First of all, what is the official name of this year’s Wrestlemania? Is it Wrestlemania 29, Wrestlemania XXIX, Wrestlemania NY/NJ or WWE’s 2Wrestlemania9 XXIX in New York and New Jersey but really New Jersey? Anyway, the crew here at HFTE are proud to bring to you thoughts, analysis, comedy, predictions and maybe a gambling tip or two.
Also, please welcome special guest commentator Brian Pickett, who will be joining in on the fun! Please follow him on Twitter, you won’t regret it.
Wade Barrett vs. The Miz (Pre-show)
Sweaty’s Prediction: The Miz via pinfall, Coral interference.
Brian: Now that this is the preshow match, would a win on the preshow count for Miz’s Wrestlemania undefeated streak? This is important for the build of Miz/Undertaker for Wrestlemania 43. This match basically means nothing. Sure the intercontinental title is on the line, but Wade Barrett has lost so many times over the last few months it doesn’t matter if he keeps it or not. This feud having started over Miz thinking Wade Barrett is an asshole for talking about being in a movie, even though Miz is also an asshole talking about being in a movie. The only hope is that Miz comes out through that AWESOME balloon again.
Brain’s Prediction: Miz wins via figure four, which at least doesn’t look terrible now. There will be a rematch at Extreme Rules with the same result. Miz will hold the IC title until he loses to Kofi Kingston. By June you won’t remember this feud ever happening.
Big Sloppy: What does the internet like to say in an event like this? “DOOON’T CAAAARE.” It’s a tough match to call, but for bad reasons. Barrett won’t be injected into the World Heavyweight chase if he happens to drop the belt, and ideally, your IC champ should be elevated after his title run. Two years ago, The Miz had one of the coolest Wrestlemania entrances of all time (the “You Can Hate Me Now” video package) but this year is reduced to a shitty version of the Figure Four and a match on the pre-show. If anyone cared about this match, WWE would make sure you paid for it. On a card with Tons of Funk, that isn’t saying much about how well you are connecting with the crowd. I’ll say Barrett retains, if for no other reason then it’ll allow both guys to move on to new feuds.
Sloppy’s Prediction: Wade Barrett
UPDATE: These lines have changed quite a bit over the last few days. I’m not redoing this though, and everything I said still holds true.
This one is a stay away, because frankly, who the fuck cares? Wade Barrett is currently pulling double duty as a jobber as well as the Intercontinental Champion, and it’s hard to tell whether The Miz is ever on the way up or down. +275 isn’t enough to rope me in.
Sheamus, Randy Orton and Big Show vs. The Shield
Sweaty: I like Ambrose a lot. The rest also have a ton of potential. That being said, the WWE is going to make them pay their dues.
Sweaty’s Prediction: Big Show will probably choke-slam one of these guys for the win, proving that that he is indeed a face, until next heel turn in two months.
Brian: The Shield is in a bit of a holding pattern going into Wrestlemania. This feud has been going for while and Sheamus has been feuding with the Shield for a bit longer. The problem is the Shield has already beat Ryback/Team Hell No and the super team of Sheamus/Ryback/John Cena.
Brian’s Prediction: The Shield wins by lifting Big Show and triple powerbombing him. The Shield’s entrance gets to look cool. Orton will hear voices in his head and everyone will ignore him.
It doesn’t seem like this team should pose a threat. They have already taken care of a team with Sheamus. Randy Orton is just there, that is all that can be said about Orton in the last year. I will give Orton credit for continuing to exist. He still moves around like a snake that talks and also has arms and legs, so not like a snake. Orton needs to go away, or start wearing a big hat, playing a flute, coming out with a group of women dressed like snakes and call himself the Snake Charmer. Then there is the Big Show who is still indeed big. People can’t lift him, because he is too big.
Big Sloppy: I know The Shield has been making an impact in WWE for months, but this Wrestlemania will be their coming out party. The WWE bypassed putting three of their higher profile stars in Orton, Sheamus, and to a lesser extent, Big Show, in singles matches and instead put them together to form the most formidable opponents available for The Shield to face. The Shield comes out the big winners, and Dean Ambrose, the best wrestler at selling moves since Shawn Michaels, makes all the good guys look like gold in the process. I do believe either of two things will happen: Shield debuts a new rookie member, or Orton will receive his long-rumored heel turn, if not during the match, then afterwords. In typical Shield fashion, it won’t be a clean win.
