus have been going at it since Clash at the Castle and they’ve produced BANGER AFTER BANGER. Inserting Drew McIntyre was a nice touch based on the history with Sheamus and Drew. I could see this as a way to get the title off GUNTHER without him being pinned. I want Gunther to break the Honky Tonk Man’s record as Intercontinental Champion. I think Triple H has bigger plans for him though. I think this is finally Sheamus’ time.
Matthew: I am old and don’t really understand what a “Banger” is, but am pretty sure this match will be one. These three guys are going to beat the hell out of each other, and it is going to be a lot of fun to watch. Gunther has made the Intercontinental Championship as important as it has felt in years, and I truly believe he will be world champion by the end of the year. Therefore, I will go with him losing the Intercontinental Championship to Sheamus here, so Sheamus can finally hold the only title he has never had.
Kelly: They’ve been pushing the whole “This is the only title Sheamus has not won” story quite a bit. I’m sure that’s not an accident and he captures the only title that has eluded him. McIntyre is likely just here to take the fall. GUNTHER will be on to bigger and better things, likely as the next Smackdown World Champion once those titles are split. He will look like a beast here and be given a protected loss.
Winner – Sheamus
Alex: I want GUNTHER to win. He’s one of my favorite wrestlers active right now and I get a huge kick out of watching him punish and brutalize people. His match with Sheamus at CatC was WAY better than I thought it would be and I’m curious if he’ll be able to come close to doing the same in this Triple Threat match.
Though, as soon as I read the words “Triple Threat”, something bothered me. I’m pretty sure that in WWE, Triple Threat matches are, on the whole, No Disqualification. You know what that means: random chairs, ladders, tables, and other weapons will be used. And to be honest, this match doesn’t need shoehorned hardcore nonsense. I truly think these three can have a fun and enjoyable match without relying on the token plunder and repeating tired tropes of using weapons unnecessarily.
Then again, the only way that stipulation can make this match better is if GUNTHER takes a ton of weapons shots and weapon bumps and still survives and retains his title. With Brock Lesnar possibly on his way out, WWE needs another monster. And who better do fill that role than the stiff Austrian who can turn a man’s chest into hamburger meat with a chop?
Winner and STILL WWE Intercontinental Champion: GUNTHER
Kristian: Banger time! This will be an outstanding, brutal contest and I’m really looking forward to it. The booking was (predictable yet) clever, sucking us in with a Fatal-5-Way #1 Contender’s Match and then a singles match between Sheamus and McIntyre to crown a definitive winner. Sheamus’s match with GUNTHER at Clash of the Castle was tremendous so adding McIntyre to the mix should take it to another level.
I have loved GUNTHER’s run as I/C Champ and he has faced opponents of all sizes and had great matches with them all (even the match with Madcap was okay!). However, in the back of my mind lingers the knowledge that Sheamus has never been I/C Champ and I think that fact might mean he wins. I’m happy for any of the three participants to walk away with the gold, but I’m leaning towards Sheamus.
Winner AND NEW Intercontinental Champion: Sheamus
John: If this is the night two opener then that would certainly be fine with me. I don’t think there’s a bad choice here. Gunther has been a dominant IC Champion since June and if he keeps the title longer to have a record-breaking IC Title reign then that is certainly fine with me. Drew McIntyre is one of my favorites in WWE that has been performing at a very high level for the last three years especially. Winning the IC Title again would be nice to see. Then there’s the Sheamus story that we all know well with him having the best match of his WWE career against Gunther at Clash at the Castle last September only to come up a bit short. Sheamus has never been IC Champion, so having him do it at WrestleMania would be huge for him as a major moment.
I like the Sheamus winning story, so I will be going with that. I think Gunther getting pinned is the right way to do it too because if you have Drew get pinned then it gives Gunther an out. However, considering how close Sheamus was to beating Gunther at Clash at the Castle, I would like to see Sheamus pin Gunther here. They can certainly push Gunther after he loses the IC Title since he’s a top heel that could challenge for the WWE/Universal Title very soon as well. Drew McIntyre is obviously a guy that can be a title challenger too. I just think Sheamus at 45 years old after 15 years in WWE finally winning the IC Title is a great story.
