Dead Man Walking.

The main event of Wrestlemania 33 was the Undertaker’s last match…ever.

I was in tears as he laid his gear down and stepped out of the ring. I had always thought about what the wrestling world would be like without the Undertaker but it was one of those things that I didn’t think would ever happen. To me, he was larger than life, he was immortal and would be around forever. That is no longer my reality and it breaks my heart but I am SO incredibly grateful that I got to watch the greatest of all time go out in style.

I don’t know what I’m going to do next year when he doesn’t appear at Wrestlemania. I will never get to hear that gong hit, see the lights go down, or get that chill run down my spine ever again. The Undertaker was the last wrestler that was still competing from my childhood, I’m talking from the time I was a baby. I’m almost 29 but that’s how long I’ve been watching wrestling, and I have my dad to thank for getting me hooked when I came home from the hospital. There has been no greater thrill in my life than watching wrestling. I’ve written about this multiple times before but I don’t care, wrestling is literally my life.

I was just over two years old when I first saw the Undertaker and that is one memory that has stuck with me over my entire life. Any wrestling memory I have, I’m usually with my dad eating snacks and this one was no different. There has been no character that has transformed so much over his entire career and still commanded the same respect and authority that he has. Even now, I’m struggling to find the words to describe how important he is to me. I couldn’t even name my favourite moment of his because he’s provided me with so many and for that, I am truly grateful.

There’s not much left I can say that can describe how he made me feel as a fan or how much joy he brought other than thank you.

 

Shane-O-Mac Attack.

I’ve taken a while to write this post because I’m just blown away at the fact that Shane McMahon is taking on the Undertaker at Wrestlemania.

I never usually read any kind of dirt sheet or give in to rumors, I try not to believe anything until the WWE has it on television or reports it themselves. However, I broke my little rule and saw that the Undertaker’s opponent at Wrestlemania 32 would be someone who was from outside the company, but was once with the company. My mind RACED with who it could be but I came up with absolutely nothing.

Zilch. Zip. Zero. Nada.

When Shane McMahon’s music hit on Monday Night Raw, I choked on my own saliva and my dad’s jaw hit the floor. He was the last person that I ever expected to see in a WWE ring again, let alone facing one of the greatest of all time. Aside from the match (which is going to be awesome!), I really enjoyed the premise that brought back Shane’s return. He didn’t just show up, talk, and leave. He was there with a purpose and a real story was laid out in a matter of minutes, he was there to tell his loving sister that she was not next in line. I went bat shit crazy.

All three of the McMahon’s are great on television, one of my favorite moments was watching Vince try to stifle his smiles as he watched his children.

The actual match is what really perplexes me because I have no idea how it will go. I think that both men are capable but they’re no spring chickens, Hell in a Cell is one of the most grueling types of matches one could be involved in. Some people are saying that Shane isn’t actually going to compete and he’ll have someone do it for him or that there will be more stipulations added before Wrestlemania.

I literally have no idea what to keep tying about because I don’t know what is going to happen in the match, the weeks leading up to it, or the weeks following. All I know is that this is one of the most exciting stories that they’ve had in months and it’s something that can keep going for a long time if it’s executed properly. I know that I’m not the only one who wants to see Stephanie have to take orders from her brother, payback sure will be a bitch.

My only gripe is that I wish Wrestlemania was closer because I’m ready!

Rollercoaster.

This year’s Royal Rumble had to be one of the craziest in the last few years.

The rest of the matches on the card were pretty good but I know I’m not alone in saying that the main event was what I was waiting for. Roman Reigns was the first entrant, defending his title, and he seemed to have all of the odds stacked against him. As anxious as I was to see if Roman would retain his title, I was equally as anxious to see who the surprise entrants would be. That was always my favorite part of the Rumble and rumors were rampant, especially with top stars in NJPW becoming free agents.

Boy, did they ever deliver this year with AJ Styles. I wasn’t really sure at first who it was because I didn’t recognize the music but did that place ever erupt when he came out! When he came out, I thought my boyfriend was going to flip the damn coffee table and I immediately thought that Vince McMahon owns the world. It’s not the Monday Night War days and there aren’t a whole lot of places for wrestlers to go but what a victory for the WWE to pull a major star with many of their own out with injury.

