WrestleMania 37 in 2021 was a big deal because it was the first time WWE was in front of a big crowd of fans for the first time in over a year. They also went with the two night concept for the second year in a row.
This post is a combination of my two WrestleMania reviews from Saturday, April 10 and Sunday, April 11. It’s a convenient way to wrap up all of Wrestlemania 37 into one post. The final rating you see at the bottom is my score out of 10 that is the combination of both nights. I am not adding 2022 thoughts. I’m just keeping in the full 16,000+ (wow!) word review.
As a reminder, I have a listing of every WWE PPV that I have reviewed in order by year. Thank you for supporting us at TJRWrestling all year long. We appreciate you. Let’s get to the show.
WWE WrestleMania 37 – Night 1
From Raymond James Stadium in Tampa Bay, Florida
Saturday, April 10, 2021
The show began with WWE Chairman Vince McMahon on the stage with the majority of the roster on the stage standing behind him. Vince said that for the past year they have been performing without something important and that would be you, the fans. Vince said thank you to the fans and welcomed us to WrestleMania in that classic Vince “welcome to WrestleMania” yell. Some of the wrestlers on the stage were people in matches on Sunday too, so it wasn’t just the talent on tonight’s show. The fans popped big for it.
Analysis: Great way to start the show. I love hearing Vince McMahon’s classic “welcome to WrestleMania” line that we have heard so many times over the last 37 years. We missed seeing the fans, but I guarantee you Vince and the wrestlers missed the crowds more than us. They feed off those reactions.
Bebe Rexha was in the ring singing America The Beautiful with a guitarist beside her. The WWE talent remained on the stage for it. I don’t know much about this Bebe Rexha woman that sang America the Beautiful but based on her outfit she probably earned some new fans.
They had a cold open video package hyping up WrestleMania. Good stuff as usual. There were pirate ship references and stuff like that since it is home to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. That’s fine. They even had two different voiceover guys, so it was pretty creative.
The show was about to begin and Michael Cole was at ringside letting us know there was going to be a weather delay. It wasn’t raining, but there’s a threat of storms coming again, so there’s a delay. That’s a first. Cole said that they had to settle things down for just a little bit. Cole didn’t specify how long the delay would be and said it would be a “few moments” which isn’t very specific. Cole said that they would have interviews with some superstars.
Shane McMahon was interviewed by Sarah Schreiber in the backstage area. Shane did his usual talk about how stupid Braun Strowman is.
Bobby Lashley, the WWE Champion, and MVP showed up, so Shane left. MVP said that he told Drew it’s all over at WrestleMania. MVP said that he told Drew he would lose dignity, consciousness and he’ll lose the match. Drew McIntyre walked into the picture and MVP was standing between them. Drew said that nothing was going to stop him. The two men were separated by WWE Official Jamie Noble and referee Jessika Carr. Drew said he was on the stage finally seeing fans for the first time in a year, he was a bit emotional and composed himself. Drew talked about how it was amazing to win the WWE Title at the Performance Center and the ThunderDome, but he was so happy to be in front of the fans again. Drew said he didn’t care if they had to fight backstage because they are having this match.
They went to Kayla Braxton, John Bradshaw Layfield and Peter Rosenberg on the set where they were for the Kickoff Show.
The New Day’s Kofi Kingston and Xavier Woods are the Raw Tag Team Champions that were interviewed by Kevin Patrick. Kofi said that they like to fight the best while wondering if AJ Styles & Omos are an actual team. Woods said that they are not scared of a guy that’s huge like Omos because they signed up for this. While Woods was talking, Big E showed up behind them to join his New Day buddies. Big E defends the Intercontinental Title on Night 2 against Apollo Crews.
When it was back to Cole, Saxton and Joe at ringside, there were no fans behind them. They were all cleared out. Earlier when they were on camera, the fans were there. The delay continued.
Braun Strowman was interviewed backstage by Sarah Schreiber. It was the usual Braun promo talking about how he was going to beat Shane McMahon and do it for everybody that was ever called “stupid” the way that Shane calls Braun “stupid.” Strowman kept on talking about how he was doing this for the people that have ever been called stupid in their lives.
Kevin Owens was about to be interviewed by Kevin Patrick. Owens took the microphone talking about how he first met Sami Zayn in December 2002 and they got along so well. Owens said that they once wrestled in front of 23 people in his hometown of Marieville and they have wrestled all over the world in places of New York. Owens said that they have wrestled hundreds of times. Owens said that they were both told that they could never make it to a place like this, but tomorrow night they will get to do this match at WrestleMania. Owens said that he will stun some sense right back into Sami Zayn and if Logan Paul wants to try something, KO will be in the ring.
Michael Cole and Samoa Joe were in rain jackets with Cole saying that they were told that in about five minutes, they will be ready to begin.
Bianca Belair was interviewed backstage by Sarah Schreiber. Belair said that she is nervous, but she is not scared and she stays ready. Belair said that Sasha Banks calls herself the best, but Bianca is going to prove that she is the B-E-S-T. Bianca said that the best part is that they have the fans back, this is more about them and it’s all about the fans.
Seth Rollins was interviewed by Kevin Patrick with Rollins saying he loved the chaos. Rollins kept calling the interviewer “Mike” and didn’t like that he kept on bringing up Cesaro. Rollins said that “Zazarow” was disrespecting him time after time. Rollins said what will happen when the storm clears, the stars will shine down on Rollins because he is the new Mr. WrestleMania and he’ll prove it once again when he trounces “Zazarow” at WrestleMania.
The Miz and John Morrison were interviewed by Sarah Schreiber. Morrison had on some “drip drip” sunglasses. Morrison ripped on Priest and Bad Bunny while Miz said that they were the greatest team of the 21st century.
The trio of Kayla, Peter and JBL let us know that they made the announcement in the stadium that the show is ready to go.
That led to a video package for Bobby Lashley vs. Drew McIntyre as the opening match for the WWE Championship.
The announce team of Michael Cole, Byron Saxton and Samoa Joe were back at ringside with the fans getting back to their seats. The weather threat has passed and the show is ready to begin.
(The weather delay is edited out of the WWE Network/Peacock version of WrestleMania 37. I decided to leave all of it in so people can read about what WWE did during the delay.)
It’s 8:34pm ET as the show began with the co-hosts of WrestleMania being introduced – Titus O’Neil and Hulk Hogan.
Titus O’Neil welcomed us to Raymond James Stadium and his city of Tampa Bay. The fans were loud popping for the words. O’Neil said that rain, sleet or snow, it doesn’t matter because the WWE Universe has that energy. Titus said for one year, one month and one day, they are back in business live. Hogan said he didn’t think they hurt Titus, so Titus did it again and he had a lot of energy. Hogan said that they are going to make history tonight and tomorrow night. O’Neil said they won’t kick it off with any match, they are kicking it off with the WWE Championship on the line. Hogan did one of his promos talking about Bobby Lashley and Drew McIntyre. Hogan did his “Whatcha gonna do” line and they mentioned the Hulkamaniacs running wild as usual.
Analysis: That was fine. There were some boos for Hogan in there I think, but not that loud although it was definitely there for a few seconds. I’m just saying some people don’t like the guy.
Drew McIntyre made his entrance as the challenger of the WWE Championship match. Drew had his store that he planted onto the stage and the pyro went off. Big pop for Drew as the first superstar to enter the ring in front of a WWE crowd in over one year. God damn it sounds great to hear the fans again. Drew got more pyro when he got in the ring. Drew had a big smile on his face in the ring. You can tell how much he loved being in there with a crowd again.
Bobby Lashley made his entrance as the WWE Champion with Montel Vontavious Porter joining him in a suit. Lashley got some pyro when he got into the ring. Ring announcer Mike Rome was in the ring to do the championship introductions.
The announcers for the match were Michael Cole replacing Tom Phillips along with Raw’s Samoa Joe and Byron Saxton. Phillips apparently is missing because of COVID-related protocols.
The bell rang for the first match at 8:45pm ET. That’s about 35 minutes later than they likely wanted it to be.
WWE Championship: Bobby Lashley (w/Montel Vontavious Porter) vs. Drew McIntyre
They locked up with a tight headlock early on with Lashley breaking free and hitting a shoulder tackle. McIntyre did a belly-to-belly suplex across the ring followed by a bit of a hand gesture. The announce team was standing up at ringside instead of sitting in their chairs. Lashley with a double fist thrust to the throat and then McIntyre delivered a clothesline that sent Lashley over the top to the floor. Some familiar WWE fans were around ringside including green shirt guy and the fans were wearing masks. Lashley was able to get control by tossing McIntyre into the barricade two times. Back in the ring, Lashley with a shoulder tackle and then a neckbreaker for just a one count. Lashley shoved McIntyre back first into the turnbuckle, then Lashley charged, Drew moved and Lashley went shoulder first into the turnbuckle. McIntyre with a jumping knee attack into the left arm and then an armbar on the left arm, but Lashley came back with punches to break free. Lashley with repeated shoulder tackles to the ribs while up against the turnbuckle. McIntyre came back with two clotheslines, then Drew ducked a clothesline and a belly-to-belly suplex across the ring. McIntyre with another overhead belly to belly suplex followed by a neckbreaker with the fans popping when McIntyre got back up with a kip-up. Lashley blocked a DDT by shoving McIntyre to the turnbuckle. McIntyre with an elbow to the face and then a Northern Lights Suplex for two. Lashley took control with a suplex, then Bobby had McIntyre on his shoulders and a spinning slam to the mat. McIntyre with a headbutt, but Lashley came back with a huge spinebuster for two. Lashley went for the Hurt Lock submission, McIntyre fought out of that and they exchanged elbows. McIntyre had Lashley on his back and flipped him over with a reverse Alabama Slam for a two count. McIntyre set up Lashley on the turnbuckle and Lashley was able to block a superplex attempt, so McIntyre slapped on a wrist lock. Lashley punched his way out of it, McIntyre was upside down and Drew popped up to slam Bobby down. Drew has done that many times before. McIntyre charged right into a spinebuster from Lashley. The fans were booing the heel WWE Champion Lashley. McIntyre kipped up again and said “bring it, bitch.”