Sloppy’s Prediction: The Shield
Gambling Outlook – Sgt. Hammerclaw:
Before I get into this match, I feel obligated to give everyone the following disclaimer: Do not gamble on Wrestlemania. Seriously. It’s fucking wrestling and there is absolutely no reason why any sane person would gamble on the outcome of these matches. Yes, I did gamble on Wrestlemania last year, but that wasn’t an intelligent decision. I haven’t decided whether I will repeat that stupid decision again this year, but you should not follow my lead if I do. You cannot comprehend how hard it is to come to terms with the fact that you’ve just wagered your hard-earned dollars on professional fucking wrestling. The emotional toll that accompanies such a decision is something that I’d only wish on my worst enemies, because screw those guys. Hell, I don’t even know if I’m going to watch Wrestlemania this year. (Seriously, get it together WWE writers.) Once again, DO NOT GAMBLE ON WRESTLEMANIA!
Okay, the first thing you need to know about gambling on Wrestlemania is that the lines never make sense. The key is to pick a few favorable underdogs and hope that a couple of them hit. Last year I used that strategy and hit on three different matches, (Kane, The Rock and somebody else who is currently slipping my mind) and won something like $275 on the night – really stupid stuff. The majority of the matches will be stay aways, because the underdog doesn’t have a good enough payout to make it a worthwhile bet, and the $3.75 that you could win from putting the max bet on the favorite ($50 where I bet) isn’t worth the risk.
As for this match, I’d actually consider taking Orton, Sheamus and the Big Show at +375. I don’t think they’ll win, but they have enough of a chance to make it worthwhile. The Shield storyline has gone to shit, and one good way to salvage it would be to create some dysfunction within their group. A Wrestlemania loss would be a great way to get the ball rolling on that storyline that I just pulled out of thin air. Also, despite my vehement hatred for Orton and Sheamus, the fans like them and that could be enough to give them the nod in this one. Again, I still think The Shield will win, but at +375, why not roll the dice?
I just came back to this. I’d originally picked Orton, Sheamus and Big Show, but you know what? Wrestlemania is one of the few times that you can feel good about betting with your heart. I like The Big Show but I really hate his teammates and I will not bet on them for a measly +375.
LATE SCRATCH, STAY AWAY
Chris Jericho vs. Fandango
Sweaty: What the hell has Fandango even done to receive the honor of even being in the same ring as Jericho? “Hey Chris, will you put over this guy we think may be pretty good someday by appearing in the same ring as him in Wrestlemania?”
Sweaty’s Prediction: Jericho via pinfall, but will sell this guy because he believes in some sort of wrestling code.
Brian: When the Fandango vignettes started in the November I never could have even joked about this being what they were building towards. I imagined the best case scenario was a short feud with Brodus Clay about dancing followed by fading into obscurity. Reality ended up much more ridiculous and incredible. He has become insanely obsessed with people properly pronouncing his name, and obsessed with showing he is a serious threat. Without even having a match yet, they have made Fandango into a threat that doesn’t look out of place on a Wrestlemania card. For how little faith we have in the WWE writing staff, they managed to nail ballroom dancer with the name of a movie ticket website. Unless you search “Fandango gay” on twitter, but don’t be stupid and twitter search things.
Glad part-time wrestler, part-time musician, part-time host of a robot boxing show Chris Jericho is back to make this work.
Brian’s Prediction: Fandango wins and shows that he can wrestle. Then at Wrestlemania 30 he beats John Cena, the Rock and the Undertaker in a handicap match while holding every single title at once. Wrestling is forever changed for the better. All hail Fandango, future president of Earth. Unless Jericho brings the boxing robots, then Fandango is doomed.
