The WWE Universe voted this match as the Greatest Wrestlemania Match of All Time

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The Undertaker and Shawn Michaels’ first Wrestlemania match at Wrestlemania 25.

Here it is in full:

…This is one of the few times I agree with the WWE Universe.

It was, to put it mildly an outstanding match between HBK and The Phenom. It was the main event on the card and also the first time ever a non-title match was the main event match at Wrestlemania.

Shawn Michaels would reveal some real interesting tidbits in commentary regarding the match on WWE Network:

  • WM25 marked their first match together at The Show of Shows. They’d faced each other at other PPVs but never before at Wrestlemania.
  • Originally, Shawn planned to quietly retire after Wrestlemania 25. Instead, he went out with a bang the following year at Wrestlemania 26 in his rematch with The Undertaker. That would also be the first time ‘Taker would face the same opponent two years in a row. The Undertaker would go on to face Triple H back to back at WM27 and WM28.
  • ‘Taker’s dive over the top rope was planned but botched by the cameraman (Shades of their Hell in a Cell match in 1998), who was supposed to break the Deadman’s fall but clearly doesn’t and ‘Taker ends up landing on his head. You can actually see him try to brace before impact but that’s kinda impossible from that angle. The match probably would’ve ended right there if ‘Taker wasn’t moving.

…Of course, it is a fact Shawn Michaels is still physically able to wrestle. Despite everyone and their mother personally asking him to commit to a one-off match with them, he’s turned down all offers. He explains in detail for the fans why during the Table for 3 he does with AJ Syles.

While he’s certainly not the first able-bodied superstar to call it a career, he is one of the rare few to actually keep his word and never work a match ever again. HBK was the guest referee in a few matches but nothing beyond that. He’s been pretty candid about being physically able to carry a match 8 years after his retirement. Hell, AJ Styles tried to get him to commit to a match during the segment and was flatly declined. So, yeah.

Obviously, HBK has come to the same conclusion as The Undertaker in fading into the sunset and letting the newer talent have the spotlight. ‘Taker proved a few years ago he can work more than one match a year so…yeah.

Taker vs. HBK at WM25 is more than worthy of being called the greatest Wrestlemania match ever for a variety of reasons. The biggest one being the superstars involved and knowing it would be an EPIC match, which it was.

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The WWE Universe voted this match as the Greatest Wrestlemania Match of All Time

Rusev Out, Chris Jericho In and now Rusev is back in at The Greatest Royal Rumble in a Casket Match [Updated 4/16/2018]

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In a developing story that may go one of three ways, Chris Jericho will replace Rusev in the Casket Match also involving The Undertaker at The Greatest Royal Rumble.

Shortly after the match was originally announced yesterday, Rusev Tweeted “Bury my softly, mt brother.” It was a thinly veiled reference to how he felt he was being treated by WWE and reportedly asked to be released just before Wrestlemania. Rusev was originally going to be a part of the Andre The Giant Memorial Battle Royale but was added to the Fatal Four Way match for the U.S. Title. Rusev was involved in the decision of that match, which Jinder Mahal won.

This morning on TMZ, Rusev and Lana made disparaging remarks about The Undertaker that his wife Michelle McCool took exception to. It’s not clear if they were in character when the comments were made but likely not. Lana reportedly told WWE she did not want her husband to be involved in the casket match and to find (The Undertaker) another opponent so they obviously did. Personally, I think it would have been better if they someone newer as win or lose, you’re a made man when you’re in a match with The Undertaker.

As for Rusev (and Lana), I see things going one of three ways:

  1. Rusev is released: It’s certainly possible but doubtful. Rusev is booked to get a second shot at the U.S. Title to boot, which likely means he won’t be getting traded to RAW.
  2. Rusev gets a title run: He’s obviously got a tag team partner in Aiden English so they could make a legit run at the tag team titles. Rusev could also be pushed to get a WWE Championship run as well.
  3. Rusev and Lana Feud with The Undertaker and Michelle McCool: I mean in the ring. Michelle McCool showed at the Women’s Royal Rumble in January she’s still got it. I kinda get the feeling WWE might actually push for this to happen, too.

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Even though fans obviously know they’re married, WWE could have a Lana vs. McCool feud separately from Rusev vs. ‘Taker. a Mixed Tag Match would be the “Safe” route but who doesn’t wasnt to see Michelle McCool get it on with Lana?

