The John Report: WWE WrestleMania 39 Review – Night 2 (Sunday)

wwe wrestlemania 39 review sunday night 2

It’s WWE WrestleMania 39 night two with Roman Reigns facing Cody Rhodes, Bianca Belair battling Asuka, and a whole lot more.

The first night of WrestleMania 39 on Saturday was a great show that was well-received by a lot of people and I really liked it. Several title changes took place along with some outstanding matches like Kevin Owens & Sami Zayn beating The Usos for the WWE Tag Team Titles and Rhea Ripley beating Charlotte Flair for the Smackdown Women’s Tag Team Title.

This afternoon, there was a huge breaking news story from CNBC about WWE being sold to Endeavor. The report says the deal could be announced as soon as Monday. Endeavor is the current parent company of UFC and as part of the arrangement, WWE and UFC could form a new publicly traded company. Endeavor would hold the majority at 51% while WWE shareholders would be given 49% of the new company. Vince McMahon would remain as WWE Executive Chairman. I sure hope that Triple H remains as the head of WWE Creative. There’s no need to go back to Vince. Keep it how it is now, please. Obviously, we’ll learn more about this in the week ahead.

What that also means is that this is the last WrestleMania where WWE is owned by the McMahon family. It all changes in the future. Sometimes change is a good thing. Sometimes it is not. I’ll try to be optimistic about it.

MONDAY MORNING UPDATE: WWE being sold to Endeavor is official and we have the details right here.

In case you missed my other reviews from WrestleMania weekend shows, here’s my WWE Hall of Fame 2023 recap. I also reviewed NXT Stand & Deliver earlier on Saturday. I’m on Twitter @johnreport as usual. Let’s rock.

WWE WrestleMania 39 – Night Two
From SoFi Stadium in Los Angeles, California
April 2, 2023

America The Beautiful was performed by singer Jimmie Allen, who was on the stage. He did a great job.

There was another WrestleMania 39 cold open video featuring Kevin Hart talking about the show. They had some highlights of last night’s WrestleMania event in there while also hyping up what’s coming up tonight.

The Miz and Snoop Dogg Welcome Us To WrestleMania

The Miz and Snoop Dogg were in the ring to welcome us to WrestleMania for the second night in a row. The Miz summarized some of the results from Saturday night while three titles are on the night. Snoop told them to fire it up and we begin.

Omos was up first with Montel Vontavious Porter by his side. MVP still has the cane with him.

The commentary team was Michael Cole and Corey Graves once again. The Spanish announce team was at ringside as well.

Brock Lesnar received a huge ovation from the crowd. Cole mentioned it was Lesnar’s 12th WrestleMania. Brock main evented his first WrestleMania 20 years ago at WrestleMania 19. Lesnar marched around the ring. Cole mentioned Lesnar was 286 pounds, but Omos towers over him. It took 13 minutes for the bell to ring for this first match.

Brock Lesnar vs. Omos (w/MVP)

Omos picked up Lesnar with a waistlock and tossed him down. Lesnar tried a German Suplex, but Omos elbowed him. Omos headbutted Lesnar followed by a body slam. Omos hit another body slam. Omos with two forearms to the back followed by Omos applying a bearhug. Omos sent Lesnar to the turnbuckle along with another forearm to the back. Omos with another body slam. Omos applied another bearhug, the fans were cheering for Brock and Brock got out of it leading to Omos hitting a Chokeslam for two. Omos sent Lesnar into the turnbuckle. Omos charged, Lesnar moved and Lesnar hit a German Suplex. The fans popped huge as Lesnar hit another German Suplex. Lesnar hit a third German Suplex with the fans cheering it. Lesnar tried a lift, but Lesnar sold the back injury, so he let Omos go. Omos went for the Double Choke Bomb, Lesnar lifted up Omos and Lesnar hit the F5 for the pinfall win at 4:55.

Winner by pinfall: Brock Lesnar

Analysis: ** It was pretty much what I expected it to be and what I wrote in the preview. Omos was in control for about 80% of it, Lesnar hit the German Suplexes to get the crowd going. Lesnar sold the back well, Omos tried his finish, Lesnar avoided it and an F5 finished it. Every match doesn’t need suicide dives and dozens of superkicks. A little variety is okay. Brock may not wrestle that much longer, so good for him having fun out there. He’s a legend. The fans liked it and it was kept short, so it’s simple enough.

Brock Lesnar celebrated the win with the fans cheering him. They respect him as the legend that he is.

There were some commercials including one for the WWE 2K3 video game.

The Women’s 4-Way match was next. Liv Morgan & Raquel Rodriguez were first followed by Natalya & Shotzi. Natalya is competing in her 11th WrestleMania match. Shotzi did not get to use her tank for the entrance. Chelsea Green & Sonya Deville were next after qualifying this past Monday. The team of Ronda Rousey & Shayna Baszler were last with Rousey getting the biggest reaction.

