5 winners and 3 losers from WrestleMania 38

WrestleMania 38 is within the books, and what an occasion it was. The grandaddy of all of them, Mania has at all times been an intersection of wrestling and popular culture designed to be the one present out of the yr that even lapsed followers tune in for.

From high to backside I’ve acquired to say it was good. This wasn’t an all-time Mania in my thoughts — nevertheless it was a principally enjoyable eight hours of sports activities leisure. That’s a feat in itself.

When I usually do a winners and losers I’m breaking down moments inside video games or particular person performances. Obviously wrestling is totally different. I’m probably not caring right here about who gained or misplaced, as a result of in any other case the largest winner can be Roman Reigns — regardless of he and Brock Lesnar having a little bit of a weird, rushed match. Instead we’re who achieved the purpose of making an entertaining match that lived as much as the billing of a WrestleMania card.

Winner: “Stone Cold” Steve Austin

It’s inconceivable to speak about WrestleMania 38 with out Austin. The shut to nighttime one gave us a hell of a shock. We all knew “Stone Cold” Steve Austin was booked for a speaking section with Kevin Owens on “The K.O. Show,” however morphing that right into a no holds barred match was a daring resolution.

I’ll be trustworthy: I used to be tremendous involved about this taking place. My concern forward of WrestleMania was that we’d get this nostalgic second ruined by the conclusion Austin can’t go, like Goldberg and Undertaker in Saudi. Instead, Austin severely appeared simply nearly as good as he did when he left the ring virtually 20 years in the past.

Yes, it was a brief burst — however this actually didn’t really feel prefer it was missing. It was principally brawling, as Austin has type of achieved his complete profession, however he owned the second and even took a rattling suplex on the ground. It was all smiles in my home.

The evening 2 hit, and we acquired the trio of stunners to Austin Theory, Vince McMahon and Pat McAfee — and it was the proper finale to what’s unquestionably Austin’s final chapter. Even if Vince’s try at taking the stunner was the world in wrestling historical past.

Winner: Becky Lynch and Bianca Belair

Just go watch this. There’s a lot to speak about in relation to this match, however something I say gained’t do it justice. The solely disgrace about Becky vs. Bianca was that it was buried within the mid card of evening one, when it actually might have headlined the evening.

Yes, I do know they needed to finish on Austin vs. Owens, in order that wasn’t taking place — nevertheless it might, and will have gone on later within the card. There might need been some inside drama over the 2 girls’s title matches and who would observe who, however when the mud settled this was the one worthy of Mania.

Bianca established herself to a world viewers as the way forward for the ladies’s division in WWE, and every part she did within the ring was a delight. Becky saved the psychology of the match transferring and the 2 gave us one thing particular. I beloved each second of it, and it is likely to be in my Top 5 girls’s matches of all time.

Losers: New Day vs. Seamus and Ridge Holland

I tremendous don’t get this. New Day have been bumped from evening one on account of time constraints, which occurs, I get it. Then they arrive out on evening two for a very meaningless one-sided match towards the solid of Peaky Blinders. Sorry, I imply Seamus and Ridge.

What have they achieved to Pete Dunne (sorry, Butch)? Poor man went from being this fierce, brawling wrestler — to mainly an precise youngster who must be restrained by his dad and mom. At this fee they’re going to have him on a leash like a sugared-up child at Disney World by Summerslam.

Winner: Logan Paul

I’ll be the primary to confess that I hate movie star matches. Always have, at all times will. I do know they’re a part of the WrestleMania cloth, however there’s one thing I discover offensive about realizing how a lot a mania match means to the precise expertise, a purpose they work over a decade for — then see a spot go to somebody who determined in February that it is likely to be enjoyable to have a match at WrestleMania.

Anyway, Logan Paul ought to have completely sucked within the ring … he didn’t. I can try to hate on this as a lot as attainable, however it could be a lie. Clearly Paul appeared like somebody who really gave sufficient of a shit to study a couple of issues within the ring and pull off an excellent match, in contrast to the heady days of Dennis Rodman and Karl Malone in WCW wanting like Dollar Stone precise figures whose joints didn’t transfer.

This was a really large deal for WWE. Having Paul look somebody respectable, and even weave in a possible feud with The Miz down the road is precisely what they needed, and Paul completely pulled it off.

Losers: Charlotte Flair and Ronda Rousey

I’m not going to dwell on this an excessive amount of as a result of I’m positive tales will emerge — however nothing about this match felt proper. It was sloppy, and never in a approach that felt prefer it was pure or spontaneous as a part of making an attempt to inform a narrative. . Honestly, it felt like these two didn’t discuss for 5 minutes earlier than the match, acquired within the ring, and tried to wing it.

This was both a case of poor manufacturing or lack of manufacturing all collectively. Both can do far, much better and it was a disgrace this stayed in a single gear and allow us to all down.

Loser: Overwrought entrances

The large, wild, bombastic WrestleMania entrance was reserved for one or possibly two stars a present. You knew HHH was going to get one, and doubtless Undertaker, and aside from that it was actually simply concerning the scope of the stage.

This yr continued the 2021 custom of rattling close to everybody having a particular entrance. Becky arrived in a limo, Seth had a choir, Cody did his complete Cody factor, Pat McAfree acquired the Cowboys cheerleaders, Bianca acquired the Texas Southern marching band … which actually, was so rattling cool and the most effective ever.

That’s the issue although, proper? Because everybody acquired an enormous wild entrance you completely forgot that Bianca’s was even that good. It simply dragged out an already lengthy present, and that is severely a case of “less is more.”

Winner: Cody Rhodes

I don’t suppose there was something in the least outstanding about Cody Rhodes vs. Seth Rollins. Honestly, it was the identical bog-standard Cody match he’s been having on weekly TV with AEW for the final two years — however that’s not the purpose.

Rhodes is a winner as a result of folks appreciated him. That pop in Dallas, the reception he acquired on his return to WWE — these days have been lifeless for him in AEW. It’s been a precipitous drop in his reputation since his legendary match towards Dustin Rhodes at Double or Nothing 2019, and as unimaginable as his first yr was with AEW, his second was equally underwhelming.

It reached some extent the place nothing was clicking for him. Cody went by a collection of rivalries no person cared about, with a smattering of the most affordable pop makes an attempt of his profession from invoking some bizarre USA vs. England rivalry towards Anthony Ogogo, to having a fake retirement after dropping to Malakai Black. Nobody was shopping for any of it, and the boos he was met with have been deafening — particularly for a wrestler who refused to show heel.

The reset was wanted, and returning to a fanbase who’ve largely not seen his work within the final two years, made him really feel recent once more. Fans have been excited, Cody was loving it, and I believe it is a great point for everybody.

Winners: Wrestling followers

WrestleMania weekend is most necessary a part of the wrestling calendar, not only for WWE, however everybody. Independent promotions and smaller company organizations all collect to run reveals round mania, realizing what number of wrestling followers are on the town.

Tribalism is past silly, particularly in such a distinct segment type of leisure as professional wrestling — however we’re completely residing within the golden age. Look again on the Attitude Era with fondness all you need, it was NOTHING in comparison with the breadth of expertise throughout a number of corporations providing one thing for everybody.

Whether you’re a self-professed WWE fan, and AEW fan. If you watch principally New Japan, or Impact — or perhaps a smaller promotion, there’s one absolute fact: A rising tide lifts all ships. Competition has pushed each firm to be higher, and we’re the benefactors.

Wrestling is nice, simply get pleasure from what we’re seeing as a substitute of preventing over who’s higher.

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