This Sunday, April 1st, from Miami, Florida, WWE presents WrestleMania 28. I can't help but admit that I am very excited about this WrestleMania. It's not just Rocky versus Cena, but I am confident enough in my love of the industry, and what I feel for what it has become, that I am willing to admit that I'm interested in seeing what these two do, as well as the reaction they will elicit from the fans. Beyond that, there's so many matches on this card that I'm itching to see that I'm truly upset that I am not in Miami this weekend. I see this WrestleMania, if booked right, to be up there with like likes of WrestleManias III, X7, X8, and XX. While I won't be there to see the show, I will be in the WNW Live Blog, so make sure you join us there. Also, please bear with my silliness. I didn't have every action figure I needed, so I got a bit obscure with it. Please appreciate it for what it is, and don't look too far into the substitutions I had to make. It was all in good fun.
Today is a great day to be a wrestling fan with Wrestlemania a few hour away. There has been more buzz for this Mania than there has been for the last few. I have been about during daily activities and have over heard people talking about Wrestlemania. No one is really sure who is on the card other than “Hey did you hear The Rock is back?” True testament to what the man did for the business. More on that later. This has been one of the hardest Pay Per Views to predict in a long time and as a fan it makes me gidddy, was a predictor aggravated. I fear I am going to do really good, or be absolutely terrible. So join myself and the rest of the predictors on what will be a roller coaster of a Wrestlemania.
Ken Predicts - WWE Tag Team Championship Match – Primo & Epico (C) vs Usos (Jimmy & Jey) vs Justin Gabriel & Tyson Kidd
I know this match didn't rate enough in TPTB in WWE's eyes, but this is a match I want to see. I think Primo and Epico have done a solid job with the Titles and they should be facing the Usos for the belts. I'm not so sure about Gabriel and Kidd as a team, but I am happy about them getting a bit more of a push. I don't think it's time for the Colon boys to be giving up their Titles. I want to see a solid feud from them before anyone even thinks of putting the belts on someone else. Okay, I was talking this one aloud and totally changed my mind. Yokozuna is being inducted into the WWE Hall of Fame, the Usos are inducting him and much of their family will be in Miami. When better for them to win the Tag Team Titles? I absolutely have to give this to the Usos. (Sorry, I didn't have any figures even closely resembling any of these guys. We'd have been stuck with a couple Eddies and some dollar store no name masked wrestlers. I'd rather skip them than not give them what they deserve.)
Ken's Predicted Winner – Usos
Gesus Predicts - WWE Tag Team Championship Match – Primo & Epico (C) vs Usos (Jimmy & Jey) vs Justin Gabriel & Tyson Kidd
I think this is a nice gesture to get these guys on the card at Mania. Ultimately I don’t think anyone really cares. I feel bad too. These guys have talent. The Tag Team Division is so lack luster it might be better for them to not bring down Mania. Sorry if that makes me sound really negative but the Tag Division is a great thing that WWE has really forgotten about lately. I hope these guys take this opportunity to really show case their talent and maybe get noticed by management since I doubt the average fan wont even pay attention to the match. I just have to see the Champs retain.
Gesus' Predicted Winner - Primo & Epico
Rikki's Predicted Winner – Jimmy & Jey Uso
Stacy Predicts - WWE Tag Team Championship Match – Primo & Epico (C) vs Usos (Jimmy & Jey) vs Justin Gabriel & Tyson Kidd
Epico & Primo have been entertaining heels in their way, and have been credible Tag Team Champs. It's unfortunate that the months before Wrestlemania have had so much storyline to work through that the Tag Teams have had even less air time than usual. In this match Kidd and Gabriel have been thrown in as filler, and now that the Uso's have pulled their characters together and created a solid team, it's time for them to hold the title and actively defend it.
Ken Predicts - IC Title Match - Cody Rhodes (C) vs Big Show
I'm really torn on this match. I think Big Show should get his WrestleMania moment after all Cody has done to build to this match, but I don't want Cody to get buried as he is climbing the ladder to the top. Big Show doesn't need to be IC Champ at this point in his career, while Cody should only be dropping the strap to continue his way up to the big one. I'd love to see Cody going after Sheamus after D-Bry settles down after WrestleMania, but that's not what we're discussing here. I actually think Big Show is going to win this, but only after something screwy happens – possibly Dusty or Goldy getting involved? This will give Big Show his moment, but not bury Cody. After WrestleMania Cody can complain about it a bit, then go right after Sheamus.
