Whoa-oh! Whoa-oh! It’s WrestleMania! Genesis of life! Whatever the hell that means!
The past few WrestleManias haven’t been all that great. The last Royal Rumble ended with the would-be top star getting booed into oblivion. The last PPV ended with disgusted apathy for the heel victory rather than passionate hatred. Despite all that, WrestleMania XXX seems like it’s going to be a pretty happening show. WWE’s Superman will meet his own Darkseid. 30 men will battle over the honor of the legendary Andre the Giant. The Undertaker will have to take on one of the very few to ever out-brutalize him in order to keep his undefeated streak alive. And of course, there’s the defiant underdog who in one night must go through 3/4 of Evolution just to get closure.
Who will win and who will lose? The Wrestle Geeks unite to figure it out.
The Real Americans (Cesaro and Jack Swagger) vs. Rybaxel (Ryback and Curtis Axel) vs. The Usos (Jimmy and Jey Uso) vs. Los Matadores (Diego and Fernando)Pre-Show Four Corners Tag Team MatchWWE Tag Team Championship
David Burszan: After Goldust and Cody Rhodes single (double?) handedly revived WWE’s tag title scene, they were shuffled out of title consideration because WWE hates the Rhodes family (although at least this time, Cody’s WrestleMania match likely won’t be cut from the show). Expect The Usos to retain because really, who else could win? Rybaxel is there so they can get a WrestleMania bonus while not taking up space in the Battle Royal and Los Matadors are hopefully just in this so Cesaro can swing El Torito for a one-hundred count.
Marc Buxton: Conventional wisdom should have the Real Americans winning the belts because their reign would flat out rule, but it seems they are due for a break-up soon. Cesaro has been the breakout star of the past six months, but it’s the Usos’ night as they will pin a member of Rybaxel for the win. Cesaro will giant swing El Torito, and that’s no bull.
Gavin Jasper: This could be the sleeper match of the night. I like everyone in this match and adding in Los Matadores at the last minute is a great call. I wish I could put some hope in the hands of Rybaxel, the Bebop and Rocksteady of professional wrestling, but the Usos are going to retain this one. It’s not even about the Usos winning, but the Real Americans losing and finally splitting. It’s time for Cesaro to get his big push as a face and it begins with the Real Americans becoming the Real Mega Powers and exploding.
Jesse Mateja: With the Usos only being WWE Tag Team champs for only a few weeks now, I don’t think they would want to take the belts off of them so soon. They are over with the fans, but could use the prestige of being the tag champs to help build them up a little more. On the other hand, Cesaro is over like a madman, and needs something (either tag titles or a singles title run) to keep his momentum going before it dies out. But Ryback and Axel need something to help boost them, too, because they are really stale. But since this is the pre-show match for WrestleMania XXX, I’m going with the current holders, The Usos.
Vinny Murphy: Before this was moved to the pre-show, I would have predicted a victory for The Real Americans. With Cesaro breaking into the top tier of popularity, a showcase for his skill is due, and I’m sure we will get that. However, since this match won’t actually air with the rest of the show, I expect Cesaro to be featured, but the Usos to retain.
The Shield (Seth Rollins, Dean Ambrose, and Roman Reigns) vs. Corporate Kane and the New Age Outlaws (Road Dogg and Billy Gunn)
Gavin: Having the New Age Outlaws on the roster has been one of the worst things about WWE in the past few months, but this is a perfect role for them. The Shield need to crush someone as faces and Kane and the New Age Outlaws are a perfect target. They’re unlikeable and each begging to be Superman Punched into oblivion. I don’t know how long they can push the Shield as faces, but I’m going to enjoy seeing them absolutely steamroll through these guys. How strange to see Kane among the heel underdogs for once.
