Tuesday, 31 March 2015

Wrestlemania XXXI

Wrestlemania XXXI

The road to Wrestlemania has been a long and strange one, filled with a lacking journey. Would WWE be able to deliver or would it fail on its most crucial card to move into a new future of WWE beyond 2015? Are the matches up to standard and fulfill their main event potential?

Coming live from the Levi's Stadium in Santa Clara, live on Sunday 29th March 2015, would WWE be able to showcase a grand spectacle and enthuse for the future generation of sports entertainment?

Let's find out.

Despite its graphics, production and card booking of superstars, all eyes were firmly on the opening of Wrestlemania. Kevin Dunn's always spectacular set design never fails the grand event. This one was filled with grandiose str quality through and through.

WWE Tag Team Championship
Antonio Cesaro and Tyson Kidd (c) w/ Natalya Vs The Uso's w/ Naomi Vs Los Matadores w/ El Torito Vs Kofi Kingston and Big E w/ Xavier Woods

Kicking off the Pre-show was a four way tag thriller to set the mood. It wasn't exactly a McMahon in every corner, but it played its part for the teams and their supporters.

Although they tried hard the New Day trio with Kingston and Big E was a let down despite their efforts. The other three teams put in an exceptional display and the match was highly held together by the tag champs Antonio Cesaro and Tyson Kidd, who retained the titles in a feasible and sparkling Wrestlemania mood starter. Cesaro also wore some yellow strip white tights for the special occasion which looked really good for him. Los Matadores contributed very well to the mix and could be given more of a chance if pushed upon. 

Andre the Giant Memorial Battle Royal
The Miz, Adam Rose, Fandango, Curtis Axel, Damien Sandow, Big Show, Jack Swagger, Darren Young, Erick Rowan, Mark Henry, Konnor, Viktor, Zack Ryder, Hideo Itami, Heath Slater, Sin Cara, Goldust, Kane, Ryback and Titus O'Neil

The annual event has returned, in the hopes of making a new up and coming superstar launch the ranks of WWE. This is a good decision and keeps Andre's historic wrestling contributions relevant. The only problem is how WWE select a star that will do the Giant justice. 

The match went underway early and lost some of its magic by WWE's lack of star building. The contenders, Axel, Fandango, Mizdow, Big Show, Kane and Darren Young were the only names capable of lifting the lucrative honour.

WWE decided, after its big build up of AxelMania, to dump Axel and neglect the rest of the young up and comers, desperate for a chance to be a WWE star, which would keep the linage of Andre's name honour. It came down to the final two. Mizdow and Big Show. We could see it coming a mile off from WWE before it started, but the Big Show tossed Damien Mizdow over the top rope to elimination in the end to secure the win as the second Andre statuette winner. 

Big Show has improved over the course of the last few months, which we highly praise, but this was a wasted opportunity just to have Show stand next to the trophy and pose as Andre did. It should have gone to Axel or Sandow, in that order.

Intercontinental Championship
7 Man, Ladder
Dean Ambrose Vs Bad News Barrett Vs R-Truth Vs Luke Harper Vs Dolph Ziggler Vs Stardust Vs Daniel Bryan

After months of pointless television angles which saw every entrant 'steal' the IC title in a game of kiss chase, the IC title could not have been devalued more. WWE attempted to boot the lineage of the title and include the extra stars to make it interesting. The batch certainly is, interesting. Some wasteful, others with strong potential.

This was a briefly shorter than anticipated match for 'Mania but still provided enough to be a morsel of interest. After everyone had their turn to play in the match a little bit, WWE chose to select its winner. The obvious and ignorant choice of Daniel Bryan became the new Intercontinental Champion.

It would have been better to give the opportunity to R-Truth, Luke Harper or Dean Ambrose. (See summary below the ratings for more.)

Once again it was an obvious fan pandering populism choice to an ignorant star who has started dipping lower down the card as an interesting act than a legitimate champion. It doesn't bode well for the B+ now down to D- player.

Randy Orton Vs Seth Rollins w/ Jaime Noble and Joey Mercury

Randy Orton returned to WWE last month and stunned everyone by sticking with the friends in The Authority, led by Triple H and Stephanie McMahon. Eventually Randy, after a strong tease, was not on good terms with them anymore, which now sets the random, but highly capable match up to enthuse us.

After some outstanding display from both J and J security soon tried to grab Orton from outside, to which Orton responded with a double DDT drop on them.

Rollins returned the action to some strong ground technical locks sold tremendously by both with Orton on a comeback. It was fluid, convincing and building the match with identity.