Ronda Rousey & Shayna Baszler vs. Raquel Rodriguez & Liv Morgan vs. Natalya & Shotzi vs. Chelsea Green & Sonya Deville

Two wrestlers are legal in the match while the other six women are on the apron.

Morgan with double knees to Deville. Sonya tried a move off the turnbuckle, but Morgan hit knees to the face again. Natalya tagged in, slammed Liv and Natalya hit a basement dropkick on Morgan. Morgan hit a headscissors on Natalya and Raquel tagged in with a splash. Raquel kicked Natalya in the arm, so Natalya brought Green into the match, who was scared of Raquel. Chelsea tried a missile dropkick, Raquel didn’t sell it and Green pulled Raquel’s hair while Raquel had Sonya in her arms. Shotzi used her legs for a takedown on Green followed by a senton splash on Green’s back. Baszler was attacked by Raquel, Natalya, Liv and Natalya, so they hit a triple Powerbomb on Baszler. Green and Deville cleared the ring, but Shotzi was on the top rope and Shotzi hit a cross body block off the top on Green/Deville. Shotzi sent Green and Deville out of the ring. Shotzi hit a suicide dive on a few women on the floor. Green knocked Natalya out of the ring. Green avoided Raquel by jumping off the top onto some women on the floor. Raquel launched Liv over the top onto four women on the floor. The fans popped for that. Raquel was legal against Shotzi with Raquel hitting a fallaway slam. Raquel hit the corkscrew elbow off the middle ropes. Deville tagged herself in with a running knee on Raquel leading to Green kicking Raquel out of the ring. Shotzi and Natalya were in the ring leading to a double team neckbreaker by Shotzi on Green/Shotzi. Hart Attack clothesline by Natalya & Shotzi leading to a two count after it was broken up. Natalya slammed Green onto Deville. Natalya applied a double Sharpshooter on Deville & Green at the same time leading to a big pop from the crowd. Morgan broke it up by jumping off the top with knees to the face of Natalya. Morgan tagged in against Shotzi, who hit a Tiger Suplex, a knee and Morgan hit double knees again. Morgan hit Oblivion on Shotzi, but Baszler made the tag. Baszler knocked Morgan out of the ring. Baszler hurt her right foot because she took her boot off at some point during the match. Rousey tagged in and Rousey applied an armbar on Shotzi for the tapout win. It went 8:27.

Winners by submission: Ronda Rousey & Shayna Baszler

Analysis: **1/2 It was an average match. There were some good parts, but it’s tough when there’s not much of a story going into a match. A woman would hit a move and then they would leave the ring so others could do spots. The men’s 4-way match on Saturday was better, but there were some good things here too. I loved the double Sharsphooter by Natalya. Rousey didn’t take a bump and only tagged in to get the submission win since she has an arm injury. I am not surprised by the match result. It was the obvious outcome.

A video aired about The Judgment Day.

They showed highlights of the Andre The Giant Battle Royal that took place on Smackdown that was won by Bobby Lashley.

Bobby Lashley appeared on the stage to pose with the trophy. Lashley waved at the fans. That was it.

Analysis: I feel like WWE did Lashley wrong by not putting him in a match. He could have beaten somebody like LA Knight or The Miz in a quick match. He deserves a WrestleMania match.

The Up Up Down Down video game crew was shown promoting the WWE 2K23 video game. They showed a simulation of the GUNTHER-Sheamus-Drew McIntyre match. Woods said in the simulations, Drew McIntyre won 42% of the time.

There was a video package for the GUNTHER-Sheamus-Drew McIntyre match. It’s sponsored by Mike’s Harder Lemonade.

WWE Global Ambassador Titus O’Neil was out on commentary again just like last night for one match.

Drew McIntyre made his entrance first with Angela the sword. Drew got a big ovation from the crowd as you would expect. Drew was wearing white trunks, which is a different look for him. Sheamus was cheered as well with the Brawling Brutes (Butch & Ridge Holland) joining him on the stage. Ridge and Butch went to the back while Sheamus made his way down to the ring. The Intercontinental Champion GUNTHER was next with Ludwig Kaiser & Giovanni Vinci on hand to join the Imperium leader. Kaiser did the introduction for Gunther as well. Gunther made his way down to the ring alone for his first WrestleMania match.

Intercontinental Championship: GUNTHER vs. Sheamus vs. Drew McIntyre

The first fall wins in a triple threat match. There are no countouts or disqualifications.