Ken's Predicted Winner – Big Show
Gesus Predicts - IC Title Match - Cody Rhodes (C) vs Big Show
I am excited for this match. Rhodes has done a good job building this match. The promo about the Big Show being a verb was hilarious. Showing the humiliating moments and just being that annoying heel was well done. He needs to show a successful baby face run before I can truly call him a main eventer, thought I would say he is on the cusp. This should be an interesting match one of the many that had me beating me head on the wall. I think Show has really gotten up there in age and is starting to lose a step. I have been going back and forth on will Rhodes creating another humiliating moment for Big Show or will he get DQ’d and lose yet retain. Folk’s I am bringing back another addition of Coin Toss. Heads Big Show via DQ, Tails Rhodes.
Gesus' Predicted Winner - Heads! (Big Show)
Rikki's Predicted Winner – Cody Rhodes
Stacy's Predicts - IC Title Match - Cody Rhodes (C) vs Big Show
Who should win this? If Cody wins, Big Show won't get much of a "Wrestlemania moment". Big Show's shown he's used to that, but shouldn't he get something after all this time? He's not getting any younger, and has certainly more than earned a Wrestlemania triumph. On the other hand, Cody has grown by leaps and bounds since he broke away from being Orton's lackey with Ted DiBiase. He's developed presence, poise and a voice that could take him a long way. Beating Big Show would definitely be a strong recognition of his talent.
I thought about this one as if it was a real, send someone to the hospital fight. If I were Cody Rhodes, I'd have some sort of plan (read "cheat") for dealing with Big Show. I don't know how, but he'll have some sort of assistance from someone that will allow him to win after Show nearly throttles him. Sorry Big Show, I'd love for you to have that moment in the lights, but I think Cody will, in the end, emerge with the title.
Stacy's Predicted Winner – Cody Rhodes
Ken Predicts - Randy Orton vs Kane
I know a lot of people are not impressed with this match, think Orton was just thrown into this match so he had something at WrestleMania, but I'm loving it. I'm a huge Kane fan and any time I can see him in a match with someone who can entertain the fans, I'm thrilled. Honestly, I don't think either of these guys NEED a win here, but of course it would be nice. After they went with the handshake between Orton and Kane last summer, I decided that Kane should win this. Now that he's masked, I want to see him have one more solid run at the top and this is his first step. It won't be any skin of Orton's nose to lose this one, though he will put up one heck of a fight!
Ken's Predicted Winner – Kane
Gesus Predicts - Randy Orton vs Kane
It is a shame that this match had to come together like this. I was really looking forward to Barret v. Orton at mania. This match seems more like a favor to two savory veterans so they could get a pay day. I believe Kane is towards the end of his great career. Though I fear he doesn’t have much to show for it. I know I will get hated for those comments but it is what it is. Orton needs this match to launch him back into the main event picture. Either way, no one will remember this match. There is just way to much on the card. Who would have thought these two would be undercard. (I’ll be saying that a lot.)
Gesus' Predicted Winner – Orton
Rikki's Predicted Winner – Orton
Stacy Predicts - Randy Orton vs Kane
Arrgh! Another tough call. Ken and I agree that neither needs this win, they're both top level and popular talents regardless. For WWE's creative team to be serious about moving Kane away from the lovable monster character that he'd drifted into, he has to win. And not just win, but almost send Orton back to the hospital. This has to be quite a battle to show off Orton and Kane as top level superstars that they are, and keep Kane on a serious tear through the WWE.
Stacy's Predicted Winner – Kane
Ken Predicts - Kelly Kelly & Maria Menunos vs Eve & Beth Phoenix
This is total crap! I understand why it's not Beth vs Kharma, but I don't have to like it! That Maria has a couple broken ribs should make this one easy, but she's on DWTS and I'm sure the WWE wants to keep thing congenial with them. All I hope is that Maria doesn't pin Beth again as that was total bull. I am hoping Kia shows up for this, but only if she's ready to start this feud. At this point I'm going with Kelly pinning Eve, just to get this over with.
