Thoughts on Wrestlemania XXX

It’s been about 2 months since I’ve written an entry here in this blog (Superbowl XLIX). Of course, I was practically wrong in every way, so congratulations to the Seattle Seahawks. I’ve been quite busy with many things in between now and then, so it’s been hard to find a little bit of time to do things. I’m still running 3 businesses. Figuratively speaking, one, which has a lot of my full investment, another which I’m kind of keeping afloat (until the captain is able to wake up and steer the ship), while the last I’m still keeping the fuel passionately burning. I don’t intend to write this blog entry to talk about what I’ve been up to the last few months. (I’m sure if you’ve read this blog before, you might have an idea of how it may sound).

As I’m writing this entry, I am actually 10,000 feet above the air, on a flight en route to New Orleans, for a much needed vacation. It’s rare I take a vacation, and I probably should take a few more to enjoy life. I last had a vacation last August when I went to Las Vegas with my brothers and we celebrated our Summer birthdays together, but before that, my last “needed time off” (when I didn’t go out of town for business), was probably in 2011 when I went to Atlanta, but before that, in Spain in September 2009 (which I briefly discussed in this blog). My brother Angelico and I are on our way to watch World Wrestling Entertainment’s (WWE) annual marquee event, Wrestlemania. This is the 30th edition of the show, and we are both avid wrestling fans, and we both decided months ago to take some time off to catch this event, as well as several other wrestling events surrounding that, as it seems to be a significant show, with it being the 30th edition and all.

Ever since Wrestlemania 27 in Atlanta, Georgia (which my brother and I also attended), my brother tries to attend each of these yearly Wrestlemania shows. With the exception of last year’s show (which he missed because of a wedding), he has held true. I only choose to go every few years when it’s worthwhile, as my schedule probably prohibits me to, plus, I have better ways to invest my “resources”. Regardless, the show itself, and the events and the week leading up to the show are a spectacle within itself, and it’s recommended, not only for wrestling fans, but for people who are just looking to have a great experience. 

I’ll get into why I’m a fan of wrestling (and of the wrestling business) in full depth in perhaps another entry. But as I said, my brother and I are huge avid fans of this business, and know a lot of the “inside information” and inner “workings” of this business. The fact that it’s “predetermined” (not “fake”), makes this business more intriguing to those who appreciate it. In fact, my brother even tried to get into this business as a performer at some point (until his age, worn out knees, and locker room politics caught up to him).

I am really writing this blog to offer my thoughts on the spectacle that is Wrestlemania, and on the actual show itself.

While down in New Orleans, we plan on absorbing the culture of the city. It is my first time in NOLA, and it has always been a place that I’ve always wanted to visit, and it’s a place I’ve probably wanted to go to for a while now. If no particular event was taking place, and I had a lot more “resources” (like time and money), I would have probably visited by now. I’ve heard so much about the culture, architecture, and the people, that it was definitely a city in my must visit list. Aside from briefly sightseeing and hanging out in the French Quarter and Bourbon Street, we plan to catch a few independent wrestling shows in the area (such as Dragon Gate, and Ring of Honor), as well as possibly a few conventions. We plan to attend the Hall of Fame ceremony the night before the show, and of course, enjoy the main show on our final night here on Sunday. We will catch a plane back to DC on late Monday afternoon.

Here are my thoughts on the actual Wrestlemania show, and the card itself. If you’re a wrestling fan, it could be an entertaining read. If not, a lot of what I’ll be saying may just be a bore. Brace yourself, I have a lot to say…

Personally, I think the show is stacked. WWE says every year, that the current Wrestlemania will be the biggest of all time. Many times, it ends up falling below many expectations. However, in this case, it looks as though they are making a true effort to really make this possibly the biggest they’ve ever had. With the launch of their new digital network, it has even been said that with the evolution of technology, this business may be due for another boom period. History has shown that every time there has been an evolution in media and technology, wrestling has experienced a “boom period”. In the mid-80s, network television was starting to evolve, which brought us the “Wrestling Renaissance era” of Hulk Hogan, the Ultimate Warrior, Ric Flair, and Randy Savage. In the late 90’s, we had the evolution of cable TV and a relatively young internet, which brought us the “Attitude Era” (arguably, the most successful era in pro wrestling), with Superstars such as Stone Cold Steve Austin, the Rock, and the NWO. Now, with the evolution of On-Demand digital content, and how information is delivered, with the launch of the WWE Network, this can possibly the start of another boom period for the professional wrestling business. However, I do believe this is contingent on the success of this show. Which may explain why they are stacking the card with great talent and story lines.