Drew kicked Gunther out of the ring to start the match. Drew and his best friend Sheamus exchanged punches, Drew hit some chops and Drew hit a clothesline. Sheamus hit his backbreaker. Sheamus set up Drew for ten beats, but Gunther was back in with hard chops on Sheamus and Drew. Titus: “Call the police!” Gunther tried a sleeper on Sheamus, but Sheamus got out of it and Gunther chopped Sheamus to the mat. Gunther pulled Drew’s arm to send him into the ring post. Gunther with a running kick to Sheamus followed by a hard chop to the chest. Gunther delivered loud chops along with a kick. Gunther with a backbreaker leading to a Boston Crab submission. Drew with a boot and slap to the face. Gunther with hard chops, Drew with a chop back, Gunther with chops, Drew with chops and they just kept going while the fans were chanting “WOO” for it Drew won that chop battle with Gunther as the fans were cheering. Sheamus worked over Gunther with uppercuts. The three guys stood there exchanging forearms and chops. Gunther with a two-handed chop to the throat of Drew and he kicked Sheamus to the apron. The fans were cheering. Sheamus snapped Gunther’s neck across the top rope. Sheamus and Drew took turns doing ten beats on Gunther with forearms by Sheamus and Drew delivering chops. Drew hit Sheamus with a forearm to knock him out of the ring. Back in the ring, Sheamus sent Drew to the apron leading to the ten forearms to the chest with the fans chanting along. Sheamus actually hit about 29 forearms with the fans chanting. Sheamus got a standing ovation for that. The fans were loving it!

Gunther was back in with a German Suplex on Sheamus followed by a clothesline for two. When Sheamus got up again, Gunther hit an even harder clothesline for two. Drew got back into it with a top rope clothesline followed by a neckbreaker. Drew gave Sheamus a belly-to-belly suplex onto Gunther against the turnbuckle. Drew hit a Future Shock DDT on Gunther leading to a kip up. Drew went for a Claymore Kick, Gunther ducked it and Gunther dropkicked Drew into the turnbuckle. Gunther hit a Powerbomb on Drew for two. Gunther went up top, Sheamus met him there with some chops and Sheamus hit a White Noise slam off the middle ropes. Sheamus hit the Celtic Cross (Razor’s Edge) for one…two…and no! The fans bought that nearfall. Sheamus went for the Texas Cloverleaf submission, Gunther got to the ropes and there was no break since it’s not allowed in this match and Sheamus reapplied the hold. Drew broke up the hold with a chinlock, but Sheamus knocked Drew out of the ring. Sheamus hit a running knee lift on Gunther. The fans were behind Sheamus, who pounded his chest with the fans chanting “Brogue” and Sheamus hit the Brogue Kick. Sheamus covered for one…two…and no because Drew pulled Sheamus out of the ring. Sheamus was angry about it, but it was legal in the match. The fans were chanting “this is awesome” for them. Drew headbutted Sheamus out of the ring. Drew ran the ropes leading to a somersault dive over the top onto Sheamus on the floor. Drew went for the Claymore Kick, but Sheamus hit him with a Brogue Kick for one…two…and Drew got his left shoulder up. After they were down selling, Drew hit a headbutt, Sheamus with a knee, Drew ran the ropes and Drew hit a Claymore Kick for one…two…and no because Sheamus got his right shoulder up! The fans were stunned. They were going wild. A lot of the fans were standing.

Sheamus and Drew exchanged punches while on their knees, then they got back up to their feet and turned into a slugfest. They exchanged short clotheslines, Sheamus bounced off the ropes and hit a Brogue Kick. Sheamus was slow to cover for two as Gunther jumped off the top with a splash. Gunther gave Sheamus a Powerbomb onto Drew’s back. Gunther hit a Powerbomb on Drew for the one…two…and three! Gunther wins! It went 16:40.

Winner by pinfall: Gunther

Analysis: ***** That was an amazing IC Title match. It’s five stars from me just like the last time Gunther faced off with Sheamus in a PLE match and this time they brought along Drew McIntyre, who perfectly fit in with them. All three guys had moments where it looked like they were going to win. The dramatic spot was when Drew pulled Sheamus out of the after a Brogue Kick, so Drew stopped his best friend from winning. That led to more nearfalls with Drew & Sheamus kicking out of their finishers. Gunther was out of the ring for a few minutes there, but I loved the pin breakup. Having Gunther hit a Powerbomb on Sheamus onto Drew’s back and then hit a Powerbomb on Drew was a terrific way to end the match. The fans were so into this match with the striking these guys did that looked like they were beating the shit out of eachother because they probably were. It just showed how willing they were to put their bodies on the line to entertain us. As Sheamus says, it was a “banger” and one of the best IC Title matches in WrestleMania history. I loved it. Amazing match.

The three announcers for the match were standing and giving them a standing ovation.

Gunther celebrated as the champion with Cole noting that he has been the champion for 296 days and counting.

Analysis: I picked Sheamus to win, but I don’t mind Gunther remaining the champion. He’s an incredible performer.

Funny tweet by Sheamus showing him and McIntyre after the match. They have earned that beer together.

