One of the biggest WrestleMania rematches in history is reportedly close to being finalized. Unfortunately it won’t be Shawn Michaels vs. The Undertaker but rather one of the worst matches to ever take place at Mania is coming back for round two.
A new report indicates that the often-hyped Bill Goldberg vs. Brock Lesnar match is close to being finalized for either WrestleMania 33 or the Survivor Series. The sequel would follow their infamous match at WrestleMania 20 which is often ranked among the worst matches in WrestleMania history. Yet for some strange reason fans are giddy at the news.
Dave Meltzer broke the news on a recent Wrestling Observer Radio podcast. Meltzer reported that the timing of the new WWE 2K17 commercial which features a Lesnar vs. Goldberg “dream match” is not coincidental. Meltzer reports that negotiations with Bill Goldberg are serious and a deal is near. Meltzer also reported that Goldberg is booked to appear on ESPN Wednesday, which indicates to him that an announcement is imminent.
Rumors about Goldberg returning to the WWE, generally get legs at this time every year. However, nothing was ever as strong as the latest rumors which point to a done deal. The biggest buzz came a couple of years ago around a Goldberg vs. Ryback rematch. Goldberg would later comment in interviews that while he had conversations with the WWE, both sides were never as close to inking a deal as fans had hoped.
Goldberg’s return follows the pattern of recent former stars on the outs with the WWE that wound up returning or doing business with the company due to the video game. Hulk Hogan, Sting, and the Ultimate Warrior all started with a game deal that eventually led to appearances and or matches. Randy Savage was even featured in a video game before he died leading to speculation that he would have returned if things played out before he passed away.
I have written on this many times and once again, I still don’t understand the hype around it. I’ll wait to rant on the match until it’s official but the idea of bringing back one of the biggest duds in Mania history as a big event is just perplexing. Yet for whatever reason, fans are hyped for it and the WWE appears that they are willing to spend more money on Goldberg than they wanted to in previous negotiations.
The mystique around Goldberg is also fascinating to me. Goldberg represents everything the audience that booed John Cena and Batista hate, yet many of those fans are excited about his return. A home video release featuring Goldberg last year was one of the most popular DVD releases in recent history. I don’t understand it but the fans have spoken, they want him back.
The match is one of a handful of dream matches out there that the WWE can book at this stage of the game. Last year’s Mania event was void of any “big matches”, yet it didn’t seem to impact business in the least. If a Goldberg vs. Lesnar rematch can increase business over last year’s extravaganza, than anything they are paying Goldberg is an investment worth making.
New reports suggest the match could take place as soon as Survivor Series. That would indicate to me that they are going to series, otherwise I can’t see them wasting a one-off Goldberg appearance on Survivor Series. Nonetheless, they did bring back Undertaker last year at SummerSlam so it shouldn’t be too surprising.
I would expect confirmation on the match sometime this week either before or during Goldberg’s ESPN appearance.