All their top names (with the exception of CM Punk… which is a whole other issue) is working on this show. Many throwbacks that are familiar to many (Undertaker, Triple H, Batista, Kane and Brock Lesnar) are featured in the card, along with a great mix of their current top stars, such as Randy Orton, John Cena, and Daniel Bryan, and up-and-comers, such as the Shield and Bray Wyatt. In fact, a lot of the roster who has at least a sliver of talent has a chance to showcase themselves in this card.

Here are my detailed predictions/thoughts on each match on this card.

4-way Tag-Team match for the WWE Tag Team Titles:
Uso Brothers (c) vs Jack Swagger & Cesaro vs Ryback & Curtis Axel vs Los Matadores
I don’t really have too much thoughts on this match, however, I do think it has a good balance of high energy fact paced wrestling, and power. Therefore, it should still make for an entertaining match. This match will probably grow the seed of a break up between the “Real Americans” team of Swagger & Cesaro, therefore although I do think they are deserving of a tag title run, it probably won’t happen because of these circumstances. I see the Uso brothers retaining in this match, which I said should be highly entertaining because of the contrast of styles.
Predicted Winner: Uso Brothers

Triple H vs Daniel Bryan
This is probably going to be the first match of the actual card, or what I would like to call, the undercard main feature, or the match that sets the whole pace of the show. The storyline behind this match is, that Triple H, who legitimately runs the WWE as an Executive VP (and COO on TV), is holding the most “over” fan favorite in years in Daniel Bryan. This storyline has been taking place since Bryan cleanly won the WWE Title from John Cena in Summerslam, in which Triple H later underhandedly destroyed him and practically handpicked his own champion in Randy Orton. Between August and now, this storyline of “The Man” holding down “The Every Man”, has taken forefront. And it looks like it will finally culminate here in Wrestlemania, with the winner of this match being inserted to the last match in the card for the WWE World Heavyweight Championship. That said, this is going to be an entertaining, but tireless and brutal battle, with eventually, the fan favorite in Daniel Bryan coming out on top. Although, some can make the argument that putting Triple H in the main event adds more credibility to it, it’s clear WWE seems to want to showcase and build up their current, as well as up-and-coming stars. Which would mean that Bryan winning this match is the only logical conclusion.
Predicted Winner: Daniel Bryan

Andre the Giant Memorial 30-man Battle Royal
This is what is considered to be the filler match, that features practically most of the main roster. Although, when a match similar to this was done in Wrestlemanias past, it seemed to be a random occurrence with random winners (such as the Great Khali, and Yoshi Tatsu) that didn’t really build any stars. They’ve placed more emphasis on it this time around with Hulk Hogan putting a heavy endorsement on it, and putting Andre the Giant’s name on it. They’ve also used significant TV time in their programming to build up this match. That said, the match will be booked in a way so practically everybody can show what they can do (or can’t do), but I’ll be surprised if the match goes over 15 minutes. It may sound ridiculous, but I think the Miz will win this battle royal. He’s had a lot of PPV “anti-momentum” going for him, and he has never “lost” in Wrestlemania, so I’m picking him as the one to win this match. Not to mention, this could give him an opportunity to get back into the “upper-mid card” and have people talking about him again. Although, the person I would like to see win this most is Zack Ryder, although, it is highly unlikely it will happen and would be a huge curveball if it does.
Predicted Winner: The Miz