A video package aired for the Bianca Belair-Asuka match.

Asuka made her entrance with some other women on the stage wearing similar attire. Asuka took off her mask and stared into the camera with the fans popping for it.

Bianca Belair’s entrance was next. They had a stage full of black girls dancing while wearing Belair shirts and they did a great job while Belair’s music was playing. One of the smaller girls an impressive dance move to end it. Belair danced with some girls on the stage. The dance group was introduced as the Divas of Compton. Great job by them!

Bianca Belair, the Raw Women’s Champion, made her entrance to the ring with the girls posing on the ramp behind her. It’s 365 days since Belair won the Raw Women’s Title at last year’s WrestleMania.

Raw Women’s Championship: Bianca Belair vs. Asuka

They both have cool-looking gear. I like Asuka’s face paint look along with the red-blue hair too. Belair was in control early leading to a dropkick into the corner. Asuka got some offense going with strikes like a spinning back fist, a kick, a bulldog and a sliding knee for two. They battled by the turnbuckle, Belair did a backflip and a spinebuster for two. Belair did a handstand off the ropes leading to a moonsault, but Asuka caught her in an armbar. Asuka went for an Asuka Lock submission, but Belair was able to roll out of the ring to get out of it. They battled on the floor with Asuka getting an armbar takedown, but Belair gave Asuka a Powerbomb on the floor. Ouch. Back in the ring, Belair got a two count. Asuka avoided a charging Belair, who went shoulder-first into the ring post. Belair tried a lifting move, Asuka got out of it and went for an ankle lock. Belair came back with a belly to back suplex. Belair went for a move off the ropes, but Asuka tripped her up with an Ankle Lock submission. Belair got out of it so Asuka went to the middle rope and hit a missile dropkick for two. I think Belair said “Kawada kicks” so Asuka hit some kicks to the body that would count as that. Asuka kicked Belair to the apron. Belair blocked a kick by catching the leg and Asuka dropkicked Belair into the ring post. Belair with a forearm and then she sent Asuka into the ring post. Belair stood on the middle rope while Asuka was on the apron and Belair suplexed Asuka into the ring for a two count. An impressive display of power there. They exchanged forearms, Belair hit a running forearm and they each got two counts followed by Asuka getting a backslide pin for two. Asuka with two roundhouse kicks to the head for two. Belair blocked a move that Asuka was trying and Belair hit a blockbuster neckbreaker. Belair with a handstand moonsault off the ropes for a two count. Asuka with a rising knee while Belair bounced off the ropes with a shoulder tackle as both women were down.

Belair kicked Asuka to keep her down. Belair went up top, Asuka with a punch and Belair tried a lift by the turnbuckle. Asuka pulled Belair by the hair followed by Asuka hitting a Codebreaker double knees for two. Asuka charged, Belair caught her and Belair launched Belair face first into the turnbuckle. Asuka was down in the corner, you could tell she was getting the mist in her mouth, then Belair nearly hit the referee and Asuka went for the blue mist, but Belair ducked it. Belair went for her finisher, Asuka got out of it and Asuka went for an armbar. Belair managed to power out of it. Belair slowly got back up and Belair hit the KOD (Kiss of Death) slam for the pinfall win at 16:05.

Winner by pinfall: Bianca Belair

Analysis: ***1/2 They had a very good, competitive match with Asuka coming close to dethroning the champion, but she couldn’t get it done. The key spot was Asuka going for the blue mist spit, Belair managed to duck it and Belair got out of the submission attempt. Belair showed off her power really well throughout the match, especially with the slow lift leading to the KOD slam for the win. I picked Belair to retain, so I got that one right also. This booking team likes really long title reigns as we have seen over the last year. Asuka put up a fight, but Belair was too much for her. Maybe they need to find a stronger heel to take down Belair in the coming months.

There were some commercials including Chad Gable & Otis promoting Snickers.

There was George Kittle of the NFL’s San Francisco 49ers at ringside. Legendary sports announcer Al Michaels was at ringside too.

Highlights were shown of Sami Zayn & Kevin Owens beating The Usos for the WWE Tag Team Titles at WrestleMania 39 Saturday.

Let’s Hear from The Miz and Snoop Dogg

The Miz announced the attendance at 81,395 people. The two-night total was 161,892 people.

The Miz said that they are supposed to be friends, but last night Snoop put him in a match against Pat McAfee while Miz was wearing a $10,000 suit. Snoop asked Miz if he wants to do it again? Miz said no. Miz said he was not ready and then George Kittle made it a 2-on-1 handicap match. Miz said Snoop ruined his suit and tried to embarrass him. Snoop said, “my bad.” Miz said it’s his city, his ring and his WrestleMania. Snoop said that this is our city, our WrestleMania and Snoop had a surprise…it’s Shane McMahon!

