Writer’s Note: As you have noticed, Face To Heel has been on a hiatus of sorts over the past several weeks. While we are still keeping up on wrestling throughout the week, we have been neglecting the website and our Twitter account. Thanks to some health issues that I am still attempting to get a handle on, and my husband’s efforts to keep our family going, there hasn’t been much time or enthusiasm for getting in front of a computer and discussing the PPVs or the weekly shows.
Thankfully, I am well enough to be back at work on a part time basis and will once again be churning out as many articles as I can possibly handle. Thank you to everyone who has stuck with us; I promise we have not abandoned our readers or our love of wrestling. Please follow us on Twitter at @FaceToHeel for updates, live coverage, and contests; and follow our writers, @MrNotWell and @OhhhTweener.
The eighth annual Tables, Ladders, & Chairs pay-per-view goes live tonight and will be exclusively under the Smackdown Live brand this time around. It will be held in the American Airlines Center in Dallas, TX. As or right now, we have six verified matches on the card, but we’ll likely see some last minute additions thrown into the pre-show. This event always ends the year on an exciting note and typically has a few jaw-dropping moments that will be talking about as we head towards the Royal Rumble. Let’s take a look at the TLC match card and make some F2H predictions!
Nikki Bella vs Carmella – No Disqualifications Singles Match
It’s nice to see the women getting a No Disqualification match, though I have my doubts about the quality we’re going to receive. Carmella is great, but is still pretty green. Nikki Bella, in my opinion, is incredibly overrated and will probably have too many concerns about re-injury to take a No DQ match seriously. I hope I’m wrong, but I suspect the only No DQ action we get is a lot of outside ring work and a few throws into the barricade.
F2H Prediction – Nikki Bella
Kalisto vs. Baron Corbin – Chairs Singles Match
I’ve forgotten why the giant Baron Corbin is picking on teensy tiny Kalisto, but I am glad to see Corbin on the main card of a PPV. I expected him to get a bigger push after winning the Andre The Giant Memorial Battle Royal, but I guess that doesn’t have much meaning after the first couple weeks have passed by. This seems like an obvious squash match for Kalisto considering that there are chairs involved, but he has quickness on his side and could surprise us. The real question here is whether we’ll see a run-in from a frustrated Sami Zayn.
F2H Prediction – Baron Corbin
The Miz (c) vs Dolph Ziggler – Ladder Match for the WWE Intercontinental Championship
I love The Miz as IC champ! That said, I also love Dolph Ziggler, so it’s difficult for me to just pick one competitor to cheer for. We assume Ziggler is going to fight clean, and Miz is going to use whatever he can, including his wife, to trip Ziggler up and keep his title. The hairspray nonsense, the Spirit Squad; he has a lot of ridiculous ideas, but they keep working. Having this be a ladder match may work in Dolph’s favor if he can be smart about it and be quicker than Miz. Don’t get your hopes up about Maryse being banned from ringside though. This will definitely be two on one.
F2H Prediction – The Miz
Becky Lynch (c) vs Alexa Bliss – Tables Match for the WWE Smackdown Women’s Championship
This is awesome. This is so awesome. I love this. Alexa Bliss is probably my favorite female on the Smackdown roster, and I’m very curious to see this tiny athlete lugging around giant tables. I love that WWE is taking more chances with their women; first dropping the “Diva” name, and then putting them into more risky and exciting matches. I’ve seen women go through tables before, but on WWE? That’s not exactly commonplace. This should be one hell of a match.
F2H Prediction – Alexa Bliss
Heath Slater & Rhyno (c) vs The Wyatt Family (Bray Wyatt & Randy Orton – Tag Match for the WWE Smackdown Tag Team Championship
2016 has been a strange year, so it only makes sense that Heath Slater would have a title and be one of the top guys on Smackdown. Keeping with the strange, Randy Orton is now part of the Wyatt Family, because why not? This match is filled with a lot of What The Hell Is Going On? This will be a straight tag match with no stipulations, but will no doubt still be an exciting one to watch. I hope Slater and Rhyno pull out a victory so Slater can hold on to that double wide. And yes, Face To Heel is continuing its refusal of calling them Beauty and the Man Beast. That’s a terrible name. Terrible, terrible name.
