WrestleMania fights to live up to “stupendous” hype

WrestleMania+fights+to+live+up+to+%E2%80%9Cstupendous%E2%80%9D+hype

WrestleMania 38 was a two-night star-studded sports entertainment event put on by the WWE on April 2-3 2022, drawing 156,352 fans combined. I’ll provide a recap of this event by going through each match night by night, as well as giving a rating from one to five

Night One:

The Usos (Jey Uso and Jimmy Uso) (c) defeated Shinsuke Nakamura and Rick Boogs by pinfall for the WWE SmackDown Tag Team Championship, 1.5 Stars. This match shouldn’t have been the opener.  Instead, there should have been a higher energy match. This match was cut short on the fly due to Rick Boogs tearing his quadriceps. It was fine for what it was, but it gets a low star rating for being cut short to no one’s fault. 

Drew McIntyre defeated Happy Corbin (with Madcap Moss) by pinfall, 2 Stars. These first two matches really felt like this Mania was not going to be that good at all. This match wasn’t the most exciting and it just felt like they could have done better. All around, I’m glad this feud is over because Drew deserves better.

The Miz and Logan Paul defeated Rey Mysterio and Dominik Mysterio by pinfall, 3.5 Stars. Yes, you read that right, THAT Logan Paul. Paul did well for his first match. He really is a great athlete and looked great as well. This match was really fun and a step up from the last two matches.

Bianca Belair defeated Becky Lynch (c) by pinfall for the Raw Women’s Championship, 4.25 Stars. What a match this was. This was definitely the best women’s match of both nights and told a great story. This match was awesome and the right person won with Belair winning her second women’s title.

Cody Rhodes defeated Seth “Freakin” Rollins by pinfall, 4.5 Stars. Cody’s return was as perfect as it could have been. He got an enormous pop and had the best match of the whole show with a phenomenal opponent. 

Charlotte Flair (c) defeated Ronda Rousey by pinfall for the SmackDown Women’s Championship by pinfall, 2.75 Stars. The finish to this match really diminished the rest of it. This match wasn’t terrible, but it wasn’t great either. I personally don’t think Rousey is the best pro wrestler so I felt this was as good as it could have been. 

“Stone Cold” Steve Austin defeated Kevin Owens by pinfall in a No Holds Barred Match, 3.75 Stars. Austin really couldn’t have had a better opponent for his last match. The build to this impromptu match was great and Owens made Austin look great even at the age of 57. This was fun and made for a great moment with Austin ending his career on his terms. 

Night Two:

RK-Bro (Randy Orton and Riddle) (c) defeated The Street Profits (Angelo Dawkins and Montez Ford) and Alpha Academy (Chad Gable and Otis) in a Triple Threat Match for the Raw Tag Team Championship, 4 Stars. This is how a Mania should be opened. This was a really fun and exciting match that got the crowd going crazy. This match was great and it’s awesome to see Orton having this match fun with his career. 

Bobby Lashley defeated Omos by pinfall, 2 Stars. This match felt like it was good as it could have been. Omos is still improving and Bobby made him look good while still coming out as the winner.

Johnny Knoxville defeated Sami Zayn in an Anything Goes Match by pinfall, 4 Stars. If you’re a fan of ‘Jackass’, then this is a match for you. This match was really fun and loaded with comedic spots that really made it stick out.

Sasha Banks & Naomi defeated Carmella & Queen Zelina (c), Liv Morgan & Rhea Ripley, and Natalya & Shayna Baszler in a Fatal Four Way Tag Team Match for the Women’s Tag Team Championship by pinfall, 2.5 Stars. This match was fine for what it was. It definitely could have been better, but the right team won in a fun match.

Edge defeated AJ Styles by pinfall, 4 Stars. This was a great match to no one’s surprise. I felt like it left a little to be desired, but the feud is continuing with the addition of Damian Priest to Edge’s side, so there’s hope. 

Sheamus & Ridge Holland (with Butch) defeated The New Day (Kofi Kingston & Xavier Woods) by pinfall, 1 Star. This match was originally scheduled for night one but got pushed to night two due to time restraints. This match was still way too short and just felt out of place. 

Pat McAfee defeated Austin Theory (with Mr. McMahon) by pinfall, 3.5 Stars. This match was very fast paced and was pretty exciting with the crowd fully behind McAfee. Pat looked great for only his third match ever and the right man one.

Mr. McMahon (with Austin Theory) defeated Pat McAfee by pinfall, 0 Stars. This match didn’t need to happen at all. It just felt weird seeing 76-year-old Vince McMahon jump and pin Pat McAfee. This was only to set up Stone Cold running in after, even then it still felt pointless. 

Roman Reigns (Universal Champion) (with Paul Heyman) defeated Brock Lesnar (WWE Champion) in a Winner Take All Match for the WWE Championship and Universal Championship by pinfall, 3 Stars. Going into this match was labeled “the biggest match in WrestleMania history” and it didn’t live up to that hype at all. It wasn’t terrible but it left a bit to be desired. It looks like Roman might have gotten hurt so they ended it early but even then, it could have been better. 

Overall, this was a pretty good show. The first night was far better than the second but both delivered exciting matches. A lot of the matches on the undercard over-delivered to make up for some of the big matches that didn’t deliver up to their hype. 

8/10