Vinny: Watch out for this one, it could be great. I expect The Shield to dominate early, but Ambrose to turn on his team. This could lead to a true race for the US Title in the coming months, and make Ambrose into the monster heel he deserves to be. It’s a victory for the New Age Outlaws and Kane
Marc: So Billy Gunn and Road Dogg are on the ‘Mania card but not Tyson Kidd? Oh, WWE. Anyway, I can’t see The Shield losing to a semi-retired tag team or the current incarnation of Kane, so I’m going to predict a big spear from Roman Reigns on one of the Outlaws and Dean Ambrose blind tagging to get the sneaky pin. Further teasing the break-up but giving Shield a big ‘Mania win.
Jesse: Roman Reigns is another guy who is really over right now. The Shield seems to be turning face (or so we think), while Kane and The NAO don’t need this win at all…it would mean nothing for them for the future. Even if the rumors of The Shield splitting up are true, this win would put over all three guys who are just at the beginning of their future in the company. The Shield: Whiskey India November Sierra.
David: Your options are the superstars of tomorrow that include a babyface that takes the craziest bumps to save his friends, a madman with a silver tongue that rivals Roddy Piper, and a sex god that “lock and loads” his fist before SUPERMAN PUNCHING PEOPLE IN THE FACE…or some mediocre wrestlers who haven’t been relevant in around a decade that include a guy who shoves asses, a chubby middle-aged libertarian businessman, and a guy that’s still making Dumb and Dumber references. SIERRA HOTEL INDIA ECHO LIMA DELTA SHIELD.
Naomi vs. Emma vs. Brie Bella vs. Aksana vs. Eva Marie vs. Tamina Snuka vs. AJ Lee vs. Rosa Mendes vs. Summer Rae vs. Natalya vs. Alicia Fox vs. Nikki Bella vs. Layla vs. CameronVickie Guerrero Divas Championship InvidationalWWE Divas Championship
David: I don’t understand this match or build-up. AJ is supposed to be a heel, but the concepts being used are for faces in peril. Vickie, the evil heel GM, is forcing the champ into a 14-wrestler match where the first person to pin ANYONE wins the title. AJ’s only ally betrays her and joins the side of the evil GM. AJ’s put in to a lumberjill match where all the wrestlers outside the ring beat her up but leave her opponent alone. Using advanced Steiner Mathematics AJ should lose, but I’m going to pick AJ anyway because I don’t see an end to the Diva wheel-spinning until more NXT talent joins the main roster.
Jesse: As much as I don’t want to see AJ’s reign end, they need to put her in a good feud since the Women’s Division is really boring right now. Having her lose to Natalya or Naomi and then feuding for the belt could be the shot in the arm that they need. Naomi has really stepped up her game over the past few months, and Natalya is (somehow) over with the younger fans. What I would do is have Cameron eliminate Naomi, leading them to eventually feud with each other, and have Natalya win this match to feud with AJ. But the way they’re pushing her, I’m going to give this one to Naomi.
Marc: WWE has not revealed the rules of the match; probably some kind of tag or free for all type thing, but look for AJ Lee to lose this one without getting pinned. I’m going to go out on a limb and predict Tamina will get a pin on probably Alicia Fox (has she ever won a match?). Look for this to rekindle the psycho gimmick for AJ in the coming months as she has to deal with never getting pinned for her title and Tamina’s betrayal.
Gavin: Man, I don’t know. I guess I’ll go with AJ retaining. She’s held the belt for so long that having her lose in such a way with such lousy odds is too cheap. Oh, they’d still do it, but part of me wants to believe that if somebody is going to actually dethrone her and take that Divas Championship, it’s going to be someone who gets pushed up with a strict focus and not a random person in a 14-Diva match. AJ will win and probably feud with Tamina until they care enough to make Emma a viable challenger.
Vinny: With Total Divas bringing in a new audience, WrestleMania is a perfect place to exploit it. Tamina probably will turn on AJ and cost her the match, but I don’t expect her to win. This is an opportunity to take the popularity of the E! Show and create a new threat. I’ll give this one to Naomi.