F2H Prediction – Heath Slater & Rhyno
AJ Styles (c) vs Dean Ambrose – Tables, Ladders & Chairs Match for the WWE World Championship
Our main event will be a traditional TLC match between Styles and Ambrose, two guys who aren’t afraid to put it all on the line. I have to wonder how James Ellsworth is going to fit into this match. I definitely want to see him ringside supporting Ambrose, and while I do not want him to affect the outcome of the match, it would be good to see him take a chair shot, push Styles off a ladder, or get slammed through a table. I love that chinless wonder. Eventually Ambrose has to turn on Ellsworth so maybe tonight will be the night when he slips up and costs Dean his shot at winning the belt by accident.
F2H Prediction – Dean Ambrose
The pre-show will begin live on the WWE Network at 7:00PM EST, with the main show beginning at 8:00PM EST. Hopefully we don’t get an early ending the way we did with Survivor Series and the booking will be strong throughout. Be sure to Tweet along with us at @FaceToHeel during the show, and keep your eye out for our next giveaway contest! Let us know in the comments below your own predictions and what you are most looking forward to on tonight’s card.
Article by Mrs Jamie Baker
After last night’s WrestleMania, I may be ready for another vacation from wrestling; if Raw doesn’t bring the house down tonight, I’m taking a break until the Payback PPV. We started the night off with a two hour preshow that began with the US Title match. Kalisto defended his title against Ryback at 5:45pm while most of the fans weren’t even in the building, and before the preshow was on USA Network for those fans without the WWE Network. It was a terrible way to treat the title and the two men competing for it. If WWE doesn’t treat the title as something important, why should the fans care about it?
The two USA Network preshow matches were The Usos vs The Dudleys and Team BAD & Blonde vs Team Total Divas. The women’s match was all about Lana, at least in the buildup. When it came down to the match though, we barely got any Lana and instead got Brie acting like Daniel Bryan. If she’s retiring and needs to go out with a great match, fine. But how is stealing her husband’s moveset a positive way to go out? It was frustrating to watch. The Usos vs The Dudleys was the one match I assumed would be a throwaway, but it ended up being confusing. The Dudleys are meant to be the heels here, but were playing to the crowd, getting cheered, and it was the Usos who closed out the match with a questionable heel-like ending by putting Bubba and D-Von through two tables. The best part of the preshow kickoff was when Lita unveiled the new Women’s Title; that thing is a masterpiece.
WrestleMania began with the ladder match for the IC Title, which was phenomenal. Sami Zayn and Kevin Owens looked like they honestly hated each other; both men were intense and focused on getting the win. There were some pretty scary spots, especially Sin Cara diving off a ladder and onto Stardust, who lay on a ladder outside of the ring. The tribute to Dusty Rhodes with Stardust’s gear and the polka dotted ladder was such a heartwarming gesture. We were teased with Miz stealing a victory, but ultimately Zack Ryder won the title. Zack Ryder. Who saw that one coming? I was incredibly happy with this entire match and pumped for the rest of the night. Every single competitor brought their A game and put everything on the line. There was not a single moment of downtime, and that ending was nothing short of genius; no one seriously thought that Ryder would walk away as champ. I loved it.
AJ Styles vs Chris Jericho was basically the same thing we’ve already seen. Jericho keeps kicking out of the Styles Clash, which is frustrating, and then he beat Styles, which is confusing. You would think we’d be protecting the talent that is going to stick around and be here week after week, not handing the veteran a win so he can go off and tour with Fozzy. Outside of a confusing win, the match itself was stale and slow, and the crowd was not feeling it. Styles has been over as hell since his debut, but he keeps getting stuck in matches with Jericho. When do we get to see something else? I swear, if we get Styles vs Jericho, Take 5 at Payback, I’m cancelling my Network subscription.
