by BROCK KOLLER
If you were to walk down the street of any major city, you’d see beautiful skyscrapers with jaw-dropping architecture and breathtaking views. You don’t think about the contractors, how the building materials were brought to the site, what it took to get that arch constructed, or how long it took to create such a marvelous landmark. You just look up and say – This is Awesome.
Welcome my friends to an analogy for WrestleMania. The build may not be much to look at, but the event itself usually is.
The past two WrestleManias have been quite fun to watch with shocking events – Brock Lesnar ending The Undertaker’s undefeated streak, Seth Rollins cashing in his Money In The Bank briefcase; nostalgic moments – Hulk Hogan, Stone Cold Steve Austin, and The Rock opening the show, DX and the NWO putting an end to the Monday Night War; and emotional performances – Daniel Bryan overcoming all odds and being crowned World Heavyweight Champion, Sting fighting in his first ever WWE match.
This year – the road to WrestleMania has been a bit windy, thanks in part to the unfortunate number of injuries to the WWE roster, but the show of shows must go on.
With that said – here are my predictions for WrestleMania 32, which takes place in AT&T Stadium this Sunday live on the WWE Network.
Kalisto (c) vs. Ryback for the United States Championship
This match is an old-school WrestleMania grudge match in my book. It’s to the ilk of a Ted DiBiase vs. Brutus Beefcake from WrestleMania V or a British Bulldog vs. Warlord from WrestleMania VII. Just two guys of the era battling it out in a nice mid-card match. Though it’s now a pre-show match, it still has that feeling. I think Kalisto’s quickness will be Ryback’s undoing. Sorry Big Guy.
The Total Divas vs. B.A.D. & Blonde
Well, this is one way to get the other Divas on the card. Hey, it’s better than a battle royal where all but four of them get eliminated after 30 seconds. It will be interesting to see what Lana and Eva Marie can do in the ring. Also, it’s nice to see Emma get some time in the main roster spotlight. Should this be the last ride for Brie Bella, let’s give her the victory and add some Yes! chants to the celebration.
WINNERS: The Total Divas
The Usos vs. The Dudley Boyz
The Usos have been opening up WrestleMania for three years now. But being on the card is still being on the card. Bubba and D-Von are having their first Mania match in over a decade and you know they will want people talking about their big return. Because of that, I don’t see the Usos being able to Uce their way out of this one, not with the Dudleys trying to make a statement – that they are more than just tables.
WINNERS: The Dudley Boyz
Andre the Giant Memorial Battle Royal
Who should win? Big Show? Kane? A Social Outcast? I don’t see any of them winning. I don’t really see anyone else on the roster winning either. Not Goldust. Not R-Truth. But – just throwing it out there – maybe it’s time for a certain Club to debut at Mania and since this match is back on the main card, there might be a possibility for that to that to happen. Just when you think Big Show is going back to back – he gets eliminated by the winner and soon to be former NXT Champion Finn Balor.
WINNER: Finn Balor
The New Day vs. The League of Nations
New Day rocks. New Day rocks. League of Nations not so much. League of Nations not so much. League of Nations is a very talented team of individuals, but they aren’t meshing well as a unit. I see them losing to the red-hot New Day and then going their separate ways.
WINNERS: The New Day
AJ Styles vs. Chris Jericho
Forget that we’ve seen this match three times already; it still feels brand new to me. And who would’ve thought that we’d see AJ Styles at a WrestleMania. Well, we’re getting it. And he’s going up against a man who is Teflon in that he can lose numerous times over, but his credibility remains intact. Come on guys, he lost to Fandango at Mania a few years ago. Fandango. And still Y2J is seen as a legit threat because he is the best in the world at what he does – one of way of putting it. But this post-rubber match might be the one to steal the show. But if everyone is expecting it to steal the show, does it really steal the show or does it take the show as expected? Either way, this has the potential to be a WrestleMania classic.
WINNER: AJ Styles
Kevin Owens (c) vs. Sami Zayn vs. Dolph Ziggler vs. Zack Ryder vs. Sin Cara vs. The Miz vs. Stardust in a Ladder Match for Intercontinental Championship
This is certainly a hodgepodge of Superstars. You got “Indy Darlings” Kevin Owens and Sami Zayn. You got crowd favorite Dolph Ziggler. You got crowd hated The Miz. And then you got three others who have all had their moments of popularity – but not very recently. I’m torn – as a human being, I’m so happy for Ryder, Cara, and Stardust for making onto WrestleMania. They work hard, are at every show and give their 100% every time they are out there. But as a wrestling fan, I’m a little annoyed. For weeks, we were getting invested in a program between Owens and Zayn. I was ready for a look back to their indy careers and their feud in NXT. I was ready for promos with emotion and realism. I was ready for the good friends, better enemies taglines. I was ready for a true battle between two of the best. But then The Miz was thrown in. Then Dolph Ziggler loses a match which meant he was not wrestling at WrestleMania and then the next week he inserts himself into this match. Then the other three pop up out of nowhere and are now number one contenders for the IC title. Again, happy for all involved, but as a wrestling fan, I want believability, I want consistency, and I just want things to make sense. That’s all I want. Well, also I want an exciting ladder match and I think I’m going to get it. What I also think is that Kevin Owens is going to find a way to retain his title. KO-Mania!