This match should be absolutely outstanding and I’m very much looking forward to seeing these hard-hitting Europeans having a “banger” match as usual.
Winner AND NEW Intercontinental Champion: Sheamus
Brock Lesnar vs. Omos
Joel: Not that interested but I think it will be better than people think it will be. I think Lesnar hitting the F5 is going to be a sight.
Winner: Brock Lesnar
Matthew: In the words of the immortal Vince Russo, I think “this is a swerve, bro.” I predict that Lesnar will quickly defeat Omos, before Bobby Lashley then comes out to once again challenge Lesnar. Lashley and Lesnar then will have a match, with the Hurt Business helping Lashley get the win and reuniting the group.
Winner: Brock Lesnar
Kelly: I’m sure this will be kept short and be one of the early matches as well. Lesnar has a plane to catch as well. Lesnar has been making Omos look like a threat, but I think the beast will slay Omos here. I don’t think Lesnar is quite done in WWE, but getting there.
Winner – Brock Lesnar
Alex: This match was Vince McMahon’s idea. No one besides him wanted this match. And despite all the shameless shilling and empty praise other WWE legends and veterans have given Omos, this isn’t going to be fun. Hell, it isn’t even going to be new or special. The entire point of this match is to see Lesnar lift a big man. The only problem is that he’s been doing that since 2002! You don’t even have to watch WrestleMania to see Lesnar do that. Just type the words “Brock Lesnar F-5” into YouTube and the first few results will show him doing that move to monsters like Mark Henry, Rikishi, or the Big Show. There, that’s the appeal of this match. If you were tuning in just to see Lesnar do that, I just saved you however much the WWE Network costs in whatever country you’re reading this from.
But if you’re still insistent on watching this match, please lower your expectations. I remember Omos vs. Lashley from last year’s WrestleMania and that match sucked. Lesnar might get a better performance out of Omos, but I’m not holding my breath.
Winner: Brock Lesnar
Kristian: I don’t hate this match. The fact that Lesnar isn’t going to squash Lashley or Bray Wyatt (where are you?) but wrestle against someone who isn’t very good sits alright with me. They’ve made Lesnar look vulnerable, which is exactly what they needed to do to sell the match. It’s worked. The interest in the match is whether Lesnar can suplex or get Omos up for an F5. That would be a spectacle and it’s intrigued the IWC. I think it will be a 5-6 minute match, where Omos will slap Lesnar around for a bit. Lesnar will try a few suplexes and fail, before breaking through with the F5 for the win. There are also rumours that Lesnar might be leaving after this, so maybe he puts Omos over. I don’t mind either way and certainly wouldn’t miss Lesnar if that were the case.
Winner: Brock Lesnar
John: I really don’t have a problem with this match. Brock Lesnar at 45 years old isn’t out there having 15-20 minute epic matches anymore. He is near the end of his career. Maybe he should put over Omos, who is nearly 20 years younger. However, I think the story is a simple one with Omos looking dominant for about five minutes, Lesnar being unable to hit his power moves and then Omos misses a move leading to Lesnar hitting a German Suplex on the 400+ pounder. Lesnar will hit an F5, which will be a viral moment that WWE pushes on social media and my friends that don’t watch wrestling will see it the next day. The visual of Brock hitting an F5 on Omos will be impressive. That’s why this match is happening. Keep it under five minutes and it’s fine with me.
Winner: Brock Lesnar
Hell in a Cell Match: Edge vs. “Demon” Finn Balor
Joel: This feud has been going on for a year now. I think it is time for both to move on but I’m looking forward to this match. Seeing The Demon as a heel against Brood Edge. The old Hell in a Cell returning. I think this will be a contender for match of the night. I think HHH respects The Demon character a lot more than Vince did. For that reason, I’m going with Balor here.
Winner: Finn Balor
Matthew: This match was made even more intriguing this week, with the announcement of Balor bringing back his “Demon” persona as well as Edge possibly being joined by his Brood partner Gangrel. Adding all of that to what will likely already be an incredible match with a really good story going in, makes this a possible show stealer. I expect both of these guys to go all out and do some crazy and dangerous stuff. As for who wins, I can’t imagine Balor losing as the “Demon” for the first time in the WWE to a guy who’s career is likely coming to an end soon. Therefore, I will go with Balor winning after a brutal and incredible match.
