This past Sunday I was able to live out most every wrestling fan’s dream by attending my very 1st WrestleMania at MetLife Stadium. The atmosphere & excitement was like no other and I highly recommend it to any wrestling fan that is or has contemplating going to the “Super Bowl of Wrestling.” With that said I thought I’d figure to give some my thoughts on the 29th installment of WrestleMania:
- The Miz def. Wade Barrett
Not a bad opener to start off WrestleMania and I completely understand the time constraints of it being on the pre-show. Therefore it wasn’t as good as some of their recent RAW matches but it got the crowd on the right foot with a Miz victory. It’s nice to see two stars with a ton of potential, be pushed up and down the hierarchy of the WWE only to make their climb back to the top.
- The Shield def. Sheamus, Randy Orton & The Big Show
The Shield was very over with the NY/NJ crowd which came as a surprise to no one. Ambrose, Rollins and Reigns continue to grow on WWE television and I really hope are given the ball to run with now that ‘Mania is in the books. If the stars align correctly this trio could one of the best groups/stables from this current decade.
As for the “superfriends” trio of Sheamus, Orton and Big Show, I got to admit I was pretty surprised they went back to (or stayed with) The Big Show heel turn. All three stars really have looked weak throughout this whole thing and I am intrigued with how WWE handles these stars heading into Extreme Rules. Currently they don’t reflect the top star “mantra” that they should be receiving in my opinion.
- Mark Henry def. Ryback
This was your typical “brut” match. I thought both stars did a lot with what they had and made it work for the most part. I’m not a fan of these type of matches but Ryback and Henry proved that they are much more athletic then the normal “brut” matches we have been accustomed to.
- Team Hell No def. Ziggler & Langston
I wasn’t a fan of the buildup for this match because while the WWE Tag Team division was a bright spot for the WWE in 2012, a tandem of Ziggler and Langston never materialized as an actual tag team until weeks before WrestleMania. Having Ziggler and Bryan in the ring against one another during WrestleMania was enough for me and I thought the match was good as well. I think had the WWE given more focus to these four superstars we could’ve gotten a lot more emotional attachment to this match from a fan’s perspective.
- Fandango def. Chris Jericho
I was in the majority when I felt this match could ultimately steal the show from an undercard’s perspective and frankly it did not. The finish was sloppy but it was made up for as both stars are heavily over with the WWE fans. Fandango is going to be a major player in the WWE and Chris Jericho continues to prove why he is one of the best in the business as he continues to help build for wrestling’s future.
While the first match didn’t “blow our socks off” like we thought, I do look forward to seeing an eventual rematch on a smaller stage then WrestleMania. I still have high hopes for this feud and the potential it has.
- Alberto Del Rio def. Jack Swagger
The Del Rio/Swagger feud fell way below expectations and rightfully so. If you go back 12 weeks ago one of these stars was a heel and the other wasn’t even on WWE television. Fast forward to post-Elimination Chamber and one of them is being pushed as a major face (Del Rio) while the other is being pushed as a #1 contender to the World Heavyweight Championship despite just being back on television (Swagger).
It’s to work a World Heavyweight Championship match like that with those things restricting them from connecting to the audience and it doesn’t help it was for a WrestleMania. Like many matches on the card I feel like if it was given more room to grow and be built the fans would’ve accepted it more. It had a ton of potential but overall I feel like it fell flat out of most, if not all, the WrestleMania matches on the card.
- The Undertaker def. CM Punk
This was the best match from the event hands down. Despite everyone “knowing” what will happen the fans are completely invested with every near fall, reversal or regular move when The Undertaker is performing at WrestleMania. It helps when “The Deadman” is quite possibly facing the first person since Randy Orton at WrestleMania 21 to really give people hope that “the streak” could end.
Huge props to both stars for putting on a show under the type of injuries they had. It was a great story told in the ring and I look forward to watching it again once the show comes out onto DVD.
- Triple H def. Brock Lesnar
Other then Undertaker/CM Punk I felt like this match told a great story inside the ring that led to a compelling finish to the match. Both guys really beat the hell out of one another to give the fans a solid match and that’s exactly what they got. Despite Lesnar losing 2 out of his first 3 matches back in the WWE I still feel like he is as strong as when he debuted.
The Triple H/Lesnar feud in my opinion was highly underrated as well and gave fans one of the better buildups heading into MetLife Stadium. I’d be perfectly fine if the WWE wanted to move forward with some sort of “rubber match” between these two at another Summerslam to really end this thing on the right note and unfortunately for Triple H the right note is by getting Lesnar over again as a monster heel. Once again, great job by both guys at WrestleMania.
- John Cena def. The Rock
Sadly the majority of fans could careless about this match and that’s unfortunate for all the hype it received two years ago as being one of those last “mega-matches” in professional wrestling. The match started off slow but I felt really picked up towards the end and had a lot better flow then their WrestleMania 28 match in Miami. While I would’ve preferred to see some sort of heel turn from John Cena (because who doesn’t at this point) or some sort of finish that left us talking, the WWE decided to let all the talking be done in the ring.
The silver lining in this all is that there are questions surrounding both of these wrestlers in regards to what’s next for both of them. Will The Rock ever wrestle again especially after the injury he suffered? Who will be able to feud with John Cena heading into the summer? Can Ryback be that guy?
Overall I was very impressed with the show as a whole and felt it was really solid. Undertaker/CM Punk went beyond expectations and everything else didn’t make me desire anything more but left me pleasantly pleased with the performances. WWE does a hell of a job with their live shows and I felt WrestleMania lived up to all that they deem it to be.
When it’s all said and done I felt like WrestleMania 29 was a 4-out-of-5 show from my standpoint. Very solid show from top to bottom that will probably be one of, if not the best, WWE pay-per-views of the year.
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