New Day’s entrance was fantastic, coming out of a massive box of Booty-O’s, but the actual match with League Of Nations was very boring. The crowd looked as if they had fallen asleep at one point. I still can’t understand why the titles weren’t on the line here; every title should be up for grabs at WrestleMania. The whole competition for who is the stronger faction would be fine if that actually meant anything. Remember when Rusev came out in a tank? Where was that showmanship and fanfare this year? The best part of this match involved three men who had nothing to do with the match; Mick Foley, Shawn Michaels, and Steve Austin. Sweet Chin Music, Mandible Claw, and Stunners for everyone! It was an awesome moment that made me hopeful that the night would be picking up.
Dean Ambrose vs Brock Lesnar was next, and this one had to be good considering it was No Holds Barred. Unfortunately, it was Kendo Stick city with an odd and abrupt ending. It felt like someone backstage ordered the ref to cut the match short. I had been looking forward to this ever since they announced it, and this is what we got? Ambrose and Lesnar could have gone to the extreme, but instead all they did was hit each other with sticks and play with a fire extinguisher. There were some good moments, of course, but overall this was confusing, short and not extreme at all. Lesnar can obviously beat the shit out of people with ease, and Ambrose can take a beating like no other, so why didn’t we get a bloody all-out brawl? Why was Ambrose suddenly unable to continue after we’ve seen him get up and come back after going through worse? I went into this match thinking it would be one of the best of the entire night, and instead was left shaking my head, wondering what the hell I just watched.
The Women’s Title was on the line next, and Becky Lynch, Sasha Banks and Charlotte did a great job here. They absolutely killed it and showed us what the female division should look like, and hopefully what it will look like from here on out. My complaint is that Charlotte won with the help of her daddy. Again. Ric Flair prevented Sasha from returning to the ring, which allowed Charlotte time to get Becky to tap. Why in the holy hell are we pushing the strength of a new Women’s Division and still having the champ rely on a man to help her win? Flair should have stayed the hell out of it. This made Charlotte look weak, like if it were not for daddy, she wouldn’t be champ. I don’t want Daddy’s Girl heading the Women’s Division, I want someone who doesn’t need a man standing behind her because she can stand strongly on her own.
Shane McMahon vs The Undertaker was up next, and this match looked exactly how you would expect. A fight between two old men who probably shouldn’t be doing half the things they are trying to do. This was slow and tedious. The highlight was Shane diving off of the top of the cage and onto the announce table, resulting in Taker able to pick up the win and Shane getting carried off on a stretcher. The two broke out of the cell at one point, so an interference would have been awesome, but we didn’t get that. We didn’t really get anything. This was terrible.
The Andre The Giant Battle Royal was interesting with the addition of Shaq as a competitor, but overall it was nothing special. The highlight was seeing NXT star Baron Corbin pick up the win. I hope this means we’ll’ be getting him on the main roster; the guy is seriously on fire. With the Battle Royal moved off the preshow and onto the main card at the last minute, I was expecting to see a hell of a lot of action and surprises. Shaq is gimmicky, not something main-event worthy. I don’t get why this match was moved because other than Corbin’s victory, there was nothing special about this at all. Unremarkable and forgettable. I honestly can’t remember anything about this other than being confused that Shaq showed up and Corbin being the last man standing.
The Rock finally showed up next and faced off with The Wyatt’s which got me hyped up. Rock was in his ring gear, but we didn’t get Bray in the ring; Erick Rowan stepped up to compete and got his ass handed to him in 6 seconds. What is the point? Then, the Family gangs up on Rock and John Fucking Cena comes to his rescue. Honestly, guys, could we have gone one WrestleMania without him? I’m so tired of Cena getting shoved in our faces at every opportunity, especially when he is constantly greeted by a chorus of boos because everyone over the age of 8 is fed up with his cartoonish antics. The Rock would have been better utilized in the Roman vs Triple H fight by interfering and having Reigns turn on him. It would also have been better if we weren’t informed that he would be a part of Mania months ago. We suspected that Stone Cold would be there, but we didn’t see promo after promo advertising the fact, so we got hyped up when his music hit. With The Rock, we were waiting for it all night because WWE has been telling us week after week to expect it.
