There’s been a lot of backstage news about this year’s WrestleMania and today, we learned more about the match order from Sunday’s event.
The match order of the show changed on Sunday afternoon before the fans were let into MetLife Stadium at around 3:30pmET. It was at that point when WWE decided to move the Universal Title match earlier in the show as the first match on the main card shortly after 7pmET. This is according to Mike Johnson of PWInsider.
The original plan was for Lesnar vs. Rollins to go on right before the main event of Becky Lynch vs. Ronda Rousey vs. Charlotte Flair, which would have been around 11:30pmET since the since the main event intros started shortly before midnight.
WrestleMania started off with Yolanda Adams singing “America The Beautiful” followed by the opening video and then Alexa Bliss was out there as the host of the show. Bliss introduced Hulk Hogan, who did a brief promo where he messed up the name of the stadium by saying “MetLife Center” instead of stadium. It was not an intentional slip-up. He’s just old. Anyway, that’s when Paul Heyman came storming out. Dave Meltzer of the Wrestling Observer said that Hogan may not have known about the Heyman thing either. The focus was on Heyman and that was all we saw of Hogan.
The explanation from Heyman in the ring was that Lesnar didn’t want to until later. He said that if Lesnar wasn’t the main event then he should go on now. The announce team acted shocked by it, the fans cheered and that’s when Brock Lesnar entered with the Universal Championship. Seth Rollins followed and he happened to be ready to go in his ring gear. After a Lesnar pre-match attack, Rollins came back to win the Universal Title in a match time of just
The AJ Styles match against Randy Orton was scheduled to go first on the main card. It was moved to second to make room for Lesnar vs. Rollins.
It was noted by Johnson that moving the Rollins/Lesnar match up earlier in the night “may have been done to accomodate Brock Lesnar so he could fly back home as soon as he was done.” Johnson claimed that some people within WWE were shocked Rollins/Lesnar was on so early because it was supposed to be Lesnar.
The rest of the card took place in the order that it was originally scheduled by management.
TJR Thoughts: I believe this to be true, which is I posted it. There are a lot of rumors that come out before and after WrestleMania that are bullshit, but I strongly believe it’s true that Lesnar would have wanted to go on earlier since he wasn’t the main event. If he was on later in the night then he would have had to fly home (he lives in Saskatchewan) in the morning. Since he was done and out of the ring by 7:30pmET, Lesnar likely was able to hop on a plane late Sunday night while the show was still going on. For people that don’t like Brock Lesnar, they will continue to view him as somebody that doesn’t care for the wrestling business because he left early.