They exchanged punches with McIntyre coming back with another belly-to-belly suplex and a Future Shock DDT. McIntyre hit a second Future Shock DDT and McIntyre picked up Lashley again with a third Future Shock DDT that was only good for a two count. That is not Drew’s finisher, but three big secondary moves in a row looked pretty good. The fans chanted “this is awesome” for them. McIntyre set up for the Claymore Kick, but Lashley fell to the mat with MVP pulling him out of the ring. McIntyre followed up with a somersault dive over the top onto Lashley/MVP on the floor! Huge pop for that move. Cole called Drew a “265-pound airbus taking flight” which is a good call. The fans loved that. Back in the ring, McIntyre jumped off the top and Lashley caught him with a suplex across the ring followed by a flatliner. Lashley called for McIntyre to get up as the fans booed Bobby and Lashley went for the Hurt Lock, but McIntyre flexed his way out of it and sent Lashley into the top turnbuckle. McIntyre charged and he countered a spinebuster attempt into a kimura lock submission on the left arm. The fans were wanting Lashley to tap, but Lashley was able to crawl to the bottom rope to force the break. Lashley and McIntyre got into a slugfest with Lashley sending McIntyre into the turnbuckle. McIntyre with a kick to the face followed by a headbutt. MVP was screaming at McIntyre to cause a distraction and Lashley managed to avoid a Claymore Kick attempt. Lashley slapped on the Hurt Lock submission with Drew going down to one knee and then Drew got back and kicked off the ropes, but Lashley did not let go of the Hurt Lock submission. McIntyre was fading on the mat and Lashley held onto the Hurt Lock. The referee called for the bell, so Lashley retains the WWE Championship! It went 18:20. The fans were booing Lashley’s win because they wanted a McIntyre win.
Winner by submission: Bobby Lashley
Analysis: **** This was a strong opener. I thought this was a great match between two heavyweights that move around the ring so well for guys their size. They worked their asses off, built up to the big moments well and the crowd was into everything. McIntyre sold everything very well including the final move. I thought McIntyre was going to win because they kept on building to him hitting the Claymore Kick and it never happened due in part to MVP distracting McIntyre enough that Lashley was able to capitalize. Lashley’s reign continues, which is cool because he can be a dominant heel champion that WWE can build around on Raw. I’m not sure what’s next for Drew and that’s okay, but I think he’ll be fine whether he’s in the title picture or not.
Bobby Lashley celebrated with MVP while the announcers talked about how tough it will be to beat Lashley for the title.
Bayley appeared backstage to talk to Hulk Hogan with NWO members Kevin Nash, Scott Hall and Sean Waltman along with Titus O’Neil. I was writing about the previous match, so I didn’t catch it all. I think the idea was Bayley wanted to help Hulk and Titus out as the hosts.
There were commercials for a few minutes. I’m not recapping commercials.
The women’s tag team turmoil match is up next. Corey Graves joined Michael Cole for commentary for this match. It’s the team of Naomi & Lana vs. Carmella & Billie Kay up first. That’s bad for Naomi & Lana prediction, I think. Cole and Graves were seated at the commentary table, so that’s good after Cole had to stand up for the last match.
Women’s Tag Team Turmoil Match #1: Naomi & Lana vs. Carmella & Billie Kay
Lana with double knees to the back of Carmella and then Carmella did a head whip into the mat. Kay tagged in and Lana took her down with a legsweep. Naomi tagged in, she kicked Kay down and Naomi jumped off the ropes with a kick to the head. Lana completely missed a kick with Kay still selling it and the announcers tried to cover for it. Double team head whip into the mat by Naomi and Lana. Carmella broke up a pin attempt. Kay got a rollup on Naomi and Carmella had her feet on the back of Kay for support, so that was enough to win. I’ll have a rating for the end of the match.
Naomi & Lana were eliminated.
Women’s Tag Team Turmoil Match #2: Carmella & Billie Kay vs. Ruby Riott & Liv Morgan
Morgan was aggressive with a running dropkick as soon as she got into the ring. The heels took over with Carmella hitting a superkick leading to Kay getting a two count. Kay kicked Riott off the apron. Kay got a rollup on Morgan with Carmella trying to cheat again, but the referee saw it and stopped it. Morgan with double knees to Kay and then Riott hit a senton splash onto Kay (who was on Morgan’s knees) for the pinfall win. After losing the match, Carmella kicked Morgan with a cheap shot.
Carmella & Billie Kay were eliminated.
Women’s Tag Team Turmoil Match #3: Ruby Riott & Liv Morgan vs. Dana Brooke & Mandy Rose
Mandy Rose slipped on the ramp on her way to the ring because there was some water on there. Oops. She was okay when she got to the ring. Brooke with a running knee on Riott and Brooke hit a Blockbuster neckbreaker for a two count. Brooke hit a spinning neckbreaker on Riott for a two count. Riott came back with a nearfall on Rose. Morgan tagged in with a step up enziguri on Rose and Morgan jumped onto Mandy’s back for a two count. Riott back, Morgan with a double knee and Riott hit a Riott Kick for a pin with Brooke breaking it up. Morgan was back in with Rose sending her into the turnbuckle and hitting a shoulder tackle. Morgan with an overhead slam on Riott. Morgan to the turnbuckle, Rose went after her, Brooke tagged in and Rose hit a superplex off the middle ropes. Brooke jumped off the top with a Senton Bomb on Morgan for two and then Morgan turned it into an inside cradle for the pinfall. Ring announcer Greg Hamilton said Riott Squad was eliminated and then he did a correction.
Mandy Rose & Dana Brooke were eliminated.
Women’s Tag Team Turmoil Match #4: Ruby Riott & Liv Morgan vs. Natalya & Tamina
This is the last match in Tag Team Turmoil. The heel team of Natalya & Tamia were dominant right away with Natalya hitting a Powerbomb on Morgan for a two count, but Riott managed to save Morgan. Tamina with repeated knees to Morgan and then Morgan fought back with punches. Riott got the tag with Morgan sending Riott into Tamina and Riott hit a shoulder tackle. Morgan with a double knee attack on Riott and Riott hit another senton splash off the top with Liv getting a two count on Tamina. Tamina delivered a superkick to Morgan and she kicked Riott down. Natalya was back in with a Hart Attack double team clothesline made famous by the Hart Foundation. Natalya teased a Sharpshooter and then told Tamina to tag in, so Tamina got the tag. Tamina jumped up off the top with a Superfly Splash and Tamina pinned Riott to get the pinfall win. That’s it for Tag Team Turmoil after 14:15.
Ruby Riott & Liv Morgan were eliminated.
Winners: Natalya & Tamina
Analysis: *3/4 The match was below average. They got through it although in terms of fan reaction, the crowd was dead quiet for a lot of it. The heel duo of Natalya & Tamina getting the win thanks to countering the babyface energy of Ruby Riott & Liv Morgan. The crowd wasn’t that interested in the match that much, but they clearly wanted Ruby and Liv to win. Some of the earlier teams barely got any reaction from the crowd. Part of that is because the match wasn’t built up that well, so it was tough to get into it. They might have Natalya & Tamina win the titles since Tamina hasn’t won a title in her WWE career, so it would be a way to get a title on her after being in WWE for over a decade. I know fans don’t like Tamina that much, but she is well respected by her peers.
The win means that Natalya & Tamina will challenge Shayna Baszler & Nia Jax for the Women’s Tag Team Titles. They showed Shayna and Nia watching on a TV backstage.
There were some commercials for a few minutes.
Seth Rollins made his entrance for the third match of the night. They showed a video that aired on Smackdown that was Rollins doing a political ad-style video trashing Cesaro. There was a pretty good ovation for Cesaro, which is good to hear since he turned face a few months ago and you don’t know how the crowd is going to react. There was a replay from two months ago when Cesaro gave Rollins the Cesaro Swing 22 times in the ring.
Seth Rollins vs. Cesaro
Cesaro was the aggressor early on until Rollins pulled Cesaro’s arm against the top rope. Cesaro with a dropkick while Rollins was on the top rope. Rollins came back with a Buckle Bomb for two. Cesaro with uppercuts, Rollins managed to block and sent Cesaro to the apron. Rollins went up top and hit a superplex off the top into a Falcon Arrow slam for two. Cesaro with a backslide for two, then Cesaro with repeated uppercuts and Graves talked about how they are friends that traveled together for so many years. Cesaro with a running uppercut on Rollins against both turnbuckles. Cesaro hit a discus clothesline likely as a tribute to Luke Harper/Brodie Lee and that got a two count. Cesaro teased going for the Cesaro Swing, but Rollins was able to get to the ropes and Rollins hit a step up enziguri. Cesaro managed to get a hold of Rollins leading to the Cesaro Swing. There were nine swings by Cesaro, who was selling the right arm injury and then Cesaro went for the Sharpshooter, but Rollins managed to get to the bottom rope to break the hold. The fans chanted “one more time” wanted the swing again. Rollins with a back drop out of the Neutralizer, Rollins moved and Cesaro’s uppercut hit the turnbuckle so Cesaro hurt his right arm again. Rollins with a springboard knee to the face followed by a Slingblade neckbreaker. Rollins jumped off the top and hit a Corkscrew Frog Splash for a two count! That was impressive. The replay made it look even better. Rollins went for a move, Cesaro flipped out of it and Cesaro hit a Neutralizer for just a two count. That is Cesaro’s finisher, so Cesaro was shocked that it didn’t win the match. Cesaro went for the Neutralizer again, but Rollins flipped out of that and Rollins hit a Pedigree (his finishing move in the past) for a two count. The fans were really getting into the match now after those two nearfalls.