Our main event was next. Triple H had an awesome entrance as usual, though the whole speech by Stephanie McMahon was a bit odd, and Roman Reigns came out looking all broody as the crowd booed him. The high point was seeing Steph get speared, and the low point was everything else. Predictably, Reigns won. I knew Reigns would win, so that isn’t my issue here. My issue is this entire match was lazy and uneventful and unworthy of a WrestleMania main event. This is the biggest match on the biggest show of the entire year, and it felt like a throwaway Raw moment. Reigns won for the third time, and no one cared.
WrestleMania went over their allotted time by almost an hour, and for the life of me, I can’t figure out why it was necessary. I’ve already seen the “this is setting things up for Payback” arguments, and quite honestly, I think that is bullshit. WrestleMania is the event of the year; it should not be mediocre in order to set up things for an upcoming PPV. There is no excuse for not putting every title on the line. There is no excuse for lazy booking and shoddy performances. I shouldn’t be so bored during your main event that I mute the PPV and move to a second TV so I can watch the Walking Dead finale.
NXT TakeOver was what WrestleMania should have been. Compelling matches, lots of action and memorable moments, exciting debuts, and match endings that make you cheer even if it wasn’t the outcome you wanted. WWE’s so-called developmental division did the better job this weekend in a fraction of the time and with a fraction of the people. Once TakeOver was over, we immediately went back to rewatch some of the matches. When Mania ended, we happily turned off the Xbox and almost instantly forgot about half the matches we watched. I haven’t seen as many Manias as the typical WWE fan, but this was undoubtedly the worst.
Tonight’s Raw is their chance to make things right, and the WWE has a lot of work to do. We still have The Authority in charge since Shane McMahon failed, but Triple H isn’t champion anymore, so I’m curious to see how they address it. Sasha Banks and Becky Lynch should get a rematch tonight; the title should have changed hands last night. The tag titles should also be on the line tonight; not defending them last night was a mistake that needs to be righted. We should get a surprise debut tonight as well; seeing Bayley or Finn Balor on Raw would go a long way in righting some of the wrongs we saw last night. Creative needs to pull their heads out of their asses and put their all into tonight’s show. So many fans are jaded after watching a mind-numbing seven hours of wrestling last night; we need something big to pull us back in and make us want to keep watching. As it stands now, I have one foot out the door and won’t have any regrets about taking a few weeks off from Raw and Smackdown.
Article by Mrs Jamie Baker
The 3rd annual Andre the Giant Memorial Battle Royal is tonight at WrestleMania. The first year, Cesaro won. The second year, Big Show won. While WWE could go any direction with tonight’s winner, one has to wonder what, if any, surprise entrants we might see come out for the battle royal to get a crowd reaction and/or possibly win the entire match.
Randy Orton appeared last night with his wife at the Hall of Fame ceremony. When interviewed on the red carpet, he stated he was still about two months out before he could return to ring action. But could that just be a ploy to keep us guessing? Maybe it was a smokescreen so that if his music hits we all get pleasantly surprised. His shoulder injury was pretty serious so it’s possible he really isn’t ready to comeback just yet. It sure would be cool.
Speaking of injuries, Mr. Hustle, Loyalty, and Respect, John Cena, could also make his return tonight, although that seems unlikely. Cena was sidelined with a major surgery and hasn’t been seen on the main roster in quite some time. A somber Cena appeared at the Hall of Fame ceremony to induct Snoop Dogg. He looked smaller, as if he hadn’t been able to workout in awhile, so a return to the ring is probably at least a few months out. Same can be said for Seth Rollins. All three of these superstars would make great additions to return via the Battle Royal or to win it outright, but all three are probably not quite ready yet.
Titus O’Neal was suspended recently, and most of us thought it was unnecessary and extreme. Maybe WWE realized their mistake behind closed doors and they’re waiting to reveal it to us. It would be a grand stage for O’Neal to make his comeback and winning this would be a fitting tribute for this big man. O’Neal deserves better from WWE and Vince McMahon who seemed to want to make an example of him in an unfair way. If Titus did return tonight, he’d get a big pop from the crowd.