It was just absolutely incredible to feel that energy and see the crowd be so into what was happening.

Another shocking moment to me was Brock Lesnar’s elimination. I just assumed that he would be handed the belt and everyone would call it a day. I KNEW that the Sister Abigail meant more than it seemed, there was no way it was just a fleeting moment.

On Raw, Lesnar was added to the triple threat match at Fastlane to determine the number one contender for Triple H’s newly one WWE title (that’s another blog post for another day). I still don’t think he will win because there is too much potential in both Roman vs. Dean and Lesnar versus anyone in the Wyatt Family. The Wyatt’s are finally going to be in a storyline that is heading somewhere (they have been flip-flopping for a while) and we get treated to best friends brawling. What more could a wrestling fan ask for?

I feel like I’m rambling but I’m just so excited. It’s Wrestlemania season, they’re announcing the Hall of Fame Inductees, Shinsuke Nakamura is coming, and I can barely contain myself.

I may shed a tear of joy.

Turning On A Dime.

Three huge things happened in the wrestling world this week. Three things that could change the outcome of two of the WWE’s biggest events of the year, Wrestlemania and the Royal Rumble.

Let’s start with Monday Night Raw and the fact that Roman actually retained the title. The match wasn’t what I thought it would be in that it wasn’t riddled with ridiculous stipulations that would virtually guarantee a loss, but just had the right amount of fuckery attached to keep it ridiculous. Vince was the guest referee and pulled the typical tricks like not seeing things and slower than usual counts. It came to a point where Vince was incapacitated, Scott Armstrong came and went, and another official came out to properly count Roman to victory. The match was good but that wasn’t what was most interesting, the shocker came at the end.

As he and Stephanie were retreating to the back, Vince announced that Roman would have to defend his title in the Royal Rumble match against 29 other superstars. That was only done one other time in the history of the event, and my jaw dropped when it was announced. Intrigue for that event shot up 1000% for that reason and a few others…

If you’ve been hiding under a rock for the last few days, some of the biggest names in New Japan have given their notice after Wrestlekingdom 10.

Excuse me for a moment…AAAAAAAAAAAAHHHHHHHHHHHHH!

I will admit that I haven’t been following NJPW for long but I instantly loved Nakamura, among others in the promotion. Of course, as soon as that report came out, the wrestling universe exploded. It was literal insanity. There were people already confirming that those who gave their notice signed and that the launch of the WWE Network in Japan was to coincide with the announcement. The dirt sheets went insane and it was the number one talked about item on my news feed that night.

Like could you imagine Finn Balor and the Bullet Club in the WWE?

I used to keep tabs on certain wrestling news sites but I haven’t really paid attention to much in the last couple of years unless I feel like it’s something super important. I am very much a ‘believe it when I see it’ type of person but this is just too good to not pay attention to. Even the WWE itself has acknowledged it in an article on their own website, that NEVER happens…EVER! Finn Balor even made reference to the Bullet Club on his Instagram and people went even more wild. This could change the face of wrestling from here on out, my dream would be that they debut some of the NJPW at the Royal Rumble and that would result in one of the craziest Mania’s ever.

Lofty goals but Shinsuke Nakamura did an interview in which he said he was going to the WWE after he is done with New Japan. The practical side of me doesn’t want to believe it until I see it but the crazy wrestling fan side of me lost its damn mind.

Another piece of wrestling news that caught me by surprise is that John Cena is undergoing shoulder surgery and will miss the Royal Rumble and, possibly, Wrestlemania. I had to calm myself down because that news also completely changed what I thought the possible stories would be for Mania season. There’s no possibility of him swooping in to win the Rumble and being in the main event of Mania. I wish no ill will on anyone but these last few months, and going forward, will be very interesting for fans all over the world.

Seth is still out, Cesaro is still out, Cena will be out, the Rumble is a title match, huge stars of NJPW are leaving and possibly coming to WWE…I literally can’t even right now.

As cliché as it sounds, I’m ready for the road to Wrestlemania.

Wrestlemania XXXI.

Undertaker celebrating his win against Bray Wyatt. Photo courtesy of WWE.

Undertaker celebrating his win against Bray Wyatt.
Photo courtesy of WWE.

Wrestlemania XXXI.

In my personal opinion, this was the best Wrestlemania in recent years.