Here comes the money! Shane McMahon made his way down to the ring wearing one of his Shane-O-Mac jerseys, pants and sneakers. Shane thanked the fans for the reception. Snoop told a referee to get in there to have a match. Referee Jessika Carr made her way down to the ring to start the match.

Shane McMahon vs. The Miz

Shane delivered some punches. Shane tried a leapfrog and then his left knee gave out as Shane collapsed to the mat. The trainer checked on Shane in the ring. Snoop went into the ring and punched Miz in the face. The referee left the ring, so the match was done. Snoop punched Miz to knock him down. Snoop teased doing a People’s Elbow, he threw his sunglasses into the crowd and Snoop hit an Elbow Drop. Snoop covered Miz for the pinfall win after 2:05.

Winner by pinfall: Snoop Dogg

Analysis: -* I will give Snoop credit for improvising there. It worked to at least finish this atrocity. Poor Shane McMahon getting hurt. It was not a good match obviously, but it filled a few minutes of time.

UPDATE: On the post-WrestleMania press conference, Triple H said his brother-in-law Shane McMahon suffered a torn quad injury. That’s something Triple H and Vince McMahon both suffered from in their careers. It was not a worked injury.

There was a video package for the Hell in a Cell match between Edge and Finn Balor.

They have the Hell in a Cell structure that is silver instead of red like WWE had been using for a few years. This is better. They had some movie tie-in for The Pope’s Excorcist with Russell Crowe featured in the promo as well.

A graphic was shown on the screen saying “Brood Edge” as Edge emerged from under the stage and had a steel mask on his head while there was also fire. They didn’t play the classic Brood theme, but it was some rock song. Edge raised his arms and it was some cape-like jacket that he had on. The rock song stopped playing. That led to the classic Edge theme song playing as the pyro went off, Edge was free of the steel mask look and he made his entrance. Graves mentioned it was a Slayer song so that’s cool. Graves shouted that Edge was ready for war.

Analysis: There were rumors of Gangrel joining Edge for his entrance, but there was no sign of him. It was Edge all alone.

Finn Balor made his entrance as “Demon” Finn Balor and he was introduced as “The Demon” Finn Balor. It looked pretty cool seeing Balor doing his Demon entrance on the WrestleMania stage.

Hell in a Cell Match: Edge vs. “Demon” Finn Balor

The first few minutes featured a lot of weapon shots with both guys using kendo sticks heavily. I missed a bit of it. When I came back, Edge trapped Balor against the cell with two kendo sticks keeping Balor trapped there. Edge hit a dropkick off the apron to smash Balor against the cell. Edge set up a table against the cell. Balor fought back with punches and he sent Edge into the steel steps. When they got back into the ring, Edge hit a flatliner followed by an Impaler DDT. Edge charged, but Balor hit a Slingblade neckbreaker. Balor dropkicked Edge off the apron and crashing into the cell. Balor hit a running dropkick to Edge that sent Edge crashing through table that was against the cell. Balor tossed three chairs at Edge, but Edge came back with a boot to the face. Edge hit a Killswitch/Unprettier that his best friend Christian has used as a finisher in his career. Edge charged, Balor with a kick and a cradle. Edge hit a sitout neckbreaker for just one with that move. Edge pulled out a ladder from under the ring and brought it into the ring. Edge tossed the ladder at Balor to knock him down. The camera didn’t show Balor with the blood on his head, so they just showed Edge fuming about it. Edge brought more kendo sticks into the ring. When Balor was cleaned up enough, Balor kicked him and wanted a Powerbomb, but Balor got out of that. Balor with a double foot stomp followed by an elbow drop slam. Balor jumped off the top with a Coup de Grace, but Edge moved and Edge ran into the ladder. Balor and Edge did a double clothesline spot. They were both down selling.

Balor with a Slingblade, a dropkick and a Coup de Grace off the top rope. That finisher got a two count because Edge got his right shoulder up. Balor climbed up the ladder, but Edge was there with a kendo stick to hit Balor with it. While they were both on the ladder, Edge hit an Edgecution DDT off the ladder for a two count. Edge brought a table into the ring, Balor beat him with kendo sticks and chairs. Edge was laying on the table. Balor went up to a platform that was on the side of the cell, he jumped off with a Coup de Grace, but Edge moved and Balor did the double foot stomp through the table. Balor was down selling for a few moments, then he got back up and Edge hit a Spear for one…two…and no! Edge used the red steel chair to hit Balor in the back repeatedly. Edge put a steel chair under Balor’s head and Edge brought in another chair for a Conchairto wit the two steel chairs. Edge flipped Balor over and covered for the pinfall win at 18:10.