The Andre the Giant Memorial Battle RoyalFeaturing Christian, Santino Marella, Brodus Clay, R-Truth, Fandango, Zack Ryder, Darren Young, Drew McIntyre, Jinder Mahal, Heath Slater, Mark Henry, Justin Gabriel, Damien Sandow, Titus O’Neil, The Great Khali, Goldust, Sin Cara, Cody Rhodes, Sheamus, Kofi Kingston, Dolph Ziggler, The Miz, Rey Mysterio, Brad Maddox, Big E, Alberto Del Rio, Big Show and three mystery entrants.
Jesse: These types of matches are so hard to predict, especially when you don’t have a big number of main eventers in them. But with this one at WrestleMania, the winner could ride out the win like winning the King of the Ring. So someone should win who could use the push. Since it could establish a big man, or make a smaller guy look good, a win is good for almost anyone. Since it’s the first with this title, I wouldn’t put it past the company to have Big Show win since he is “the giant” of the company. But since it could go to anyone, I’ll predict a big man winner with the Giant, and a smaller guy winner with Dolph Ziggler.
David: In tribute to Andre, the winner of this contest is going to be a giant. Ruling out Khali, that leaves Big Show and Mark Henry. While both are near the end of their careers, Big Show will win this. His WrestleMania record has been TERRIBLE. His only WrestleMania moment that didn’t involve embarrassing himself was winning a secondary title off of a much smaller wrestler that was bullying him for months (after losing a major title to a “vanilla midget”). This might be his last WrestleMania and what better WrestleMania moment can he have than the “son of Andre” winning a Battle Royal? After his win, expect either a heartwarming retirement speech or for someone to break the trophy. It may not happen until Raw or Smackdown, but there’s no way his career AND the trophy leave Louisiana in one piece.
Marc: Ah, the Wrestlemania Battle Royal, a way for almost the entire roster to get a ‘Mania pay check without really doing much of anything. Since it’s the celebration of wrestling’s great big man, Andre the Giant, it’s only fitting for Big Show to get the trophy, which I’m sure someone will smash on RAW to kick off a feud. So, yeah, Big Show with the win!
Vinny: Perhaps the beginning of a tradition, this Battle Royal should be a showcase for the incredible roster the WWE currently maintains. I see Ziggler, Big E, and Sin Cara all getting some good spots in before it concludes. I don’t think any of the three will win though. Here, because its the first, tradition will reign with Big Show.
Gavin: When they first announced this, I immediately thought Big Show. He’s not only the next generation Andre, but he’s at the end of his career and having him win would be a nice gold watch. Then they started pushing him as the obvious winner to the point that it couldn’t be him. Then I realized that I was barking up the wrong tree. Yes, sure, Andre won a battle royal at WrestleMania 2, but that isn’t what WWE ultimately cares about. They care about WrestleMania III. The show where Andre lost spectacularly by getting bodyslammed. Looking at the roster, I’m giving this to Sheamus, the most Hogan-like of competitors. Sheamus is going to bodyslam Big Show and then throw him out of there. Then again, perhaps he’ll do both at the same time!
John Cena vs. Bray Wyatt
Jesse: The odds are stacked heavily against Cena in this one with the chances of Rowan and Harper somehow helping Wyatt. The young fans are going to want Cena to win this one, and for them Cena should win at WrestleMania, but Bray should really get the victory to help build him up as a competitor and to help put over how strong he is as the leader of the Wyatt Family. This feud can go on for a few months with plenty to do storywise, so I am going to go with Bray.
David: This match isn’t about who gets the pin; it’s about Bray Wyatt breaking Cena’s spirit. John Cena will win, but will he win by overcoming the odds or will he win by sacrificing his integrity?
Marc: It’s Bray Wyatt’s time. On paper, the most compelling future ‘Mania match would be Undertaker versus Bray Wyatt. Wyatt’s journey to that moment begins here as he manages to pin Cena with help from Rowan and Harper. Wyatt might be the most over Superstar of the night as the fans will not side with Cena on this one. Sister Abigail will rule this night, follow the buzzards.
