I Love WrestleMania
I love WrestleMania. I love everything about it.
I love the week leading up to the event - or, events, as it's now a two-night affair - the way wrestling fans completely take over whatever city the WWE is in, the huge stage reveal, the speculation and debates that go on all week, the whole Hall of Fame Ceremony, the signings/indie shows in that city are bringing the best of the best in, WWE superstars are appearing on all the late night talk shows, the ridiculous entrances….even the RAW after Mania rules!
No matter how good or bad the WWE product is in the year prior to WrestleMania, I always feels like it's Christmas morning when I wake up on a WrestleMania day. You just always have that hope that we could be in store for a "WrestleMania moment" that we'll remember forever, or a match of the year/instant classic, or that this will be the start of a new era for the company.
This will be the first non-COVID Mania I haven't been in the building for since WrestleMania 32 in 2016, and while I've got major FOMO about not being in Los Angeles this weekend - some of the worst experiences of my life have come when trying to leave the stadium following WM, and I don't envy anyone who has to deal with that AND LA traffic tonight/tomorrow.
I think I'd rather be thrown off the top of the Hell in a Cell.
WrestleMania 39 also marks my 20th consecutive WrestleMania I've watched live; I started with WrestleMania 19 in 2003 and never looked back, never missed one again. Never will, either. This is my Super Bowl.
Let's talk about tonight's card a bit, shall we? After all - I think the product has been pretty damn good leading up to the "Showcase of the Immortals" and these shows have the potential to be all timers (but especially Night 1)….
John Cena and Austin Theory open the show tonight on Peacock with a match for Theory's United States Championship.
Side note: God, I hate that new United States Championship design….
It's just so - bleh. No personality, no nothin. I'd just admit that was a swing and a miss and bring back the old one if I were them….
….but I digress. Theory is a cocky pretty-boy character who was Vince's 'chosen one' before VKM split from creative.
You may remember him from his match with Pat McAfee last year….
….or from his appearance on the Yak this week!
Theory called Cena out for this match a few weeks ago, and Cena came out and absolutely fried him on the mic….
Sonned him. Gave him a pat on the head and said, "Very cute that you think you're on my level"; great stuff from Big Match John.
This is a make-or-break match for Theory in my eyes. He's still super young and this could be the breakout performance that sets his career up for major success, but if this falls flat with Cena jerkin the curtain for you (which guarantees you an insanely hot WM crowd) he may be stuck in the midcard for life. Big proving ground.
Still, I'd expect him to go over here. Hollywood Cena ain't got time for titles nowadays, or the space in his carry on for that title alongside his Peacemaker helmet.
Who knows, though - maybe they'll swerve us for an early "WrestleMania moment" and put Cena over, only to have him drop it back on RAW or something! I think that would be pretty cool. Bring Cena's US title back!
Logan Paul returns to the squared circle to take on Seth Rollins, and if I've learned anything about Logan Paul in the WWE, it's to prepare for something insane that steals the show and goes viral EVERY. SINGLE. TIME. he hits the ring….
It's insane how good he is at this for how little experience he has. Rollins as a babyface feels like the perfect opponent for him, and Seth will surely carry Logan to an absolute banger here. I wonder what the big spot will be this time around.
I have VERY high hopes for this match. Oh, and Logan might enter from the sky….
In the following content, Trish Stratus and Lita are BACK to team up with Becky Lynch, and they'll be taking on Damage CTRL in a six-woman tag!
I'm a sucker for a nostalgia match like this as WrestleMania, with "part-timers" featured, as much as I hate to admit it - most wrestling hardcore fans despise them, as they're "taking spots away from full timers" - but who is gonna turn down watching Trish and Lita EVER?!
It's also pretty cool to me that Becky, Bayley, Dakota, and Iyo get to wrestle their idols on the grandest stage possible.
I got to interview Trish a couple weeks ago, as well, so check that out for more on this one….
With all due respect to the very talented people in the WrestleMania eight-man-tag showcase, I have no real thoughts on that match.