Winner by pinfall: Edge

Analysis: ***3/4 A physical brawl within the confines of a Hell in a Cell match. They used a lot of weapons with the kendo sticks, the chairs, the tables and the ladder. When you have a Hell in a Cell match like that, it’s all about using weapons to settle the rivalry. The Conchairto finish was a definitive ending. The fact that they had to stop for a few minutes so Balor could get the blood cleaned up did hurt the match, but that’s how it is in PG WWE. I thought Edge winning was the right move. I know that people hate seeing “Demon” Balor lose and Edge is the older guy, but based on the story they have had for the past year, Edge should have got the win here to put an end to the rivalry. I don’t think this was as good as Edge’s last Hell in a Cell match with Seth Rollins. It’s still an entertaining match.

Edge slowly got back to his feet as the winner of the match while the announcers put it over as a great match.

Analysis: Since Rhea Ripley won the Smackdown Women’s Title, it could mean that The Judgment Day group is moving to Smackdown with her. That’s why this could have been a feud ender also.

There was a video showing clips of the WrestleMania Goes Hollywood movie parody videos that WWE aired over the last month.

Bianca Belair, the Raw Women’s Champion, was interviewed by Kayla Braxton. Belair talked about beating Asuka in a tough match for her third straight WrestleMania win. The girls that were part of Belair’s entrance joined her to chant “EST” as the scene ended there.

A commercial aired for the WWE Backlash Premium Live Event coming next month on May 6th.

They showed highlights of the WWE Hall of Fame ceremony from Friday night.

The Hall of Fame 2023 class was announced for some waving from the stage. Stacy Keibler was up first. The family of Andy Kaufman next. The Great Muta was there with a mask on. He did his green mist spit before the camera was on him. The Warrior Award recipient Tim White was represented by his brothers. Lastly, Rey Mysterio was introduced to the crowd. Rey got a big pop as usual. They showed the Hall of Famers again as they stood on the stage.

Analysis: It’s a WrestleMania tradition to have the Hall of Famers greet the crowd like that. It fills a few minutes and that’s fine.

A commercial aired promoting WrestleMania 40 in Philadelphia next April at Lincoln Financial Field, home of the NFL’s Philadelphia Eagles. They showed some Philadelphia fans chanting “Mania” to get ready for it.

There was a video shown of Seth “Freakin” Rollins making his entrance on WrestleMania 38 Saturday.

Analysis: I have no idea why we needed to see that again other than WWE wanting to fill a few minutes to prepare for the main event.

A TurboTax commercial aired since it is sponsoring the main event.

The video package aired for the Roman Reigns-Cody Rhodes main event. It was excellent.

Cody Rhodes was up first with the fans cheering him while a lot of them were singing his song. Cody rose from the stage, he was wearing a robe and the fans shouted the “WHOA-OH” part of the song. Cody made his way down to the ring and greeted his family at ringside. Cody’s wife Brandi, daughter Liberty, sister Teil and his mother were there. Cody hugged his daughter and gave her back to mom. Cody presented the weight belt to Jon Huber’s son Brodie Jr. aka Luke Harper’s son. That’s very touching. Cody took his time getting into the ring, kissed the ring and posed for the crowd again.

The stage was full of six pianos with piano players that were performing the Roman Reigns theme song. After a bit of that, Roman’s music hit.

Roman Reigns made his entrance joined by the “Wise Man” Special Counsel Paul Heyman and Solo Sikoa. Cole mentioned it has been 945 days for Roman Reigns as the champion. That’s the Universal Championship and one year for the WWE Championship. Reigns is main eventing WrestleMania for the seventh time and the first wrestler to defend the same World Title at three straight WrestleManias. It took a while, but Reigns made his way down to the ring. The announcers really put over Reigns in a big way, which is certainly fine because Reigns deserves it. Cole also mentioned some of the men that Reigns defeated to continue this historic title run. When Reigns got into the ring, he held up the WWE & Universal Titles as a pyro display went off in the stadium.

Cody Rhodes was introduced first by ring announcer Samantha Irvin, who really does a great job and gives her all when she does it. The fans popped big for Cody again. When Irvin introduced Reigns, Roman was smiling with his two titles in his hands and he held up the titles over his head.

Reigns called for the microphone: “WrestleMania, acknowledge me!” There were boos and cheers while Solo just stared at Cody. The bell rang at 11:00 p.m. and obviously, there’s no specific time ending for WWE PLE events.