Winner: Finn Balor
Kelly: The WWE has done one thing right already with this match and bringing the original cell back for this match. I would expect Balor to bring out The Demon here. There have been some rumblings of possibly a Brood reunion to perhaps counter Judgment Day. That would be awesome if that does happen. Edge and Balor are both crazier than Nikki Cross and they are going to try to do some really insane things in the cell. This should be the true ending to this feud. Both Edge and Judgment Day need to move on to other things. Let’s hope both survive it.
Winner – Finn Balor
Alex: I must be the only wrestling fan on the planet not looking forward to this match. But I have good reason to: I really don’t think this will be a classic cell match, much less anything close to a MOTYC.
You see, WWE’s track record with Cell matches is spotty at best. There hasn’t been a truly great cell match since before 2008. That’s because that year, there was a HIAC match (which, coincidentally, featured Edge) that set the new standard for what a HIAC match is supposed to be.
Instead of creating this sense of claustrophobia, fear, and panic over being unable to escape, Cell matches have since become bait-and-switch hardcore matches.
When was the last time there was a HIAC match that actually included outside interference, or even attempted interference? When was the last time a cell match actually featured two people actually trying to end their blood feud with decisive finality instead of throwing together convoluted and clunky hardcore spots? When was the last time a HIAC match actually felt something wrestlers – and therefore the audience – should be afraid of? If it takes you more than ten seconds to answer these questions, you’ll understand why I’m so skeptical about this match, especially since, again, it features Edge in it, and Edge’s Cell matches are among the biggest bait-and-switches of them all.
I’m not saying all these negative things to dissuade you from watching the show; I’m saying all these negative things so that you won’t make the same mistakes I’ve made and get your hopes up only to end up disappointed in the end like I’ve been. This won’t be a classic; instead, it’ll be your token carnage fest and nothing more. Good, maybe great, but nothing outstanding.
Winner: Finn Balor
Kristian: It’s great to see Balor in a huge Mania match as he has certainly deserved it after his stellar heel work over the past year. Him joining the Judgement Day certainly made little sense at the time, bit since he’s replaced Edge as the leader he has been fantastic in the role. Even though the feud has been going for a long time, I haven’t tired of it.
They had a few Edge/Beth injury angles that bought them a few months, then Edge’s return breathed life into the feud again and now we have this massive match up inside the cell, which is usually a great blow-off match type. I think Edge finally gets his revenge and ends the rivalry here. It will be cool to see the ‘Demon’ persona of Finn Balor again.
John: The longest storyline of any WrestleMania match this year since it’s going back to last June when Balor and The Judgment Day attacked Edge. Since then, they have wrestled many times. I like seeing a Hell in a Cell match at a WrestleMania because it’s a match that deserves the cell due to the history between them. Balor is likely going to be in the “Demon” role again, so it will be cool to see that entrance in a WrestleMania setting. It is believed that Gangrel will be there with Edge for the Brood entrance, which will be a nice throwback as well.
In terms of the winner, the younger guy Balor makes sense although he’s in his early 40s while Edge turns 50 later this year. It might be Edge’s last WrestleMania if he retires later this year, but perhaps he’ll continue into next year. They should get plenty of time to have a great match. Story-wise, I think Edge winning makes more sense as payback for this long storyline although if Balor got the win then that’s certainly fine too.
Raw Women’s Championship: Bianca Belair (c) vs. Asuka
Joel: The build hasn’t been good, but I’ve enjoyed Asuka’s return to main event level. I think she will bring out the best in Bianca, who’s had classics the last two years at WrestleMania. I think Bianca retains. I just don’t think Asuka has enough momentum to end her reign yet.
Winner: Bianca Belair
Matthew: I like both of these women a lot, but the build for this match has been weak compared to many of the other matches on this card. Nevertheless, both of these women are capable of having an incredible match, and the in-ring work should be great. As for who wins this one, I will go with Asuka after she makes a full heel turn here.
