Well, it’s the day after Wrestlemania. It’s over. Opinions seem to vary on a lot of aspects of the show. It seems that I liked Lawler/Cole a lot more than everyone else, but everyone seems in a agreement that HHH/Taker simultaneously stole and saved Wrestlemania. I’ll save my overall thoughts for the end of the post. The Road to Wrestlemania 2012 is now underway.
Match Ratings (my thoughts on the matches will seemingly alternate between live ramblings and retrospective comments):
Rock out to start the show: I actually forgot in all the Cena/Rock hoopla, that Rocky was actually “hosting” this thing, as if he was a RAW guest host…Uh-oh, Rock just said ‘wrestle’…Rock looked legit overwhelmed…The Rock was great for the live crowd, but I honestly was still pissed off at this point about Dragon/Sheamus being taken off the card
Michael Cole called Wrestlemania “The Fabric of Americana”: what the fuck does that mean?...that is such a Vince McMahon line
Show got off to a bad start when we all learned that Daniel Bryan vs. Sheamus got moved to the pre-show. Those guys deserved a paycheck, and an 8-10 minute match between the two would have been nice. I assume it will happen on RAW.
Alberto Del Rio (w/ Brodus Clay) vs. Edge© (w/ Christian): ***1/4…making this the opening match seems to bury all those involved…wow, Edge did a flip dive to the floor; I don’t think I have ever seen that from him…Brodus and Ricardo took care of Christian, which freed up Brodus to interfere…and motherfucker, Edge won in 11 minutes with the spear…how does that happen?…where is the goddamn common sense?...and for the 4th year in a row, the Rumble winner fails to win a world title…Edge then started to dropkick and elbow drop Del Rio’s Roles Ryce (sp?)…good, so now they have buried and embarrassed Del Rio…fuck this company...Edge and Christian came off like jerks at the end there
Rey Mysterio vs. Cody Rhodes: ***…How does Cody Rhodes still not have knee pads?...I refuse to take him seriously until he gets knee pads…Rey Mysterio, who is promoted as a Mexican superstar, dressed like Captain America…where is the goddamn common sense?…Cody did the Alabama slam; shades of Hardcore Holly…Rey put on the plastic mask and started headbutting Cody…that was kind of a dick move and the crowd reacted appropriately with Cody cheers…Cody wacked Rey with the knee brace for the win (the ref had to pretend he did not see the knee brace in the ring)…good match but the crowd was not that hot for it
Snoop Dogg and Teddy Long is numerous purchases…yay it’s William Regal…Khali doing Grease is buys…ZACH RYDER and RODDY PIPER~!...Chris Master’s dancing pecs with Yoshi Tatsu~!...that was harmless goofy fun…sure, I would have preferred a Danielson/Sheamus match but I don’t know if Dragon jobbing in 4-5 minutes is really helping either man
Big Show, Kane, Santino & Kofi Kingston vs. The Corre (Wade Barrett, Justin Gabriel, Heath Slater, & Ezekiel Jackson): DUD… literally only went a minute…what an epic end to an epic feud…I hope everyone enjoys their paycheck because that was a waste of time
ROCK BACKSATGE FUN: Mae Young wants the People’s Strudel…yay, it’s STEVE AUSTIN…that was fun if a tad underwhelming for the first segment involving those two since Rock beat Austin in the latter’s last match at Wrestlemania 2003
Randy Orton vs. CM Punk: ***1/2… The first match to get a video package… match was very simply, but intelligently worked: Punk worked on the knee forever with Orton getting a few hope spots along the way…finally, Orton’s knee completely gave out, but he almost hit an RKO,..Punk got overconfident and went for a springboard move but got caught with a RKO….great finish to a good mid-card match
MORE ROCK BACKSATGE FUN: Rock recruits Pee Wee Herman to Team Bring It…and Mene Gene is here!...these Rock segments were pretty disappointing
A Brief break in the action to announce the Hall of Famers: HBK got a monster reaction…the Hall of Fame may be a “sham,” but I still enjoy it…it further celebrates wrestling history during the best wrestling weekend of the year
Jerry Lawler vs. Michael Cole (w/ JACK SWAGGER) with Steve Austin as Special Guest Referee: **3/4… Booker T and Jim Ross joined Josh Matthews on commentary for this match …Cole was wearing the most ridiculous orange amateur wrestling gear…Cole said that after tonight, everyone will refer to him as Mr. Wrestlemania…great camera work during Austin’s entrance, as SWAGGA was in the middle of a pushup, and he looked shitfaced when the music started…Austin tried to run over SWAGGA and Cole with an ATV so Cole ran into the Cole-Mine…thank god they played Jerry’s real music…the only way this angle could have been greater is if Cole had hired Larry Sweeney as his sports agent…Lawler got into the Cole-Mine and kicked Cole’s ass…SWAGGA gave Cole the chance for the heat, but when he tried to interfere again, Austin gave SWAGGA a stunner…I enjoyed this a lot…they lost the fans for a moment (including a “This is Boring” chant”), but it was awesome at the end..Lawler made Cole tap immediately but Austin let him tap for a while…then everybody through a party in the ring with beer and a spinaroonie…Austin then stunnered Booker T for no reason which made me laugh…I’ve heard people complaining that this was like Bret/Vince: you people are fools; go back and rewatch the two matches back to back…could this match have been shorter: yes, but it was still fun…the GM then chimed in and DQed Lawler and gave Cole the win…”Bullshit” chants from crowd, and Austin gave Matthews a stunner…that seemed to just be a way to get Ross and Lawler on commentary…weird finish to feud
