Well, I hope my readers enjoyed the first part of my adventure down in Miami, Florida over WrestleMania weekend where I discussed attending the 2012 WWE Hall of Fame Ceremony. Again, I want to say that I was so honored to have attended the event, and met some people. It was a blast. I also attended Ric Flair’s induction ceremony when he went in as a singles wrestler, so to have attended both of his inductions, as well as my beloved Edge’s, is mind blowing.
Well, enough about the Hall of Fame, this second and final part will be dedicated to the WrestleMania PPV event itself, so I hope you will enjoy it, so here we go.
I decided to lay around in my hotel and chill out as I stayed out way late after the Hall of Fame downtown. Miami is a nice city, but I do wish WWE had picked another city besides Miami, as the state of Florida just hosted a WrestleMania four years prior. Yeah, Miami has a lot of hotels, and is a tourist spot, but it is so ultra expensive. Also, when I decided to go to the Sun Life Stadium, I nearly had a coronary when I saw what the price was for parking at the Stadium: FORTY DOLLARS. Good Grief. I never paid that much for anything like that as far as parking. I was sickened to death. When ESPN’s Michael Wilbon of the show, Pardon the Interruption says Sun Life Stadium where the Dolphins play is a “dump,” he was not kidding. Outside of the luxury boxes, this stadium had to be the ugliest stadium I have ever been to. I mean, it was just blech. It was old, and broken down. No wonder Peyton Manning didn’t want to play there. Earth to Stephen Ross: You can spruce up your stadium , you know. I mean, WWE could have picked nicer stadiums like Gillette Stadium, Heinz Field, or even where Super Bowl 46 was just played in Indianapolis at Lucas Oil Stadium. Those cities also could have been great hosts for the WrestleMania week events as well.
Anyway, I walked around before going to my seat, and bought Edge’s Hall of Fame shirt. It is really cool. It has all these expressions that have described Edge and there is a grey silhouette of him doing the devil sign. I then went to my seat which was in 106 and it was behind the stage. The ring set up was cool with the Palm tree gimmick, but the Palm trees blocked people’s views.
[adinserter block=”2″]Lilian Garcia came out and sang “America the Beautiful,” and they did the flyover. In my opinion, the PPV was awesome. The top matches delivered for the most part. The undercard was just that, the undercard. I am so glad that I attended. I originally was going to go to the Hall of Fame only and then go home, but the match that sold me was the Taker/HHH match. It was when they put Shawn Michaels in as the referee and made it the Hell In A Cell Match, that really closed the deal. I was like “I am buying a ticket.” I am so glad I did.
(Matches may be out of order)
The pre-show match was just an entertaining tag match. Too bad Justin Gabriel got hurt though. Fun match though.
1. Daniel Bryan (C) vs Sheaumus for the World Heavyweight Championship
What kind of booking was THAT? Now I am aware they want to put over Sheamus’ broque kick, but I just don’t think that is the way to do it. Of course, if you watched Smackdown, it looks like Bryan is going to get a huge push out of it. When I saw the match, I was annoyed to see Sheamus (who I like a lot) win in 18 seconds just like that. Rating: *
2. Randy Orton vs Kane
I wondered why Randy Orton was in a filler match with Kane instead of being in the World Title picture. I still am wondering. Anyway, chants of “Move the Palm tree” were heard during the match. The match was pretty decent for Kane. I am surprised that Randy lost. Again, the show was on his birthday (April 1) ,so that could explain it. Rating: **
3. Big Show vs Cody Rhodes for the Intercontinental Title
Here I am waiting for an Intercontinental Title match on Mania for ages, and this is what I get. The match was just passable. Cody did the best he could with the Big Show. I mean, they could not get a better opponent for Cody to drop the IC title to other than the Big Show? I mean, let’s get real here. The Big Show does not need a title. I am sure they could have done the match with R Truth, or some other face. I was not expecting the second coming of Macho Man vs Rickie the Dragon Steamboat at Mania 3 or anything, but WWE could have come up with something better than Show. It was a fun match though. Rating: **
Throughout the PPV, they had some backstage skits. One of them had Foley and Santino doing a “World’s Deadliest Catch” skit where Hall of Famer Ron Simmons came in and did “DAMN.” They did the announcement of how many people attended, and announced that the next WrestleMania was going to be at the New Meadowlands Stadium on April 7, 2013.