Undisputed WWE Universal Championship: Roman Reigns (w/Solo Sikoa & Paul Heyman) vs. Cody Rhodes

There was a staredown as the match began. The referee for the match is Dan Engler. Cody with a hammerlock leading to Reigns getting to the ropes to break the hold. Cody with a side headlock, then he was sent into the ropes, Cody dropped down and Cody punched Reigns in the jaw. Heyman reminded Reigns that all of the people are here to see Reigns and told Reigns to smash him. When Reigns got back into the ring, he managed to get some offense going including clotheslines against the turnbuckle. Cody fought back, sent Reigns into the ropes and hit a dropkick. Cody with punches, Cody went for a Disaster Kick off the ropes, but Reigns caught him and Reigns hit a Powerbomb for a two count. Reigns with punches along with choking across the middle rope. Reigns hit a suplex for just a one count leading to some laughing by the champion. Reigns suplexed Cody followed by some waving towards Cody’s family at ringside. Reigns sent Cody to the apron, Cody got back in the ring and sent Reigns out of the ring. Cody went for an attack on the apron, but Reigns grabbed the foot and Cody landed on the apron. Reigns tossed Cody on to the bottom of the ramp. Reigns gave Cody a body slam on the bottom of the ramp. When Reigns tried another body slam, Cody got out of it and Cody gave Reigns a body slam on the ramp. They were fighting around the ring. Both guys broke the referee’s count at different points when they were fighting on the floor. Cody sent Reigns into the ring, the referee was looking at Reigns and Solo hit Cody in the ribs with the steel chair. You could see Cody had to wait for it, so Solo was a bit slow with it. Reigns hit a Drive By kick on the floor and back in the ring for a two count. Cody fought back with punches. Cody bounced off the ropes, Solo grabbed his foot (the referee never saw it) and Reigns hit Cody with a clothesline leading to a flip bump by Cody. Reigns got a two count out of that.

Reigns whipped Cody hard into the turnbuckle leading to Cody selling the rib injury. Reigns tossed Cody out of the ring again. Reigns cleared off the English announce table. Reigns cleared off the Spanish announce table as well. Reigns broke the referee’s count, then back out again and Reigns wanted a Powerbomb. Cody blocked that and Cody gave Roman a back body drop from the Spanish table while sending Reigns through the English table. That was a big spot. Cody back in to stop the count. I guess we can say they don’t do DQ’s for breaking those tables since it’s part of the ringside area. They were back in the ring with Cody getting an uppercut punch followed by a powerslam. Cody jumped off the ropes with a springboard Cody Cutter for one…two…and no! Reigns kicked. Cole was shocked as he shouted “Oh my God, he kicked out at two.” That is not Cody’s finisher, but it’s a big move that is great for a nearfall. Cody stomped on Reigns, so Reigns left the ring. Reigns hit a suicide dive sending Reigns hard into the barricade. Cody sent Reigns into the ring, Solo got the weight belt and he hit Cody in the back with it. The referee didn’t see it, but he heard it enough. Referee Dan Engler ejected Solo from ringside leading to a huge pop from the crowd. The replay showed that Engler didn’t see it, but he reacted to the sound. Good spot to pop the crowd. Reigns wanted to use the weight belt as a weapon, the referee tried to stop it and Cody hit a superkick. Cody hit the Cross Rhodes for one…two…and no! Roman kicked out. Amazing nearfall there.

Reigns hit a jawbreaker, a headbutt and a forearm to the back. Reigns sent Cody over the top, Cody was selling his left injury, Cody tried to skin the cat back in and Reigns caught him. Reigns hit a uranage with Cole saying that and then calling it a Rock Bottom for a two count. It’s more of a uranage because a Rock Bottom is when you go down to the mat with your opponent. Reigns set up in the corner, he charged for a Superman Punch, Cody avoided it and Cody hit a Pedigree for one…two…and no! Just a two count. The majority of the crowd was standing and cheering for Cody. They both ran the ropes, Cody jumped off the ropes going for a Disaster Kick, but Roman got him with a Superman Punch. That got a two count. Reigns went for a Spear, Cody over a top and he hit a sunset flip for two. Cody applied the Figure Four Leglock with the announcers mentioned Dusty Rhodes looking down at his son Cody using a move that Dusty used a lot in his career. Reigns turned it over to put the pressure on Cody, who crawled to the bottom rope to break the hold. They both paused a bit for a breather with Cody on the apron while Reigns was in the ring. They exchanged punches, Cody with a necksnap across the top rope and Cody went up top. Cody jumped off the top, Reigns avoided it and Reigns charged with a Spear for one…two…no! Cody got his right shoulder up! Reigns was shocked by it as he complained to the referee about it.

Reigns mounted Cody and worked over him with punches. Reigns signaled as if to say “that’s it” as Reigns applied a Guillotine Choke hold. Cody was selling it like he was fading, Cody was down to a knee, but Cody kept his arm up because had some fight left in him. Reigns wrapped the legs around Cody’s waist, but Cody used his right arm to push Roman’s arm out and Cody broke the hold. Cody mounted Reigns leading to punches to the head. Cody went for a kick, Reigns moved and Cody kicked the referee Dan Engler to knock him out of the ring by accident. Reigns punched Cody, who bounced off the ropes and Cody hit a clothesline to knock Reigns down. They were both down selling again. The Usos went into the ring with a double superkick on Cody. The fans were booing loudly while Cole was complaining about it. The Usos hit 1D on Cody. Sami Zayn and Kevin Owens showed up to fight off the Usos. Owens and Zayn sent The Usos out of the ring. Owens hit a Stunner on Reigns. Zayn hit a Helluva Kick on Reigns. The Usos and Zayn/Owens went fighting out of the ring and into the crowd. Cody crawled over to Reigns, put one arm on the chest, the referee Dan Engler did the slow count one…two….and no! It’s just a two count. The match continues. Wow. What drama there.