Gavin: I so want Wyatt to win this. Oh, man, do I ever want Bray Wyatt to win this. Unfortunately, Cena’s gone far too long without a meaningful win and I can’t imagine Cena going from winning the title off the Rock in the main event of last year’s show to jobbing on the undercard to Silent Hill Waylon Mercy. Then again, even if John Cena gets the pin, it doesn’t exactly mean he truly wins. He may brutalize Wyatt so that the aftermath gives us a laughing hillbilly cultist with a bleeding lip, happy that he brought Mr. Goody Two Shoes down to his level. Whatever the moral result, Cena isn’t jobbing.
Vinny: Now, there could be an argument that Cena hasn’t been given the best runs as of late, and that slaying the predominant monster of the WWE could be his reward this year. Honestly though, Cena doesn’t really need the reward, with his tour bus that is nicer than your Mom’s house and Pin-Up girlfriend, he’s doing just fine. Wyatt, on the other hand could be 2014-2015’s Neo-Undertaker. I expect Bray to win clean.
Undertaker vs. Brock Lesnar
Marc: This match should be so much more compelling than it is. WWE’s myopic booking of Lesnar has seen him already lose to Cena and Triple H (twice). Two meaningless losses that render Lesnar impotent against Undertaker who has already beaten HHH at WrestleMania (thrice). Lesnar should be going into this match undefeated and seemingly unstoppable, but he’s not, so look for an awesome entrance, tons of ‘Taker love and a Lesnar tap out to Undertaker’s Hell’s Gate. Streak continues.
Jesse: I’m actually surprised that it wasn’t brought up that these two fought over a decade ago at No Mercy 2002 and Lesnar actually beat Taker in a “Hell In The Cell” match for the WWE Championship. It could have added to build up to this boring match. And when I call it that, it’s because we all know Taker will keep The Streak alive. With both men having very limited schedules in the company, there’s no reason for Brock to break The Streak and beat Undertaker. Sure Brock could use the win to keep looking like a major threat, but Undertaker and his streak are a force bigger than Lesnar. Taker goes 22-0.
David: 22-0. Storyline wise, there’s not really anything here. After a run of matches with stakes (the career vs streak with Michaels, “End of an Era but Not Really” with HHH, beat up the Punk that stole my dead friend’s urn) this one doesn’t have anything really going for it. Undertaker is going to win because he always wins, so the match is going to live or die based on people’s interest in Brock Lesnar and in style battles. His past streak matches have all been against wrestlers. the fun of this match is going to be seeing how a match against a brawler goes.
Gavin: With the Undertaker’s career winding down to the end, maybe it’s possible that someone will end the streak. Maybe John Cena, Roman Reigns, or Daniel Bryan have a fighting chance at believably getting the nigh-impossible win over the Dead Man. That said, no way is it going to be Brock Lesnar. There’s absolutely no reason for it. It’ll be a cool fight for sure, but the only way I see Lesnar having a chance is if he accidentally injures Undertaker for real and they have no other option. The Streak will remain alive.
Vinny: Seriously? The only surprise here will be if Sting shows up in the rafters…please let that happen.
Daniel Bryan vs. Triple HWinner Advances into the Main Event
Gavin: Thank God for wrestling fans. You guys saved WrestleMania by letting your voices be heard. WWE screwed up so much that even the casuals realized that Daniel Bryan being screwed over mixed with Batista getting a super push via return was a load of crap. Between the fans turning on the product and CM Punk allegedly deciding he had had enough of the company’s creative problems, they’ve been forced to not only give Daniel Bryan a climactic match against the man who screwed him for months, but also practically telling us that he has to win and that this won’t be another Triple H vs. Booker T situation where Triple H puts himself over despite storytelling logic. The title match puts things into question over whether or not Bryan’s win will be a clean one. Clean or dirty, he’s winning and going on to the main event.
Vinny: Ahhhh, the real main event. I hope to see a total war here, hopefully the longest match on the card. I also expect some sort of interference or another surprise, perhaps something leading to both competitors ending up in the advertised main event. Should be fun, my winner here is the man who definitely makes it to the last match, and that’s Daniel Bryan.