Should be quick and fun. Hopefully an insane spotfest with dives galore. Some of these guys should have a chip on their shoulder that they deserve a bigger spot on this card, so I hope they show the powers that be why!
Rey Mysterio finally gets the chance to beat his son Dominik's ass in the next match - yep, the same son who was on the line in his infamous ladder match for custody against Eddie Guerrero….
This has been building for months - ever since Dominik turned heel, joined Finn Bálor's Judgement Day faction, and started acting like a little shithead. He crashed the Mysterio Thanksgiving to beat up his father, Rey….
He crashed the Mysterio Christmas and GOT ARRESTED in the process, sent right to jail….
….and he even crashed a beautiful Valentine's Day dinner between his parents.
Eventually, Rey decided enough is enough, and that he was gonna have to give Dominik an ass whooping to set him straight.
Dominik has really come into his own during this feud and it's amazing to see. Plus, Rey sells his ass off for his son. As a longtime Mysterio mark, this is another one I can't wait for.
Rey was inducted into the WWE Hall of Fame last night and gave a fantastic speech, which Dominik walked out of at the start….
….and I loved that. I've always enjoyed how there's little elements of kayfabe kept during the ceremony, and the cuts to the main eventers to get a reaction from the crowd. All part of the hype to Mania.
I'm not sure which match is actually closing the show tonight, but I'm hoping it's Kevin Owens/Sami Zayn vs The Usos, so we're gonna talk about Charlotte vs Rhea Ripley now.
This is a rematch from WrestleMania 36, aka the COVID Mania, and while it was a pretty great match then and I'm sure it'll be a great match tonight, the story hasn't hooked me at all. Charlotte just doesn't connect as a babyface like she does as a heel, and Rhea's rivalry with Beth Phoenix felt far bigger than this heading into WrestleMania. Hopefully what they do in the ring tonight makes up for that.
I do think it'd be a horrible mistake to main event with this, because the crowd will undoubtedly be the hottest for this next match…..
Finally, the culmination to the Sami Zayn/Kevin Owens vs The Bloodline storyline. I know it's not the culmination some wanted (Sami dethroning Roman Reigns in tomorrow's main event) but it's as good as we're gonna get, and I'm really fucking excited for it.
In my eyes, these are two of the best tag teams that have ever lived. If you've seen KO/Zayn's work as 'Steenerico' in Ring of Honor, I think you'd agree, and the Usos are undeniably one of the greatest tag teams to ever step foot in a WWE ring at this point. Top 5 at the very least. The way they've helped carry the division for the past decade and stepped up during this Bloodline stuff has just been insane to witness.
I know this is a pretty long time commitment, but the WWE put together a 1hr45min playlist compiling pretty much the whole Bloodline storyline between Sami/Kevin/Roman/the Usos, and it's well worth a watch. I think it's the best angle the company has ran in a very long time and this will greatly enhance your enjoyment of both this tag team match and tomorrow night's main event….
Sami is the most over underdog the WWE has had since Daniel Bryan around WrestleMania 30, to the point where Kevin Owens HUGGING HIM to reunite on SmackDown got a bigger pop than anything else on the show a few weeks ago….
I can't remember the last tag team match fans were this invested in. Every slow burn has paid off tenfold. If it actually main events (as it should - again, not to be mean but Charlotte/Rhea WILL NOT be able to follow this) I think it could go down as the biggest/greatest tag team match ever.
Do not underestimate the four men in this match and their ability to rise to the occasion - Kevin Owens, Sami Zayn, and Jimmy/Jey Uso do NOT disappoint in big spots. I would be totally shocked if this isn't the match of the weekend.
As far as surprises go - there's been rumors about "Stone Cold" Steve Austin showing up and doing something (aka stunning somebody) this weekend, rumors about free agent Jay White potentially signing with the company, I heard Randy Orton is just about ready to return, and Bray Wyatt might even try to pull off some weird spooky shit.
I can't wait to find out what will have the wrestling world talking at the end of the night, and if you enjoyed this blog, let me know and I'll do another preview for the Night 2 card. Enjoy WrestleMania!
P.S. Vince McMahon has a fucking mustache all of a sudden….