Wrestlemania Recap: How was the Ultimate Thrillride?
7 + hours was a bit much, even for a wrestling fanatic like me.
Due to this fact, I’ll just highlight the main positives, negatives and make a few other comments regarding Wrestlemania 33.
Best Moment: The Return of the Hardy’s
Was there any doubt about this? As New Day looked to be inserting themselves into the Raw Tag Championship match, I jokingly made the comment that it’d be cool to see Broken Matt and Brother Nero. Low and behold, all of three seconds later me and the other friends I was with who actually watch wrestling were freaking out over one of the coolest returns in years. Even better, Cole immediately mentioned the word ‘broken’ and Matt seemed to be in-character in their exclusive segment after the show so we should be able to see what Wrestling’s most popular character over the last year or so can be in WWE.
Worst Moment: Alexa Bliss/Bray Wyatt losing their titles
Look, I’m not even a fan of Bray Wyatt. I think he’s a decent hand who you can use as a stop-gap main eventer when everything else has gone stale. With that said, I’d love to hear the logic behind him losing the title to Randy Orton in his second title defense. Randy is my third favorite performer of all time but he already had 12 title reigns, it’s not necessary for him to have the belt at this stage in his career. Bray has been the one step forward, two steps back booking era where every time you think he’s finally gotten over the hump…WWE stabs him right in the back, halting his momentum time and time again. In an era that has hilariously few stars, you’d think you might want to create a few more and WWE blew an opportunity last night at cementing the Eater of Worlds as one of them.
That brings me to Alexa Bliss. By far the best diva since the brand extension last summer she was rewarded with a decent title reign before stupidly dropping it to Naomi at the Elimination Chamber. I wrote then that they should've saved that moment for Wrestlemania 33. Instead she was injured, returned days before the show began and actually did end up winning the title at the show last night. Too little, too late for me. You can’t have someone have their career defining moment happen twice in two months, especially at the expense of the division’s top talent. It wasn’t special the way they did it, and that’s a problem.
Battle Royale-Wasn’t a fan of the Gronk spot or Mojo winning but I understand why they did it. People talking is best for business.
Cruiserweight title-Unfortunately wasn’t able to see most of it. Wanted Aries to win but thinking about it now I’m happy Neville retained.
Ambrose/Corbin-Disappointed that these guys didn’t make the main show. The match was good. I’m glad Dean retained. Baron needs a proper feud now.
AJ/Shane-AJ did what only AJ can do and dragged a good match out of Shane. One of the better matches of the night and the no-brainer winner.
KO/Jericho-The right man won. Another good match and curious to see where both men go from here. Owens is getting awfully close to being a Grand Slam champion under two years into his WWE tenure.
Raw Women’s Title-I liked it. Nia needed to go first. Charlotte looked like a star. Bayley got a defining win to bolster her reign and give herself serious credibility. Sasha looks to be next up.
Raw Tag Titles: Definitely the match of the night. The Hardy’s surprise inclusion in the match followed by the awesome performance they put on absolutely stole the show.
Cena/Nikki vs. Miz/Maryse-The most predictable match and moment on the card. Wasn’t great.
Seth vs HHH-Probably the last point in the show where everything was going well. This was a good match that didn’t rush right into a finisher-fest and the fact that HHH was downed by only one pedigree was fantastic booking to me. I’d love to see Seth switch up his finisher now that he’s past Hunter and hopefully we can see him remain healthy for a while now.
WWE Title-Despite the animation of it, this match was garbage. They immediately started going for the big moves and threw the whole dynamic of the match off. Orton didn’t hit any RKO we haven’t seen a million times and while Bray is one of the best at making some of his moves look as believable as possible both men had poor performances here. This was a moment to create a star and both men came out looking worse.
Universal Championship-It was exactly as I expected. A rushed match to accommodate Goldberg’s lack of ability that led to maybe five moves being used in total. The saving grace is it was over fast and it wasn’t the main event.
SD Women’s Championship-Obviously thrown together at the last minute and completely forced to occupy a minuscule amount of time. Becky and Alexa deserved far better.
Roman/Taker-I’ll have a lot more to say on this in another article. My one thing here was I just wish the match had been better. The botches and bored/exhausted crowd killed any chance this match had at exceeding. I was looking forward to this despite Taker’s crippled body do to his storytelling ability. The story lived up to the hype, the rabid crowd I was expecting did not.
Overall we are looking at a 5/10 Wrestlemania. Mainly for Hardy return, Taker’s big send off and a couple stars who actually lived up to expectations. Still one of the worse Mania’s of the last decade. Certainly in the bottom three with 32 and 27.