Antonio Cesaro has been out for a long time due to injury, which one can’t help but notice a common theme throughout WWE. Cesaro was over in a big way before getting sidelined. The crowd loves him and his time with Tyson Kidd helped to elevate him to new heights. If Cesaro returned at WrestleMania and hit the Cesaro Swing, fans would lose their minds. And if he won the whole thing, that wouldn’t be so bad either. Two Time Andre the Giant Memorial Battle Royal Winner, although a mouthful, has a nice ring to it.
In a surprise ending Friday night, Finn Balor retained the NXT World Heavyweight Championship against Samoa Joe. This was the second time Joe failed to capture the gold from Balor, leading some to speculate that Samoa Joe didn’t get the title because he’s close to a main roster activation. If Joe is coming to the main roster, what better way than to have him jump into this match and possibly even take home the trophy? Balor would also make an excellent entrant into this match to bring some light onto NXT and their current champion.
Shinsuke Nakamura had one of the biggest debuts in WWE history and certainly had the biggest NXT premiere match ever on Friday night. He is a shining star and is already crazy over with the crowd. Having him come down during WrestleMania would receive a roar from the crowd. It’s unlikely he would beat Sami Zayn on Friday and win this Battle Royal on Sunday, but it sure would be cool and would show the massive amount of respect Triple H and company have for him.
The match has been cut from 30 competitors down to 20, so there may not even be any surprises forthcoming. It might just be a regular match with main roster competitors. If that’s the case, hopefully Bray Wyatt gets a much needed win. Whatever the case may be, this tribute to one of the biggest stars in wrestling to ever live will give many Superstars a chance for a WrestleMania moment they otherwise wouldn’t get.
Article by Jamie Curtis Baker
WrestleMania is finally here! Like many responsible adults, I opted to take paid time off on Monday so I can enjoy some drinks while watching the show of shows. After getting slightly jaded with the state of wrestling and taking a few weeks off around the winter holiday season, my husband and I are back in the middle of things and putting more energy into Face To Heel than ever before. The 32nd annual WrestleMania is taking place at AT&T Stadium in Arlington, Texas and is scheduled to start on the Network at 5PM, giving us an insane six hours of wrestling and pre-show action to contend with.
A special live, hour-long presentation that includes three preshow matches will air for free on the USA Network at 6PM, and the main PPV airing begins at 7PM. An hour long WrestleMania Fallout Post Show will immediately begin after the final match on the Network. We had two dismal go-home events earlier this week that did little to get fans hyped for this event. For those of you happy to have a Cena-free WrestleMania, I suspect you’ll end up disappointed. With Cena still unable to compete, he will likely either be featured in The Rock’s segment or used in a backstage promo in preparation for his return, because he’s John Cena and he can get the crowd to pop. Let’s take a look at the massive card and make some predictions.
Kalisto (c) vs Ryback – US Title Match on WWE Network Preshow
I can’t tell you how happy I am to see Ryback in a title match at Mania! He has grown in leaps and bounds over the last few months; you can’t deny that Ryback has improved both in the ring and on the mic. One of the reasons the Goldberg chants annoy me so much is because it undermines the work Ryback has done to make himself into something more. That said, it doesn’t help that they have updated his ring gear to look like Goldberg’s. I’ve read a lot about how this is a throwaway match or a waste of time, and I wholeheartedly disagree. Kalisto has done a lot for himself, working his way from NXT to the main roster, and is gaining popularity as a singles competitor. Like them or not, they both have earned this match. The go home episode of Raw had Ryback come to the ring for all of eight seconds to quickly “confront” his competitor before leaving, which is a shame because these men and this title deserve better. Originally on the main card, they were bumped to the preshow to make room for the Battle Royal. Not even bumped to the USA Preshow, but to the 5:30PM slot on the Network. A title match shouldn’t be treated as a throwaway, competed for while people are still filing into the arena or not even tuned in yet at home. Still, I feel like big things are in the future for Ryback, and I’m excited to see where things go from here.