Both with their glistening bodies in the open stadium sunlight turned the action to red hot with intensity and jabs a plenty. Orton threw Rollins with a powerful Fall Away Slam, smoothly done. Rollins nailed Orton back with an apron Enziguri to recover stead with a beautifully timed, swift and fully connected top rope Moonsault. It was top notch. The fans agreed with respectful applause.

Next came a beautiful superplex. Swift counters to the powerful DDT by Orton followed. Seth superkicked Orton so quickly and perfectly to which Orton then gave an RKO counter to keep the match bubbling over. There was a kick out by Rollins at two, which really boosted his credibility as a challenger who can stand equal with Orton.

Noble and Mercury interfered and got some stunning RKO's. This distraction allowed Seth to Curb Stomp on Orton. A kick out at two, returned not only the favour but kept the match boiling. Corkscrew twist by Seth was missed, but gained bearings enough to smash a cool back mule kick which led into a crushing RKO instead, leading Randy Orton to cover Seth Rollins and claim the three fall victory in one of the predicted stand out bouts at 'Mania. It really did enthuse the fans. 

Sting Vs Triple H

A lot of hype was built around both stars taking each other on in recent months. Ignorance was highly abound by both going into it which tainted its magic.

A drumming band of Sting mime artists's and a Shaolin monk opened Sting's WWE debut. Sting strolled out calmly and simply walked, stood and stared at the crowd, looking lost and inexperienced. There was no buzz to his effect or entrance as he simply walked down the ring normally. It was a wasted opportunity.

Triple H entered with an absurd Terminator entrance which was completely pathetic and simply dumb. It was laughable, not epic. Tripper emerged from beneath the ramp in a shoulder padded silver helmet and armguard Terminator get up. It looked cheap and tacky. 

Then the Terminator himself Arnie Schwartz told us it was "time to play the game" after scanning the audience with his red eye motion detectors. Thrilling. 

A lock up started as Sting leads. HHH seen mouthing instructions vividly. "You still got it" fans daftly cheered as an act of trying to figure out something to say to support an old star of the past. He didn't do anything yet. Lock up again. HHH is sent to the outside. Take a breather, dear. Running knee in lock, reversed over sent HHH back outside. Sting ran to the barricade and missed. Suplex leads to two fall. Sting stumbles at HHH's feet, as Trips signals the "ultimate humiliation" Michael Cole adds, with the crotch chop. The fans did not fully boo and some cheered which WWE weren't expecting. Sting was not that appreciated for his lacking talent. Wear down headlocks by Triple H now. Sting tiredly threw weak punches to come back which flew his hair up revealing his bald spot. It's cold up there Eerie. Sting locks on the Scorpion Leg Lock as DX music sounds and all the degenerates crew, except Chyna (shhh don't say that name) were there. Sting predictably took them all out, with a splash from the top rope. As the run in happened fans booed. Then they chanted "Awesome" when DX was taken out. How fickle can you get? Triple H nailed a Pedigree on Sting which received a debatable two count. Fans loudly cheered for Triple H.

Stage music sounded of the nWo as Hulk Hogan, Kevin Nash and Scott Hall stumbled out slowly as three geriatrics on day release. They walked down the ramp to the DX crew. It was not exciting in the least as the nWo tapped punches so meekly. Sting got Triple H from behind to backdrop him, but Triple H kicked out at two. Sting tried the Scorpion Leg Lock again as Triple H crawled towards his sledgehammer. Hogan took the hammer away as X-Pac bashed him. Hogan was loudly booed. All the outsiders took each other down. Triple H was in another Leg Lock, sounding constipated.

He got free as Sting tried again. Shawn Michaels shockingly returned from the crowd to superkick Sting in the face in a shock turn of events as the crowd were annoyed with so many run ins. Tripper takes a cover but Sting kicked out. Hmmm. DX passed Tripper his hammer. Scott Hall gave Sting his bat. Zzzzzzz.

Triple H fell down as Sting failed to connect a supposed hit to the gut which was a major botch. Sting then broke Triple H's plastic hammer in halve. Oooh. So tough.

Sting splashed Triple H into the corner as Triple H countered the second one with a running attack concealing a foreign object. Sting was smashed as Triple H covered the Stinger for a three fall win.

All the crew, except for Chyna were in the ring after the battle. It looked like everyone in the old people's home. Triple H then extended his hand to Sting and they held hands as a "Wrestlemania moment" Jerry Lawler tells us. Yeah, sure. I'm so moved. It became boring and was built on run in hype which distorted the full effect it could have had.