Ken's Predicted Winner – Kelly & Maria
Gesus Predicts - Kelly Kelly & Maria Menunos vs Eve & Beth Phoenix
Always great to have a bathroom break on the card. I try to not bury the Divas but there is nothing in this match worth staying for. WWE will continue to make their current dominating roster look weak over a mere mention of them on news networks.
Gesus' Predicted Winner – KK & Maria
Rikki's Predicted Winner – Eve & Beth
Stacy Predicts - Kelly Kelly & Maria Menunos vs Eve & Beth Phoenix
I'd love to see Beth (and Eve, I guess) trounce Kelly Kelly and Maria. Even through Beth's recent title run I didn't get the impression that she gets the respect she deserves for someone of her physique and talent. I'm so hoping to see Kharma back to add some real drama to the Divas. Eve's recent heel turn isn't really working that well for me. Diva screamfest matches with the odd soap opera betrayal just make me want to go wine tasting. However, I'm pretty sure that the powers that be want their guest star to look good, and in a storyline way Eve needs punishment for her cruelty, so I expect Maria and Kelly Kelly will win, after Maria pins Eve. And yes, Kendra, I want an extra half point if I got the ending exactly right.
Stacy's Predicted Winner - Kelly2 & Maria Menunos
Ken Predicts - 12 Man Tag Match - Team Teddy: (Captain) Santino Marella & R-Truth & Kofi Kingston & Zack Ryder & Great Khali & Booker & (Mascot & Flag Bearer) Hornswoggle vs Team Johnny: (Captain) David Otunga & Mark Henry & Dolph Ziggler & Jack Swagger & Miz & Drew McIntyre (Flag Bearer) Vickie Guerrero
I talked to Gesus about this earlier and he mentioned that he as going to predict this match as an elimination match and I had to agree with that plan. I had to agree because it was the only way to get rid of Khali early in the match. Let him come out, make his appearance and get his bonus, then get him out of there. In some ways I feel that way about Henry too. He can take someone else out in the process, but he's been so grumpy since his injury that he's been almost painful to watch. Booker should get a few moves in, get the pop from the fans, then he's out. Santino can get his laughs, bring some fun to it all, then he's out. Otunga can't wrestle his way out of a wet paper bag (though he did something beautiful this weekend – check out the wonderful thing he did on WNW), so then he's out. R-Truth, Kofi and Ryder can then fight it out with Dolph, Swagger, Miz and McIntyre. Then get rid of Ryder. The rest can give us quite the show, but in the end, who will it be? I thought going through this all that it was going to be Team Johnny, that makes the most sense, but what if Team Teddy won, then Laurinaitis went to the Board of Directors to get reinstated, claiming that Long did something illegal in the match. This won't be the end of these two, so I'm going to go with something outrageous, because that's what I do. Every once in a while it works out for me, so I'm going with Team Johnny and it will be McIntyre who gets the final pinfall.