Rollins trash-talked Cesaro saying he survived the Neutralizer and The Swing, so Rollins said he was a God. Rollins with a forearm to the back of the head. Rollins went for a running knee, Cesaro ducked and Rollins kicked him to knock Cesaro down. Rollins set up for The Stomp, but Cesaro went up with an uppercut. Cesaro spun Rollins around on his shoulders in a move he calls the UFO. Cesaro applied the Cesaro Swing with the crowd chanting along for every spin as Cesaro spun Rollins around for 23 swings. Cesaro hit the Neutralizer in the middle of the ring and got the pinfall win at 11:40. Big pop from the crowd for the win.
Winner by pinfall: Cesaro
Analysis: **** This was an excellent match for the time given with Cesaro picking up the win just as he should have done. The story made sense to have Cesaro pick up the win since it was his first singles match at a WrestleMania. I like how Cesaro was favoring the right arm injury early on, he kept on fighting through it and selling it the whole way. They did some smart nearfalls with Cesaro getting a two count with a Neutralizer and then Rollins got a two count with a Pedigree. Rollins never managed to hit The Stomp during the match, but I really liked that spot with Cesaro countering it leading to an uppercut. From there, Cesaro took over and a second Neutralizer got him the win. I would have liked to see them get more than 12 minutes, but I am happy that they had a fast-paced match and it was full of action. I just think if they got another five minutes it could have been a more classic match. The advantage of going “only” 12 minutes is that they didn’t do a lot of rest holds and there was a lot of action. I enjoyed it a lot.
Cesaro celebrated the win in a big way with the crowd popping big for him. Cesaro was pointing to all four sides of the ring and the fans were cheering them loudly. Graves correctly said that the fans were cheering for Cesaro and he’s sure the locker room was as well because everybody respects Cesaro so much.
Analysis: That reaction for Cesaro was tremendous. As I said earlier, I didn’t know how the fans were going to react to him, but I’m glad they showed him a lot of love.
They showed a clip from Smackdown with Jey Uso winning the Andre the Battle Royal. Shinsuke Nakamura was the runner up. Also, Dolph Ziggler & Robert Roode retained the Smackdown Tag Team Titles in a Fatal 4-Way match.
Dolph Ziggler and Robert Roode were interviewed backstage by Kayla Braxton. They had their Smackdown Tag Team Titles. Ziggler and Roode bragged about how good they look with their titles. They were asked about New Day’s match vs. AJ Styles/Omos and they gave some heel answers in reply.
Big E was on the stage to do the New Day introduction for his buddies Kofi Kingston and Xavier Woods as the Raw Tag Team Champions. Big E was wearing the Intercontinental Title.
AJ Styles entered with Omos, who was dressed in a dress shirt and black pants rather than any kind of wrestling gear. Omos is 7’3” and a legit giant that has been under WWE contract for a few years, so now we get to see his in-ring debut in WWE.
Raw Tag Team Championships: The New Day (Xavier Woods & Kofi Kingston) vs. AJ Styles & Omos
AJ Styles started with Kofi Kingston with AJ doing a headscissors. Omos was wrestling in a tight tank top rather than being shirtless. Styles and Kofi did an exchange of moves with Styles grabbing a headlock. After Kingston broke free, he brought in Woods and Woods slapped on a headlock while telling us that they were cutting the ring in half. New Day did their unicorn stampede repeated kicks on Styles. Woods controlled Styles with a headlock for about one minute with Omos nearly tagging in. Kingston was back in for a double team bulldog. Styles tried to tag out, Kingston was blocking him from doing it and Styles ran around the ring. Woods got the tag and knocked Styles out of the ring again. Woods dropkicked Styles into the barricade. Kingston was back in with a double foot stomp to the chest for two. Styles nearly tagged in, legal man Woods stopped him repeatedly and Styles kicked Woods into the corner. Kingston was back in with a Frog Splash off the top rope onto AJ’s back for a two count. New Day kept on taunting Omos while they isolated Styles. Woods tagged in, Styles knocked Kofi out of the ring and Omos got the tag against Woods. The crowd popped for Omos because there was such a long build for this as Woods faced off with Omos. Woods with kicks to the legs and a dropkick with Omos no selling it. Kingston tagged in, he jumped off the top and Omos blocked a clothesline. Omos tossed Kingston down by the arm. New Day were stunned as they stared up at Omos, who tossed Kingston into the turnbuckle. Omos with a running back elbow smashes on both guys against the turnbuckle. Omos did a backbreaker across the knee and then the claw on the face of Woods. Omos got a hold of Kingston and gave him a backbreaker. Styles jumped off the shoulders of Omos and hit a Phenomenal Forearm on Woods. That was a cool spot. Omos picked up Kingston and gave him a two-handed Chokeslam. Styles told Omos to pin with one foot, so Omos put his foot on Kingston to cover for the pinfall win. The match went 9:45.
Winners by pinfall AND NEW Raw Tag Team Champions: AJ Styles & Omos
Analysis: **1/2 It was just an average match and that’s okay because it was about the story. I liked what they did with Styles isolated from his partner, then Styles finally got the tag and Omos had a dominant “rookie” performance by destroying both New Day guys easily because he’s such a big guy. I liked the Phenomenal Forearm spot by Styles off the shoulders of Omos. The finish worked too with Omos hitting a huge move followed by a pin with one foot. I like how it was booked although the heel team being cheered a bit isn’t what WWE likely wanted, but that was the smart way to do it.
Post match, Styles and Omos celebrated with the titles. Omos put AJ on his shoulders and AJ had the titles with him.
There were several commercials that aired including the WWE 2K22 video game coming soon.
Sasha Banks was shown backstage getting ready for the main event.
The Steel Cage was being lowered above the ring. That led to the Shane McMahon vs. Braun Strowman video package. That led to my bathroom break.
Shane McMahon made his entrance first. Braun Strowman was next and he got a pretty good reaction from the crowd. They popped for the big guy. As Strowman nearly got into the cage, Shane held onto the door for a bit. That led to Elias and Jaxson Ryker attacking Strowman from behind with chair shots. Elias and Ryker attacked Strowman with chair shots to the left leg, so Strowman was dealing with a knee injury.
Steel Cage Match: Braun Strowman vs. Shane McMahon
The ways to win a WWE Steel Cage Match are pinfall, submission, climb over the top to the floor or walk out the door. Jerry Lawler joined the commentary team for this match.
Shane kept Strowman down with repeated chair shots to the back and the left knee. Strowman managed to block a chair shot. When Shane tried to leave, Strowman stopped him. Shane delivered some punches, but Strowman got a hold of him and tossed him across the ring. Shane climbed up the side of the ring and grabbed a piece of sheet metal that was on the cage. Shane hit Strowman with the sheet metal to the back and to the head, but Strowman kicked out of a pin attempt. Shane tried to get out the door, Strowman stopped him and whipped Shane into the cage two times. Strowman with an uppercut punch to the face. Strowman hit a running splash on Shane against the steel cage. Strowman with a powerful punch to the chest to knock Shane down. Strowman lifted Shane up, then Strowman went back to selling the injured left leg and Shane shoved Strowman into the cage three times. Shane jumped up and hit a leaping DDT. Shane went up top and hit the Coast to Coast dropkick on Strowman for a two count. That was impressive by Shane at 51 years old. Shane climbed up the side of the cage with Ryker and Elias there to help him out, but Strowman countered that by doing a shoulder tackle into the cage to knock everybody down. That was a clever spot. Shane was back up to the top of the cage and Shane managed to grab a toolbox that was in some bag that was on top of the cage. Shane hit Strowman in the head with Braun bumping back into the ring. Shane was on the outside of the cage and he was halfway down. Shane was waving at Strowman, who got back up and grabbed Shane by the head. Strowman ripped off part of the cage and got a hold of Shane in the ring. Strowman beat up Shane with punches to the body. The fans were cheering for Strowman. Strowman lifted Shane up to the top of the cage with Braun going to the top of the cage with him. Strowman picked up Shane so that they were standing on the cage. Braun: “WHO’S STUPID NOW?” Braun tossed Shane off the cage into the ring. That was a huge bump by Shane in the ring. Strowman could have climbed down the cage to win the match, but he went back into the ring. Strowman said this is for every person that has ever been called stupid. Strowman picked up Shane and walked him around the ring leading to a Running Powerslam for the pinfall win at 12:02.
Winner by pinfall: Braun Strowman
Analysis: **3/4 It was a dominant win for Strowman in a match that went longer than most of us probably didn’t see coming. I thought the story worked pretty well with the cheap attack before the match to weaken Strowman by giving him a knee injury and then Strowman was able to make the big comeback. We all knew Shane was going to take a big bump and that’s what happened when he took that slam off the top rope and landed hard into the ring. I thought they would find a way to incorporate a table into the match so that Strowman could throw Shane through a table in a big spot. Anyway, what they did worked and the fans were solidly behind Strowman, so that’s what matters. This was probably the most predictable match on the entire WrestleMania card. Strowman winning was the right call.
Strowman left triumphantly and the fans popped for the big man. Shane was getting helped by referees in the ring.
Analysis: I can see Strowman going after Bobby Lashley for the WWE Title after this. It makes sense to me since it’s a fresh feud.
There were some commercials.
There was an incredible pyro display to pop the crowd some more.
Michael Cole and the announce team were about to introduce the Hall of Fame class. Bayley showed up saying that Hulk Hogan and Titus O’Neil didn’t want her help, so she thought she would help the announcers. Bayley cued up the video.
There were highlights shown from the 2020 Hall of Fame class. The broadcast aired this past Tuesday.
The 2020 Hall of Fame class was on the stage: John Bradshaw Layfield, William Shatner (not there so they showed a picture), The Bella Twins – Nikki & Brie Bella, Jushin Thunder Liger (not there so they showed a picture), Warrior Award recipient Titus O’Neil and The British Bulldog (represented by wife Diana Hart Smith, son Harry Smith and daughter Georgia Smith). Lastly, it was the New World Order group with Hulk Hogan, Kevin Nash, Scott Hall and Sean Waltman. All four of those guys are two-time Hall of Famers now. I assume we’ll get to see the 2021 Hall of Fame class on Sunday night.
