Friday, March 26, 2010

Wrestlemania XXVI: Preview and Predictions

WrestleMania XXVI takes place this Sunday night at 7 (eastern time) from the University of Phoenix Stadium in Glendale, Arizona; home of the Arizona Cardinals. My lack of blogging shouldn’t be taken as a sign that I’m not looking forward to ‘Mania, because I absolutely am! On paper, this is a very good card with a solid build.

It still amazes me how far 'Mania has come. Now, cities bid on getting the event. That’s why Wayne Gretzky (above) was wearing this shirt a few years ago in a bid to get the biggest show of the year in pro wrestling to come to the desert. Next year the event comes to Atlanta and the Georgia Dome. As far as Sunday's show, several of the matches have a chance to be great and of course one of those is the rematch of Shawn Michaels and The Undertaker. This also is probably the healthiest roster the W.W.E. has had going into a 'Mania that I can ever remember. Here’s how I see the matches and the order in which I think they will take place:

Money in the Bank Ladder Match (Christian, Dolph Ziggler, Kane, Shelton Benjamin, Jack Swagger, M.V.P., Matt Hardy, Evan Bourne, Drew McIntyre and Kofi Kingston)
Opening with M.I.T.B. is a great way to get the crowd hot. Ten wrestlers is the most this match has ever had; normally it is seven or eight so some people believe that there are too many people in this match. But it may lead to more action as you can constantly have guys going in this match. I’d love to see Evan Bourne do a shooting star press off one of those really big ladders. If that were to happen, it would be the spot of the night! As far as a winner, the safe bet is Christian. But I'm going to go with McIntyre. Six months ago I would have said Kingston, but his stock has plummeted since his feud with Randy Orton fizzled.

Unified Tag Champs ShoMiz (The Big Show/The Miz) vs. John Morrison and R-Truth
Not much has been made of the fact that Miz is the U.S. Champ and so technically he holds three titles; including the World Tag Team and W.W.E. Tag Team titles. I’d say that’s a bit much to try and put this guy over. I’m hoping Morrison and Truth win this one.

Randy Orton vs. Cody Rhodes vs. Ted DiBiase in a Triple Threat match
It will be interesting to see what Legacy looks like at the end of this match. I think there will be a bit of a swerve in this one with Cody siding with Randy against Ted, giving Orton the win.

Rey Mysterio vs. CM Punk; if Punk wins, Mysterio joins the Straight Edge Society
Right now, Punk is one of the best heels in the business. As much as I like Mysterio, it would create some interesting t.v. if Rey loses. If these two are given enough time, this could be one of the best matches on the show.

Bret Hart vs. Vince McMahon in a No Holds Barred match
The history between these two is well-documented. Last week on Raw, Vince promised that Bret would be screwed again. Something will definitely happen, but I still see Bret coming out with the win in what will probably be the final match ever for Bret Hart.

Triple H vs. Sheamus
The two are buddies off-screen, so let's see if that translates into good chemistry in the ring between these two. I think Hunter takes this match.

World Champ Chris Jericho vs. Edge
Another match that has potential to be great. I’d like to see Jericho win this and extend the feud for a while.

The Undertaker vs. Shawn Michaels in a no disqualification, no count-out retirement match
The Undertaker's undefeated 'Mania streak vs. Michaels' career is on the line. There are four ways I see this match ending:

1- Michaels wins clean.

2- ‘Taker wins clean.

In either of the two above cases, I think this match would close the show and give fans a feel-good ending.

3- HHH interferes and helps Shawn win.

I could see a scenario where Hunter hits ‘Taker with the sledgehammer and Michaels gets the pin, but Shawn for some reason doesn't see Hunter cheating on his behalf. He finds out the next night on Raw and goes ballistic.

4- Triple H interferes and causes Michaels to lose.

In either scenario 3 or 4, this sets things up so Michaels has an emotional breakdown similar to the one at the Royal Rumble. Michaels takes some time off and then comes back later this year to build things with Hunter for next year's 'Mania.

At this point, I see no reason for 'Taker to lose at Wrestlemania but after hearing that a few years ago Mark Henry was going to beat Undertaker and stop the streak, I'm not so sure. If this is going to be Michaels last match, nothing would be better to see him beat The Undertaker. All in all, this is going to be a great match. As great as last year? That's tough to do, but these two veterans always bring their best so I wouldn't be surprised.

W.W.E. Champ Batista vs. John Cena
Batista’s stock has really risen as a heel. I like Batista either as a heel or a babyface. I’m also a fan of long title reigns and so I would like to see Batista hold onto the strap. More than likely, though, this match closes the show with Cena once again the champion.

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