Kelly: I was sure that this new Asuka was here to right the wrongs done to her and this was the first wrong to be righted, winning the title at WrestleMania. But, as I write this, I have a little bit of doubt. Belair is one of a very few women allowed a WrestleMania to WrestleMania title reign. She is also the longest-reigning black champion in WWE history. A well-deserved honor indeed. Backlash is going to be the first major event in Puerto Rico in 20 some years. I believe her reign lasting until then would break Becky Lynch’s title run record. An Asuka win there would be something special for the fans in Puerto Rico. I think Backlash will have several title changes so I’m sticking with my original answer here.
Winner – Asuka
Alex: This should be solid. Belair has been great and Asuka is excellent in the ring. Give these two women at least fifteen minutes and they should be able to do something great.
That said, I think this is the right time for a title change. Belair is a bit stale as a character and personality and I think that her run has gotten a bit boring as of late. She’s running the risk of becoming the female version of Roman Reigns: so dominant that she runs out of challengers and then no one wants to see her title defenses because the challengers aren’t built up well enough to be credible. If the RAW women’s division is going to succeed, there need to be credible challengers for the title. That’s why I think Asuka should win: she should beat Belair by making her pass out or by referee stoppage to show how brutal she is. If she wins in such a way, Belair will actually have a challenge to overcome, instead of going through the same bog-standard storytelling that has plagued her for months.
Winner and NEW RAW Women’s Champion: Asuka
Kristian: This is the second Women’s Championship match that I’m not really invested in this year. Asuka’s return has been great but again the dynamic feels off. Belair needs a full-blown heel to play off and Asuka is kind of in the tweener role, with a few heelish actions every so often. Clearly, WWE loves Belair as the face of the division and I see no reason for her to drop the title. It should be a really good match. I’m just not that into the storyline.
Winner AND STILL Raw Women’s Champion: Bianca Belair
John: The build has been just average. They weren’t even on the last Raw, but there were videos about both women. Asuka earned the title shot by winning Elimination Chamber and it’s a fresh rivalry. They were allies for most of last year too. Asuka has the face paint look now while having that mystery mist as part of her act as well, so she’s using that to get in Belair’s head a lot.
While I really like Asuka as a performer and she obviously did very well with Triple H booking her in NXT (she never lost a match there), I think Belair is going to retain. To me, I think they should have a strong heel as the one to beat Belair rather than this match without a strong build. Maybe if Asuka fully turns heel and becomes more dangerous then she can win, but it just doesn’t seem like the right time. I think they’ll have a great match that will get 15-20 minutes or even more than that. They should do very well together.
Winner: Bianca Belair
Undisputed WWE Universal Championship: Roman Reigns (c) vs. Cody Rhodes
Joel: The most important decision of the Triple H era. The most important decision in years In WWE. They could make their biggest babyface since John Cena by giving Cody Rhodes the win. It is what they should do. I’m just afraid they are going to be tempted to let Roman hit 1,000 days as Champion. Roman’s been great. The biggest star in the business but now is the time to give back. Make your “next” biggest star by giving Cody the victory.
Winner: Cody Rhodes
Matthew: Finally, we come this, the unquestionable main event of the evening and one of the biggest wrestling matches in years. Roman Reigns will put up his almost 1000-day reign as champion up against a man in Cody Rhodes who is trying to capture the one title his father never did. Rhodes has been killing it since returning from injury at the Royal Rumble, and has put to rest any worries that the crowd will not accept him over Sami Zayn in this spot. This feels like the time for Reigns to finally lose for the first time since 2019, and end The Bloodline once and for all. Therefore, I will go with Rhodes winning here, and WrestleMania ending with Cody, Zayn and Owens all celebrating with the titles.
Winner: Cody Rhodes
Kelly: What is there to say about this? This is the boss fight for Cody’s journey to the title. Rhodes has to win the title here. The lack of world championship opportunities will start hurting later in 2023, so a title change and split are in order. If Reigns beats Rhodes, there is literally nobody left and that’s a bad thing. The Bloodline is starting to show cracks, so it is time for them to stop holding the titles hostage and move on to the next phase of their story.
Winner – Cody Rhodes
Alex: I’m sure most if not all of my colleagues are going all in with Cody as the winner. I would too…if Cody had actually done anything to make him a credible threat to Roman Reigns.
Over the past few months, Cody has certainly done a lot of talking. He hyped up this match, did plenty of pointing to the WrestleMania sign, and has said whatever he can to tug at fans’ heart strings to strike an emotional chord to sell a ticket. But while he has said a lot, he hasn’t done much to convince me that he has a chance of winning.