We’ll just have to wait and see if WWE sees the potential in bringing back McCool to feud with Lana ^_^

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Update 4/13/2018:

In a move that renewed speculation from last year Rusev may be leaving WWE, Rusev removed all mentions of WWE from his social media accounts and unfollowed everyone from WWE as well Friday morning. His Twitter account now promotes a movie Lana is starring in called Other Versions of You (as CJ Perry) as well.

WWE confirmed this afternoon Rusev has not be released and will now be in the 50-Man Royal Rumble at The Greatest Royal Rumble in Saudi Arabia. WWE added Rusev to the Wrestlemania match for the US Title admid rumors he was considering asking for his release. While it’s easy to see the changes on his Social Media accounts as indicators he is either planning to or is in the process of asking for his release, let’s not forget the yearly Superstar Shakeup happens next week. His cryptic tweet talking about making a change could certainly be in reference to that.

Let’s be real: If WWE wanted to release him, the would have done so already. They certainly wouldn’t have put him on the card for either Wrestlemania 34 or The Greatest Royal Rumble so…yeah. I do think think folks are reading into things a little too much in this case.

Rusev Out, Chris Jericho In and now Rusev is back in at The Greatest Royal Rumble in a Casket Match [Updated 4/16/2018]

A look at Giant WWE Superstars who came after Andre the Giant

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Andre Roussimoff (1946-1993) aka Andre the Giant was called the 8th Wonder of the World for a reason (Fun Fact: Chyna was the 9th Wonder of the World). There never was and never will be anyone like him ever. Now, Andre actually suffered from Giantism, an actual medical condition that caused him to grow continuously. His massive frame was both a blessing and a curse. He died in his sleep from congestive heart failure in 1993.

It’s now been 25 years since the death of the original giant but since then, others have stepped over the ropes in WWE. Here’s a look at some of them.

Image result for The Big Show Paul WhitePaul White aka The Big Show is 7’0″ and 385 lbs. but he weighed over 400 lbs until very recently.

The Big Show was in some regards The Second Coming of Andre The Giant when he first came to WWE in the late 90s. He was on the new defunct WCW before signing with WWE at the close of the Monday Night Wars. The World’s Largest Athlete is a Grand Slam Champion, holding all of the current titles at some point during his 20+ year career as well as the WCW, ECW and Hardcore Championships.

WWE took lessons learned from Andre the Giant’s condition to help The Big Show have a long career. Like Andre, The Big Show grew very fast from a young age and has some of the same challenges as well. Fortunately in his case it’s not life-threatening and he is clearly going to retire soon.

Despite his size, there are a handful of superstars who can deadlift him. The Big Show candidly revealed on an episode of Table for 3 (On WWE Network) John Cena, Kane and Mark Henry are 3  of the 4 Superstars he feels 100% comfortable being lifted by (The 4th now being Braun Strowman). To lift someone as big as he is, you have to have not just the strength but the stamina to do it.

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The World’s Strongest Man was a part of the 2018 WWE Hall of Fame Class. He stands at 6’4″ and weighs 360 lbs but weighed a little over 400 lbs. 10 years ago. Mark Henry spent most of his year putting over other superstars but his years of dedication was rewarded in 2011 when he won the WWE Championship at Night of Champions.

Before he signed with WWE in 1996, Mark Henry was a professional bodybuilder and competed in Strong Man competitions. That’s where he earned the title “World’s Strongest Man”. One of his favorite party tricks: Crushing an apple with one hand. You can see him do it on two episodes of Ride Along (On WWE Network).

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Dalip Singh Rana, known in WWE as The Great Khali stands at 7″1″ and weighs 347 lbs. His tenure with WWE was repeatedly stalled due to injuries and other health problems that are actually pretty common in tall people. His appearance at Battleground last year fueled speculation he was going to make another WWE appearance but that appeared to be a one-time thing.

The Great Khali, along with Jinder Mahal have helped open Pro Wrestling in India. They are the most accomplished Indian-born wrestlers and while Mahal is an active superstar, Khali has been working for indie promotions since he left WWE a few years ago. He also runs a wrestling school in India.

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Glenn Jacobs aka Kane stands at 7’0″ and weighs 323 lbs. Kane has wreaked a path of destruction eclipsed only by his brother The Undertaker. Kane has held almost every title there is and has had several Championship runs.

