New Orleans, LA
WrestleMania is finally here! The “Showcase of the Immortals” has arrived! The build to this year’s Mania is a little lackluster for some, but no matter the hype—or lack of—this event always produces memorable moments. With many stories set to culminate at this year’s Mania, it can be argued the 30th edition of the annual spectacular will be remembered for decades to come. The biggest story of this year’s event is undoubtedly the rise of Daniel Bryan and if he will overcome the odds to become the new WWE World Heavyweight Champion. We’ll get to that in just a bit, but let’s first check out how we did last time with our Elimination Chamber picks.
My Results- 5 for 7
WWE Tag Team Championship- Fatal 4-Way:
The Usos (c) vs. Los Matadores vs. Rybaxel vs. The Real Americans
Nice to see the Tag Team Championship featured in Nola, even on the Pre-Show. The Pre-Show will be exclusive to the WWE Network during its 2nd hour. So if you aren’t subscribed, you will miss this match. And that would be a shame because this is going to be a hot opener. The tension between The Real Americans seems to have dissipated since receiving this title shot. But a loss here might cause their issues to boil over. Not sure how the Matadores ended up getting a shot at the Title. I’m fairly certain they had 2 tv matches before being thrown into the mix. And Rybaxel’s inclusion is also up for debate; they were glorified jobbers for a stretch there. This match is set to give The Usos a WrestleMania Moment. At least they don’t have to defend against the New Age Outlaws…
Our Pick- The Usos retain.
The Shield vs. Kane & New Age Outlaws
Yeah, so this is happening. I’m enjoying this unexpected face turn by The Shield, but I question how long it will last. The clear sign is Roman Reigns will emerge from the group as a top star. So expect him to showcase here. Nice to see Kane on the card, but pairing him with the Outlaws is somewhat bizarre. How long will the Outlaws last as a regular act on WWE programming? It’s difficult to pick against the young guns here, as a win for Kane & the Outlaws does nothing for them. Shield dominates this one and wins with a Reigns’ Spear on Kane after a Double Suicide Dive by Dean Ambrose & Seth Rollins on the Outlaws.
Our Pick- The Shield wins.
Andre the Giant Memorial Battle Royal-
It’s an interesting premise. 30-man Battle Royal in honor of the first WWE Hall of Famer, Andre the Giant. While that’s all well and good, what’s the point? The winner gets a trophy of Andre the Giant. Not a Title shot. Not an extra payday. Just a trophy. I’m not trying to knock the match. I’m as big a fan of Battle Royal as anyone. But they need to have an ultimate prize to be useful. A trophy that will be forgotten 3 months from now isn’t it. Hopefully, this Battle Royal is used to showcase some of the top workers who deserve this WrestleMania payday.
My Pick- Dolph Ziggler wins.
Victor’s Pick- Big Show wins. (Because a giant has to win one of these every once in a while)
Vickie Guerrero Divas Championship Invitational:
AJ Lee defends against every Diva on the active roster
This match will be one fall to a finish with 13 divas competing for their top prize. In case you were unaware, the codename for this match in WWE Creative is “Suck it CM Punk.” Clearly, this is a message being sent to CM Punk through his rumored fiancée AJ Lee. AJ’s reign as longest reigning Divas Champion in history will be coming to an end, which is a shame. The top 3 Divas who are being groomed to be the next Champion are Naomi, Brie Bella, & Nikki Bella. Naomi has multiple non-Title victories over AJ. Brie & Nikki are both former Champions each linked to a top superstar in the company. Brie with Daniel Bryan, Nikki with John Cena. It also sets up a fairy tale season finale for “Total Divas,” the reality show following most of the Divas.
My Pick- Brie Bella wins.
Victor’s Pick- Nikki Bella wins. (Or Vickie Guerrero wins if she is added to this match)
John Cena vs. Bray Wyatt
This match is about Cena’s legacy and Bray Wyatt’s attempts to destroy it. Bray is trying to strip away the superhero façade Cena’s built over the last 12 years. The Wyatt Family has been superb in their role, nipping at Cena’s heels since the Royal Rumble when they cost him the WWE World Heavyweight Championship. It’s nice to see Cena look somewhat human in this angle. Just having him admit he’s scared of the Wyatt Family gives them credibility. And Cena’s doubts he can beat Wyatt have helped build a head-scratching pairing on paper into a legitimate WrestleMania main event. This is a huge opportunity for Bray Wyatt to solidify himself as a main event player. A win for Wyatt would be huge. But this is WrestleMania and there’s no way WWE’s top star loses here.
My Pick- John Cena wins.
Victor’s Pick- Bray Wyatt wins.
Undertaker vs. Brock Lesnar
Normally, I would go into a long winded diatribe about the match and explain the build. But honestly, this is Undertaker at WrestleMania. He isn’t losing and I couldn’t care less about any of Brock Lesnar’s recent matches.
Our Pick- Undertaker wins (22-0)
Winner Advances to WWE World Heavyweight Championship Match:
Daniel Bryan vs. Triple H
This match has been brewing since Summer Slam, when Triple H cost Bryan the WWE Championship the first time. Since that moment, Triple H morphed into an overbearing heel authority figure, whose insufferable need to put himself over has caused WWE Raw to be unwatchable at times. Perhaps I’m just out of touch, but the fact that Triple H could even remotely end up in the main event of WrestleMania XXX is mind-boggling stupid. What sense does it make that the guy running the show could also be its Champion? While we’re on the subject, please remove Stephanie McMahon from tv. She’s mind-numbingly inept on tv (which is somewhat ironic) and she will never get her comeuppance for being such an arrogant bitch because she won’t take a legitimate bump in the ring from anyone. Vickie Guerrero competed in matches during her General Manager runs, something Stephanie will never do. So just get her off my tv, because it’s quite annoying having to fast forward through her segments. As for this match, I don’t trust Triple H. His ego is massive and having one more run at the Title is not something I put past him. It’s well known this match was never the intended match for WrestleMania, so I don’t expect a satisfying payoff to this match. I expect a “How I Met Your Mother” series finale middle finger to the fans.
My Pick- Triple H wins.
Victor’s Pick- Daniel Bryan wins.
WWE World Heavyweight Championship- Triple Threat:
Randy Orton (c) vs. Batista vs. Daniel Bryan or Triple H
Batista’s Royal Rumble win was met with about as much excitement and interest as watching paint dry. Fans were not buying it, and having him shoved down our throats did not make it better. It was obvious fans wanted to see Daniel Bryan in the WrestleMania main event, and anything less would be considered a failure. WWE attempted to remedy this by making the main event a Triple Threat match, with either Triple H or Daniel Bryan winning the final spot. Randy Orton’s title run is coming to an end; it’s just a matter of who will end it.
My Pick- The Winner of the Daniel Bryan/Triple H Qualifier
Victor’s Pick- Daniel Bryan wins.
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