Analysis: The fans cheered for everybody in the Hall of Fame class. That’s always a cool moment at WrestleMania.
There were some commercials.
A commercial aired for WrestleMania 38 next year with Steve Austin narrating a video about it since Austin is a native Texan. Next year’s WrestleMania will be at AT&T Stadium in Dallas. It said April 2022 as the date rather than just listing the Sunday date. It’s the same venue as WrestleMania 32 in 2016.
Analysis: I wonder if they go with a two-night WrestleMania next year too. You can get more matches on the show, you can sell more tickets for two straight nights and I think it’s fair to say fans will be used to it after this year. I’m all for two-night WrestleMania events. I enjoy it much more than watching a six or seven-hour show.
Booker T joined commentary for the next match.
There were about 20 or more guys in bunny costumes that hopped down to the ring. Booker T said that we should back and watch to see what happens. All of these people in the bunny costumes went into the ring. That led to The Miz and John Morrison singing their terrible “rap” song “Hey Hey Hop Hop” and it wasn’t very good, but that’s to be expected since heels are supposed to be bad.
A video package aired to set up Damian Priest & Bad Bunny vs. The Miz & John Morrison. It started at Royal Rumble and it led to this.
Damian Priest made his entrance to a solid reaction for Priest’s WrestleMania debut. Bad Bunny was up next and he was shown on the road on top of a black truck. Bad Bunny was driven into the back part of the stadium and he was on a truck as the pyro went off behind him. There was a pretty big reaction for Bad Bunny, who walked down to the ring with a lot of confidence.
Analysis: The combined time for the entrances and video packages must have been around 15 minutes although I didn’t time it.
Damian Priest & Bad Bunny vs. The Miz & John Morrison
Priest was going to start the match, but Miz wanted Bunny to start the match and Bunny tagged in with the fans popping for that. Bunny rocked Miz with a right hand with Morrison telling Miz that was lucky. Miz with a waistlock leading to Bunny elbowing Miz in the face. Bunny with punches, then Miz took over and put his forearm against the face of Bunny. There was a takedown by Bunny leading to punches, but Miz was able to take over with punches. Bunny did a nice job of hitting an armdrag takedown that led to Miz rolling out of the ring. Miz was stunned by that. Back in the ring, Bunny with a drop toehold and Bunny did La Magistral cradle for a two count. That was impressive. Miz came back with a knee to the ribs and then he tossed Bunny into the ropes. Bunny was on the apron, shoulder to the ribs and Bunny ran the ropes leading to a headscissors! That was pretty good. Morrison tagged in with Bunny hitting a headbutt and Bunny followed up with a jumping elbow smash on Morrison. When Bunny went for it again, Morrison hit an elbow and Miz punched Bunny to knock him down. The heels took over with Morrison hitting a knee to the face. Miz was back in with a chinlock along with some more punches and kicks. I think I heard Miz say “go outside” to Bunny as he kicked Bunny to the floor so that Morrison could send Bunny into the announce table. Morrison did a Spinarooni to taunt Booker T as well. Miz with a punch to the ribs of Bunny. Miz punched Priest on the apron, so that led to Miz/Morrison stomping on Bunny repeatedly. Miz had Bunny set up against the turnbuckle, Miz charged right into a kick by Bunny and Bunny hit a nice DDT out of the corner.
Priest finally got the tag about ten minutes into the match. Priest with multiple kicks to Miz and a clothesline on Morrison. Priest lifted Miz for a suplex into a slam on Morrison. Priest with a sitout Chokeslam. Bunny was back in and Priest/Bunny hit a sitout Falcon Arrow slam onto each of Miz and Morrison. Priest ran the ropes, jumped off the middle ropes and landed onto Miz/Morrison on the floor. Bad Bunny went up top and he hit a cross body block onto Miz/Morrison. Priest went for his finisher, but Miz countered with a Skull Crushing Finale for two because Bunny made the save. The fans were really getting into it. There was a big spot on the floor with Bad Bunny hitting a version of a Canadian Destroyer that was incredible! Booker called it a Bunny Destroyer. The announcers were shocked by it while the fans loved it. Priest lifted up Miz on his shoulders and Bunny jumped off the top with the cross body block into a pin for the win at 15:05. The crowd popped big for it.
Winners by pinfall: Damian Priest & Bad Bunny
Analysis: ***3/4 This match was really good. Bad Bunny was so impressive in this match and I like how it was put together. You can tell that Bad Bunny put in a lot of work in terms of wrestling training. Some of Bunny’s moves looked pretty good, his punches look decent and he sold everything pretty well when needed. The fans were completely invested in that Bad Bunny match as well. They popped for everything, they bought when Miz got that nearfall on Priest and Bunny made the save. Some of the moves by Bad Bunny were impressive like the headscissors, the DDT out of the corner and the Canadian Destroyer on the floor. I think the cross body block off the turnbuckle while Priest held Miz worked as a safe finishing move and also something that was believable to win the match. Give a lot of credit to Morrison and Miz for their performance here because they were in the right place at the right time throughout the match while Priest had a nice showing in his first WrestleMania match too.
Bad Bunny and Damian Priest celebrated the victory. The fans were really happy about it. You could hear a lot of screams from fans supporting Bad Bunny too. The guy is popular.
Analysis: I really think that was one of the best matches that a celebrity has had in a WWE ring. Making it a tag team match was the right move for sure, but Bunny could probably do pretty well in a singles match too.
The announcers talked about Bobby Lashley retaining the WWE Championship in the opening match against Drew McIntyre.
There was a rundown of the lineup for WrestleMania on Sunday night.
The announced attendance, which WWE sent out in a press release, was 25,675 fans and that was considered a sellout based on the number of tickets they were allowed to sell. That’s cool. It would have been 70,000+ without the COVID-19 restrictions in place.
The video package aired for the Night 1 main even with Sasha Banks defending the Smackdown Women’s Title defending the gold against Royal Rumble 2021 winner Bianca Belair. This video was really well done and I liked the song choice too.
Bianca Belair made her entrance first as the challenger. Sasha Banks was up next as the Smackdown Women’s Champion. Both women got impressive pyro displays as part of their entrances, but they didn’t get anything that was extra special. Banks has blue hair with a green streak. The fans popped big as ring announcer Greg Hamilton said that this is for the Smackdown Women’s Championship. Cole talked about how they were making history with two black women main eventing WrestleMania together.
Analysis: The crowd was into this really well. That’s a great sign for the ladies when you’re over three hours into the show (thanks to the weather delay).
— WWE (@WWE) April 11, 2021
Smackdown Women’s Championship: Sasha Banks vs. Bianca Belair
Banks with a takedown followed by some trash talk and Belair got in Sasha’s face to talk shit to her. Belair avoided a Banks attack using her athleticism. Belair lifted up Banks, but Banks was able to get out of it. Belair got a hold of Banks, she went for a move and Banks sent Belair out of the ring. Banks with a baseball slide knocked down Belair on the floor. Banks sent Belair throat first into the top rope and into the ring post. Banks ran the ropes with a suicide dive on the floor, Belair caught Banks did a press slam. Belair brought Banks into the ring and slammed her. Banks was able to come back with a dropkick for two. Belair with a shoulder tackle followed by a body slam. Belair went for a moonsault, Banks grabbed the hair, Banks with repeated knee smashes and a running knee got a two count. Banks took over with a chinlock leading to Banks pulling back on the arms, which led to a plug for the sponsor Snickers. I cover it all. Banks with a knee to the jaw. Banks went for the double knee attack, but Belair did a slam. Banks grabbed the hair of Belair, who pulled back on her own hair and that led to Belair sending Banks into the steel steps. Banks charged on the floor, Belair moved and Banks hit the barricade. Belair used her power to hit a delayed vertical suplex. Banks went for an arm drag off the ropes, but Belair came back with a clothesline, shoulder tackle and a dropkick. Belair with a running Shooting Star Press followed by a shoulder tackle against the ropes. Belair hooked the arms of Banks leading to Belair slamming Banks face-first into the mat. Belair was on the top rope and Belair went for a 450 Splash, but Banks got both of her knees up to block. Good spot there with Banks blocking a big move to change the momentum in the match.
Belair got a sunset flip for two, Banks with a backslide pin for two and Belair caught a running Banks leading to a Powerbomb by Belair. Belair hit a second Powerbomb for two with Banks barely kicking out. Belair went for a third Powerbomb but Banks countered it by sending Belair face first with an X-Factor into the mat. Banks hit a spinning DDT off the middle ropes for two. Banks went up top, she jumped off and she hit a Frog Splash for a two count. Banks pulled on the left arm of Belair against the ropes and then Banks sent Belair into the steel steps. Banks asked Cole what time it is and then Cole said it was “Boss Time” as he likes to say. Banks was pulling on Belair’s long hair a bit and then Banks applied the Bank Statement submission. Belair rolled forward and got her hand on the bottom ropes to break it. Banks called Belair a “rookie” and Belair shoved Banks back first into the turnbuckle. They battled on the turnbuckle with punches, but then Banks trapped Belair upside down against the ropes. Banks was getting booed a bit as she talked trash. Banks jumped off the top, Belair moved and then Banks hit the turnbuckle when she went for a double knee attack. Belair went up top and hit a 450 Splash for one…two…and no. Belair was shocked by it was just a two count. Belair went for the KOD slam, Banks pulled on the hair and then Belair hit Banks in the ribs with the hair. That led to a loud “smack” sound. Belair went for the KOD and then Belair hit the Kiss of Death slam for the pinfall win. Cole for some reason thought that Banks kicked out, but there was no kick out. Cole corrected himself saying that Belair won and he was so shocked by it. Belair was the winner at 17:15. New champion!