Big Sloppy: My undying love for Chris Jericho is no secret. Hell, I even named my dog after him. Which is why this match hurts my heart a little bit. It’s not that I don’t believe that a match with Fandango won’t be good; it just doesn’t feel right. The feud feels rushed, as three weeks ago I thought Jericho would be in the Intercontinental title hunt at Wrestlemania. I also don’t think that someone’s very first match should come at Wrestlemania, unless you are absolutely sure that he will be a can’t miss headliner. I see the whole dancing gimmick, as entertaining as it is now, to quickly lose steam. Can you really picture a character based off of a dancing reality TV show to be headlining Wrestlemania a year from now? I know this will be an entertaining match, as every Chris Jericho ‘Mania match is. But I’m also pretty sure that Y2J will be dropping this match. Yes, I know in a world of fake wins and losses, it doesn’t mean anything; but as a fan, I still want to see my favorite pull off a win.
Sloppy’s Prediction: Faaan-daaaahhn-gooooo
Gambling Outlook – Sgt. Hammerclaw:
A Fandango win here would make all the sense in the world. If I recall correctly, Jericho’s WWE contract only runs through Wrestlemania, and the long-standing tradition is to go out lying down. (In order to boost the existing talent that you’re leaving behind.) That said, I love Y2J, and hope he wins. Fuck it.
Tons of Funk (Brodus Clay and Tensai) and the Funkadactyls (Cameron and Naomi) vs. Team Rhodes Scholars (Cody Rhodes and Damien Sandow) and The Bella Twins (Brie and Nikki Bella)
Brian: From Akeem the African Dream, to Rikishi to now Brodus Clay and Sweet T (Formerly the Hip Hop Hippo.), wrestling loves fat guys that are terrible at dancing. Brodus Clay was last seen at Wrestlemania dancing with a bunch of mommas, yes that did happen and no you can’t block it out and pretend it never happened. Sweet T was last seen at Wrestlemania losing to the Undertaker, so welcome back? Naomi once wrestled on NXT in a Hamburger Helper costume, and Cameron is the only person left from the last Tough Enough where she told Stone Cold her favorite match ever was Melina vs Alicia Fox. Wrestling is weird.
Cody Rhodes has a mustache and is best friends with Damien Sandow, which in the “WWE universe” is strange and homosexual. Even stranger than the guy who claims to be a dancing dinosaur from the planet Funk.
The Bella Twins are back, so huzzah? Go breasts?
Brian’s Prediction: Fat dancing men win. Fat dancing men dance. Children might dance with fat dancing men. Don’t call the authorities, the children dancing with the fat dancing men are somewhat safe.
Big Sloppy: In my opinion, one of the easiest matches to call on the card. Individually, Tensai and Brodus Clay are high level jobbers, while Damien Sandow and Cody Rhodes are still considered to have very bright futures. It only makes sense to give your future headliners the rub at the biggest event of the year. Not only that, but after the Bella Twins took a leave of absence from the company to work on their physical appearance (read: boob job), this will set them up to be heavily showcased, giving me plenty of opportunities to fast forward through their DVR’d matches in the future. Rhodes Scholars/Bellas win the match playing dirty pool, the good guys gain the upper hand post-match, and then dance. Everyone goes home happy. But not really, because you just sat through that.
Sloppy’s Prediction: Rhodes Scholars/Bellas
Gambling Outlook – Sgt. Hammerclaw:
They don’t even have a line for this, which is a good thing. I hate the dance dance revolution. Let Naomi break away from the group, become a real wrestler and then end this train wreck of a gimmick.
Brock Lesner vs. Hunter Hearst Helmsley
Sweaty: Just bring the Connecticut Blueblood gimmick back for Christ’s sake. I have never met HHH, but something tells me that that gimmick better suits him than the wearing a leather jacket and blue jeans gimmick. Speaking of ring attire, is Brock still sponsored by Jimmy John’s.
Sweaty’s Prediction: I’d rather eat a Jimmy John’s sandwich than Stephanie McMahon’s pie. (Rock promo anyone?) Lesner by KO.
Brian: BORK LASER BORK LASER BORK LASER BORK LASER. Ok now that is out of my system. This match should the most violent of the night. Expect both to bleed, mostly because Brock Lesnar is insane and might occasionally forget it isn’t a real fight. Everyone assumes Triple H is winning this match to “get his win back” and due to the internet’s collective twitch whenever he does or says anything. This isn’t helped by moments like randomly punting Wade Barrett in the groin. Also not being helped by the bizarre portion of the build that Triple H had to basically be tricked into no holds barred and putting his part-time career on the line. Two stipulations he could have just accepted, and nobody would have questioned it.
