The Miz defeats Wade Barrett on the pre-show with the figure four leglock to win the Intercontinental Championship: The IC Title history at WrestleMania has all but disappeared in terms of importance, but the Miz and Wade Barrett gave a solid performance(just under ten minutes) that kept the crowd alive. I enjoyed the match, and I’d like to think that WWE will do more with the IC Title this coming year and propel the Miz back into the main event scene by next year’s WrestleMania.
The Shield defeats Randy Orton, Sheamus, and Big Show when Dean Ambrose gets the pin on Randy Orton. Show knocks out both Orton and Sheamus after the match: I don’t think there was a better way to officially open the show than with this match. The action was fast paced, and the crowd was into it. I like the way Show went about turning his back on Orton and Sheamus, because you really understand his reasoning with how things went down. Both guys refused to tag him, so he knocked them out when they lost. If they didn’t want him on the team, why pick him at all? The logic to booking them as a solid group just to have Orton and Sheamus snub Show for the tags is very lazy and insults our intelligence. Good to see the Shield pick up the win, but WWE could’ve booked it in a smarter way.
Mark Henry defeats Ryback after Henry collapses on top of him. Ryback hits shell shocked after the match: I actually like the logic to this whole thing. My complaint is that the match was slow, but we basically knew that’s how it would go. Henry gets a big WrestleMania win, and I feel he deserves that. Ryback gets his big WrestleMania moment, and his rise up the ladder to superstardom has earned him that as well. A rematch is now very possible, and next time it could be at a pay per view where WM rematches are known to outdo their predecessor(Extreme Rules). What’s to complain about? I enjoyed the entire match with the tests of strength, and I like how the outcome was booked to make both men look good.
Team Hell No retains against Big E and Dolph Ziggler. Dbry pins Ziggler after a flying headbutt: This was a very good tag team match, and I’m not at all disappointed with the outcome. Big E showed his size and power, but he also showed his total lack of wrestling ability. Ziggler worked damn hard and kept the team looking good, and overall I’d say this was one of the better WrestleMania tag team matches that I’ve seen in the last few years.
Fandango defeats Chris Jericho with a poor rollup after ‘countering’ the walls of Jericho: My two complaints are that Fandango was extremely sloppy during the final two minutes with everything he did, and Jericho basically carried the match to make it good. On the positive side, Jericho made this match look good with a guy that executes his character fairly well. I may not love the Fandango gimmick, but the guy act his persona better than most with such a goofy gimmick. I honestly enjoyed the overall action of this one, and it really pissed me off that the finish was so choppy when the match itself delivered on such a good level.
Alberto Del Rio defeats Jack Swagger using the cross armbreaker: A lot of people have said that this rivalry didn’t have a main event feel to it, and I have to disagree. If you watch Smackdown and Main Event as regularly as you watch Monday Night Raw, you would probably have seen the buildup for this match and been anticipating it. The wrestling was very good, and the crowd was actually quite into the match, especially at the finish when Swagger tapped out. Ziggler didn’t cash in his briefcase, and that’s perfectly okay too.
The Undertaker defeats CM Punk with the tombstone piledriver: Five star match. Both men brought it, and the action never stopped. These guys reminded us of what WrestleMania magic is all about. The kickouts weren’t overdone, and the finish was memorable as the two countered each other back and forth. I didn’t expect the streak to end tonight, and I’m glad it didn’t. Punk is a fantastic wrestler, but a guy that plans on retiring in the next few years has no business breaking such an illustrious record.
Triple H defeats Brock Lesnar with a pedigree on the steel steps: Even with Shawn Michaels and Paul Heyman involved, this was a four star match for me. The wrestling and brawling was far superior than the match they had at Summerslam, and they kept me interested from bell to bell. The brutal nature and aggressiveness from both men really gave it an extra personal feel that just made it that much better. Great match with more of a story than a wrestling match, but definitely a highlight of the night for me.
John Cena defeats the Rock with the AA to win the WWE Championship. The two shake hands and embrace after the match. Rock says thank you to the fans and meets Cena at the end of the ramp to raise his arm as the show closes: The match started off pretty good and then went to a slower than slow pace. However, it picked up with an awesome series of kickouts and false finishes that seemed to never end. A lot of people will complain and say that these false finishes can hurt a match when they’re overdone(me being one of those people), but it wasn’t a bad thing here. This is the the main event of WrestleMania! We’re supposed to be on the edge of our seats! I enjoyed the match overall, and I was pleased with Cena getting the clean victory over the great one. Do I think there will be a rubber match now? Absolutely. Do I think it could be any better than their first two matches? Maybe. I think this second match was far better than their first in terms of suspense and overall wrestling, but some may disagree. Great WrestleMania moment to close the show with Rock and Cena showing that much respect towards one another.
Best Match of the night: Punk/Taker
Worst Match of the night: Ryback/Henry for their speed, but still not a bad match at all.
WrestleMania was unique and had a well developed card. People complain that the booking has been inconsistent, but in terms of the actual card I feel that the foundation was laid out quite clearly and WWE delivered a very good show. Maybe I’m just a “bad fan” for enjoying what I saw tonight, but I was literally caught up in every match and enjoyed what I was watching from start to finish. I think in terms of booking now, things are very wide open for what direction they could head in towards Extreme Rules, but that isn’t really a bad thing. WWE has the freedom to do what they want, and that works well because you don’t know how many part timers will stick around for the next show.
8.5 out of ten. Great night and great show with three awesome matches and a very good world title match. I’d be curious to know what you thought of the show and what specifically made you feel the way you did. A lot of the complaints seem to be centered around the fact that certain things didn’t happen that were rumored, but why can’t the focus be on the good things that did happen? I’ll be back with the Raw Analysis on Tuesday. Until next time, you’ve been ThunderStruck!
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