The Shield vs Kane and the New Age Outllaws
On paper, the way the younger, more talented Shield stable has been built up in the last year and a half, they should destroy their much older opposition at Wrestlemania. However, I think that is what the company wants you to think. Something is going to happen in this match that will cost the fan favorites the match. Either a turn with one of the Shield members, or an unmentioned X-factor interfering (such as Kevin Nash, old NWO, or Kliq members?, etc). Fact is, it’s not gonna end clean, and will set the wheels in motion to get the Shield broken up and experience individual success. Personally, if I was booking this match, I would have Kane do something on Raw that will stack the cards against them, like have them fight each other for Dean Ambrose’s US Title. But, since they didn’t do that, looks like it will go as is, and a Shield loss will be less believable. Somehow, I do think they’ll find a way to book them for a loss.
Predicted Winner: Kane and the Outlaws

John Cena vs Bray Wyatt
Don’t really want to get to the story of this match, because it’s a little complex, but the buildup for this match has been spectacular. All I got to say, is that one of their biggest names in John Cena is booked to go against one of their hottest new up-and-comers in Bray Wyatt, who is probably the most intriguing character since probably the Undertaker. I don’t think Cena will lose the match, but he will somehow put Bray Wyatt over. It will be booked as a gruesome match, with probably Bray Wyatt dominating the whole way, with Cena just sliding by with a victory, sort of like how the Triple H vs Undertaker was in WM XXVII.
Predicted Winner: John Cena

Vickie Guerrero Divas Championship Invitational
This is probably gonna be the “Bathroom Break” match, which is the “intermission” match that people probably care least about to slow down the show. This match won’t be long, and I’ll be surprised if it lasts more than 8 minutes. I see AJ Lee retaining her championship. If any of the other divas won it (with the exception of Tamina, Naomi, or Brie Bella), it would seem like a random result without meaning. The reasons why I don’t think the 3 aforementioned will win is because Naomi doesn’t seem to be a marquee name (yet), and it wouldn’t make sense if she won, Brie Bella doesn’t need the championship to stay credible since she has her reality show, and Tamina won’t win because it can set a storyline down the road for a feud with AJ if she doesn't win the title. So with that, AJ continues her run as one of the more successful WWE women wrestlers in recent memory.
Projected Winner: AJ Lee

Brock Lesnar vs Undertaker
I am excited for this match, but it’s very predictable and not much to it. It will probably booked as a brutal slugfest that’s gonna tell a good story, with Brock Lesnar probably dominating a good amount of the match as a monster and credible former UFC star. However, Undertaker will go toe-to-toe with him and will be competitive at times. In the end, Undertaker’s streak isn’t going to end. If Undertaker gets hit by a bus in the middle of the ring, so long as it’s Wrestlemania, he will kick out at two every single time.
Projected Winner: The Undertaker

Main Event: Randy Orton (c) vs Batista vs (Daniel Bryan) for the WWE World Heavyweight Championship
This match is the coup de gras of the card. I can’t really tell how this match is gonna be booked, but the crowd should be up for this match, and they will finally see their hero win the belt against two comparable opponents who were the company’s “chosen ones”. This is the result that makes sense, as the feud and storyline of “The Man vs The Everyman” has been going on since August, and it will be the payoff for the protagonist, and the people cheering for him. If this match doesn’t disappoint, like I think it won’t, I think this may be a match that people may be talking about for a while. 
Projected Winner: Daniel Bryan (new champion)

As you can see, I truly am a fan of this business, and have kind of put thought into this. It makes me look like a nerd, or a “mark”, but I have been a fan of this business since I was a kid, and although it’s staged, many aspects of it are applicable to be successful in my trade in motivational speaking and in life. (Be engaging, entertaining, always re-invent yourself, work hard, etc). In fact, if I’m ever up to it, I’ll probably write a blog on how being a fan of pro wrestling has helped me in life.

But other than that, that’s what I got to say about Wrestlmania. As I said, if the wrestling business is going to experience another "boom period", it may be contingent on the success of this card. And personally, I think it's gonna deliver. Not sure how it will compare to the greatest and more memorable Wrestlemanias but I truly believe it has potential for greatness, and could get people interested in wrestling again.

This blog has been long enough, so I think I will end it here. I don’t want to spend too much of my vacation writing this. (Started this on the plane, finished it in my hotel room hours later). Regardless, I hope you enjoyed reading this? I hope your answer is…