Brian’s Prediction: Brock Lesnar wins. Triple H, the television character, is hated on the internet for many good reasons. Moments like kicking Barrett in the groin, promos that go on for too long, times where he has been billed as the most unstoppable force in WWE and many more. At the end this seems to be best, Brock Lesnar stays a monster and Triple H falls fighting to the last breath (figuratively, I don’t think he is literally going to die). HBK can carry him off, and Triple H can get his “last” moment. Don’t worry, if you hate Triple H, the 15 minute farewell promo the next night should fill you up. Also when he comes back for another match ignoring the stipulation of this match by telling everyone to “suck it.” Enjoy the loss now, because the next DX Reunion is always lurking like the serial murderer sitting outside in your bushes.
Big Sloppy: Another match without a real clear cut favorite. Word on the street (or on shitty wrestling websites where 90% of the information ends up being false) Brock Lesnar is sticking around to work the big events for another year. Lesnar is 1-1 in PPV matches since coming back, with a loss to Cena and a win over HHH. Mr. H’s career is on the line, but I have a hard time believing that he’ll go out like this, to a part timer. I see him going the Flair/HBK route and being taken out by a respected performer when his time comes. But will WWE allow Brock to fall to 1-2 on primary PPVs? In this case, I say yes. Shawn Michaels will be in Hunter’s corner, but I say Vince is the difference in the match, screwing over Lesnar and Heyman. I’ll go out on a limb and say that HHH makes one more run at a championship off of his momentum of a big ‘Mania win.
Sloppy’s Prediction: Triple H
Gambling Outlook – Sgt. Hammerclaw:
I don’t care for HHH. I think he’s the type of guy who would only lose a Wrestlemania match if he felt that it was really good for the brand. (see: past WM Undertaker matches) I don’t think Lesnar will be around long enough to make it worthwhile for HHH to lose.
Team Hell No vs. Dolph Ziggler and Big E Langston
Sweaty: I have long despised Kane, and by long despised, I mean ever since his debut. That being written, I find myself caring for Kane much more now than I ever did before thanks in large part to Daniel Bryan.
Sweaty’s Prediction: Team Hell No, because Ziggler is going to cash in his Money in the Bank later, so I doubt that they will let him hold both the Tag and Heavyweight titles.
Brian: All I want for this match is for Daniel Bryan to have a real match at Wrestlemania. His first Wrestlemania match against Sheamus got pushed back to the preshow, then was turned into a battle royal at the last moment. Last year he lost to Sheamus in 18 seconds. So my only hope for this match is that it gets time, and maybe for Big E Langston to wear more clothing.
The Daniel Bryan/Kane tag team is on its last legs. They have done about everything they can with this run as wacky tag team, and it is almost time to break them up. This Wrestlemania match seems like a good time to start moving them apart. They don’t have to hate each other, they can hug and slowly drift apart. At least that is how it works in my fan fiction, they do something else in my slash fiction. Speaking of my slash fiction, this is Big E Langston’s first match on TV. If they win he can join the elite club of people to win titles in their first match, with such legends as Santino Marella.
Brian’s Prediction: Ziggler and Big E win with Ziggler pinning Bryan. This is tough though, if Ziggler is cashing in then I would say they lose. I’m assuming that he isn’t, and that AJ will try to distract someone, Kaitlyn will attack her, chaos will break out, then Ziggler will steal the win.
Big Sloppy: This is a tough one for me, because both Daniel Bryan and Dolph Ziggler severely need to break away as singles competitors, and soon. The “WWE Universe” (stupid) loves cheering for Bryan because he’s genuinely entertaining (more so than Ziggler.) Meanwhile, Ziggler has been lugging around that stupid briefcase for months on end, apparently no where near a backstage monitor whenever The Rock (or C.M. Punk before that) has been laid out in the middle of the ring. Not a great sign when the WWE has to pair you up with Vickie, then AJ, then Big E, just to try and get you a reaction. Someone get this man a catchphrase, or a dumb hand gesture to emulate.
So, I guess I’ll go with Dolph/Big E in this one. Team Hell No has run its course, while at least Langston could benefit from the championship win, even though it feels like a step back for Ziggler. That, and I really want to see crazy AJ do more skipping around the ring.