I kept getting this wrong but Glenn Jacobs is expected to retire from wrestling should he win the mayoral election in his hometown of Knoxville, Tennessee. The election will be next month and he is the favorite to win. He obviously learned lessons from Linda McMahon’s failed attempts to run for a Senate seat in Connecticuit and has used his fame and recognition from WWE to push his campaign. Jacobs is a Republican and is actually well spoken and smart as was demonstrated by his Corporate Kane Persona.

Kane’s absences in the last two years have been due to his focus on the mayoral election in his hometown. If he wins the election–and he is leading in the polls–he will likely announce his retirement. It was pretty cool some superstars have been helping him with his campaign from time to time as well.

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As you can see, Adam Scherr aka Braun Strowman isn’t the only giant in his family. He’s 6’8″ and weighs 385 lbs. Here he is pictured with his younger sister Hannah. His father Rick Scherr is actually in the Softball Hall of Fame. Mark Henry recruited him after seeing him at a Strong Man Competition.

I’ve been talking about The Monster Among Men alot lately but he is one of the top guys along with Roman Reigns. He technically won the Tag Team Championships by himself at Wrestlemania 34 but was forced to vacate the titles the following night on RAW since his partner was still in grade school.

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Mark Calloway aka The Undertaker rounds out my list of giants in WWE. He’s 6’8″ and weighs 309 lbs. Everyone knows his many accomplishments over his nearly 30 year career so…yeah. The Legend of The Phenom is headlined by his 24-2 Wrestlemania Record and his 21-0 Wrestlemania Streak  before it was broken by Brock Lesnar at Wrestlemania 30. He beat Bray Wyatt (WM31) and Shane McMahon (WM32) before losing for the second time at Wrestlemania 33 vs. Roman Reigns. After being called out for weeks, he returned to beat John Cena in a squash match at Wrestlemania 34.

Wrestlemania aside, ‘Taker introduced Casket Matches to WWE and it is his speciality (despite having lost two big ones for storyline reasons). ‘Taker was involved in the first two Hell in a Cell Matches (against Shawn Michaels and Mick Foley respectively) before the Pay Per View of the same name was introduced.

WWE is VERY protective of The Undertaker’s character and more than anyone else including Brock Lesnar or John Cena. The Deadman is intentionally kept out of sight during emotional moments involving the whole locker room (such as honoring someone who passed away or moments of silence). The two exceptions was when ‘Taker broke character and came out for Ric Flair’s farewell the RAW after he was retired by Shawn Michaels at WM24 (‘Taker won the WWE title the same night). The other instance was after his match last year at WM33, he went over the to barricade to hug and kiss his wife before exiting. By the way his wife is former WWE Superstar Michelle McCool.

Images and footage of ‘Taker both out of gear and out of character are pretty rare though WWE has started including video footage of him talking in his normal voice (not as The Undertaker but as Mark Calloway) in backstage footage taken behind the scenes at big events. Images of him looking 10 to 20 years older (he’s 52 years old now) posing with fans can be found online.
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‘Taker obviously dyed his hair, which has turned white in recent years. Unlike Shane McMahon (has gray hair despite being in his mid-40s), he has to dye his hair to stay in character. As you can see in the above photograph, he’s started just going to public places as The Undertaker because of how recognizable he is.

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…Come on, did you think I wasn’t gonna mention women?

Savelina “Lina” Fanene aka Nia Jax stands at 6’0″ (The weight of Female Superstars is not shown on WWE.’com’s website), putting her three inches above her cousin and fellow WWE Superstar Tamina Snuka. Nia won her first title since coming to WWE at Wrestlemania 34 when she beat Alexa Bliss for the RAW Women’s Championship.

Nia was a Heel during most of her WWE career but after she name-dropped her cousin Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson in a closed door meeting, her Face Turn on The Road to Wrestlemania was set up. Speaking of her famous cousin, she decided to try out for NXT after watching her cousin live at Wrestlemania 28.

In her inclusion in the latest season of Total Divas, Nia opened up about her insecurity because of her size. Like I mentioned earlier the only other superstar who is as big as she is also happens to be her cousin, Tamina. The body shaming storyline WWE ran with leading up to her match at Wrestlemania 34 was an important one as well as powerful. Nevermind the fact Nia and Alexa are actually friends in real life (Alexa clearly broke character when she went backstage to console Nia, who’d just lost to Asuka for a spot at Wrestlemania).

