WWE sold Roman Reigns vs Brock Lesnar for the title match in WrestleMania 38 as “the biggest WrestleMania match ever.” We had a conversation about the same at Cageside offices while Friday night smackdown This week I think they may have some claims to sell it that way.
What was bigger? Hulk Hogan vs Andre the Giant? Hogan vs. Ultimate Warrior? Stone Cold Steve Austin vs The Rock? John Cena vs The Rock? I really think you can say in good faith that these two people, with their discord together, and the stakes in play, in the place where they hold the match, can be called what they sell.
Feel free to tell me how full of shit I am, if you think I am.
A quick note on all of this, by the way: Both Usos and Paul Heyman described it as not just a title-versus-winner who takes every match but a unifying title. Is it possible that we can finally move away from a title per brand and go down the path of one major championship as it always should have been?
As for the contract signing that they did here, I’d like to point out how impressed I am that Lesnar showed this new side of himself, with his cowboy hat, turtleneck, jacket, and all-over style, and WWE made sure they didn’t lose sight of the absolute beast they were. Underneath it all.
It makes me think of the first John Wick movie. This movie was all about revenge, sure, but it worked out really well because while Wick was methodically smashing everyone in his path to get that revenge, they made sure they did a lot of character building throughout, all designed to constantly remind you of one thing – that’s baaaaaaad Dude here.
That’s what they did with Lesnar in this clip.
Yes, here he is smiling and flinging with fans and definitely having fun. But he also cut a promo inviting security guards to slip signs (lol) and reminding Roman Reigns and Paul Heyman that nothing could stop him from jumping over that table and kicking their ass. It’s also the mammoth of a man who can pick up a big-ass table and throw it at three grown men just as if it didn’t weigh an ounce. This big bitch picked up a chair and threw it in a man’s face, barely breaking a sweat in the process. He easily treated like nine men rushing at him and doing nothing to stop him because they could do nothing but take the ass he was giving them.
This is how you build a badass.
And that’s how you build it to the biggest WrestleMania match of all time.
Reigns did his part too, perfectly playing the arrogant boss who has dominated everything and everyone on this show for about two years and believes in himself above all else. We’ve seen him justify his words over and over again. But he must be dealing with a completely different beast now.
WrestleMania I can’t get here soon enough.
Hey, Johnny Knoxville is back!
As you know, my pro wrestling celebrity bar is pretty low. You are successful in my book as long as you take it seriously enough that you don’t make fun of him and/or seem to be honestly having a good time with him. This nonsense is supposed to be fun, after all.
Knoxville wipes off this tape with ease.
Since he’s an absolute crazy guy who’s willing to self-harm so badly for our entertainment, one would think he’s perfect for this professional wrestling, but I do get a little worried about the guy when I see him get hit right in the face with Helluva Kick here:
If they really plan to give us Zayn vs Knoxville in WrestleManiaI’m a little afraid of where that might take us. He’s going to have to do something to make this match worthwhile in front of 100,000 people and he can hardly stand the shock.
Oh, that would be crazy, wouldn’t it?
all the rest
- Michael Cole interviewed Ronda Rousey to start the show, and they went so far as to try and make her look like a lovable kid. They’ve got sympathy for the injuries, the pregnancy, and her desire to come back and be great again, and benefit from Charlotte Flair. It has worked well. When Flair herself appeared to say she was going to make Rousey click for the first time, she was booed hard and it was clear that Ronda had the full support of the audience. Sonya Deville showed up to help Flair in his stealth attack and the fact that she’s doing a double-task like this becomes the height of the fun. Ronda fought back and sold her due to a knee injury. We soon learned that this was just to prepare Rousey vs. Deville for the next week. You’ll need matches like this to keep your strength on the way to the big match.
- Los Lotharios scored a win over The New Day and looked poised to push the ladder. So this week Big E threatened to roll Humberto with his four bikes in order to distract Angel enough for victory. The match was really good for the TV brand.
- We’re definitely getting a five-way title match at WrestleMania for The Usos tapes, right?
- Xia Li finally wrestled at this show, and the match was such that fans in the arena started chanting “Hershey’s chocolate.” Pat McAfee replied, “Pennsylvania says ‘Zia Lee got it,’ and they’re 100 percent right.” She won the match, and those same fans cheered. It was good in the end.
- Sasha Banks is back! She scored a dominant win over Schutze, and smiled widely as she was presented with the bank statement. Naomi went out for comment and revealed that they are a team now and are planning to win the women’s tag team titles.
- I absolutely loved Drew McIntyre teasing him back in Alabama slams on Madcap Moose and Moose respond with fear, grab the ropes to save him from getting dumped on his head again which, as I’ll remind you, was entirely his fault. I like professional wrestling sometimes. I also love the WWE announcement of McIntyre vs. Does this mean that McIntyre vs. Corbin are being saved for WrestleMania? Would we feel good about it if that was the case? After all, this was great:
This wasn’t a particularly exciting show until that absolute cut-out for a major event segment.