Ken's Predicted Winner – Team Johnny
Gesus Predicts - 12 Man Tag Match - Team Teddy: (Captain) Santino Marella & R-Truth & Kofi Kingston & Zack Ryder & Great Khali & Booker & (Mascot & Flag Bearer) Hornswoggle vs Team Johnny: (Captain) David Otunga & Mark Henry & Dolph Ziggler & Jack Swagger & Miz & Drew McIntyre (Flag Bearer) Vickie Guerrero
I thought this match was going to be a waste of time and is by all means possibly is. I just didn't think there was a point for them to be on the card, but then realized there was no MITB so they needed a way for a lot of mid-cards to get on screen in a meaningful way. There is some good some and and some ugly in this match and its build. After all the screwy who’s in, who’s out, and then back in I could not tell you who is really in this match. I couldn’t tell you who was in this match without looking at the line up. The build of mixing it up was great for entertainment purposes but sort of hard to sell a pay per view with you don’t know who is in the match. Then again this match isn’t selling one ticket. This match has to be an elimination match. It is just WWE’s style and would be even more lame if it weren’t. A few wrestlers I want to touch on. Santino I just don’t see what people like in him. I was live at Elimination Chamber and the crowd was hot for him. I am puzzled why. He is a great worker but really(x3) people? Booker T, I am happy that he is in this. Hopefully that means he will have a limited role all night on announce. He is the soul reason I don’t watch smackdown. Before I go on a rant, lets move on. I am loving that Swagger’s mom is sending him to the ring with his new hair cut. Great that Ryder is getting his Mania moment as well. That boy can recover from back issues quick, good on him. Khali is a great person to have in this match, they really need someone to pin first and get out of there without fear of burying someone more. The person I am really looking to shine in this match is Ziggler. I have said it before and I will say it again. The boy has all the makings to be the next Ric Flair. If the boy can stay healthy and no wellness violations him, not being in the main event next year will be a darn shame. The boy has talent. Not only in the ring, but outside as cheerleader. There should be a decent story told, but at the end of the day, I don’t see entertaining television if Teddy wins. Ace is on a role and is the guy you love and the guy you hate. Walks the fine line very well. I could see the match being down to Ziggler and Santino.
Gesus' Predicted Winner - Team Ace
Rikki's Predicted Winner – Team Teddy
Stacy Predicts - 12 Man Tag Match - Team Teddy: (Captain) Santino Marella & R-Truth & Kofi Kingston & Zack Ryder & Great Khali & Booker & (Mascot & Flag Bearer) Hornswoggle vs Team Johnny: (Captain) David Otunga & Mark Henry & Dolph Ziggler & Jack Swagger & Miz & Drew McIntyre (Flag Bearer) Vickie Guerrero
I wasn't sure I'd like it when the Executive Vice President of Talent Relations started being part of the story, but it's actually working really well. And although there's an all too believable flow chart on the internet for Teddy Long's matches on Smackdown, I like seeing him on a regular basis. I've also liked that they've made Otunga and Santino - who would be hard pressed to be more opposite characters - a regular part of this feud. I could do without the whole Team X vs. Team Y idea, so I'm hoping they'll figure out how to make this match interesting, and then drop the teams. As for the ending, it makes sense to me for evil to prevail, so Laurenitis can continue to annoy everyone, and add "Victorious Team Leader" to his already overlong title. Somehow I feel sure that even though Long would loose control of Smackdown, there will be something he can do to remain a thorn in Laurenitis's side for a while longer.
Stacy's Predicted Winner – Team Johnny
Ken Predicts - World Heavyweight Championship Match - Daniel Bryan vs Sheamus
This is a match I have been chomping at the bit for. I expect a lot from these two and a fabby match because of it. I love that this match was bumped from the card last year, made the dark match, now they're in a main event at one of the biggest WrestleManias we've seen in a long time. These two are going to leave it all out there and could be a match of the year contender as these two guys still have a lot to prove to cement themselves as some of the top players in the company. Saying all this, I see Sheamus winning the Title and really proving he's Champion material, not just that really white guy that Trip has decided to push because he likes him. Sheamus could be leading the company a lot sooner than I previously thought. I do want to throw in that I think AJ will be involved in some way, and D-Bry will end up blaming her for his loss. Hopefully she will either stand up for herself over the next couple weeks, or Sheamus proves to her that D-Bry is a total tool, and possibly she turns into his valet, but that's not the biggest part in this whole thing.
Ken's Predicted Winner – Sheamus
Gesus Predicts - World Heavyweight Championship Match - Daniel Bryan vs Sheamus
As many if not all will say, its great to see the dark match from last year moved to the show and arguable the “co main event.” Had you told me 6 months ago DBD was going to be the champ going into Mania, I would have laughed and told you it was Henry, are you dumb? Well I am once again wrong, and couldn’t be happier. I think DBD is the second best wrestler in the world. This should be a great match between 2 up and coming war horses. Sheamus is an old school mentality wrestler. Not only has he gotten over with the offices he has gotten over with the way less important me. He has proven he is an effective heel and face, and though had a slump, remains to be relevant, exciting and dominate. I don’t see this match going more than like 15-20 mins which is really sad. I would love to see these boys tell a real story, and flat out go in the ring. I think with the amount the office is behind Sheamus, he walks out the winner and DBD runs out of tricks to win, although personally I would prefer him champ. It’s just Sheamus’ time.