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Sarona Snuka aka Tamina Snuka stands at 5’9″ and is of course, the daughter of the late WWE Hall of Famer Jimmy “Superfly” Snuka. She is also the only one of The Rock’s cousins on the active roster–the others being Roman Reigns, The Usos and Nia Jax–who hasn’t won a title yet but that could change between the Superstar Shakeup and the Women’s Tag Team titles to come later this year.

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In closing, it would be fair to say Andre The Giant left a lasting legacy and responsability for WWE. A responsability WWE has taken on in earnest. I’m talking about making sure their larger Superstars are treated with respect and dignity. They are more than their gait. They’re someone’s son, daughter, father, uncle, brother, sister, aunt, cousin or uncle.

Hopefully they will all be around long after they retire for good.

A look at Giant WWE Superstars who came after Andre the Giant

John Cena calls out The Undertaker, forgets what he said last Summer

Took me a minute to find this video, then couldn’t resist rewatching the whole segment in full:

…The relevant line is at 5:55 of the video. At that point, Cena says “I’m not The Undertaker. I’m not a battered veteran with a bad hip.”

When he called out The Undertaker on this week’s episode of RAW, Cena spoke highly of The Deadman. Clearly he should’ve watched the above video. LOL. Like with the buildup to ‘Taker vs. Bray Wyatt three years ago, ‘Taker doesn’t need to show up in person. Cena has the best mic skills in the company and has since he walked in 15 years ago. He can build the match by himself. That said, I do see ‘Taker appearing to accept the challenge in the next three weeks.

All that said, let’s return to the entirety of the above video. Obviously, Cena destroyed Reigns on the mic. He took him to school and it was obvious especially from the 7:15 mark to about 8:00. Cena literally teaches Reigns during their promo how you cut a good promo (‘cuz John Cena is just that damn good). Cena prettymuch taught him to stop holding back when he does promos and as the new top guy, he has the leeway to go off script. Reigns clearly got it a few minutes later as he becomes more comfortable doing the promo.

Now check out the part this video is cued to:

…SAVAGE.

Cena makes reference Reigns’ recent suspensions at the time from failed drug tests. In one case, Reigns was absent for the buildup for the Triple Threat Match at the 2016 Battleground involving him, Dean Ambrose and Seth Rollins. Ambrose was booked to retain the title and the match was built without Reigns so Ambrose and Rollins built the match on their own.

Both last week and this week, Reigns was half-cocked and cut some good promos. He wasn’t chewed out last week like he said he would be (it was planned) and this week’s segment involving Vince seemed to indicate there will be sine changes in how Lesnar is used after he presumably drops the title at Wrestlemania. Lesnar got away with holding the top title hostage 3 years ago because there wasn’t a brand split first and at the time, Vince was trying to get Lesnar to commit to WWE longterm.

Things are different now.

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John Cena calls out The Undertaker, forgets what he said last Summer

Hell in a Cell: A Lesson in Brutality

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…Truth be told, It’s been some time since we have seen a quality Hell in a Cell match. At least not since the match between The Undertaker and Edge at Summer Slam 2008. The HIAC matches we’ve seen since then were tame in comparison. Even the one between ‘Taker and Shane ‘O Mac at Wrestlemania 32 fell far below expectations despite Shane’s memorable dive off the top of the cell.

The match involving Dean Ambrose and Seth Rollins did offer glimpses of what we may see at this Sunday’s outing: A return to the brutality the WWE Universe has come to expect from a match titled Hell in a Cell.

 

Let’s look at 8 of my personal favorite Hell in the Cell matches up to now:

 

8. Triple H vs. Cactus Jack

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Ah, Mick Foley’s retirement match. It would be a travesty for this to not be mentioned. It was Championship vs. Career as Triple H battled Mick Foley in the match the latter made famous two years earlier. Just like back then, Foley was put through the cage. The difference was his time it was clearly pre-planned.

7. Sasha Banks vs. Charlotte Flair

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Charlotte and Sasha made history last year as the first women to compete inside Hell in a Cell with the RAW Women’s Championship on the line. I commented on this last year but the beatdown Sasha took before the match officially started ruined it. You already knew at that point the outcome had been decided. Charlotte was a Heel but I agree with the critics she could have won without the pre-emptive attack.