Jesse: With the fans so behind Bryan at this point, and after all he’s been through in the last year, the fans would revolt if he didn’t make it into that title match. But, Trips has built himself up in the past few weeks about going into that title match, as well. The best outcome I can see for this is some sort of double countout that would make both men not lose, but also not win, making it a 4-way for the WWE World Heavyweight Championship. I think that’s the smart thing to do. But if it doesn’t happen, Bryan will win this in one way or another.
Marc: Bryan has to take this one. He should squash HHH to make Bryan look like a million bucks going into the main event, but he won’t. Look for Bryan to get beat down and injured but still pull off the plucky babyface win.
David: I see this going one of two ways:
Stephanie McMahon accompanies HHH to the ring. When the bell rings she goes to kiss him or tell him something; D-BRY takes advantage of this and hits HHH with a flying knee and wins the match in 18 seconds or less. WWE has painted a revisionist history that the YES Movement started because of Bryan’s 18 second loss at WrestleMania 28, so what better way to apologize for that match than to reverse the loss? If that doesn’t happen, expect HHH to cheat somehow leading to both him and Bryan in the main event. Either way, Daniel Bryan’s going to be in the main event.
Randy Orton vs. [winner of Bryan/Triple H] vs. BatistaTriple ThreatWWE World Heavywight Championship
David: As much as the WWE hates referencing REDACTED, this is the perfect chance for a mulligan on WrestleMania XX’s main event. The best wrestler gets to be recognized, go over HHH and his buddies, and get that perfect WrestleMania moment to close out the show. HHH gets recognition for pushing talent, Batista gets a big paycheck, and Orton doesn’t have to carry Batista on his own. Win-win-win-win for everyone, but most of all, Daniel Bryan.
Marc: Yeah, Bryan should win, but he isn’t the superstar appearing in a Marvel movie this summer. Look for Bryan to get huge, molten heat, but Triple H’s interference and Bryan’s injury will prove too much for Bryan, leaving Batista to win the WWE title so he can take it with him to the Guardians of the Galaxy premiere.
Jesse: Like I said, one way or another Daniel Bryan is going to be the third man, with Triple H possibly being the fourth man. With Batista back, and with the Guardians of the Galaxy movie coming, he’ll obviously be a top guy. But after everything he has gone through, I can’t see them not giving Bryan the win. And if you throw Trips into that match, a Bryan win would make it even sweeter for the fans, and give more for The Authority to throw at a WWE World Champion Daniel Bryan. Daniel Bryan wins the big one.
Gavin: At any other PPV, I could give this to Batista. They obviously want to push him huge and if it wasn’t for his complete lack of cardio, I’d be excited about seeing him as a top heel. Thing is, this is WrestleMania XXX and you can’t just end a show like this with the man whose Rumble victory was met with an unexpected and overwhelming chorus of boos. Randy Orton’s not even an option. Daniel Bryan is going to win it all, becoming like a cross between Bret Hart at WrestleMania X and what’s-his-name at WrestleMania XX.
As an aside, when I worked at a bookstore, I started a conversation with a kid who was buying WWE Magazine. The first season of NXT had just started and I told the kid about how I had seen that Daniel Bryan guy wrestle live on several occasions. I told him that he was going to be a huge deal one day. He kind of rolled his eyes and gave a sarcastic, disbelieving, “Yeah, we’ll see about that.” And he will. This Sunday, he’s going to see that I wasn’t fooling. Yes.
Vinny: Since this isn’t a competition between the writers, this is going to be sort of a cop-out, I apologize in advance. The problem here is we have 2 “possible” scenarios and about 40 actually possible ones. Who knows who will end up in the main event and what rules they will actually be wrestling under? A friend of mine planted the idea that this will end up a Fatal Four Way, and I have been thinking about it more and more. So, my prediction is this:
If Triple H is in the match, he will reaffirm his position as biggest heel in the company (he already is anyway) and start the new “season” as such. If Triple H is not in the match, then the intent of the show was to send the crowd home happy.