Undertaker vs. HHH: ****1/2… they aired the awesome video package with Mark Collie’s “In Time” before the match…Hunter came out to a Metallica song, before his regular music hit…this is Hunter’s first PPV (or TV) match since April 2010…Taker came out to the Man in Black’s “Ain’t No Grave”… Johnny Cash is the Tupac of country music: he’s been dead 7 years and he is still releasing albums…90 seconds into the match and the Cole-Mine was already destroyed…dear lord, Taker did the Wrestlemania dive 5 minutes into the match (replay showed that Hunter barely caught him)…I thought he would never be able to do that again…Jim Ross is really getting this match over in a way that Cole could never dream to do…goodbye Spanish announce table…9 minutes in, and they are already kicking out of finishers…they kicked out of each other’s finishers for the next 11-12 minutes…the match became interesting again when Hunter just kept whacking Taker over and over again with a steel chair…wow, chair shot to the head; Chris Nowinski won’t be happy (although to be fair, the chair shot did not look too dangerous)…I have to say, I almost bought the tombstone on Taker as the finish…Hunter had such great facials after Taker kicked out of the tombstone…”This is Awesome” chants broke out after that kick out…Hunter got caught in the gogoplata, and he tried to grab the sledgehammer but he lost the grip…the Game tapped at 28 and a half minute mark…initially, the 10+ minutes of kicking out of finishers annoyed me, but it paid off in the end...basically, Hunter was playing Taker in this match, and Taker was playing HBK…great stuff, and the best one on one match from Hunter in YEARS...Taker could barely get out of the ring and Hunter appeared to be showing remorse…they may have done this to give Taker a reason not to be on TV for a while…I would be fine if he only worked the Rumble-Mania for the next 5-10 years…the finish implied that Hunter would want a rematch next year
John Morrison, Trish Stratus, & SNOOKI vs. Dolph Ziggler, & Lay-Cool (Michelle McCool & Layla w/ Vickie Guerrero): *…The perfect way to get the crowd into the show again after an epic match: VICKIE GUERRERO~!...i have to assume they were blocking out the crowd noise because Snooki was not booed out of the building…Trish and Michelle clearly were out there to prove a point about what a woman’s wrestler was…Snooki actually did a couple of handspring backflips which silenced the boo birds…Morrison also did a high spot in there; Layla, Morrison and Ziggler were never legal participants in the match
Cena vs. The Miz©: **1/2…Alex Reilly had gear on, so does that mean an unscheduled tag match with the Rock is gonna happen?…I cannot believe the Miz is main eventing Wrestlemania; he is so Jericho in 2002 though; so hopefully that means in 6 years, he will get a real chance as a main eventer…I liked this new entrance videos they did for the guys; it made the main event feel special…probably one of the cooler super special Cena entrances yet…wow, Cena has another new shirt…what color has he not used yet?... the Miz has apparently added the Side Effect to his moveset…Riley drove Cena headfirst into an exposed turnbuckle, but Cena still kicked out of the Skull Crushing Finale…after a ref bump, Riley hit Cena with a briefcase but Cena still kicked out…WOW, Miz kicked out of the FU, which shocked the hell out of me…wow, a Double Countout in the main event of Wrestlemania…where is the Rock to save the day?...Rock restarted the match, and then Rock Bottomed Cena to give Miz the win…Cena vs. Rock at Summerslam in LA: done deal…Rock gave the Miz the people’s Elbow after the match which would have meant a lot more if they did not give that away for free on the go home RAW…overall, a fun main event, but I don’t know about putting Rock over the two main eventers at Wrestlemania…it seems like a bad idea but we shall see
Overall Show Thoughts: I was glad that I kept my expectations low for this show, because otherwise, this show could have been a real disappointment…instead, I had a fun time watching most of the matches…the only real thing that will be remembered from this show is the great match between Triple H and Undertaker…even the Rock didn’t feel special at this point, as his comedy bits seemed out of his place…in the conclusion, I really feel that Rock’s big return should have been a match; him just attacking Cena and Miz after their match felt like a letdown…see everybody in 2012!