Lana, Summer Rae, Emma, Naomi & Tamina (Team BAD & Blonde) vs Paige, Natalya, Brie Bella, Eva Marie & Alicia Fox (Team Bella/Total Divas) – Tag Match on USA Preshow
Not only is Lana finally having her first match, but she’s getting it at WrestleMania! At least, she will if this match doesn’t get cut for time. Lana has been antagonizing Brie Bella over the past few weeks for no other reason than she can get away with it. This has given us the first few indications that she has a moveset, even if it’s a borrowed one. Putting her in such a large tag match will allow her to enter in briefly enough to do what she needs to without putting the entire match on her shoulders. I got excited about the late addition of Emma to this match, but the excitement was short-lived once they added the useless Eva Marie to the mix. I’m very worried that this is going to turn into the Daniel Bryan Tribute Match, with Brie wearing his ring gear and starting a YES! chant. Since WWE doesn’t have Daniel Bryan, they might settle for the next closest thing. Don’t let it happen. Bryan’s wrestling career is sadly over, and this match is about all of these ten individuals, not one wife of a former champ. Even if they don’t go the Bryan tribute route, there is a rumor that Brie will retire from in-ring competition due to an undisclosed health issue (which is why Bryan reportedly cancelled his recent live appearances), so this match may be all about Brie no matter what.
WINNERS: Team Bella/Total Divas
The Usos vs The Dudley Boyz – Tag Match on USA Preshow
This is the one match I’m really going to complain about on the entire card, which is an improvement for me. I’m simply bored with The Usos, and have been for some time. They were off TV for a while due to injury and came back exactly the same as when they left. The color of their shorts might change here and there, but otherwise they stay stagnant. No new moves, no new promos, just the same two guys day in and day out. The Dudleys recently turned heel, and they’ve been ticking off fans left and right, likely in preparation to face the brothers. Their match on the go-home episode of Smackdown was said to be “below average” and was one of only three Smackdown matches held. I found it hard to pay attention as they fought on Smackdown; the match was stale and didn’t do anything to build towards Mania. There’s nothing on the line for these teams at Mania either, just another two-on-two that we’ve seen countless times already. Being that it’s WrestleMania, I expected some sort of stipulation to make this match matter. As it stands, this is just filler.
WINNERS: The Dudley Boyz
Andre The Giant 20-Man Memorial Battle Royal
This year, the battle royal has downsized from 30 competitors to 20. Originally advertised for the preshow, this match was recently moved to the main card, giving us an indication that we will see a major surprise entrant. Past winners include Big Show and Cesaro, so the assumption already is that we’ll see one of the bigger men take the win this year. The Social Outcasts were the first to announce their involvement, and will also probably be among the first eliminated. Big Show, Mark Henry and Kane will also compete and present a challenge when it comes to elimination considering their sizes. I’d love to see Prince Pretty win, but I don’t think Tyler Breeze is due his WrestleMania moment just yet. Damien Sandow is a dark horse in this match; he could use the win to catapult himself back into the spotlight. Goldust and R-Truth could use this match to further tease their tag team aspirations, and The Ascension can use it to try to be relevant again. I’m hoping the Wyatt’s (minus Luke Harper) get into this match. The Wyatt Family main evented Smackdown, and by main evented I mean that Wyatt and Strowman refused to compete, so Rowan had a one-on-one with Dean Ambrose. Either they are saving them for something big, they are protecting a still-healing injury, or Creative has lost their minds.
WINNER: Bray Wyatt
AJ Styles vs Chris Jericho
I’m excited about this match because there are some rumors floating around that I desperately want to believe about Finn Balor using this match as a way to debut on the main roster by assisting AJ Styles in some capacity. The problem with this rumor is that Balor’s entrance demands our full attention, so having him run out mid-match would be a terrible waste of his first appearance. Plus, Karl Anderson and Doc Gallows are currently in Dallas and are rumored to be debuting on the main roster during the post-Mania RAW under the Balor Club name, so we might not see Balor at all until then. Something needs to happen here to build the bridge that carries Styles into his next storyline, because we’ve exhausted what he can do with Jericho. Styles needs to get a victory over the veteran to end this feud and stop the “you’re just a rookie” nonsense. Yes, this is his first WrestleMania, but the guy has been wrestling for years and is anything but a rookie. Beating Jericho in their 4th (and hopefully final) match up should put the rookie talk to rest and allow him to move on, stop being the newcomer, and properly establish himself on the main roster.