4. Diva Tag Team Match: Beth Phoenix/Eve Marie Torres vs Kelly Kelly/Maria Menounous
It was a fun Diva match. Maria did not take many bumps due to her broken ribs suffered from “Dancing with the Stars,” but the Divas did a pretty good job. The crowd saw that the stagehands were setting up for the Hell In The Cell Match, so during the Diva match, they chanted “Let’s go Stage hands.” Well, I am sorry, but I thought that was rude. Those women in that ring bust their rear ends much like the men, and in my opinion, deserve the same respect. It is bad enough that WWE uses them poorly as it is, especially Phoenix and Natalya, who can actually wrestle a match. The baby faces won, of course. Rating: **
5. End of an Era: Hell in a Cell between the Undertaker and Triple H with HBK as referee
This had to be one of the best matches I have ever seen in person. Great HIAC match as well. Great ring work by both HHH and Taker, but what was even better was the storytelling. At first, HBK was pretty neutral, even at times wanting to stop the match because it looked like Undertaker could not continue. However, HBK was showing partiality towards Hunter. From Hunter’s defiance, to HBK’s facials, to Taker’s constant punishment of HHH, this match was phenomenal. There was even a little color (cut above HHH’s eye). The coup de grace was Taker, HHH, and HBK all walking off, and doing that group hug at the top of a ramp. It certainly was an “end of an era.” Rating: *****
6. General Manager Match : Team Johnnie vs Team Teddy. Winner runs both shows
This was just a filler match that I honestly thought did not belong on the show. I mean, I care about the wrestlers, not non wrestling characters. Last year, as a fan, I put up with feuding announcers. I didn’t care about feuding announcers. I don’t care about Michael Cole putting himself over. This year, I don’t care who runs SD or Raw or whatever. I am guessing this was a way of getting guys on the PPV. Too bad Christian who was supposed to be on Team Johnnie, had to be replaced due to injury. Anyway, the match was something that could have been on Raw or SD. You had Team Teddie screwed over by Eve when she pretended to be supporting Zach doing that Woo chant causing the distraction, and Miz hit Ryder with the Skull Crushing Finale for the win for Team Johnnie. Eve then kicks Ryder in the balls. Sorry, that belongs on TV. Rating 1/2 *
They brought out the Hall of Fame Class of 2012. Everyone got a good sized pop, especially Mike Tyson for some reason. Edge came out to his own music, and did his devil horns sign, and was fighting back tears.
Backstage, a jubliant Johnnie Ace tells Punk that if he (Punk) gets DQ’d, Jericho get’s the Title.
7. Punk (C) vs Jericho for the WWE Title
This was an awesome match. It started a little slow for me, but once it got going, I just loved it. Jericho is such a wonderful heel, by trying to get Punk to snap and get DQ’d. Punk and Jericho did a great job with the holds and counter holds. I figured they would have a great match together, and they didn’t disappoint. Rating: **** 1/2
The Funkasaurus comes out, and has his momma , and her bridge club do a whole dance routine. That was fun, actually. There was a backstage segment with Heath Slater and Flo Rida which saw Slater being beat up. MKG came out and played Cena to the ring, and Flo RIda came out and performed a song for the Rock.
8. Once In A Lifetime: The Rock vs John Cena
Well, it wasn’t a catch as catch can (as Jim Ross would say) type of a match, but I really enjoyed it. When Rock was on the offense, the match was awesome. When Cena was on offense, though, the match was just alright. The Rock is a great seller, but Cena’s offense seemed off, in the very beginning. Once the match got going, everything was fine. There was a lot of heat, obviously, and all the chants came out from the fans. I know in my predictions column, I said we were going to have Cena win (zzzzzzzzzzzzz). However, as the match continued, I started to think that Rock was going to win. What clued me in was late in the match, I noticed Cena acting heelish. I saw him trying to win by short cuts, and things. It was near the end when Cena attempted the Rock’s patented People’s Elbow that I thought Cena was about to lose, and lose he did. I was shocked, and happy. Excellent Match Rating: ***1/2
[adinserter block=”1″]I honestly had NO problem with the Rock winning. Yeah, I have heard comparisons to David Arquette winning, and how Cena is a WWE talent and should have gone over. Well, here is what I have to say to that. I have no problem with Rock winning because I think it would be more interesting to see what happens to the Cena character now that he has lost. I think you get more of a storyline out of Cena down the road with his losing than if he won. I mean, I remember during the buildup how Cena kept saying how he HAD to win, and such. Well, let’s see what he does now, and he has Brock Lesnar to deal with on top of dealing with his loss to the Rock. I mean, seriously, it is very easy to have Cena win. Cena beats Rock…..well, where do you go from there? Anyone can book that ending. As for the comparisons to David Arquette, now really, contrary to popular myth, The Rock busted his rear to make it in the wrestling business also…just like those who came before him. To compare him to Arquette is just ridiculous.
Well, that is the end of my experience at Mania 28. I hope to make it at Mania 29.
Terri Bey currently blogs for CamelClutchBlog.com about Wrestling, NFL, and other sports/pop culture related subjects. Her work has appeared in BleacherReport and for F4WOnline.com. Terri can be found here at Facebook- http://www.facebook.com/TerriBey and at Twitter- http://www.twitter.com/missedgehead