Sunday!

We now have a much more cohesive idea of what WrestleMania is going to look like. (Card is still subject to change, though.)

Before the show, they will have three matches:

André the Giant Memorial Battle Royal
WrestleMania Women’s Battle Royal
Cedric Alexander vs. Mustafa Ali

Of those, I kinda wish that Alexander vs. Ali was on the main show. The first two are going to do what the old King of the Ring tournament used to do… namely, establish a new heel that was going to be pushed to the moon for half a year or so to see what happens. Given that we’re not likely to be really familiar with whomever it is that they decide to push, it makes sense that the Battles Royal would be part of the warm-up show rather than WrestleMania Proper.

But Alexander vs. Ali has a long shot at being match of the night (out of four possible matches of the night). Put me down as guessing that Alexander wins this one.

Now for the show itself. In the order that Wikipedia has the matches listed at this moment in time:

Brock Lesnar (c) vs. Roman Reigns
They’ve been telegraphing that Reigns is going to be the guy to knock Lesnar down for a year now (hrm… maybe two years now). So it looks like this will be the WrestleMania where that happens. Sigh. My pick: Reigns defeats Lesnar more or less cleanly. (And that’s why they’re putting this match on the card early… they want people to go home happy and they don’t want the last moments of the PPV to have everybody in the arena booing.)

I hope Heyman sticks around afterwards, even if Lesnar doesn’t.

AJ Styles (c) vs. Shinsuke Nakamura
Another long-shot contender for match of the night (second of four potential matches of the night). Maybe. I love Nakamura’s charisma but he wrestles… weird. It’s like he’s from a parallel dimension or something. They call it “strong style” but if they called it “kicky punchy”, it’d do a better job of conveying what he does in a match. If he does the usual “strong style” thing, I take back that thing about it being a contender for match of the night. They might get a good story out of it anyway, but the match itself will be two very different kinds of charisma mixing like peanut butter and tuna fish. My pick: AJ.

The Miz (c) vs. Seth Rollins vs. Finn Bálor
Now this is a strong contender to be the match of the night (third of the four possible ones). All three of these guys can wrestle and, unlike that last match, they’re compatible. Peanut butter, chocolate, and cookies. They’ll hit it out of the park and The Miz walks away still the champion. (Perfectly acceptable cheating for the win. He’ll steal somebody’s pin.)

Randy Orton (c) vs. Bobby Roode vs. Jinder Mahal vs. Rusev

I appreciate that WrestleMania is the biggest PPV of the year with the biggest gate and biggest merch and thus they want to get as many people on the card as they possibly can. But, jeez. Fatal Four Ways are, like, really unsatisfying matches. You have 6 different 1 on 1 matches as any given two wrestlers roll out of the ring and then we pick one, at random, to win and it never feels like anything is at stake. I’d rather see two matches that were half as long as this one match is going to end up being. Let’s give the win back to Bobby Roode because he pins… oh… Jinder. And that will let there be a rematch of Orton vs. Roode at the next PPV.

Alexa Bliss (c) vs. Nia Jax

Alexa has been champ for a while and they’re heeling the heck out of her and they’re playing up the bullying angle against Nia *HARD*. So Nia is coming in as a physical monster and an emotional underdog. Nia Jax will win in the feel-good match of the night.

And she’ll hold the belt for approximately a week before losing it again. (Remember when Zach Ryder won the IC belt? Yeah. Like that.)

Charlotte Flair (c) vs. Asuka
This is the fourth match that has a shot of being match of the night. It’s got a very good shot at pulling it off. (I’m torn between saying that Miz/Rollins/Bálor will be match of the night and this one will be. I could honestly see this one stealing the show.)
Flair will heel it up and Asuka will play Ricky Steamboat. Asuka’s streak remains intact and she walks out with the belt.

Cesaro and Sheamus (c) vs. Braun Strowman and TBD
This match isn’t about “who wins?”, it’s about “who is going to be Strowman’s partner?”
My guess is John Cena. And Strowman/Cena win the belts.