Kid Ink sang his Wrestlemania theme song with Travis Barker and Skylar Grey now for an intermission period. Go to the toilets now, people.

Tag Team
AJ and Paige Vs The Bella Twins

The divas filler match was a waste of time, as per usual, but WWE could have laced a strong match on the show if it bothered. Maybe it does not know what to do with it and can't be bothered to think. Then, maybe get people to be in charge of the divas division, reporting to you for liaison and final, workable decision? Emma is more than due her call up as a serious contender after her work has been impressively improved and capable among a distantly lacking roster.

Paige stood on the ramp and nodded whilst waiting for AJ to skip on. Yeah, they are friends again all of a sudden.

Paige clumsily jumped on Nikki Bella and then botched almost every move. It was embarrassing. Nikki used the Alabama Slam to stop momentum. Brie dropkicked Paige down well. Brie tried to mix it up with a backlock surfboard variation well. AJ had been knocked down from the apron a moment ago and shown conked out. Both Bellas wear Paige down.

Nikki cracks the Rack Attack on Paige for a close two count. Paige uses sloppy kicks and throws to the outside of Bella. It was messy and negligent to their well-being.

AJ gets tagged back in now. She flies all over Nikki but then lands on her front screaming again like before, which was daft. Paige charged back in to dropkick down AJ on a pin to Nikki which failed at two. AJ countered a tricky top DDT as more run in came. Nikki smashed AJ in the face but only got two. AJ clasped on the Black Widow submission to carry Paige to another victory over The Bella Twins in a fairly useless match.

WWE Hall of Fame 2015

This year's Hall of Fame featured overdue entries The Bushwackers, (Luke and Butch,)  technical great Larry Zbysko, sterling female champ Alundra Blayze and Japanese veteran Tatsumi Fujinami, Also in are Samoan groover Rikishi, celebrity love-in Arnold Schwarzenegger, one of the greatest legends Randy Macho Man Savage, and friend of the WWE family Kevin Nash,

WWE also included a Warrior Award. This was to respect someone who made a contribution or impact to WWE or wrestling. That's basically a rip-off of the Max Waltham Appreciation award, given every year in the Wrestling Wonders Year End Awards. 

WWE also used the deceased Ultimate Warrior to use as the staple of the award, which is debatable. We have respect for the deceased and shall not go into detail, but Warrior was not as kind a person as most remember or make out. WWE should change the name of the award to save further embarrassment went continuing the awarding ceremonies. 

Despite the concerns the award went to the very deserving Connor Michalek. Connor "The Crusher" passed away last year after a strong battle with cancer. His spirit was gracious, charismatic and deserving. 

United States Championship
Rusev (c) w/ Lana Vs John Cena

This one was built on a political emphasis of good old Nationalism in wrestling story backgrounds. It was Russian sympathizer Rusev against WWE's almighty American superhero John Cena. Who would come out on top and make their nation proud?

Lovely Lana led the way with the United States title a Russian army, flag carrying parade, marching alongside her. Heavy artillery cannons blew as Rusev entered from atop a tank. The crowd really boo'ed that one. Did WWE take this one too far? Rusev proudly waved the Russian flag, regardless.

Cena's package started impressively, until WWE showed off Apple's iphone and /facebook goon Mark Zuckerburg as its defining features to a great America. Ugh. That didn't sell the version very well. There were some cheers at being "American" yet some booed it. As soon as Cena entered, the crowd boo'ed the hell out of him. Wow. Not even Nationalistic approach changed a positive reaction for Cena. Will WWE ever take it seriously? It's not about Americans, its, once again, about Cena. Fans did not buy in to it.

Rusev demanded to be introduced first by dumb announcer Eden. Cena was afterwards as the crowd really boo'ed him yet again. Ouch.

Cena instantly floored Rusev with a clothesline. Rusev came back with impressive offence and a toe kick to the foot taking Cena down. Rusev flipped an impressive double arm over the body suplex. That was good. Rusev waved the Russian flag as Cena was down in the ring. Cena kicked his leg up at Rusev to change pace. Two shoulder tackles and the crowd was unimpressed. They all got on their feet to mimic and boo him. Cena smirked at them without taking them seriously. If he did he might learn a new focus.

Rusev returned control soon after. Cena jumped onto Rusev so he could be dropped down. Rusev looked strong but it was silly of Cena to do such a juvenile action. That could have ruined Rusev and the match. Cena did the famous leg drop from the top which was a tad short on Rusev, hitting his back. A few years ago saw the infamous Cena jump which missed The Miz by half the ring. It has not improved since.