WINNER: Kevin Owens
Charlotte (c) vs. Becky Lynch vs. Sasha Banks
If this match was determined on best theme song – Sasha Banks would win it hands down. But it’s not – at least, I don’t believe it is. Anyhow, I’m still going with Sasha to pick up the victory. I think maybe Charlotte’s pops, Ric Flair, will interfere, somehow taking Becky out of the equation and Sasha will boss her way in and get the win. Yes, boss is now a verb. This has the makings of an excellent women’s wrestling match.
WINNER: Sasha Banks
Dean Ambrose vs. Brock Lesnar in a No-Holds Barred Street Fight
Barbed wire baseball bats and chainsaw still won’t be enough for Dean Ambrose to take down the Beast. Paul Heyman, that’s another story. But I don’t think Ambrose has enough in his arsenal to get a win over Lesnar. I know Dean will take Lesnar to his limits – got to keep Dean strong – but Lesnar will find a way to victory.
WINNER: Brrrrrrrrrrrrrock Lesnar
Shane McMahon vs. The Undertaker in a Hell in a Cell Match
If Shane wins, he gets control of Monday Night Raw and The Undertaker will no longer be able to wrestle at WrestleMania again.
What stipulations we have here. First, it’s a Hell in a Cell match, so you know Shane McMahon is going to do some impressive elbow or coast-to-coast dropkick from the roof of the cage. Put a chip over that square on your bingo card, now.
Then you have what happens after this match is over. Should The Undertaker win, everything remains the same and Shane goes back to managing his tech companies and buying sneakers. Should, however, Undertaker lose and Shane win, this will mark Taker’s last WrestleMania match. Could this really be Taker’s final WrestleMania match? If this was supposed to be Undertaker vs. John Cena in Undertaker’s final match – then maybe they are sticking to this being Taker’s final year and he won’t be wrestling by Mania 33. And maybe he’ll wrestle Cena at SummerSlam or Survivor Series for his final match. In which case, this being Taker’s final WrestleMania makes sense.
Also if Taker loses and Shane wins, Shane gets control of Monday Night Raw. WWE themselves said in Shane’s return promo that things need to change. Will they really keep Raw status quo after all of this? But what really would change if Shane wins? We’d get a nah-nah-nah hey-hey-hey goodbye promo Monday night for The Authority and Vince and then what? A tournament to bring back the Cruiserweight title? A 60-minute iron match between Sami Zayn and AJ Styles? The return of Brawl For All? How would Shane really change Monday Night Raw? It’s a tough one.
The main issue is will The Undertaker still be around for next year’s WrestleMania? That’s what am I basing my prediction on. And the answer is – I am hoping we are able to see what we should’ve seen this year, next year – Taker vs. Cena in Taker’s final match. So with that, I am saying The Undertaker retains his 1 loss record and defeats Shane McMahon. Then maybe on Monday Night Raw – I don’t know- Mick Foley reveals he has the lockbox from Shane and is now the owner of Raw. Who knows? What is that lockbox anyway and why hasn’t anyone mentioned it ever again?
WINNER: The Undertaker
Triple H (c) vs. Roman Reigns
Like it or not. You can’t stop it. You have to accept the inevitable. Roman Reigns is your new top star in the WWE. Roman Reigns is your new face of the company. Roman Reigns will be your new WWE World Heavyweight Champion at WrestleMania. It’s a done deal. And, honestly, if Triple H retains, is that the right thing to do for the betterment of the company? No. Reigns is fresh, a new persona, and let’s see where he takes the WWE. It’s time to give Roman a chance. #GiveRomanAChance Though, don’t fret. He could turn heel on The Rock, right? Then we’d totally be behind him.
WINNER: Roman Reigns
So that’s it. Add in a sprinkling of Fifth Harmony, The Rock, perhaps a Stone Cold appearance, some Flo Rida, and an awkward backstage segment with Snoop Dogg and Road Dogg and you got yourself WrestleMania 32.
Enjoy the show.