Winner by pinfall AND NEW Smackdown Women’s Champion: Bianca Belair
Analysis: **** It was a very good match with Bianca Belair coming through with the biggest win of her career. The finishing sequence was really clever because Banks was pulling on Belair’s hair all match long, so to have Belair hit her in the ribs with the hair and then hit the KOD slam was the right way to end the match. I thought Banks was terrific in terms of being cocky throughout the match. What I thought the match was lacking was they didn’t have enough nearfalls and near submission moments. The best nearfall was Belair hitting the 450 Splash for a two count, but I felt like they could have had Banks coming close to winning multiple times. Instead, they didn’t tease enough near finishes. Belair winning was the obvious move, it was the right call and the fans wanted her to win, so obviously WWE made the right decision with Belair leaving with the title. (I liked it more on the second viewing and boosted the rating up to four stars out of five.)
They showed replays of the big spots including Belair’s family celebrating the win. Banks had a scar on her ribs from the hair whip spot.
Belair celebrated with the Smackdown Women’s Title and the sky was filled with fireworks. Belair celebrated some more as the pyro went off. That was it for the show.
Analysis: Belair will probably have a long reign as champion since she has been pushed a lot this year already with the Royal Rumble win and then WrestleMania. A feud with Bayley makes sense, but there are also other women she can feud with too. A Belair/Banks rematch would do well any time too.
This event had a runtime of 3:37:59 on WWE Network. If you take out the delay that was about 35 to 40 minutes then the run time is right around three hours. It’s 3:09:28 on WWE Network with the weather delay edited out.
Five Stars of the Show
2. Seth Rollins
3. Bianca Belair/Sasha Banks
4. Bad Bunny/Damian Priest/The Miz/John Morrison
5. Bobby Lashley/Drew McIntyre
I’m going with an 8 out of 10 for this show.
I enjoyed WrestleMania Night 1. It’s hard to pick my favorite match because there were a few really stood out to me, but if I have to pick one then probably Cesaro beating Rollins. With that said, I think they should have got more than 12 minutes for that match. I thought Lashley beating McIntyre was a terrific match between two big guys that are great athletes and told an interesting story. Bad Bunny was very impressive in his match and it was one of the better celebrity performances I’ve ever seen in a wrestling match. Credit Miz/Morrison and Priest for doing their parts well too. I thought Bianca Belair/Sasha Banks had a pretty good. I think they could have used more dramatic moments like nearfalls or near submissions to make it look like Sasha might win because it was just too obvious Bianca was going to win, which she did. It’s still a match and I’m proud of both women for getting the chance to main event.
There wasn’t anything that bad on the show either. The Women’s Tag Team Turmoil was lacking in terms of excitement and crowd reaction, but it was a way to get more people on the show. They booked the Omos in-ring debut in a way that made him look like a big star because of how New Day reacted to him and sold for him. It’s a story that worked well. It’s not always about putting on a classic match. I thought Braun Strowman’s win over Shane McMahon was actually booked well and ended with Shane taking a big bump as usual.
Going into this WrestleMania, I was most looking forward to hearing the crowd again and they were pretty good for most of the show. It helped a lot. Several great matches helped too. With a runtime right around three hours (after the delay for nearly 40 minutes), it didn’t drag at all. I’m a big fan of the two-night WrestleMania idea. Plus, when you think about how cheap it is to watch this stuff whether it’s Peacock or WWE Network, there’s a pretty good value here. Bring on night two tomorrow!
Now we move on to night two!
WWE WrestleMania 37 – Night 2
From Raymond James Stadium in Tampa Bay, Florida
Sunday, April 11, 2021
The show began with country singer Ashland Craft singing “America The Beautiful.” I had never heard of her before this moment, but she did a good job. I’m just glad there are no weather issues after it rained in Tampa earlier in the day. Hopefully it’s a clear night for everybody involved.
The intro video aired showing some highlights from Saturday night’s show. After that, it was the same sort of thing as we saw on Saturday’s opening video with two different voiceover guys talking about the show except this time it focused on superstars wrestling on Sunday. It was very good as usual.
There was an impressive pyro display to start the show with the fans popping for it.
The WrestleMania co-hosts Titus O’Neil and Hulk Hogan made their entrance on the stage. They were dressed like pirates since Tampa Bay is the home of the NFL’s Buccaneers and they have the pirate ships all over the building. There were boos for Hogan again. They welcomed us to the show with Titus mentioning seven spectacular matches and Hogan noting that they had five title matches. They kept on going on with pirate references. It was bad dialogue. Let’s get to the first match.
Analysis: I don’t think the host role is necessary. However, it wouldn’t shock me if WWE went with Steve Austin next year in Dallas since he’s a Texan and actually popular with the fans.
The announce team of Michael Cole, Samoa Joe and Byron Saxton welcomed us to the show. They are calling the Raw matches.
Randy Orton made his entrance wearing some white tights with a red design on them. When Orton was on the stage he made a gesture with his arm I think to tell us he got goosebumps hearing the fans again. Orton usually dresses in black gear, so it’s a bit of a different look for him. When Orton did his arm pose on the turnbuckle, some fireworks went off.
There was a video package about the long rivalry between Randy Orton and “The Fiend” Bray Wyatt. It went back to TLC in December when Orton burned The Fiend (a mannequin) alive. The Fiend was off for a few months and then helped his “Friend” Alexa Bliss beat Orton in a unique match at Fastlane. That led to this match.
That led to “The Fiend” Bray Wyatt making his entrance. The Fiend was shown walking down a hallway or something like that. Alexa Bliss skipped down to the ringside area with a toy box that she cranked up like a little toy box. That led to The Fiend emerging from this box that was right beside the ring. The fans popped for it. The Fiend was back to wearing more of a regular mask rather than a burnt mask that he has had for the last month.
Randy Orton vs. “The Fiend” Bray Wyatt (w/Alexa Bliss)
It took 23 minutes for the first match to begin. The Fiend jumped off the toy box and hit Orton with a clothesline. The Fiend hit a uranage slam. The Fiend did a neck twist on Orton, who was down grabbing his neck. There was the dreaded red light that they use sometimes for Fiend matches. Orton was crouched in the corner, The Fiend charged and Orton bailed to the floor. Orton with a kick to the gut and dropped Fiend on the announce table, but Fiend came back with a Mandible Claw hold until Orton got out of it. Back in the ring, Orton hit a draping DDT off the ropes. Orton sent The Fiend into the toy box and hit another DDT off the ropes. The Fiend came back with a clothesline followed by a running cross body block. Orton managed to hit another DDT off the ropes for the third time. The Fiend blocked an RKO attempt with the Mandible Claw and The Fiend kissed Orton on the head while teasing a Sister Abigail move. There was a fire that went off on the ring posts. The fans chanted “Holy Shit” at that. Alexa Bliss was seated on the toy box with mysterious black liquid coming down her face. The Fiend was distracted by that, so then Orton hit the RKO on The Fiend for the pinfall win at 5:50.
Winner by pinfall: Randy Orton
Analysis: *1/2 It was a short match with a lame finish fitting the weird story going on. I’ve seen people call this some all-time terrible match. I don’t see that, but I can see why people hated it. I hate the red light and I don’t know why they brought it back since The Fiend had matches without it for a while, but I guess WWE felt the need to bring it back. That finish surprised me with Bliss distracting The Fiend with the mysterious black liquid and then Orton hit one move to win the match. I don’t know many people that picked Orton to win here. I certainly didn’t pick Orton, so that makes me think the feud might continue. It’s not a great feud to me, but they are bigger names on the Raw brand, so I can see them going on for another PPV or two.
Orton left looking shocked about what happened, but he was happy about the win.
The Fiend stared at Bliss, then the lights went out and when they came back on, both of them were not shown again. The fans booed.
Analysis: I don’t know where it’s going. I’m not sure I care either.
There were some commercials.
Hulk Hogan and Titus O’Neil were backstage standing by with Hall of Famer Eric Bischoff. Bayley showed up calling herself a fellow co-host and said that she is a fan of Eric’s podcast. Bayley said she had her own stories on her own talk show. Bischoff said that match between Bianca Belair and Sasha Banks was great. Bayley wasn’t interested in hearing about them. Bayley talked about how she was the longest reigning Smackdown Women’s Champion and on both nights of WrestleMania. Hogan left with Bischoff, Titus put his hat on Bayley’s head and left.
Daniel Bryan was shown warming up somewhere backstage because he’s in the main event later in the show.
Natalya and Tamina entered for the first title match of the night. They won Tag Team Turmoil on Saturday to earn this title shot. Nia Jax and Shayna Baszler entered as the Women’s Tag Team Champions with no Reginald. Corey Graves joined Michael Cole to call this match.
Women’s Tag Team Championships: Nia Jax & Shayna Baszler vs. Natalya & Tamina
They are both heel teams, so that’s an interesting dynamic although the fans seemed to be behind Natalya and Tamina in this match. Natalya did some mat wrestling with Baszler where they exchanged holds, but nothing really happened. Nia Jax faced off with Tamina and they are distant cousins, so it’s a bit of a family here. They exchanged headbutts and punches, Natalya tagged in and there was a double team back body drop on Jax. Baszler tagged in, but Natalya & Tamina were ready with a front suplex where they put Baszler on Jax. Baszler got an inside cradle for two. Natalya with a release German Suplex on Baszler. Tamina was back in with a clothesline. Natalya with a slingshot to Baszler right into a superkick by Tamina and legal woman Natalya got a two count. Baszler came back with some hard kicks along with a huge knee lift to the face! That looked brutal and sounded loud. Jax got a hold of Tamina on the floor and Jax gave Tamina a body slam on the floor. Baszler with a running knee on Natalya against the turnbuckle. Baszler stepped on the side of Natalya’s left ankle. Jax was back in with a leg drop to the left leg followed by some knee stretching. Jax with a clothesline on Natalya while Tamina was still on the floor. Baszler back in with another knee to the face for a two count. Jax was legal, Natalya moved to avoid a shoulder charge and Jax hit the turnbuckle. Natalya with a discus clothesline on Jax for two. Jax with a headbutt and a Powerbomb got a two count as Tamina got back in to break up the pin. Tamina tagged in against Baszler with Tamina with two elbows and a running elbow smash. Tamina with a dragon screw leg whip, Baszler avoided a charge and Tamina kicked Baszler down. Baszler went for a submission, Tamina blocked it and Tamina hit a Samoan Drop for two.