This year’s Showcase of the Immortals really lived up to the grandeur and prestige that surrounds Wrestlemania. I couldn’t even pick a single moment that stood out in my mind but I suppose I can pick a few!

Undertaker Returns

I could have just written Undertaker and I’m sure that my message would have been conveyed quite well. After what happened at Wrestlemania XXX, I was honestly nervous that was his final walk down the ramp and that we’d never see him again.

Nervous actually isn’t even the right word to describe how I was feeling. I think ‘damn near shitting my pants’ about covers it. People laugh all the time when I tell them that but very few people know what the Undertaker actually means both to me and professional wrestling as a whole. Not meaning to sound cliché here but they call him ‘Phenom’ for a reason.

The gong hit and his music started, I had goosebumps. He walked out from behind that screen in his trademark hat and jacket, he commanded that arena. Watching him walk down to the ring just made my heart swell and I just watched in awe. Every time he graces us with his presence it is a breathtaking moment. He looked fantastic and I hope that he’s got a few more Mania’s left in him

Sting Wrestles at Wrestlemania

This was something that I (among millions of others) had been waiting over a decade for, Sting FINALLY had a match in a WWE ring. Sting showed incredible loyalty to WCW throughout the Monday Night Wars and that’s a feat. I just think that the WWE would have provided a better platform for him but I wouldn’t be writing this if he jumped the ship to WWE all those years ago.

I really liked the way that his match was built, shrouded in mystery and suspense (much like Sting himself). The match may not have turned out how I would have preferred, I still was entertained from beginning to end. Hopefully, the Icon will return for that ever elusive Undertaker/Sting match.

Seth Rollins Cashes in…FINALLY!

I was beginning to think that he would NEVER cash that damn thing in.

I will have to admit that during the main event, I was so nervous that Roman wouldn’t take the victory. As his match progressed, it didn’t seem like he could take much more of Brock’s abuse. Sure, he got a few great superman punches in but Brock kept killing any momentum that he had. It wasn’t looking good for Roman and then it got worse…Seth’s music hit and he brought the briefcase to the ring. He FINALLY cashed that in.

At first I was angry about it (a ginger kid angry…imagine that!) because of how badly I wanted Roman to win. One thing that didn’t make sense to me was how it was declared a triple threat match, I can’t recall a time when that was ever done. I didn’t really think it was fair to do that to Roman, as he wasn’t the champion and had been under so much criticism since he had won the Royal Rumble in January.

With all that being said, I still thought the outcome of the match was great.

Roman got to have his Wrestlemania match, Seth finally cashed in that damn briefcase, and (most importantly) Brock didn’t walk out with the belt.

Everything about it was just fantastic. The matches may not have all turned out how I would have liked (I was legitimately PRAYING for a Sting victory) but I was 100% satisfied with the show. How many times do I say that? I even enjoyed the women’s match for god sakes.

Wrestlemania 31 brought out the best parts of being a wrestling fan. My dad and I laughed, gasped, and lost our breath at the amazing moments that the superstars gave us. I could thank the WWE all I want for giving us such a great event but it will NEVER be enough.

I’m already looking forward to Wrestlemania 32!

Power Play.

Photo Courtesy of WWE

Photo Courtesy of WWE

Monday Night Raw was one of the final stops on the road to Wrestlemania XXXI.

This was the last major chance that the superstars had to show themselves off and make their mark before the Showcase of the Immortals. I personally think that they did a fantastic job.

Sting kicked off the broadcast by calling out Triple H in the middle of the ring. He spoke about the conniving and manipulative nature of the Cerebral Assassin and his words almost earned him a patented Stephanie McMahon slap. Triple H came down to confront the Vigilante and we got one epic standoff. Well, it would have been epic had Hunter not chickened out and left ringside. He had his sledgehammer but Sting had that bat. There is no guarantee who will win this fight but I think it speaks volumes that Hunter back away like he did. Will he get Sting when his guard is down? Is this all just a double-cross?

I am still in shock that I get to see Sting in a WWE ring after waiting over a decade. There is no bad outcome for this match for me. I’m just happy that I get to see him wrestle on a platform truly worthy of his ability.

(On a historic note, it was 14 years ago this Monday that Vince purchased WCW and won the Monday Night Wars.)