The reason this made the list is simply because it opened the door to more HIAC matches involving the Women’s Division.

6. Dean Ambrose vs. Seth Rollins

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Dean Ambrose had me believing we may see a return to the brutality that has been absent from the now HIAC matches for almost 10 years now. This match took place a few months after The Shield broke up. Ambrose channeled his inner Mick Foley and put on a classic in this battle against The future King Slayer.

 

5. The Undertaker vs. Edge

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Ah, the first of 4 matches on this list featuring The Undertaker ^_^

This was a grudge match made in hell between The Rated-R Superstar and The Phenom who made the match famous. The Undertaker gave Edge a personal lesson in pain after the match was over: After winning the match, he chokeslammed Edge off a ladder through the ring straight into hell.

4. Triple H vs. Shawn Michaels

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…I only just watched this match for the first time on WWE Network today. Afrer seeing how brutal it was, I had to put it on this list. Holy hell. This would be higher up if not for the participants involved in the Top 3.

The match lasted almost an hour.

You would have thought both men were trying to outdo their previous HIAC matches with the brutality they inflicted on each other. By the time it was over, both men were laying unconscious in the middle of the ring.

3. Kurt Angle vs. Stone Cold Steve Austin vs. Triple H vs. The Undertaker vs. Rikishi vs. The Rock

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This was a star-studded HIAC at Armageddon 2000 for the WWE Championship. The match involved all of the company’s top talent. As you can probably imagine, there was a number of memorable moments from Triple H being Suplexed onto the hood of a car to The Rock overselling The Stunner in the middle of the ring.

The above picture stands as one of the top moments in HIAC history: Hall of Famer Rikishi being pushed off the top of the cell by The Undertaker into the back of a flatbed truck filled with wood chips. ‘Taker DID warn Rikishi if he wasn’t careful, he’d make him famous.

Kurt Angle retained the title by taking advantage of some confusion in the ring.

2. Shawn Michaels vs. The Undertaker

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Ah, the very first Hell in a Cell match.

Tomorrow makes it 20 years to the day The Undertaker and Shawn Michaels stepped foot inside what would come to be known as The Devil’s Playground for the first time. The only thing more shocking than the horrors The Deadman inflicted on HBK was the Kane’s shocking first appearance in WWE.

‘Taker literally did everything he could think of to HBK from throwing him around like a rag doll to using him as a human battering ram against the side of the cell. He even made him fall off the side of the cell and crash into the announcer’s table. Despite the brutality, it’s agree the abuse he took in his HIAC match with Triple H 7 years later was far worse: At least HBK was able to leave the ring.

Even so, there is a reason this is #2…

1. Mankind vs. The Undertaker

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…There will never be a match like this again. EVER.

There is Hell in a Cell and then there is The 1998 Hell in a Cell match between The Undertaker and Mankind at King of the Ring. Do yourself a favor: Watch the full match on WWE Network if you’ve never seen it.

Let me give you a bit of background info on this legendary match: Prior to the start of the match, ‘Taker had concerns about competing with a nagging foot injury. The match starting on top of the cage was Mick Foley’s idea. Little did they know when they were both up there, this match would cement their place in Wrestling History.

When Foley is thrown into the announcer’s table, he breaks his left arm and fractures bones in his spine. ‘Taker would later say he was legit concerned since they both knew Foley would have to carry the match since he was competing with an injury. Despite that, Foley would refuse medical treatment and continue the match. Unlike Foley’s match with Triple H, the fall through the cell was not planned. Foley blacked out for 2 minutes from the impact of hitting the ring. It’s said later Foley suffered a ruptured spleen and a concussion from the second fall.

Since the second fall was a legit freak accident, ‘Taker’s shock seeing Foley hit the ring below was legit. With things now gone to hell–pun intended–you’d think things couldn’t get any more over the top. But it did: Foley introduced THUMBTACKS. Then he was dropped and chokeslammed on a bed of them. TWICE. You literally have to see it to believe it.

…Never before and never again.

The only thing even more crazy: Both of them ran interference with the match that followed involving Kane and Stone Cold Steve Austin. Unbelievable given Foley was legit hurt and hurt bad.