Cody hasn’t beaten anyone special or important. He hasn’t shown that he’s undergoing any unique training or preparation ahead of his match. He hasn’t even sold the match as a big deal by saying he has counters ready for Reigns’ biggest moves or something special lined up just for Reigns.
WWE had a golden opportunity to have Cody beat some former world champions or people with great credibility to show that he stands a chance against Reigns. Instead, he’s going into this match at a severe disadvantage. It’s as if the creative decision was to handicap Cody even more so that his potential win would seem like a greater accomplishment. That sort of makes sense but it’s way too farfetched.
To that end, I’m making a bold prediction. Since WWE’s business isn’t impacted by the champion’s presence, I’m predicting that Reigns retains. Even though the entire story and build seems to support Cody winning, I have this odd hunch that WWE might not pull the trigger on this. Reigns is a bigger star by basically every metric. And since WWE is hellbent on breaking records and making him into a true legend, the company very well might book him to win just to continue his historic reign.
Maybe WWE has something big planned for WrestleMania that isn’t what we all think it is. Whatever the case, there are too many gaps in how Cody’s story has been told for him to have earned his fairytale ending.
Winner and STILL Undisputed WWE Universal Champion: Roman Reigns
Kristian: It all started with a Reigns heel turn in August 2020. What a masterstroke that was, but so long overdue. I could not stand Reigns as a babyface. He was so robotic, pushed down our throats to Cena of mid-2000s levels and his moveset was also Cena-esque. However, all that changed at SummerSlam 2020, when he returned and then soon aligned with Paul Heyman. Since then, it’s been masterful storytelling with his family in the Bloodline, matched with high-quality encounters against the company’s top baby faces. Even the little things, such as facial expressions, that seemed lost on him during his face work are something that I’ve noticed have improved significantly during his time as a heel. Reigns looks fully invested in his work (despite not being at work very often!) and we have all benefited from that. However, this ‘reign’ will end on Sunday night as the Golden Boy of WWE caps his stunning return by capturing the gold.
There’s been some fierce discussion online this week about the outcome of this match. For a number of us, we feel the match result has been set in stone since Cody Rhodes made his return and defeated Seth Rollins at last year’s WrestleMania. For me, even though part of me was leaning towards Zayn vs. Reigns at Mania, Rhodes receiving the big spot in the Rumble and then winning it consolidated for me that he was going to be the one to take down the Tribal Chief. Reigns will take time off and reset, then he might come back and have a program with Jey Uso that they never seemed to finish at the end of 2020.
Reigns won’t be hurt by a loss here, but I fully believe that Cody’s momentum and appeal as a babyface will be shattered if he doesn’t win on Sunday night. This is the opportunity to launch the next babyface mega-star for the next five years and Triple H would be remiss to let that chance slip away. I expect a stellar contest and Cody Rhodes overcoming the odds to become the Man.
Winner AND NEW Undisputed WWE Champion: Cody Rhodes
John: I’m very excited for this match. A lot more than last year’s WrestleMania main event with Roman Reigns facing Brock Lesnar. That wasn’t fresh at all, but this match is very fresh and I think we’re going to get a happy outcome because I’m going with Cody Rhodes winning the Undisputed WWE Universal Title.
It’s not the first time I have picked Roman Reigns to lose during his nearly 1,000 days as the WWE Universal Champion and since he added the WWE Title at last year’s WrestleMania as well. It just feels like the right time against the right guy. I believe in Cody Rhodes.
The story with Roman’s title defenses is that so many of them have been cheap. He got help from The Usos and Solo Sikoa constantly. I think what needs to happen in this match is we need to see The Usos try to cheat for Roman again, but Sami Zayn & Kevin Owens should take them out. When Solo Sikoa tries to interfere, somebody needs to take him out too. The story should be that Roman’s allies got neutralized and in a one-on-one setting, Cody is better. That’s how you put over Cody the right way in the WrestleMania main event. If Roman wins, I guess we’ll just keep going on the path we have been on, but I think that’s the wrong decision. As I said, Cody is the right guy at the right time and that’s my pick.