The fans were clapping for Tamina, but Baszler kicked Tamina while on the turnbuckle. Natalya saved Tamina from Baszler. Jax tagged in, Natalya with a clothesline on Baszler and Jax jumped off the turnbuckle with a cross body block on both opponents for a two count. Jax told Tamina she runs this: “I’m King Kong, bitch.” Tamina with a backhand to the face and Tamina hit a body slam for a two count. It didn’t look great, but it was still effective. There was a rare “Tamina” chant from the crowd. Tamina went up top, she jumped off the top with a Superfly Splash, but Jax rolled out of the way as Tamina hit the mat. Natalya got the tag and so did Baszler with Natalya hitting a dropkick on Jax. Natalya put the Sharpshooter on Jax, which looked impressive although Jax was not legal in the match. Baszler went back in with the Kirifuda Clutch on Natalya, the referee checked on Natalya’s arm and she was passing out so the referee called for the bell. The champs retain at 14:20.
Winners by pinfall: Nia Jax & Shayna Baszler
Analysis: *** This was a pretty good tag team match with Natalya and Tamina getting plenty of offense while coming close to winning a few times. When was the last time there was a “Tamina” chant during a match? You don’t really hear that because Tamina is usually a heel, but the story worked with Tamina overpowering Jax and Baszler did a nice job of selling for Tamina as well. They got the crowd to care, which is one of the goals of a pro wrestling match. The finish made Natalya look a bit foolish with the Sharpshooter on Jax, who clearly wasn’t legal yet Natalya kept on applying the move even with the referee telling her that Jax was illegal. I would have been happier with a title change. The champs have held the titles for too long.
Jax and Baszler celebrated with their titles while Natalya and Tamina were dejected in the ring.
The video package aired for conspiracy man Sami Zayn against his former best friend Kevin Owens. Zayn has Youtube star Logan Paul supporting him.
There was a special guest commentator for his match: It was 2020 Hall of Famer John Bradshaw Layfield, who had to wait one year for his Hall of Fame induction, so he made a joke about that.
Sami Zayn made his entrance with the crowd humming along to his theme song. Sami Zayn asked for a very warm WrestleMania reception for his special guest of honor tonight. Zayn said this is his only ally against the conspiracy against Zayn. Sami introduced Logan Paul and there were boos for the Youtube celebrity. Kevin Owens made his entrance to a big pop from the crowd with KO doing well as a babyface in the last few months.
Kevin Owens vs. Sami Zayn (w/Logan Paul)
Zayn charged right at Owens, who hit a Popup Powerbomb and Zayn bailed to the floor. Logan Paul was seated in a leather chair at ringside. Zayn fought off a Powerbomb on the apron, then back in the ring and Owens suplexed Zayn ribs first into the top rope. Owens with a running clothesline followed by a cannonball against the turnbuckle. Owens up top, Zayn crawled to the apron and Zayn kicked KO while on the apron. Zayn delivered a brainbuster on the ring apron! That looked brutal and also very impressive in terms of the execution as well the bump by Owens. Back in the ring, Zayn hit a Michinoku Driver for a two count. Cole called it a Blue Thunder Bomb, Graves corrected him to save him from the internet and Cole said thanks because he got enough of that last night. That’s funny, but it’s because Cole thought Sasha Banks kicked out at the end of the main event of WrestleMania and she did not. Anyway, Owens battled Zayn on the turnbuckle with Owens hitting a headbutt followed by Owens hitting a Frog Splash off the top. Zayn avoided a Powerbomb, Owens hooked the arm of Zayn and hit a cradle suplex into the knee for a two count for Owens. Zayn got out of a slam by Owens and then Zayn hit an Exploder Suplex into the turnbuckle. Zayn went for the Helluva Kick, Owens moved, Owens wanted a Stunner and Zayn hit a Blue Thunder Bomb for two. That’s what Zayn usually gets for that move. Zayn with an Exploder Suplex into the turnbuckle, a Dragon Suplex and then a brainbuster for a two count. Great moves there. The fans chanted “this is awesome” for them as Zayn made his crazy faces. Zayn worked over Owens with punches and a headbutt to the chest. Zayn was going for a superplex, but Owens countered it into a Fisherman’s suplex out of the corner into the ring! That was impressive. Owens with two running clotheslines in a row, then Owens went to the turnbuckle and Zayn hit a Helluva Kick. JBL referenced their great match at Battleground 2016. Zayn charged again, but Owens met him with two superkicks that dazed Zayn. Owens hit a Stunner for the pinfall win at 9:20.
Winner by pinfall: Kevin Owens
Analysis: ***3/4 It was a great 10-minute match where they earned those “this is awesome” chants with the cool exchange of moves. I wish it went longer, which is something I said about Cesaro/Seth Rollins on Saturday as well. If you would have told me this match would be five minutes less than the women’s tag team match then I would have been surprised. They had a match that was full of action with the big moves like the apron bumps, a lot of moves that get nearfalls for both guys and then Zayn didn’t capitalize on his Helluva Kick because he failed to go for a pin. Owens came back and finished him off with the Stunner. I expected Owens to win since Zayn loses most of his matches anyway. I’m sure it was a thrill for these best friends to wrestle a singles match at a WrestleMania. They did well.
After the match was over, Logan Paul was in the ring talking to Zayn. Logan wanted to give Owens a handshake, but Zayn got mad at him for doing that. Zayn said that Owens conspired against him with the referee. Zayn said that Paul was his guest, so Paul shoved Zayn on his ass. Paul went to Owens and raised his hand as the winner of the match. Owens didn’t really like that, the fans were cheering and chanting “yes” so Owens hit a Stunner and Paul didn’t sell it well. It was still a Stunner leading to the fans cheering Owens for his actions. After the match, Owens greeted his wife, son and daughter at ringside. I think Owens also hugged superfan Vladimir because everybody loves Vladimir. Logan Paul was helped by referees and officials to the back.
Analysis: The fans didn’t like Logan Paul, so it made sense for Owens to hit him with a Stunner to make the fans happy. Paul did a poor job of selling the Stunner. Really bad. It’s the thought that counts.
Riddle was shown backstage on a scooter where he went up to Great Khali with Ranjin Singh. Ranjin left. Riddle asked to see Khali’s ring and said Khali’s hands are the size of Riddle’s hand. Riddle said that Khali should open up a giant store. Kahli shook his head no. Rob Van Dam showed up to translate claiming that they need some creative branding. RVD had his “RVD rolling papers.” Khali spoke in Punjabi. RVD told Riddle good luck in his match and they did the “RVD” hand gesture. Riddle left for his match.
Analysis: It was a no-brainer to get Riddle on-screen with RVD since they are two known stoners, so might as well get them together. The fans were into it with RVD chants too.
There were commercials for a few minutes.
Sheamus was up first as the challenger in the US Title match. They showed a clip from Raw a few weeks ago when they got into an altercation backstage to set this up. Riddle got a nice pop as the US Champion. When Riddle kicked off his flip flops in the ring, the animated birds were on the screen again. I’m sure some fans complained about it. That doesn’t bother me. It’s just a brief animation.
United States Championship: Riddle vs. Sheamus
Sheamus was in control in the first minute, then each guy connected with some elbow smashes until Sheamus hit a spinning side slam for a two count. Sheamus hit a backbreaker. Riddle tried to come back with kicks, Sheamus caught his foot and Riddle stretched on Riddle’s arm against the ropes. With Riddle on the apron, Sheamus hit Riddle in the back with a forearm. Sheamus with eight forearm shots to the chest of Riddle followed by Sheamus hitting a suplex for two. Sheamus went up top, Riddle jumped up there and Riddle hit an overhead belly to belly suplex for two. It was almost like a Spanish Fly slam, but it was more like a belly to belly suplex. That got a nice reaction from the crowd. Riddle with a jump kick, two forearms to the face and an overhead throw. Riddle with a broton splash on the chest. Riddle hit a Jackhammer slam for a two count. The first lift didn’t work, but then Riddle hit it perfectly. That is Goldberg’s finishing move and Riddle has had issues with him in the past. Sheamus sent Riddle to the apron, Riddle jumped over the top rope into the ring and Sheamus hit a huge knee to the face for two. Sheamus with an Alabama Slam for a two count. I think Cole called it a Brogue Kick by Sheamus, but it was rising knee to the face. They battled on the apron, Riddle sent Sheamus into the ring post and Riddle hit a German Suplex on the apron. Riddle with a kick to the chest followed by Riddle hitting a twisting splash off the middle ropes onto Sheamus on the floor. Riddle up top with a corkscrew splash for a two count. Riddle was shocked by that only getting a two count. Riddle with an armbreaker submission, but Sheamus powered out and hit a Powerbomb for two. Riddle slapped on a rear naked choke submission with Sheamus getting to the bottom rope to break it. Sheamus with punches to take control again. Sheamus had Riddle on his back, he went to the second rope, Riddle flipped out of it and Riddle went up top with Sheamus. That led to Sheamus holding Riddle on his back. I think Sheamus was going for White Noise off the top, but there was a slip, so Sheamus hit the regular White Noise slam. Sheamus jumped off the top with a knee to the chest for a two count. Sheamus went for the Brogue Kick, Riddle moved out of the way, Riddle jumped off the middle ropes with a moonsault and Sheamus hit him with a Brogue Kick of sorts for the pinfall win at 10:53. The replay showed how the Brogue Kick managed to connect and Riddle has a bloody mouth because of it.