…I left this out until now but what made the top 2 matches so memorable was Jim Ross calling the matches.

A few matches worth getting an honorable mention:

  • Brock Lesnar vs. The Undertaker: Their first Hell in a Cell match in 2002 had originally been booked for ‘Taker to win but since ‘Taker had a broken wrist, he had to take it as a loss to put Lesnar Over.
  • Brock Lesnar vs. The Undertaker: Their second, more recent Hell in a Cell match in 2015 had all the makings of a classic. It packed the grudge factor like their first HIAC match only both men were healthy. The Beast took The Undertaker to Suplex City, ending the rivalry in convincing fashion.
  • Mankind vs. Kane: This 1998 match is underrated since it was the only HIAC Match that took place during RAW. It was also Kane’s first venture in HIAC in which he destroyed his then tag team partner Mankind.
  • Triple H vs. Kevin Nash: Holy hell, you’d have thought Triple H was legit trying to kill Kevin Nash. It took everyything The Game had to put his best friend down for good.
  • Randy Orton vs. Daniel Bryan: The only reason this gets an honorable mention is because of how it ended: After Daniel Bryan punts Triple H out of the ring, Special Guest Referee Shawn Michael drops D-Bry with Sweet Chin Music, allowing The Viper to win the match and the vacated WWE Championship.

I have my fingers crossed Shane vs. KO delivers on the brutality it’s being built to be. We will find out for sure this Sunday.

 

Hell in a Cell: A Lesson in Brutality

The Undertaker retires at Wrestlemania 33

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…The rumors turned out to be true: Wrestlemania 33 would be Mark Calloway aka The Undertaker’s last match of his career. The 52 year old Superstar was clearly given full control for what would be his final match on the stage that made him a legend. When it was announced Thursday that Jim Ross would be coming back to call one match, we knew it would likely be for one of three matches. It turned out it was ‘Taker vs. Reigns, which itself turned out to be the main event on the card (The other two possabilities being Lesnar vs. Goldberg and Orton vs. Wyatt). The clincher was when the match was made the main event over the 3 title matches before them in which a new Champion was crowned. (Lesnar, Orton and Naomi).

Anyone who’s followed The Undertaker’s career knows the laundry list of accomplishments credited to him name, most of which involve Wrestlemania. I won’t go over all of them but of course. ‘Taker holds two records that will probably never be approached: Most Wrestlemania matches (25) and longest Wrestlemania streak (21). His only losses were at WM30 vs. Brock Lesnar, who ended The Streak and this year at WM33 vs. Roman Reigns, who comes from a family of Wrestling Legends (Rikishi, The Rock and so on).

It would probably be accurate to say Vince McMahon allowed The Undertaker to choose his final opponent and where. He did pick Lesnar to be the one to end The Streak, after all. The Deadman had expressed a strong interest in working with Daniel Bryan a few years ago but due to a career-ending neck injury after Wrestlemania 31, D-Bry was off the table. Choosing The Big Dog was very symbolic.

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As was the promo for their match, ‘Taker chose Roman Reigns to be the new cornerstone of Wrestlemania. While I don’t see Reigns donnning ‘Taker’s gear and coming out to his music, he will become the new standard of greatness at Wrestlemania.

Simply having competed against The Undertaker at Wrestlemania would raise his profile but actually winning the match? The Roman Empire will now rule Wrestlemania for years to come barring the unforseeable. While it’s doubtful Reigns will compete in 20 more Wrestlemania matches, he will have alot of big ones. Last year’s match vs. Triple Hfelt stale compared to his singles debut at Wrestlemania 31 vs. Brock Lesnar.

Speaking of: Alot of folks were apparently expecting Roman Reigns to Heel turn during this match just like last year vs. The Game. I don’t see him becoming another John Cena but I think he will Heel turn before the year is over.

Undertaker Retires WrestleMania

The Undertaker had his last match  but I doubt we’ve seen the last of him. I would not be surprised at all if he is inducted into the WWE Hall of Fame next year. It would be fitting. The WWE allowed him to go out in style and to retire with dignity. Who can forget how The Deadman had to be carted out of the ring after Wrestlemania 28? That was perhaps when The Deadman truly realized he was running out of time.