Analysis: Reigns won by cheating so many times without anybody else around to try to stop the cheating, but this time Zayn and Owens were there to nullify The Usos at least. It was a good way to pop the crowd and keep the match going.

Cody and Reigns were on their knees exchanging punches. They got back up to their feet. They threw some more punches, Reigns wanted a Superman Punch, but Cody hit some lefty jabs like Dusty along with a Dusty Bionic Elbow! Cody with the uppercut punch. Cody hit the Cross Rhodes. Cody hit Cross Rhodes again. Cody wanted to hit Cross Rhodes again, Heyman distracted the referee and Solo Sikoa hit Cody with the Samoan Spike. Reigns bounced off the ropes and hit the Spear on Cody for the one…two…and three! It went 34:35.

Winner: Roman Reigns

Analysis: ****1/2 It was an epic, outstanding main event level match. I don’t want to go five stars because of all the cheating and referee-bumping spots that they did, but it was an emotional match full of drama with both guys working really hard. There were so many spots in the match where Cody looked like he was going to get the win, but then Roman kept getting help as usual. Cody hitting the multiple Cross Rhodes and then just stopping against the turnbuckle made it clear that somebody was coming there and that was Solo making his presence felt yet again. I thought Cody was going to win the titles. I wrote it many times in the last two months and I thought this was the right time for Roman’s title reign to end, but I guess not.

Roman Reigns celebrated with the Undisputed WWE Universal Titles while Paul Heyman and Solo Sikoa were by his side. They showed some replays of the finish.

Roman Reigns was on the ramp celebrating with the WWE & Universal Titles. Cody Rhodes sat up in the ring looking absolutely devastated. They continued to show Reigns celebrating with one finger in the air since he is The One and they are The Ones.

Analysis: Business is really strong with Roman Reigns on top, so I guess the WWE decision-makers want to keep things how they are now. The company is selling for like $9 billion or whatever it is, so if the people that run WWE want to keep the titles on Reigns then it’s easy to see why. Would I have had Reigns win? No. I thought it was Cody’s time. It’s not up to me, though. I’ll keep watching and see what comes next. That’s the beauty of pro wrestling. It just keeps coming at us.

cody rhodes wwe roman reigns

A video package aired to sign us off.

This event had a runtime of 3:42:21 on WWE Network. That means it was about 20 minutes shorter than Night 1 was.


Five Stars of the Show

  2. Drew McIntyre/Sheamus
  3. Roman Reigns
  4. Cody Rhodes
  5. Edge/Finn Balor


Final Thoughts

I’m going with an 8.25 out of 10 for this show. I went with a 9 out of 10 for WrestleMania 39 Night One. Let’s call it 8.75 out of 10 as the total for WrestleMania 39.

I liked it overall. The show wasn’t as good as Saturday, but there were still a lot of great things like the IC Title triple threat match between GUNTHER, Drew McIntyre & Sheamus. Those guys absolutely put on a classic, hard-hitting performance that we’re going to remember for a long time. The fans are going to remember that one. I rated it five stars like the Tag Team Title match on Saturday.

Edge-Finn Balor Hell in a Cell match was pretty good, but not at the level as the Edge-Rollins HIAC match from 2021. I liked Belair-Asuka too for the most part although it never got that intense. Belair put Asuka away rather easily. Brock Lesnar hitting Omos with an F5 was cool. Simple match, but got the big spot to end it.

There were some down points to the show like Shane McMahon returning and tearing his quad (Triple H said in the press conference) while he was trying to have a match with The Miz. At least Snoop Dogg improvised in that spot.

Lastly, the Roman Reigns-Cody Rhodes match was a tremendous main event level match with a finish that is going to anger a lot of people because they wanted Cody to win. Instead, Reigns cheated to win yet again as his long title reign continues. A lot of us thought Cody would be the guy to end it and I certainly thought it. Sometimes the bad guys win and, in this case, Roman keeps winning. As a match, they had great chemistry together. The referee bump and interference hurt a bit in terms of quality, but it also added to the drama. Maybe somebody is the guy to beat Reigns. It wasn’t Cody’s time I guess even though a lot of us thought it should be.

As a reminder, I have a listing of every WWE PPV that I reviewed in order by year. Thank you for supporting us at TJRWrestling. We appreciate you.


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