Winner by pinfall AND NEW United States Champion: Sheamus
Analysis: ***1/2 It was the usual physical match between these guys. They always have good matches. I think I’ve given their matches a rating similar to that in the past almost every time they had a match. I thought it was a smart adjustment by Sheamus when he went for the White Noise slam off the top and slipped, so then he just hit in the ring. It sucks that there was a bit of a slip, but they were smart enough to adjust with Sheamus hitting the move in the ring. I didn’t expect Sheamus to win the title because Riddle only won the title two months ago. However, I get wanting to put a title on Sheamus because he has done really well in the last few months. Hopefully there’s something interesting for Riddle to do in the future.
There were some commercials. Triple H was featured in a commercial with Bad Bunny where he told him he was amazing at WrestleMania and now it’s time to do what you do. They plugged Bad Bunny’s musical tour and listed the dates of his schedule.
The video package aired for the Intercontinental Championship match between Big E and Apollo Crews. The ring announcer Greg Hamilton let us know there are no disqualifications or countouts in this Nigerian Drum Fight. It’s basically a No Holds Barred Match or a Street Fight with a different name.
There was a performance from rapper Wale performing Big E’s “Feel The Power” theme song. Big pop for Big E when he made his entrance on the stage with the Intercontinental Title around his waist. Apollo Crews made his entrance with the Nigerian colors for this match that he has chosen.
Nigerian Drum Fight for the Intercontinental Championship: Big E vs. Apollo Crews
They had a battle with kendo sticks and Big E was in full control of that. There were some drums at ringside along with tables and other weapons. Big E grabbed a gong and Crews kicked it out of Big E’s hands. Crews hit Big E with the kendo stick. Big E managed to send Crews to the apron and Big hit his running Spear to the floor and back in the ring for a two count. Big E set up the steel steps on the floor as he teased doing a move there, but Crews hit a Death Valley Driver on the apron leading to a two count. Crews set up Big on the bottom half of the steel steps and Crews tried to throw the steps on Big E, but Big E moved. They were on the apron again, Crews with a kick and then Big E delivered a uranage slam onto the bottom half of the steel steps. That was a rough landing for Crews, who landed hard on his left arm before his back hit. Big E brought a table into the ring and he set it up. Crews was back in the ring with an enziguri kick followed by Crews hitting Big E with a kendo stick repeatedly. Crews set up Big E on the table, Crews jumped off the top with a Frog Splash and Big E moved. Big E hit the Big Ending. That led to a big man going into the ring to attack Crews. It was the former Dabba Kato, who hit Big E with a punch to the face. The big man delivered a Chokeslam on Big E and then Crews covered Big E for the pinfall win. It went 6:53. The announcers acted like they didn’t know the big guy even though he was on Raw many times.
Winner by pinfall AND NEW Intercontinental Champion: Apollo Crews
Analysis: **1/4 A much shorter match than I expected it to be, but that’s okay. It was still okay for the time they got. I didn’t expect this title change especially when they just had a title change. However, it’s hard to predict when some random big guy is going to show up to help Crews win a match like that. I figured Big E’s title reign was going to last a lot longer than it did although it went nearly four months, so that was okay. The fans were really behind Big E. Maybe they can put Money in the Bank on Big E this year instead of putting it on a heel. I think Big E would be a great choice. On another note, I’m happy for Crews becoming Intercontinental Champion. The guy works hard, is a good performer and deserves to be holding a title just like the US Title last year.
Apollo Crews celebrated with the title with the big man by his side. There were some fireworks that went off too.
Analysis: Regarding the big man with Crews, they were not calling him Dabba Kato this time. There was a report from PWInsider that former Dabba Kato would be getting a new gimmick as “Commador Azeez” or something like that, so there it is as he helped Crews beat Big E.
There was a video that aired showing highlights from night one of WrestleMania. That was followed by some media coverage of the event.
There was a video for WrestleMania 38 from AT&T Stadium in Dallas, Texas next April 2022. The original date announced was April 3, 2022, but it was not on the graphic here, which means maybe they go with two nights again. I hope it’s two nights instead of one night.
They showed highlights from the 2021 WWE Hall of Fame Class that aired this past Tuesday.
The 2021 Hall of Fame class was shown on the stage: Rob Van Dam (he’s high), Molly Holly, The Great Khali, Ozzy Osbourne (not there so his image was shown on screen), Eric Bischoff and Warrior Award winner Rich Hering. Lastly, Kane got his music play and he got a big ovation from the crowd. Kane set off his pyro on the stage as well and that looked very impressive.
Analysis: The biggest pop went for Kane there although RVD got a big ovation too. This Hall of Fame class had less people this year with no tag teams or anybody that has passed away. It’s still a good group led by Kane and RVD. I’m glad that Kane got to be a headline name because he deserved it.
A video package aired to set up Asuka defending the Raw Women’s Title against Rhea Ripley. There was barely any story here, but they get a video package anyway.
Rhea Ripley made her entrance as the challenger for the Raw Women’s Title. A woman named Ash Costello sang Ripley’s “Brutality” theme song. She did okay. Lots of yelling. If I wanted to get yelled at like that then I’d get married. Scary thought! Anyway, Asuka made her entrance as the Raw Women’s Champion and some pyro went off when she got into the ring.
Raw Women’s Championship: Asuka vs. Rhea Ripley
Asuka with a dropkick that sent Ripley to the turnbuckle. Ripley came back with a hard chop, then she missed a corner charge and Asuka kicked the ropes while Ripley was against the ropes. Ripley went to the floor for a breather, then back in Ripley avoided a hip attack. Ripley hit a lifting slam where she sent Asuka into the mat face first. The fans were chanting for both women as Ripley applied a leg scissors around the waist. When Asuka got back up, Ripley hit a dropkick that knocked Asuka down. Ripley did some trash-talking leading to a knee to the ribs and a clothesline. Ripley with a kick, but Asuka caught the right leg and applied a kneebar submission. Ripley was able to power out of that and turned it into a German Suplex for two. Ripley sent Asuka into the turnbuckle three times. Ripley went for a suplex off the ropes, Asuka fought back with elbows and Asuka jumped off the top with a missile dropkick that looked great. Asuka with a release German Suplex, then a running hip attack, a spinning back fist and a spin kick to the head. Asuka with a running hip attack for a two count. Asuka went to the top turnbuckle, but Rhea knocked her down with a dropkick. They were on the apron, Ripley was sent to the floor where she caught Asuka and sent Asuka into the ring apron. They were standing on the apron with Asuka delivering a DDT onto the floor. That looked brutal, but they landed it about as well as you could. It’s a move you don’t see very often, which is smart because it’s dangerous. Back in the ring, Asuka hit a running knee for two. Asuka with kicks to the ribs and then a sliding knee, but then Ripley caught the foot followed by Ripley stomping on Asuka. Ripley hooked the legs of Asuka with her arms into a submission, but Asuka countered it into an armbar. Ripley powered out of that by sending Asuka into the turnbuckle. Ripley with a suplex where she brought Asuka from the apron into the ring. Asuka took down Ripley by the arm and Ripley countered into a pin, but Asuka countered it into an Asuka Lock that Ripley countered. Asuka with three kicks to the chest, Ripley asked for more and Ripley avoided a kick leading to Ripley hitting the Riptide slam for the pinfall win at 13:28.
Winner by pinfall AND NEW Raw Women’s Champion: Rhea Ripley
Analysis: ***1/2 A very good match with a title change for the third straight match on this show. Asuka was on offense for a lot of it, which made it pretty cool most of the way and I liked their big spots like that DDT on the floor. You just don’t see moves like that very often. Ripley could have been heelish in the match, so I don’t know if WWE wanted to go all the way with her being a heel. Ripley basically won after hitting one move. I think Asuka should have kicked out of the first Riptide and then have Ripley hit the move again to make Asuka look stronger. I picked Ripley here because it just felt like the right time for a title change.
Ripley celebrated with the Raw Women’s Title. There were cheers for her even though I think WWE tried to make her a heel going into this match. The fans like her a lot. Asuka looked dejected about the loss.
Analysis: That means that Women’s Royal Rumble winner Bianca Belair won the Smackdown Women’s Title at WrestleMania and now runner up Rhea Ripley won the Raw Women’s Title at WrestleMania as well. New stars on the rise. The NXT Women’s Champion Raquel Gonzalez is another star on the rise, so that’s three new champions crowned in the women’s division over the last week.
There were some commercials.
They showed highlights of Randy Orton beating The Fiend earlier in the night. I don’t know why they needed to show a few minutes of replays of that match, but they did.
The WrestleMania hosts Titus O’Neil and Hulk Hogan appeared on the stage. Titus thanked us for watching WrestleMania at home and especially the fans in attendance. They were interrupted by Bayley again. Bayley complained and yelled: “Where’s my pyro?” That led to some pyro going off around the stage and Bayley loved it. Bayley complained about how she was the host of the show, but she had to deal with all of these people disrespecting her and insulted Michael Cole, which I love. The Bella Twins showed up wearing red outfits and Bayley said that they looked like Elmo in their outfits. Bayley told them that John Cena was not here. The Bellas beat up Bayley and threw her down the ramp. The Bellas posed with Titus and Hogan on the stage.
Analysis: Bayley is great. I liked seeing her doing her heel promo there. I think a lot of people were hoping for and maybe expecting Becky Lynch to show up to go after Bayley, but that didn’t happen at all. It was just a rumor and I didn’t know if it was going to happen. Bayley’s line about John Cena to The Bella Twins (since Nikki used to date John Cena for many years) was pretty funny. Anyway, The Bella Twins beating up Bayley was a way to make people happy although there were boos for it.
There was a commercial for Peacock/WWE Network. The next pay-per-view is WrestleMania Backlash on Sunday, May 16th. That’s what they are calling it or maybe just Backlash. I believe there was a report that Money in the Bank was next, but Backlash is next instead.
A video package aired for the Universal Title main event with Roman Reigns defending the title against Edge and Daniel Bryan. Great video package covering this story.