Sloppy’s Prediction: Ziggler/Langston
Gambling Outlook – Sgt. Hammerclaw:
Just look at that fucking line.
Alberto Del Rio vs. Jack Swagger
Sweaty: I love the idea that Alberto is being sold as some guy that can relate to the people. “The people” being poor, white folk. Speaking as a poor white folk, I am firmly behind Jack Swagger because he likes to smoke weed and drive fast in that order.
Sweaty’s Prediction: Zeb Colter lures Alberto out of the ring with a plate full of cocaine, Jack Swagger wins by count out. Ziggler cashes his Money in the Bank on a totally coked out Del Rio.
Brian: If you haven’t figured it out, Jack Swagger and Zeb Colter do not like foreigners, to the extent that they won’t even listen to Jukebox Hero. My hope is that Jack Swagger has a 50 foot tall Don’t Tread on Me flag to unfurl behind as he makes his entrance. My other hope is that Zeb Colter wears a special Wrestlemania fishing vest. I bet Zeb has a lot of neat lures in there.
Brian’s Prediction: Del Rio wins. This is the one match I am least sure of. Swagger could win this easily building to Del Rio chasing him down to win the belt back. I think what happens instead is Del Rio wins with some help from Ricardo and Swagger gets another shot and wins at Extreme Rules. Dolph Ziggler could also cash in and mess all of that up.
Big Sloppy: This match is my bet to open the show (not counting the Miz/Wade Barrett “pre-show” match.) Zeb Couter has singlehandedly saved Jack Swagger’s career, and it started well before the DUI incident. Before being rebranded, he was on a level with Zach Ryder and Great Khali in terms of jobbing. Zeb has been vastly entertaining (seriously, follow him on twitter,) and is the mouthpiece that Swagger has needed ever since he was a child, when mama and papa Swagger wouldn’t shell out the money for speech impediment correction. But just because Coulter is entertaining doesn’t make Swagger entertaining in the ring. He just seems boring and methodical to me, as if he wrestles at a pace of a 500 pounder. Del Rio isn’t exactly Mr. Excitement either, but he works stiff as all hell, which makes it look more believable. Del Rio retains in this match up, if only because I don’t believe Swagger would be rewarded still so close to his arrest.
Sloppy’s Prediction: Del Rio
Gambling Outlook – Sgt. Hammerclaw:
They can’t possibly let Swagger win after some of the shit he’s said, can they?
Ryback vs Mark Henry
Sweaty: Oh my Christ, if I hear someone refer to Ryback as Goldberg one more time, I’m going to go ape shit. GOLDBERG WAS UNDE-FUCKING-FEATED AND THE GREATEST WRESTLER OF ALL TIME NOT SOME GODDAMN NXT REJECT.
Sweaty’s Prediction: Mark Henry with the pinfall after a Mae Young run in.
Brian: Two big strong dudes want to beat each other up to see who is bigger and stronger. This is all you need to know. It is simple and effective.
Brian’s Prediction: Ryback wins. The question is whether he can actually shellshock Mark Henry. I’m going to assume he can, because this match seems pointless otherwise. A win by just a clothesline, or even a slam would take away from the moment they are trying to give him. As much as I would like Mark Henry to win, because no wrestler in WWE history has dealt with having as many hand babies as he has, this isn’t his time. He can be built right back up to be a threat quickly.
Big Sloppy: I hate watching big, plodding wrestlers, Henry more so than Ryback. Hey, could be worse. Khali doesn’t have anything going on Sunday night. Ryback needs this win more for his character. He’s still viewed as the future, while Henry is a cheeseburger or two away from joining Paul Bearer in the big wrestling ring in the sky. Ryback has been screwed over on all of his high profile matches, so it makes sense to finally reward him with a big win on the biggest stage. Who knows how it will end, though. If Ryback couldn’t hit the Shell Shock finisher on Tensai a few months ago, we’d risk seeing his legs go full on Kevin Ware if he tried to get Henry up.