The crowd cheered "Let's go Lana" to amuse themselves. Cena did a jumping DDT from the top ropes decently, but easy, all the same. Cena traded fists with Rusev where Cena moved in such a way that did not sell Rusev's punches and looked weak thanks to Cena. Rusev made Cena's believable. Cena locked in the magical STF as Lana threw a show in the match to distract, which failed. Rusev took a flip Fall Away Slam with good power to regain control.

Rusev went to the top rope and smashed a fantastic headbutt across the ring. He only took a two fall for his efforts. Rusev called for the Crush! Cena sprung off the second rope to give a stunner to Rusev, which took a close two only. It still looked daftly incorporated but at least Cena tied to mix it up. Clearly Cena hasn't learn how to smooth things into matches. Adding random bits with no tie in well cause further problems. Cena rolled Rusev up again but failed to follow through. Rusev clamped on The Accolyde with extra crush. Lana was thrilled. For once Cena tried to maintain a tightly composed lock on. Cena broke the Accolyde with a power up surge to bash Rusev's back into the corner post, as per usual, in Cena resurgence.

Lana got bashed by Rusev off the apron after talking to the referee and John Cena grabbed Rusev to give him the Attitude Adjustment and claim the United State title, defeating the undefeated Rusev in a cheap ending, which further devalued the match just put on, its title and Cena's attempts to be new and engaging. Cena may have won the title, but Rusev held up the match with a phenomenal transformation. 

Stephanie McMahon now took centre stage to announce a new attendance record of 76,976. Steph, with her hubby Triple H, claimed it was her who made it possible. Her guidance. Hmm? You sure about that dear? She reckons her ideas guided the way. I wonder... Where is your guiding force dear?

Triple H re-informed the crowd after his earlier match that "The Authority always wins." I wonder who they take after?

Upon that note, WWE superstar The Rock surprisingly arrives. Steph reminds she is in charge and that Rocky should leave. After some harshly tempting situations from Steph, The Rock wasn't going to be put out so easily. 

The Rock went to the front row for some support and pulled over standout UFC champion Ronda Rousey, invited to Wrestlemania. Once back in the ring. Steph appreciated Ronda's achievements but explained the rules of the ring. Rousey is the MMA Octagon Queen. However, this is the squared circle, Steph said. Then Steph lost it. This is "my ring" she snarled. The Rock had enough and on cue unloads on HHH with fists. Ronda then flips HHH over perfectly in the ring on follow up. Steph carefully sees a moment to stop her. Both have a stare down. Steph tried a quick slap but Rousey was too focused and caught her arm. Rousey then twisted her arm into a painful armlock. Rousey ended the segment on a high with her Wrestlemania moment by tossing Stephanie outside as she left with The Rock. The fans lapped it up, amid speculation Rousey may one day make it to WWE as a capable wrestling diva.  

The Undertaker Vs Bray Wyatt

A match that had full on potential from the get go was an inevitable choice for the pairing. The dark arts of the Phenom and the unmentionable soul from within Wyatt's control were a natural collision necessary to take place.

Wyatt entered with some spooky Scarecrows to which where given life by Wyatt's presences alone, walking past.

After the stare down with the two, Bray ran right into a big boot. 'Taker took it old school once more with a returning favourite of the top rope walk smash. Starting with strong fire, Undertaker once again proved he has not lost any health amid fan speculation and remains the most extremely dedicated worker in the WWE lockeroom. Undie follows on soon after with the leg drop for good measure.

Taker whips Wyatt into the corner with a Snakes Eyes smash. Another Big Boot is readied but Wyatt, having tatsed feet before, avoided this one and runs Undertaker down hard. Bray uses a huge splash and covers for a two fall only. Wyatt dominates the match now, climbing onto the back of The Undertaker to wear down from behind. He shoves 'Taker into the corner posts too.  

Undertaker gets back into the battle by locking on the Hell's Gate submission. Wyatt eventually breaks free with clubbing blows. Bray follows with a heavy back splash to Undertaker for a cool two count. Bray goes into the crazy crab at the corner ready for his foe with Sister Abigail. Undertaker then grabs Bray instead, breaking free from Wyatt's hold, with an almighty Chokeslam. He follows on with a damning Tombstone Piledriver, which almost defeats Wyatt with a close two fall.

'Taker goes for another Piledriver but Bray slips down the back and breaks out to plant Sister Abigail on The Undertaker. The audience are shocked and intreged with brimming passion as Bray gains a near fall. 