The Usos (Jey and Jimmy Uso) (c) vs. The New Day (Big E, Kofi Kingston, and/or Xavier Woods) vs. The Bludgeon Brothers (Harper and Rowan)
This match is going to be a strong contender for hottest mess of the night. Give it to the Bludgeon Brothers. Why not.

Kurt Angle and Ronda Rousey vs. Triple H and Stephanie McMahon
Ronda is interesting here. They know that she knows how to fight but she doesn’t know how to wrestle and she doesn’t know how to talk. She’s got metric buttloads of raw potential, but they need to train her and they need to protect her until she’s trained. She gets the pin, of course. She’ll pull Angle out of the fire and save his hind end and pin Stephanie to a huge pop… but the other three will be the ones who carry the match. My guess is that Rousey has less than a minute match time. She’ll beat Stephanie with the armbar and Stephanie will tap out nigh-immediately after 10 minutes of HHH and Angle put on a clinic to show the kids in the back how it’s done.

Daniel Bryan and Shane McMahon vs. Kevin Owens and Sami Zayn
This will be a fun match that will be all kinds of chaotic and will have everyone screaming at the television that they need to do a better job of protecting Bryan. KO and Sami for the win.

I’m thinking that Angle/Rousey vs. HHH/McMahon will be the last match rather than Bryan/McMahon vs. Owens/Zayn. They’ll want to close the show with ticker tape and Rousey waving victoriously to the crowd in photogenic shots that will play perfectly on all of the morning television shows on Monday.

So… what are you expecting to happen?

Or, on the off chance that you’re not going to watch WrestleMania for some reason, what are you reading and/or watching?


Staff Writer
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Jaybird is Birdmojo on Xbox Live and Jaybirdmojo on Playstation's network. He's been playing consoles since the Atari 2600 and it was Zork that taught him how to touch-type. If you've got a song for Wednesday, a commercial for Saturday, a recommendation for Tuesday, an essay for Monday, or, heck, just a handful a questions, fire off an email to AskJaybird-at-gmail.com

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19 thoughts on “Sunday!

  1. Holy cow, the McMahon kids are in their forties?

    (Well, they were always around my age, so, duh?)

    Has it always been common for people in their 40s to be in the main event? Or is it just the golden rule – the McMahons, & Mr. Trip H-McMahon own the gold, so they make the rules?

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    • It’s not that it’s *COMMON*, it’s more that the owners of the company can very easily be made to believe that what is best for business is to have them be prominently featured in important storylines.

      (And the whole “Mister McMahon” thing from the late 90’s was lightning in a bottle that created one of the Best Heels Of All Time and if wrestling is going to fall into any trap, it’ll be the trap of “we can do that again!”)

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  2. Jaybird wants you all to know that, nearly 5 hours in, only two of his predictions have turned out to be correct. Random chance would have done a better job. (He said that! Not me! I wouldn’t rub it in like that…)

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      • Jeez Louise. I was wrong about *EVERYTHING*.

        Well, not everything, but almost everything.
        Stuff I successfully predicted:
        Cedric Alexander winning
        AJ Styles winning
        Nia Jax winning
        Bludgeon Brothers winning

        That’s 4 out of 13.

        I was kinda right about Rousey winning, but I thought that the match would protect Rousey (and by “protect”, I meant “not use”) but she came out guns blazing and put out a strong contender for Match Of The Night. (I think that Charlotte/Asuka was the best match, but other people in the room preferred the Rousey match and I can totally see why they did.) Given that I thought that Rousey would be awful for less than a minute and, instead, she was awesome for fully half of the match, I’m only giving myself a half point for that one. 4.5 out of 13. Ugh.

        I loved seeing Daniel Bryan win. I loved seeing him no-sell.

        I thought that the Strowman match was awful. They’re cutting the tag-team division off at the knees *AGAIN* in service to a monster that they don’t know how to use. It was cute that Nicholas is a tag-team champ as well… but that’s one of those things that is sweet on the lips and bitter in the stomach.

        The Fatal Four Way demonstrated exactly why I don’t like Fatal Four Ways. I’m glad that Jinder has a belt, though. I can’t *QUITE* stop seeing the three man band when I look at him, but I’m getting better at seeing a championship level guy rather than a jobber-for-life.