WINNER: AJ Styles
Kevin Owens (c) vs Dolph Ziggler vs Sami Zayn vs The Miz vs Zack Ryder vs Stardust vs Sin Cara – 7 Man Ladder IC Title Match
Neville was intended to participate in this match, but since he is out with an injury, Zack Ryder will be taking his place. Last year, Daniel Bryan won the IC title in a ladder match that tried to recapture the amazing moment Bryan had at WM30. I like the idea of revisiting a ladder match, especially with Owens and Zayn involved. It’s a bit insulting to Ryder, Stardust and Sin Cara to be the afterthoughts, the ones Owens threw into a qualifying match as a joke, but I’m sure it’s still exciting for them to get a match and title shot. I’m looking forward to seeing Owens vs Zayn the most; neither man holds anything back, plus Owens was responsible for taking Zayn out of action for quite a bit, so things could get heated. The dynamic between the two is the best part of this match. Not to take away from the other men here, but it’s incredible to see NXT pushing themselves onto the main roster and proving that they belong and then some. I just hope The Miz doesn’t pull the hiding under the ring stunt and steal a win at the last second.
WINNER: Sami Zayn
Dean Ambrose vs Brock Lesnar – No Holds Barred Street Fight
If we choose to believe every rumor we read online, Bray Wyatt was originally meant to face Lesnar at WM, but was sidelined by a minor back injury. WWE wanted to keep it under wraps, so they had Wyatt carefully back out of matches but still remain present as they build a new story with Lesnar and Ambrose. Now that Wyatt is cleared to compete, he may insert himself into this No DQ match. I truly hope this happens, or Wyatt is added to make this a Triple Threat at the last minute, because why not? Ambrose has been teasing an array of weapons, including a chainsaw because this is the zombie apocalypse and you just never know. These three are incredibly strong in the ring and could very well turn this into the best match of the evening. Bray Wyatt deserves to be in the title picture for countless reasons, so throwing him into this match in a big way is a good start on getting him there. The Raw before Mania didn’t do much at all to hype up this match; having a red wagon full of weapons circle the ring while Lesnar holds a kendo stick wasn’t all that thrilling. It would be interesting if Paul Heyman picks this match to turn on Lesnar, aligning himself with Ambrose and allowing him to make a seamless heel turn. Both of these guys are such over babyfaces, so something has got to give.
WINNER: Dean Ambrose
Charlotte (c) vs Becky Lynch vs Sasha Banks – Triple Threat Divas Title Match
This is the match we’ve all been waiting for, only we imagined it without Ric Flair standing at the sidelines. It says a lot about the WWE’s main roster Divas that the three newest additions from NXT are the ones with the important women’s match on the card instead of veterans like Natalya or Brie, but the NXT trio is the most deserving out of everyone. Banks has announced that her entrance at Mania will be one-of-a-kind and something we’ve never seen before. She also announced her plans to have the first MITB match for the women, giving me another reason to call her my favorite female on the main roster. Charlotte burst onto the main roster with a vengeance, but having her daddy trail behind her 24/7 has made her look weak and incapable of winning on her own. It plays to the sad stereotype that women need a big strong man to help them out, and it’s outdated and pathetic. The belt needs to change hands because the character they turned Charlotte into isn’t who we need as our Divas champ. The women’s division still needs work, and we need to ensure that we have a strong female heading it up. Previously dubbed the Four Horsewomen (with Bayley), these three will give us a match that is main event worthy, which is what we’ve desperately needed on the main roster for some time now. If the rebranding rumors are true, whoever wins here tonight will be the last Divas champion, and the first to hold the new Women’s title.