Wyatt cannot believe Undertaker's luck and summons the spirit within from the crazy crab once more. Whilst Bray Wyatt calls the crab, The Undertaker vividly springs up in the seated rise from the mat as the pair stare at one another with sheer intensity eye to eye. Bray Wyatt places Sister Abigail once more but The Undertaker quickly counters the dreaded kiss to the forehead and lifts Wyatt high into the Tombstone Piledriver to nail Bray Wyatt and win the match and redeem himself from last year in a tough and epic contest.  

WWE World Heavyweight Championship
Roman Reigns Vs Brock Lesnar (c) w/ Paul Heyman

This is the big one. Filled with so much drama, tension and disagreement and that's not even before the two have wrestled yet. Roman Reigns, has been met with severe indecision as a star failing to interest fans. Though Brock Lesnar had cause for concern to fans too over his absences as champion and contract renewal in doubt. (see summary below PPV for full details.)

Reigns entered through the crowd as the camera found him directly pushing an eager fan touching Reigns. Maybe he couldn't resist or maybe he was being a tool. WWE weren't taking any chances. Sometimes you know if someone is okay at getting a light touch, but fans who are to irk should not touch any superstar in a negative manner. 

When The Beast got there Brock Lesnar was not messing around. He gave Reigns a German Suplex and F5 slammer barely ten seconds in. That was impressive. Lesnar dominated Reigns further with a fabulous flip Fishermans Suplex. Reigns' first offence allowed was a cheap shoulders break free from Lesnar which received huge boos. Brock caught his opponent for yet another German Suplex throw around. 

Reigns staged a comeback. He was soon thudded down by a clubbing clothesline off to the outside by Brock.    

"Reigns wont quit" as JBL points out. Suplexes galore follow for Reigns. He then took a third F5. Lesnar took a teasingly close two fall leaving fans in awe.

Reigns gathered his chance a little later with a Superman punch, wobbling Lesnar to his knees as Lesnar become bloodied. Another Superman punch failed to floor Lesnar. A rapid Spear couldn't do it. The second spear finally knocked powerhouse Brock down for Reigns to cover with a quick but short two fall.

Brock Lesnar had had enough and found his inner strength calling. He then grabbed Roman Reigns on a return and nailed a crushing F5. Both were scatty and fell down to the mat. It was the perfect time. Seth Rollins arrives! Seth decides it is time to cash in his title opportunity. It's officially a Triple Threat now. 

WWE World Heavyweight Championship
Triple Threat
Brock Lesnar (c) w/ Paul Heyman Vs Roman Reigns Vs Seth Rollins

Seth Rollins quickly barges Roman Reigns out of the ring and deals with Brock Lesnar instead. Seth limbers up in the corner and Curb Stomps Brock. He attempted another to tame The Beast, but was caught into an F5! The tension was palpable. Roman Reigns would not allow this to end his chance so easily. He quickly jumped back in the ring to Spear Brock Lesnar down. Seth Rollins quickly regained his stride from behind and nailed a Curb Stomp onto Roman Reigns. Seth Rollins covered Roman to land the three count and be crowned the new WWE World Heavyweight Champion!

PPV Rating - 8/10

Men/Women of their matches - Antonio Cesaro, Damien Sandow, Dean Ambrose, Randy Orton, Triple H, Brie Bella, Rusev, The Undertaker, Brock Lesnar

Man/Woman of the PPV - Seth Rollins

The pre-show did what it needed to by encouraging fans as the warm up which was well respected and not out of place. Though it is disheartening for some fans who feel Cesaro is going to waste as an under-utilised heavyweight contender more deserving of main card status. Perhaps WWE can work on this for after this tag title run. 

The ladder match was supposed to encourage and intrege. It didn't really and was rushed more than anything. It was an obvious result that pleased moany fans on the night, but did not really add any thrill to the 'Mania event. When Bryan fans finally get what they want, was it worth it? Time to let go of that loose idea based on fandom over respect for wrestling talents. It was just another match with a bit of extras thrown in as make-up.

Rusev was a complete transformation. His effort and improved in-ring work was outstanding. He was on point, well timed and connected with his partner. It is a shame his partner could not do the same. Rusev made the match and gained fan respect, regardless of the storyline.