I think they’ll go 20+ minutes. They might get nearly 30 minutes and that’s not even counting the very long entrances either. It should be one of the best matches at WrestleMania and one of the best matches of the year too. I’m very excited to see it as a fan of both guys and as somebody that has written so much about this journey to get to this match. I’m ready for it.
Winner AND NEW Undisputed WWE Universal Champion: Cody Rhodes
The Match I’m Looking Forward To The Most
Joel: Roman Reigns vs Cody Rhodes.
Matthew: Roman Reigns vs Cody Rhodes.
Kelly: The Usos vs. Sami Zayn & Kevin Owens
Alex: GUNTHER vs. Sheamus vs. Drew McIntyre. Töte sie beide, herr GUNTHER! Töte sie beide!
Kristian: Roman Reigns vs Cody Rhodes. It feels like a WrestleMania main event to me.
John: Roman Reigns vs Cody Rhodes.
The Match I Care About The Least
Joel: Brock Lesnar vs. Omos.
Matthew: Either of the 4-Way Tag Matches.
Kelly: Brock Lesnar vs. Omos.
Alex: Either of the 4-Way Tag Matches.
Kristian: Either of the Fatal-4-Ways.
John: Women’s 4-Way tag team match.
Joel: Edge vs. Finn Balor.
Matthew: Edge vs. Finn Balor.
Kelly: Roman Reigns vs. Cody Rhodes.
Alex: Roman Reigns vs. Cody Rhodes.
Kristian: Reigns vs. Rhodes just ahead of HIAC.
John: Roman Reigns vs. Cody Rhodes.
Joel: Brock Lesnar vs Omos might be over before the smoke clears from Lesnar’s pyro.
Matthew: Brock Lesnar vs Omos.
Kelly: Brock Lesnar vs Omos.
Alex: Brock Lesnar vs. Omos (3-4 minutes, please).
Kristian: Brock Lesnar vs Omos.
John: Brock Lesnar vs Omos.
Excitement Level on a Scale of 1-10 (1 being low, 10 being high)
Joel: 9. On paper, this looks to be one of the, if not the, greatest WrestleMania ever. Several well built stories like The Bloodline/Kevin/Sami/Cody or Dominik/Rey, Balor/Edge. Yeah, there’s Brock and Omos but 5 minutes out of my day ain’t going to kill me. I wish the women were built better but look at the card. There are 18 women booked for this show. I consider that a win in my book. Hopefully the show ends the way it should but regardless, I’m optimistic this will be better than last year’s show (which was great), and probably a top 5 WrestleMania if the right matches get the right amount of time. Looking forward to writing about it and watching both nights.
Matthew: 10 – This is WrestleMania, damnit! Add to the usual excitement that the card is stacked with great matches with awesome storylines and you have the making of a truly memorable show that I cannot wait to watch!
Kelly: 9. It is a really solid card and I’m sure it will deliver as expected. I think we will make some new stars on “The grandest stage of them all”. WrestleMania will be special again.
Alex: 8. WrestleMania should be great. I just hope that the company trims down on some of the pageantry and filler between matches because I don’t want to watch two four-hour-plus shows. There are fewer matches overall, so hopefully that will lead to more action and less filler.
Kristian: 8.5 – It’s WrestleMania, so you have to be excited. Initially, I was worried that two nights of Mania would be overkill but now I prefer it. It allows for more big moments (four headline matches not one) and the match length that wrestlers deserve at a WrestleMania. I think the quality and grandeur of the main event overshadows some of the worries I had for the undercard and WrestleMania will again be a momentous occasion in LA.
John: I’m going with an 8.5 out of 10. It should be a great show with numerous matches hitting the four-star plus level that means they are going to be outstanding and when you have a few of them, that means it’s an entertaining two nights overall. I love two nights of WrestleMania because it’s better than writing for six or seven hours straight. I like separating it to two nights and I think the talent probably likes it better too. Plus, WWE gets to sell over 130,000 tickets over two nights, so I’m sure they LOVE it also. Anyway, I’m excited about Cody-Roman, the Usos vs. Zayn/Owens, the IC Title triple threat match and more. Bring it on.
John: I’ll be back with a review of WWE WrestleMania 39 on TJRWrestling.net on Saturday and Sunday night, so check that out live or any time after it’s over. You can also tweet me @johnreport as well.
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