There were rumors his match with Shane was supposed to be his final match but due to post-show rumors about him, it’s likely WWE Officials wanted things to be more definite this time. Man, what a send off. The picture above says it all. The Undertaker is now free to disappear into the sunset.

…I will talk about other Wrestlemania news and results in two separate posts throughout today and tomorrow by brand. Later today, I will do one for RAW. Tomorrow, I will do one for Smackdown.

 

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The Undertaker retires at Wrestlemania 33

Possible Wrestlemania matchups are starting to come into focus

According to a few sources within WWE, The Phenom vs. The Roman Empire at WM33 is “prettymuch set”. Vince McMahon has reportedly wanted to book them in a match for some time now. This seems to match rumors I heard last year ‘Taker was originally going to be Reigns’ opponent last year.

It ended up not happening as we know for two reasons:

  1. The Reigns/Triple H feud was going unexectedly well even though everyone knew Trips was just putting Reigns over.
  2. The creative team had to scramble to write Shane McMahon’s sudden return to WWE after a nearly 10 year hiatus. Since Vince was personally involved, they had no choice but to book Shane with The Undertaker. The buildup fell flat but the match itself was unexpectedly good.

…This will be a match for the ages. The foundation for their match at Wrestlemania was laid when Reigns eliminated The Undertaker at the Royal Rumble (See above picture). It’s just a matter of when in regards to when the buildup begins.

What would make this matchup real interesting: According to an interview by Roman Reigns himself, he might Heel turn real soon. That would make the buildup believable and his character has been teasing a Heel turn for some time now.

I think it’s a safe bet the match is a done deal. Even though it won’t be a title match, this time we can expect to see a full match between the two titans of destruction =O

…This was obviously being set up to happen but due to Seth Rollins re-injuring his surgically repaired knee (The same one that cost him 9 months from fall 2015 to Spring 2016), he may be out for up to 8 weeks (!) which means he’s definitely missing Wrestlemania. Ouch! He has not been medically cleared to compete in any live events since the injury on RAW.

WWE has promised to provide an update in the upcoming RAW episode. Should Rollins be shelved, WWE’s creative team apparently has a replacement match set to go…

…The match alot of insiders thought was actually going to happen at last year’s Summer Slam believe it or not. For those who don’t know, there is legit…”tension” is the word I’ll use between Triple H and Shane. Triple H and Stephanie feel threatened by Shane’s return to the company after being away for 7 years. While Shane was away,

Triple H and Stephanie worked their way up the corporate ladder both on and off-screen (By the way, Triple H is the Director of Talent Relations and the Principal Owner of NXT). Triple H’s brain child NXT moved WWE out of the PG Era and helped kick off the rebranding of the Women’s Division. The story goes, it was Stephanie who convinced Vince to trust Triple H and cut back on his on-screen appearances, allowing the company to move into The New Era.

Their concern–more specifically The Game’s–is the possability Vince might hand the company over to Shane. Shane wasn’t lying when he said he “never lost his place in line” this time last year on RAW. As far as I know, Shane does not hold any executive positions within the company aside from being the Smackdown GM since his return.

Should Rollins be shelved–and I don’t think WWE will rush him back for the match–then they will start building this instead.

https://i1.wp.com/uniwrestling.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/01/WWE-Could-Be-Planning-John-Cena-Versus-Samoa-Joe-in-2017-905x509.jpg

…We could see what WWE had planned for Seth Rollins and Finn Balor last year: NXT’s best brawler vs. The Face of WWE. Could be crazy but it could also be real interesting. That said, as of right now we still don’t know which roster Samoa Joe will be on yet. I don’t think that’s been set in stone.

That said, I do think it could be an interesting match. They both have crazy stamina and both have impressive mat skills to boot =O

https://i2.wp.com/pm1.narvii.com/5799/69f482ae1fef346ccfd742f10e1dd01c9d2725ca_hq.jpg

I only just heard about this possible matchup this morning: Bray Wyatt is apparently the favorite to win the WWE Championship at the Elimination Chamber PPV later this month. He would then go on to face Randy Orton at Wrestlemania for the title.

Orton has been part od the Wyatt Family for the last three months. The Apex Predator is one of a handful of superstars who can be Over with the crowd weather he’s a Face or a Heel. We probably won’t see the buildup until after the Elimination Chamber match though.

 

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Possible Wrestlemania matchups are starting to come into focus