Triple H was the right choice to win, but albeit a less than desirable win. Filled with only run-ins as the main attraction and Triple H's insane need to get fan populism with biased call up options from NXT and ignorant stars does not help WWE move forward. He needs to listen to crucial advice which is meant to be helpful than snubbed. It can only go downhill otherwise. That should never be tested for funsies. As for the ignorance of Sting, his old hat superstardom in a run down budget company of yesteryear holds no value. Sting's ignorant foot in a puddle instead of a former pond has gone south. Having done the one match obligated for buzz, and lacking that was, there is no further need for such washed up ignorance. Does WWE really need rejects from the past adding no value? This aint TNA, either. All the best, dear.

Randy Orton and Seth Rollins put in one of the two most predictable matches that would help Wrestlemania shine and shine it did. The pair glistened in the sunny backdrop of the open stadium. Such skill, talent and seemingly effortless breeze was a sheer joy to behold. This made a key ingredient to keeping 'Mania at the top. Orton can always be relied upon to deliver, but Rollins was an equal that helped boost the match to a one on one thrill than guide along builder.

The second most outstanding match, predicted, was The Undertaker and Bray Wyatt. Neither let the side down and while we knew how the outcome would go, Undertaker's opponents should always have an air of mystery at potentially defeating him. With last year's streak broken, fans could not call this one which made it all the more mesmeric. The strange and credible mystique of both supernatural beings balanced the bout and kept both at the top of their game. Undertaker proved the critics once again that there is no way back and won't be caving into pressure to relinquish his stage presence anytime soon. He will decide, as it should be and the result was the right one.

Brie Bella made the best out of her short spell in the match. She was the only one who had less time in the ring. Ironically it worked out for her and she tried her best to deliver some technique. AJ put her bits in where needed but it was a little bit of a mess with Paige trying to work Nikki. The title needs real competition and it isn't Paige. Clogging up the scene devalues the gold and the champion who do try when it counts.

The Andre battle royal has become somewhat of a joke battle royal. It can still be pulled back if WWE try. Though Big Show has been improving, he really shouldn't have won this, at least not this year. This year was Curtis Axel's momentous occasion and would have strengthen the bond of trophy lineage. Memories are meant to be meaningful when adopted in wrestling legacy on screen. Sandow was a close second and needs to go full strength mode now to become the great singles competitor he once was. Working with The Miz has done nothing to advance him.

Seth Rollins shock cash in was foreseen by us, but it was done very well and kept fans clueless until the point of arrival. They forgot about Rollins in the grand scheme of all the match ups and made WWE's future a crowning moment to boost a new era forward. Rollins is one of the best candidates WWE have and it was soon due. Doing it at 'Mania made him a legit superstar and credible by taking down two of the strong men trying to best one another. The cash in was made beautiful by making Rollins (as suggested by us) to make his moment a serious one and not a gimmick. This was smoothly done and allowed Rollins to win on his own merit in a time where both Reigns and Lesnar were debatable by audience.

As for Brock and Reigns themselves, it worked out better for Roman to be beaten down by Lesnar. While Reigns had some moments to keep fair distance, this boosted his time from being a complete hated washout. Sometimes less truly is more. Lesnar on the other hand looked incredible as the destroyer and flourished his star among a loss with the fans fully engaged behind him waiting on tenterhooks for the next moment. Brock Lesnar on the Monday before Raw leading into 'Mania, Brock sealed a six figure, three year salary, pocketing $100,000 per annum. As Brock himself added he had to take it. "McMahon made me an offer I couldn't refuse" he added. McMahon sure does know when he wants to how to acquire someone. Though can he get the one's who really matter aside from Lesnar? 

Ronda Rousey's appearance was decent and paved the way for a future chance in WWE. By the looks of it, she has options if she would pursue it and would not be neglected as a result by fans. She gots skills. Though it was okay, she will need to have a bit more refinement in her vocal trades. Plus Stephanie is a pro, almost, but needs to not viciously shout too much with such snarl as it takes away a tiny piece of the magic. Minor dear, but important, all the same.

For WWE this Wrestlemania really could have sucked. It got off to a good start, kept the middle first hour strong and then moved towards the heavy stuff. The start and the end fitted in well, but the middle lost its core. The ladders, divas and Sting's wearoff moment fell flat for the show. However the foundations in-between saved a huge chunk of the show and gave fans that feel good feeling. There was surprise, joy, pleasing results (in part) and careful planning. No-one is expecting Wrestlemania-esq qualities all year round, but fans do want this type of emphasis in its programming. Apart from the duds, the show was a strongly, well put together extravaganza, despite naff graphics and a few oddballs in places.

© Max Waltham 31st March 2015

All Rights Reserved 

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