Becky Lynch pinned Ronda Rousey in the main event of WrestleMania 35 on Sunday night to win both the Raw and SmackDown Women’s Championships.
WrestleMania 35 marked the first time in history that a women’s match was the main event of the show.
Lynch’s win capped off a WrestleMania in which many of the fan-favorites were victorious. Seth Rollins beat Brock Lesnar for the Universal Championship to open the show and Kofi Kingston beat Daniel Bryan for the WWE Championship earlier in the show.
Lynch’s win seemingly came out of nowhere, and it was questioned — by commentators on the show — whether or not Rousey’s shoulders were actually pinned to the mat. That’s a story that will likely play out on Raw and SmackDown over the coming weeks.
For what it’s worth, it definitely didn’t feel like the culmination of this storyline. This felt like a chapter more than a conclusion. The proper conclusion would have been Becky Lynch tapping out Rousey. Not only did that not happen, but Becky’s win was clouded with some apparent controversy.
WWE putting the women’s match in the main event was the right move. At the end of the day, the match that goes on last should be the match that drew the most money, and more people were invested in Becky Lynch than anyone else on the show, including Kofi Kingston.
Unfortunately, the reaction for Lynch’s win didn’t feel as big as it should have been. That’s due in part to the finish coming quick and out of nowhere, but it also had to do with the overall length of WrestleMania. If you watched the full show, including the preshow, the entire event was more than seven hours long. The main event concluded at 12:30 a.m. in New York.
I’m sorry, but you’ll never convince me that 12:30 a.m. is peak viewership.
WWE seems to realize that most of its Raw audience tunes out at 10 p.m., because for the most part, the “main event” angle on Raw happens at the 10:00 hour and not when the show goes off the air at 11 p.m., with some exceptions.
If WWE is going to insist on WrestleMania being a standalone five-hour show (not including the preshow) then the show needs to start at 6 p.m. Heck, start it at 5 p.m. Start it early enough that the show is getting over at a decent hour, and hopefully the live crowd still has enough juice in the tank to give the main event a proper reaction.