As stacked as the Wrestlemania card is this year, I think that the Intercontinental Championship ladder match is going to be the one to steal the show. The entire situation seems a little chaotic and comedic at times but these competitors have put on some of the most consistently entertaining matches and segments. The person who I want to win is Wade Barrett but the realist part of me is thinking that it will be Dolph Ziggler. Some may see it as a ‘downgrade’ for Dolph but I think that it doesn’t matter what belt a superstar carries, it’s all in how he carries it.

We also got treated to a divas match and some tag team matches, I may not have agreed with who won but I was still entertained. One point of contention that I have is with this whole #GiveDivasAChance movement. I think that it’s great that people want women’s wrestling to be given more exposure within the company because they do have some extremely talented women on that roster. However, it can’t just be AJ, Paige, and the Bellas; everyone needs to get a chance at the belt. AJ isn’t the saviour of the women’s division, I’d hate to break it to some people. There are women who are more talented and more athletic. If you want women to get a fair shake, they all have to be treated as equals in the division and on the roster. Maybe I’m reaching for that rainbow but that’s how I see it. They all work hard so they should all have a shot, there really isn’t that many women on the main roster to begin with. I don’t think the women’s division should be all sunshine and rainbows but you can’t just apply the movement to a small group of them.

Now that I’ve ranted, I think the biggest moment of the night was when Roman grabbed the title out of Lesnar’s hand and held it up. I was rendered speechless and I realize how hard that is to believe coming from someone like me. People will always bitch and moan about Roman and I could give two shits. Like I said in a previous post, no one is ever truly ready to be in that main event spot at an event with the grandeur of Wrestlemania (if you say you are, you’re lying through your teeth). Taking Brock’s title was a major power play by Reigns and I think that it sent a VERY strong message to Lesnar.

I also wanted to address the fact that Lesnar resigned with the WWE, inking a multi-year deal. Yeah, I’m not happy about it but I have heard rumors of what they plan to do with him and I don’t think that he’ll continue on as champ. To me, it doesn’t make sense to put that much steam behind Roman and then just take it all away because some block headed dope can write his name on a line. Before anyone loses their mind, I don’t think Roman Reigns and Daniel Bryan are or were in the same type of situation so get out of here with that nonsense. I think that this signing was a strategic move on the part of Vince and WWE to keep Brock away from UFC. Did Brock honestly think that they would let him fight for both companies at once? There’s guys that work a lot harder than he does but I do understand why that decision was made from a business standpoint. I don’t like it in the least but I respect it. Since I’m such a curious cat, I want to know the terms of his deal. We all know that he can’t handle the work and he doesn’t like to travel so it will be interesting to see how often we will actually see him and what he will be doing. I’ve heard the rumors but I tend to not believe something until WWE releases an official statement or I see it for myself.

These people can change their minds like people change their underwear.

Out With The Old.

Photo courtesy of WWE

Photo courtesy of WWE

Stephanie McMahon brought up something tonight that really caught my attention.

This Wrestlemania could be Cena-less.

Hold the phone. This cannot be!

Oh but it can!

Cena has been a staple at the event for the last decade. He’s fought some of the biggest and baddest in the business and has achieved incredible accolades in his career. I don’t know how I’ll manage but I’m pretty sure that I can survive a Wrestlemania without John Cena.

I rip on John Cena constantly but I think he’s a great superstar and a great personality. I still love to wear my Cena merchandise and I wear that stuff with pride. He will always be a major presence in the company, on television, on pay-per-views, and will always be one of the most dedicated superstars to ever step through the ropes. However, I don’t think that all of those things necessarily warrant his presence for this event. There really isn’t that much left for him to accomplish in his career, this man has literally done it all. Stepping out of the spotlight for one event won’t kill him. John Cena won’t fade away into oblivion, even though some wish that he would.

By not appearing this year, I personally think that he’d show some support to the younger talent and the talent that seems to be stuck in some kind of mid-card purgatory. He isn’t exactly a spring chicken any more. Cena has lasted longer than many of his counterparts and has had quite the illustrious career. Everyone needs to calm down because I am not saying he needs to retire or anything like that, just step back a bit. Give the future of this company a chance to be truly recognized and have their moment in the sun.

After that, he can go right back to being Super Cena and the guy that we all love to heckle.