Sloppy’s Prediction: Ryback
Gambling Outlook – Sgt. Hammerclaw:
Ryback botched his shellshock on Lord Tensai awhile back, and if he struggled with Prince Albert, I don’t see how he’s going to get Henry up. I also don’t see Ryback winning a match without shellshocking someone. Even his handicap matches require the multi-shellshock victims to lock legs prior to getting picked up. Seriously, watch the goddamn replay of last week. (or was it two weeks ago?) The dudes had to lock legs for it to work. Also, I hate Ryback.
The Undertaker vs CM Punk
Sweaty: Good job, WWE, for using the real life death of Paul Bearer as part of your storyline. It’s things like this, doing it with a character like CM Punk, that gives me hope that the WWE is trending toward getting a TV-MA rating. However, this is a double-edged sword for some, because there may be a few people who long for the days of the Attitude Era but now have kids you’d they’d like to get into wrestling. Screw you, I don’t have kids.
Sweaty’s Prediction: I’d like to think that the WWE would let Punk end The Undertaker’s winning streak as some sort of consolation for having to job to The Rock, I know better because I’m a realist. Undertaker wins via pinfall.
Brian: The question will always be what this feud was going to be before the death of Paul Bearer. We certainly wouldn’t have the moment to end Raw of CM Punk dumping an urn full of ashes on the Undertaker. Punk has become the 90s WWE cartoonish villain that the Undertaker needs. He may as well come out at Mania with the urn melted down as a gold chain and claiming he is also working as a trash man. Punk is the Blue Brothers car, a chain and casket away from becoming Big Bossman in the best way. Without the death, this would have been Punk claiming his streak is just as impressive, and that he was better and not scared. This match should be 1994 levels of cartoonish WWE. I want the urn to spew green mist out of it, I want Undertaker to pull out a body bag, I want multiple Undertakers, I want multiple Doinks, and Leslie Neilsen should be there.
Brian’s Prediction: CM Punk wi…. HAHA. No, Undertaker totally wins, because Undertaker. But with enough alcohol and a good match they can convince you it is possible for the Undertaker to lose.
Big Sloppy: With all due respect, the WWE got a huge break with the timing of the death of Paul Bearer. With Undertaker not coming back until a month out from Wrestlemania, it would have been a hard go of things to give this match its proper build up. It would have been the same old “End the Streak” story line that has been trotted out year after year. Not so this year. Yes, the Streak is still a primary focus; however, the personal attacks have added a new layer to this match. The druids and the fake Paul Bearer was a great touch to end Raw on Monday, with the ashes being dumped on Taker after a severe beating. Even the Undertaker acknowledged his streak may end this year, but promised that CM Punk “will never live to talk about it.” And that’s precisely why the Streak won’t end – because they’ve already won by planting seeds of doubt in the fans that it just might be the year. Taker wins again, and CM Punk gets to add another potential Match of the Year to his resume.
Sloppy’s Prediction: Undertaker
Gambling Outlook – Sgt. Hammerclaw:
Last year I bet on HHH. The emotional roller coaster of that match took its toll on me, and I’ve learned my lesson. The WWE just wants you to think that there’s a chance that Taker can lose, but then he’ll overcome the odds and win. This is unfortunate, because watching The Undertaker nowadays is a lot like [any athlete who stuck around too long and destroyed their legacy] play [their sport] at the end of his career. It really pains me to say this, but I really want The Undertaker to just go away forever.
The Rock vs John Cena
Sweaty: This is interesting. John Cena, the man who the WWE continues to jam down our throat as the anti-antihero (hero), is finally kind of working on me now. Well, it doesn’t hurt that he’s going up against a wrestler in The Rock, who used to be an antihero in his day, but now is just an actor who feels he needs to be in Mr. Olympia shape in order to star in and promote six movies in two months.
Sweaty’s Prediction: Worst case scenario, a Rock win guarantees that there are at least 6 more movies that The Rock has a role in that will need promoting. I don’t know if there is or not, but I’m just going to assume there is. The Rock via pinfall, after about eight People’s Elbows.
Brian: Once in the lifetime two, 2Lifetime 2Furious! Last year’s loss sent John Cena into a slump that saw him beating Brock Lesnar at the next PPV, winning the Slammy for Superstar of the Year and entering a relationship with one of the Bellas. What a tough life, don’t know how John made it. The Rock has also shown up a few times in this feud to remind us he is the champion, still has catchphrases, and to mock you because Fast 6 isn’t out yet. Cena looked even more insane the weeks he was rambling about the importance of the match and The Rock wasn’t there and didn’t even have a message for him. He may as well have been yelling in a mirror only to freak out when he saw the Rock’s reflection in it.