WINNER: Sasha Banks
The New Day vs The League Of Nations – 4 on 3 Handicap Match
New Day has had a numbers advantage on other tag teams from the beginning with their third member (4th if you count the trombone), but with the League Of Nations, the odds are against them for once. I’m a big fan of the League; it’s great to finally see Wade Barrett competing again, and it’s good to have Rusev and Lana separated so they can both pursue their own stories. This match was originally billed as a tag title match from WWE’s WrestleMania specific account, but the tweet making that announcement has since been deleted. The new verbiage is that this is “a battle for supremacy” and it will determine “which team will assert itself as WWE’s prime stable.” I fail to see how becoming the prime stable could mean more than winning the titles, so this change is confusing for me. I expect this match to feature a full and unquestionable babyface turn for The New Day; they’re basically there already, and a beat down from the Nation will help push them over the edge.
WINNERS: New Day
Shane McMahon vs The Undertaker – HIAC Match
The stipulations are clear. If Shane wins, he earns control of Raw and The Undertaker can no longer appear at WrestleMania. If Shane loses, he’s out of the will and the family business. Taker is obviously past the point of safe retirement; he could have gone out when he hit 20-0, but chose to keep on going. I don’t see him having his last match against Shane McMahon. Although stranger things have happened, this feels like the wrong way for the dead man to say goodbye, so in that respect he needs to win. On the other hand, seeing Triple H and Stephanie dethroned by Shane would be an interesting twist. Quite honestly, it would probably be nice for the pair to be able to take a little time off, and losing the title and control of Raw would allow that to happen. I don’t think Shane is back to make a big commitment though; it seems like he was a choice down the list somewhere. The main problem here is trying to convince a crowd to cheer for a McMahon victory when it means that Taker won’t be at any future Mania. Shane is meant to be the face here, but this stipulation is going to make him the villain. Creative will look foolish if they backtrack after the fact and find a loophole to keep Taker at future Manias, or if they have Shane shake his hand after winning and declare that now that he’s in charge, Taker can wrestle at Manias until his legs quit working. At the end of the night, we have to have a crystal clear winner and decision on what happens from here. We can end Mania with questions, but we cannot allow any of those questions to be about whether or not one (or both) of these men has a job.
WINNER: The Undertaker
Triple H (c) vs Roman Reigns – WWE World Heavyweight Title Match
The posters and merchandise in Dallas are advertising this match as a no DQ, which would be a great way to guarantee the maximum amount of action in this match. I honestly didn’t give two shits about this match prior to Triple H breaking Reigns’s face. Now that Reigns is back to his old self, I’m seriously into it and can’t wait to see him and Triple H beat the hell out of each other. Reigns is doing a phenomenal job of making us believe he truly hates Triple H and wants revenge and the title back. He’s stopped the goofy schtick and he’s quit smiling at the crowd. Now he shows up, kicks ass, and leaves. I’m curious about The Rock’s involvement in WM and whether or not he will interfere in this match. It would make sense for him to come in and attempt to assist Reigns. It would be a smart move to have Reigns turn on The Rock, knock him out of commission, and go on to fight solo. Reigns is looking to capture his third title reign, and while I’m happy to see Reigns is done showboating for the crowd, I don’t want to see the title back around his waist. Not just yet. If he does win, I want Seth Rollins to crash the party. He’s not ready to return to the ring, though he’ll possibly be ready for SummerSlam, but he’s well enough to show up and has been rehabbing hard. Rollins showing up to make his intentions known would be an epic moment. I’d like to see Reigns and Rollins resume their battle when he returns, only with the roles reversed and Rollins as the face while Reigns plays villain. He needs to turn; we’re seeing him get booed far too often as he tries to remain face; it’s not working and needs to change. I’m not talking too much about Triple H because this match isn’t about him. He truly does whatever is best for business, in character and out, so his involvement in this match and in the title picture is for the greater good, not the individual.
WINNER: Roman Reigns
Article by Mrs Jamie Baker