        Glad that Rollins has a belt. I hope that he and Miz and Balor continue to have good matches trading that belt back and forth for the next 4-6 months or so.

        HOLY COW THAT BROCK LESNAR MATCH!
        Reigns is growing on me. I think that he needs to spend a year fighting around the IC or US belt before moving up to the World Heavyweight belt, though.
        Who could possibly beat Lesnar? Credibly, I mean. Strowman is the only name that comes to mind and he’s currently hobbled by the tag belts and Nicholas.

        Oh, and that Cena/Undertaker match? Good for them. That was a perfect little WrestleMania moment. A 95% squash and the only reason they gave Cena any offense at all was so that ‘taker could do a zombie sit-up.

        I enjoyed the heck out of the show. It wasn’t the best one of the year… but WrestleManias usually aren’t.

        Good stuff all around. Well, except for that Bludgeon Brothers match.

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        • As for the ones I got right:

          Alexander vs. Ali was an awesome match. I expected no less.

          Styles vs. Nakamura was kicky-punchy to distraction but the match actually got pretty good in the last third. The post-match stuff had me excited, though. “Strong Style” might work better on a heel than on a face. I’m looking forward to seeing if it does.

          Nia Jax is *AWESOME*. I loved the moment where Nia yelled at Alexa and Alexa screamed in alarm in response. They did a good job of making Alexa a credible threat, though. Rare to see a David vs. Goliath match where you’re rooting for Goliath. These women did a great job of accomplishing that.

          The three-way tag-team match was a hot mess. The less said about it the better.

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          • still cannot get over how good Ronda looked. I know it was my match of the night, but I think it was because my expectations were so low that they were beat by leaps and bounds. While I was expecting Charlotte and Asuka to be great and it matched that expectation.

            Worst match of the night for wrestling was Strowman’s match, but the side angle made up enough for it to not be the overall worst match of the night. That goes to Brock and Reigns. I get so tired of the one and done moves that come from every single match Brock is in. One move, wait 15-30 seconds, repeat until you are bored to tears…..

            I am not a huge fan of Reigns, but he can at least do a bit of chain wrestling when in the ring with a good technician. Brock…. he needs to go back to the UFC.

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          • Here’s part of the problem: the buildup for the main event for the last month or so has involved Roman Reigns undercutting Brock Lesnar. “He’s a part time champ, he never wrestles…” that sort of thing.

            Which is fine if you intend to have him drop the title to the guy making the criticism. If you don’t, you’ve effectively cut your champion off at the knees and, get this, the guy you had fighting the cut-off-at-the-knees champ couldn’t even beat him.

            They hurt themselves avoidably.

            The good news is that they might have (finally) gotten Reigns over.
            The bad news is that they’ve done so at the cost of everybody on the roster.

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        • This was a weird Wrestlemania, when it came to trying to predict finishes. They really stayed away from the obvious choices, but things still made sense for the most part. I thought it was a good PPV, but i thought it was a bit of a letdown as a Wrestlemania. I came away satisfied, but not excited.

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          • They should have put the Lesnar match in the middle somewhere.

            I thought that Reigns would win and everybody would boo… but Lesnar won and everybody booed.

            Which was weird, after a WrestleMania that had everybody pretty much excited for everything else.

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  3. As an experiment, I’ve been reading through a variety of e-books by indie authors published through whatever Amazon is calling their low-end thing these days. They could all use a copy editor. Even the big publishing houses have gotten sloppy in recent years, but these indies average a missing word or extra word left after some edit every page* or three. Copy-and-paste in word processing is a double-edged sword; finding near duplicate emotion-setting paragraphs a few pages apart is not uncommon. Most of them struggle with pacing and the level of detail.

    I’m still curious about the business model for the authors. I set aside $20 for the experiment, and have paid anything from free to $2 for these individually. Even if the author is getting every dime, they’re not making a living doing this. Is it just scratching an itch? Are they hoping to get picked up by an agent?

    * Page in this post should be interpreted as something fairly small, since I’m reading on my phone. Maybe a third the number of words of a trade paperback page?

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