Daniel Bryan was up first and he looked ready to go as he led the crowd in the “YES” chants on his way to the ring. As soon as Edge’s music hit, the crowd popped huge for him. It was a HUGE ovation for Edge as he did his entrance running on the stage and getting the big pyro display that looks so impressive in an open air stadium. Even though Edge has been portrayed as a heel going into this match at times, the fans reacted to him like a big babyface. Roman Reigns was up next as the Universal Champion with cousin Jey Uso and Special Counsel Paul Heyman by his side. They used the 8K cameras for Roman’s entrance down to the ring to make it look even cooler. Reigns took a while to get to the ring as usual because that’s what he does as a heel.
The three men stood in the ring for the championship introductions by Greg Hamilton. Based on audience reaction, the fans cheered Edge the loudest, even more than Daniel Bryan who did some “yes” chants as usual. Reigns was booed heavily.
Universal Championship: Roman Reigns (w/Jey Uso & Paul Heyman) vs. Edge vs. Daniel Bryan
Triple threat rules are that first man to get the pinfall or submission is the champion. There are no countouts or disqualifications in triple threat matches in WWE. The referee is Charles Robinson.
Reigns went after Edge at first, then Bryan attacked Reigns. Reigns sent Bryan out of the ring and Jey Uso superkicked Bryan. Jey sent Bryan into the steel steps. Reigns sent Edge out of the ring with Jey hitting Edge with a superkick. Bryan hit a suicide dive on Reigns, but Jey was there to knock Bryan down again. Edge fought back against Jey by sending him into the steel steps. Edge whipped Reigns into the side of the ring apron, the barricade and the ring post. Edge gave Jey Uso an Edgecution DDT onto the bottom half of the steel steps. Edge was selling pain himself since he landed hard on the steps too. They had medical personnel check on Jey, so they took Jey away from ringside and that led to Jey being taken out of the match. Bryan faced off with Edge in the ring while Reigns was on the floor. Edge and Bryan exchanged forearms, Bryan with a drop toe hold into the turnbuckle and kicks to the chest. Bryan with a hurricanrana off the top, but Edge turned it into a sunset flip for two. Edge with a neckbreaker drop for a two count. Reigns was back up on the apron, he tried a suplex on Edge, but Bryan tripped up Reigns on the apron. Bryan with a missile dropkick off the top with fans popping for Bryan. Big uppercut from Bryan to Edge. Bryan avoided a clothesline from Edge, then Bryan with a suicide dive, but Reigns caught Bryan and suplexed him on the floor. Edge with a baseball slide dropkick on Reigns. Back in the ring, Reigns with a leaping clothesline on Edge with the fans booing Reigns. Edge hit the Edgecution DDT on Reigns with Edge realizing that Bryan was still on the floor. Edge charged for a Spear, but Reigns came back with a Superman Punch on Edge. Reigns charged, Edge avoided a Spear and then Edge hit a sunset flip for two. Reigns and Edge each ran the ropes leading to both men going for a Spear, so there was a collision in the ring where they basically hit eachother on the shoulder. The fans chanted “this is awesome” for them.
Bryan was back into it with a flying headbutt off the top on Edge. Bryan up top and he jumped off the top with a flying headbutt on Reigns for a two count. Bryan delivered the Yes Kicks to Edge and Bryan. Reigns ducked a kick to the head and then Bryan hit a running knee on Edge. Bryan with a roundhouse kick to the head of Reigns for a two count. That running knee by Bryan is a finishing move for him sometimes. Bryan stomped on Roman’s head repeatedly and then Bryan slapped on the Yes Lock on the left arm of Reigns with Cole noting no disqualification so a rope break won’t stop it. Edge ended up making the save by hitting Bryan with a forearm to the back. Bryan took down Edge and Bryan slapped on the Yes Lock on Edge, who refused to tap and Reigns attacked Bryan. Reigns hit Bryan with repeated punches to the head. Reigns gave Bryan a Powerbomb onto Edge. Reigns kicked Bryan out of the ring near where the announce table was. The fans were booing Reigns while chanting “Roman sucks” at the champion. Reigns put the steel steps up against the announce table. Reigns hated the “Roman sucks” chants from the fans. Reigns picked up Bryan and gave him a Powerbomb through the table while Reigns was on the steel steps. Reigns was yelling at the crowd and then Edge came out of nowhere with a Spear on Reigns while Roman was on the steps. That led to everybody being down on the floor as the fans chanted “this is awesome” for them. Edge had multiple chairs as he went after Reigns in the ring, but Reigns got the chair and sent the chair out of the ring. Edge sent Reigns throat first into the top rope. Edge slapped on the Crossface submission on Reigns, but Reigns got out of it. Edge grabbed a metal piece of the chair that he put in Roman’s mouth while in the Crossface, but Bryan was back in to stop Roman’s hand to intercept the tap out. Bryan applied a Yes Lock on Reigns at the same time, so then Bryan and Edge fought eachother with headbutts. Bryan delivered forearms to Edge while they were on the mat. The match was around the 20-minute mark.
Bryan held the arms of Edge and stomped on his head repeatedly. Bryan set up in the corner with the “yes” chants. Bryan charged at Edge, but Edge hit a Spear on Bryan. Reigns went for a Superman Punch, but Edge ducked and Edge hit a Spear on Reigns for one…two…and no because Bryan pulled referee Charles Robinson out of the ring. That is not a DQ in this match with the rules they have. The referee went back into the ring, so it wasn’t a referee bump there. Edge set up two steel chairs on the apron. Edge hit Bryan in the back with a steel chair and sent Bryan into the ring with Reigns. Edge had a crazy look on his face as he went into the ring. Edge hit Reigns and Bryan with repeated chair shots to the back and chest. Edge put Bryan’s head against the steel chair and he grabbed another chair that he put against Roman’s head. Edge did the Conchairto to Bryan, which is just a chair hitting the other chair without really hitting the head, but it’s the thought that counts. Jey Uso was back in, he went after Edge and then Edge was able to get Jey out of there with a Spear along with chair shots. Reigns was back up with a Spear on Edge and he didn’t try to pin Edge. Reigns gave Edge the Conchairto to the head. Reigns stacked Edge onto Bryan and Reigns covered both guys at the same time for the pinfall win at 22:41.
Winner by pinfall: Roman Reigns
Analysis: ****1/2 This was an excellent main event match. I thought it was the best match of the night and the best match of the two-night WrestleMania. The atmosphere of the crowd gave it a big time feel as well because they were popping for everything while rooting for Bryan at times and even Edge at times, but they didn’t want Reigns to win. I thought they did a nice job of utilizing weapons around the ring like the chairs, the steel steps and Reigns putting Bryan through the table. The Conchairto played a big role in the finish with Edge destroying Bryan first, but then after Jey Uso got involved again, Roman Reigns finished off Edge with a Spear and Conchairto. I loved the drama of the near submission wins. See, that’s something that I wish last night’s main event had more of. You need to tease possible finishes a lot and that’s what these guys did. Anyway, it was a finish similar to what we have seen in previous Reigns matches. While Jey didn’t directly help Roman win, the fact that Edge had to deal with Jey is what led to Reigns hitting the Spear and Conchairto for the win. If it wasn’t for Jey being around then Reigns may have lost. That’s going to be the story that they will push. I thought they did a tremendous job in the match and the fact that the fans reacted so strongly to the three guys certainly helped a lot. I don’t think any of the three guys outperformed the others. They all did very well in this match and I hope they enjoyed it as much as I did.
They showed replays of the key spots in the match. There are people that think Edge was covering Bryan when the pin happened. No. Reigns stacked Edge on top of Bryan and Edge’s shoulders were down at the same time as Bryan, so Reigns covered them both at the same time. It’s a clear win for Reigns.
Reigns celebrated in the ring with Jey Uso and Paul Heyman. That led to fireworks going off in celebration of Reigns continuing his run as Universal Champion. The show ended there.
Analysis: When will Roman lose the title? I have no idea. I thought it might be here, but it’s not happening yet and it may be a long time for when it does happen. Roman is doing an excellent job in this role, so I don’t mind it too much. I assume they might do Roman vs. Edge as a singles match at some point. I’d love to see Bryan vs. Edge in a singles match too.
This event had a runtime of 3:12:38 on WWE Network.
Five Stars of the Show
- Roman Reigns
- Edge/Daniel Bryan
- Kevin Owens/Sami Zayn
- Rhea Ripley/Asuka
I’m going with a 7.75 out of 10 for this show. That is lower than the 8 out of 10 I gave Night 1, but I will bump the combined score to an 8 out of 10. If you don’t like it, write your own review. My review. My rules!
I’ll be honest in saying I’m pretty tired after writing so much over the last five or six days or whatever it has been. The main event really helped this show go from being just an average three hours to being pretty good by the end. I thought Reigns/Edge/Bryan was clearly the match of the night and also the best match of the two-night WrestleMania. It’s probably one of the best WrestleMania events ever. By that I mean maybe in the late top 10 range or top 15 out of the 37 WrestleManias that have taken place. I’d have to consult my lists and past reviews, but I’m just saying I enjoyed it.
I think Owens/Zayn was next best even though it was short at 10 minutes. Sheamus and Riddle had a good showing as usual and I really liked the finish. They did a lot in the time given. I’m a little surprised by three straight matches with titles and if you consider Rhea Ripley then that’s three straight heels winning titles. There are a lot of heel champions on Raw/Smackdown right now. I got some predictions wrong because I thought more babyfaces were going to win since it’s the first show with fans in one year and instead there were a lot more heel wins than I thought there would be.
It was so great having two nights of shows with a loud Tampa Bay crowd at WrestleMania. It’s going to suck having to go back to ThunderDome shows, but that’s how it is for now and hopefully we can get the real fans back at shows by the summer or later in the year.
Here’s my ranking of WWE PPVs in 2021 so far.
WrestleMania 37 (April 10 & 11) – 8
Royal Rumble (January 31) – 8
Elimination Chamber (February 21) – 7.25
Fastlane – 6.5
Thanks for reading this review. My contact info is below.