Last year’s match feature a lot of Cena looking around, while the Rock took a nap. The match dragged on for 10 minutes, because at times it looked like Cena had no idea what to do to kill the time. It made a bunch of money though, and I hear that is what the WWE’s goal is. So I guess they couldn’t not do it again.
Brian’s Prediction: Cena wins and the Rock vanishes back to the world of blowing stuff up and driving cars fast. Cena might try a underhanded tricks to win, but won’t change his character. He will just win and become champion. Everything will be the same again. Next PPV Cena will talk about how he is the underdog and how no one thinks he can win. Perhaps one more feud of THERE IS NO WAY JOHN CENA CAN LIFT THE BIG SHOW. At some point he will change the color of his shirt. Should be fun! Long live jortsman!
The last few weeks have offered some glimmer of hope this may give us the long (pretend I wrote long another 700 times) needed John Cena character change. I can promise the match will have a Rock Bottom, a sharpshooter, a People’s Elbow, an Attitude Adjustment, a STF and a Five Knuckle Shuffle.
Big Sloppy: A year ago, I was thinking to myself “OMG. This is a Once in a Lifetime match that we’ll never see again! I should enjoy every second of this!” OK, not really. I do remember, however, being very pissed off that The Rock won last year. Not that I’m a Cena fan; haven’t been since his “Thug Life” phase. But I am a fan of wrestling, and remember thinking that it was bad business for Rock to show up and beat the company’s biggest draw, only to turn around and leave again. I’m glad that Rock, at least in a part time role, stuck around long enough to carry out a feud with Punk and reignite his feud with Cena. This gives the WWE the chance to even the score and rebuild Cena with the use of the belt, which I actually think he needs now more than ever over the last few years. I don’t think it will be an entirely entertaining match from a wrestling standpoint, but it is sure to get the best crowd reaction, along with the Taker/Punk match. Cena’s speech on Monday night about how he wouldn’t change the belt after he wins it pretty much seals it for me that he’ll have his hand raised at the end of the night, and he and Rock will have the ol’ good guy respect handshake at the end.
Sloppy’s Prediction: John Cena
Sloppy’s Rankings by Potential Entertainment:
1. Undertaker vs. Punk
2. Jericho vs. Fandango
3. Rock vs. Cena
4. Shield vs. Orton/Show/Sheamus
5. Lesnar vs. HHH
6. Del Rio vs. Swagger
7. Team Hell No vs. Ziggler/Langston
8. Ryback vs. Henry
9. Every stupid backstage skit, cameo, etc.
10. Video packages you’ve already seen two dozen times leading up to Wrestlemania
11. The screen at the end that notifies you the PPV has concluded
12. Tons of Funk vs. Rhodes Scholars
Gambling Outlook – Sgt. Hammerclaw:
Yeah. Cena’s going to win and I don’t like The Rock.
To quickly recap, that gives us a grand total of two matches that I’d consider betting on this year. That’s as underwhelming as it gets folks, but based on this year’s lines, I wasn’t the only person who took advantage of the noticably higher moneylines for the underdogs last year. Let’s take a quick look at the ticket:
To reiterate: DO NOT BET ON WRESTLEMANIA. I certainly won’t be. Well, maybe I will, but probably not. Hell, I don’t even think I’m going to be ordering it this year because the storylines have become so weak. I legitimately don’t care about any of these matches. Not one. I hope The Undertaker loses, but that’s about it, and I don’t think I want to subject myself to paying top dollar for crushing disappointment.
However, if Brandon Stroud’s (if you don’t read his weekly Raw recaps on With Leather, you should start doing that immediately) Cena heel-turn prediction ends up coming to fruition, that would be incredible. I’d be roped right back into wrestling almost immediately. If he somehow aligned with Punk, my favorite wrestler, that’d be even better. God damnit, maybe I will order it now. Enjoy Wrestlemania everyone! I’ll just be sitting here staring at the betting ticket contemplating whether or not I’m actually about to go down this sad, lonely, desolate road again.