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Now every year, thousands of fans all over the world debate what matches are going to happen at WrestleMania. People long for another moment like Rock and Hogan going toe to toe or another amazing event like X-Seven in Houston, which is widely regarded as the best Mania of all time. In recent years, the Grandaddy of ‘em all has suffered from being a one match show like WrestleMania 25 (Taker/HBK), bad booking at WrestleMania 27 (Cena/Miz, Lawler/Cole) and matches not getting time to become classics. (Rey/Punk, Rey/Angle/Orton)
With the many rumoured matches for this years event in Miami, WrestleMania XXVIII has the potential to be just as entertaining and memorable as X-Seven. I’ve compiled some top tips that I think would ensure this WrestleMania is just as epic as the best Manias of the past.
1. Have Jim Ross Call The Main Events
I don’t hate Michael Cole and I actually thought he called the Taker/HBK match at XXVI very well. In recent times, his heel persona has ruined his commentary style and detracts from the matches. I think it’s important that he is on commentary at Mania this year, but it would be good if the last three matches were Punk/Y2J for the WWE Title, Undertaker/HHH and Rock/Cena, and before the matches Cole got in the ring to cut a heel promo and have JR come out and fling him out the ring and take the commentary spot for the main events of the show. JR will put over Punk like the main eventer that he is, and will make Taker/HHH and Rock/Cena seem much more important.
2. Have WWE Legends sit in the front row
WWE loves to use their Legends at WrestleMania weekend. Having Piper, Slaughter, DiBiase, Rhodes etc front row would make the event feel more special and could be used for an interesting interaction or two between stars and legends during the show.
3. Give us a WWE Divas Match that fans will remember
Since Trish Stratus and Mickie James had their great Mania clash in 2006, the women’s matches have either been multi women throwaway matches, Playboy bunny atrocities or forgettable squashes. This year there is a ready made feud with the dominant Champion Beth Phoenix being challenged by the monster, Kharma. Both women can wrestle and if the storyline is booked well and they’re given enough time, this could be a classic.
4. Allow Matches time to tell a story
There are matches this year like Punk/Jericho, Kharma/Beth and perhaps Cody Rhodes/Goldust, that need to have time to make the match memorable. If all the matches at this years event get the proper time to tell their story, then that will go a long way to making this years spectacle a memorable event.
5. Title Matches have to be Important
This year, more than ever, the title matches are in danger of being mid card battles that won’t be remembered in five years time. With Taker/HHH and Rock/Cena, the title matches can only hope to be the 3rd and 4th most important matches on the show. Punk and Jericho should be able to build a feud that fans will care about and feel like it’s a big time match. The World Title is the one I’m worried about. With Sheamus as the Rumble winner, I can only hope whether it’s Orton or Bryan he goes after that they give us a match to care about and not one that fans will use as a break to get beer.
6. Bring Back the WWE Creative who can BOOK Special Attraction matches
WWE used to always be able to book special attractions very well at WrestleMania. From Shane and Vince at X-Seven through to the Battle of the Billionaires at 23, fans always got to see a fun match with just the right amount of outside elements. In the past three years, the Stamford group seem to have lost the ability to book a special attraction and it keeps getting worse. For Mania 25, Chris Jericho’s 3 on 1 legends match with Mickey Rourke’s involvement was a letdown and fell flat. The next year Bret Hart’s match with Vince McMahon went about 6 mins too long and was hard to watch. Finally this past year in Atlanta, the simple Lawler beats Cole match was so over booked that it was something you’d rather instantly forget. This year with NBA Legend Shaquille O’Neal up against Big Show, WWE needs to go back to basics and model it on their previously successful attraction matches like Mayweather/Show or Hogan/Vince.
7. Make Shawn Michaels the Guest Referee for Undertaker/HHH
With the all but confirmed third Mania match between Undertaker and Triple H, many fans are questioning why the match is taking place again? There are some fans who would prefer to see the Dead Man against Wade Barrett. To those people, I say ‘You’re delusional!’ There would be no believability. HHH is the only wrestler on the roster, not in a feud, that could take on the Streak again. In order to make us believe the Streak is really in jeopardy, there needs to be one ingredient added to the match, HBK as the guest referee. It would add drama and that intangible of not knowing what he’ll do.
8. Less Video Packages, Let the Young Talent Shine
WrestleMania do great video packages but in the last few years, the abundance of these has affected the time the roster get in the ring. This year there should only be two or three short packages which allows the Dolph Ziggler’s and Sheamus’ of the company to be allowed their time to shine and make a memorable impression at the biggest show of the year. In addition to the veterans and the legends on the card, it would be good to get some young guys in high profile matches so they can create a legacy for future years.
9. Make Money In The Bank open to ONLY Former World Champions
This year, WWE are bringing back the infamous ladder match to Miami’s event. There’s been rumours that creative have considered making the match open to only former World Champions. I, for one, am all for this happening. It will make the match feel special. Entrants like Kane, Christian, Rey Mysterio, Alberto Del Rio, The Miz etc will give this match a bigger feel than it usually has.
10. Send fans home happy after The Rock/John Cena
Fans are speculating as to how this year long feud will end on April 1st. Will Cena turn heel? Will Rock walk away victorious? I’m not going to try and tell WWE what to do. What I would say is, I hope they send the fans home happy. I hope they don’t give an unimaginable outcome like Rock endorsing Cena. We want to be shocked and witness an epic main event.
There are my top tips to make this years event great. I’m sure you have your opinions too, so drop me a line and let me know!
Only 57 days to go……