Gesus' Predicted Winner - Sheamus
Rikki's Predicted Winner – Daniel Bryan
Stacy Predicts - World Heavyweight Championship Match - Daniel Bryan vs Sheamus
Beaker's cousin Seamus has been a real star, becoming quite the fan favorite for the littles and the long term fans. He deserves a real chance to hold the strap again and show us that he's a real champion's champion. By losing, Brian will have more time and flexibility to perform, since he won't need to tell us how great he is quite so often. He is great, too, so it's time for him to get back to demonstrating it. D-Bry will cheat, but Seamus will thump him in the end for the win.
Stacy's Predicted Winner – Sheamus
Ken Predicts - Rock vs Cena
I know Richard has been sticking with Cena having to win because Cena is there day in and day out, Rocky isn't. That's a great plan, and of course there's the whole 'passing of the torch' thing, even though I don't completely agree with that after all this time. This feud is nothing about passing the torch, and all about Rocky leaving and Cena believing that Rocky just doesn't care about wrestling the way Cena does. There so much emotion behind this one, so many great promos, sadly it won't be followed up by the best wrestling of the night. All in all I expect a lot of energy and the fans will be more than entertained, both will hit their biggest moves, and possibly Rocky will show us a few things we've never seen from him, hopefully. In the end I think it will look like Cena will get the win, but Rocky will pull it out. I agree that there's no good reason for Rocky to win this one, but I'm going with it. It's about darn time Cena doesn't win one! I respect Cena more than most people, and I loved his final promo on RAW, but it was a bit too needy for my taste. I'm going against the grain, against convention and picking Rocky. Please remember that I am wrong more often than I'm right for going against the obvious, but I have to go with Rocky on this one. I am still torn on the possibility that Miz could be involved.
Ken's Predicted Winner – Rocky
Gesus Predicts - Rock vs Cena
First off I want to elaborate on a few things. Any star in the back complaining about Rock being in Mania just needs to be be quiet. I know everyone is saying it but not once while I was talking to people have I heard “Oh hey Mania is this weekend isn’t that Yoshi Tatsu wrestling that one guy?” or CM Punk, heck even Kane or Orty. The draw power from Rock is without doubt amazing. He is single handedly responsible for people paying attention to wrestling again. I know a few people who have said they have only started watching since they heard the Rock was back. That is great for business. As much as you want to hate the Rock for leaving, at least he is giving back now. I have no qualms or hatred for his leaving. Looking back in the Attitude Era, watching stars like Hogan and Flair with their bodies beat up, and Stone Cold never being the same. The drugs, the abuse, the seeing what years in the business does to a person. I respect that he left and is finally giving back. The man is a larger than life character. Larger than life characters are missing in wrestling today. We can argue if it is due to the wellness policy or terrible creative or what but the fact of the matter is they’re missing. It could also be a sign of the times. The Rock’s larger than life character is what is making wrestling cool again, and is what is adding a lot to this match.
Is the Rock going to pass the torch? Will he retain? Will Cena turn heel? The big questions being asked. What I have been dreaming about is being the fly in the room as the agent, Cena and the Rock sit down and talk about their match. Has to be such an amazing thing. I am just as thrown through a loop as many of you. Instead of rambling on about how I think this match will go, I am going to write about how I would book this. I think Rock should win. Without giving too much premium away Rock has interest in returning next year. The Rock is money and a draw (obviously). I would book him and Cena to have another match at summer slam, or something, and make their rubber match at next years Mania. Yes, WWE has a knack for putting people under in their home town, but I just don’t see Rock coming back to go under in his home town. It would be a great way to keep Cena in the story line without the over exposure we are used to with him in the main event scene. I think this last year with the build to Mania and Cena was great. I just fear it will get old, and will be too predictable for WWE. I just think it would, in the end, be better for business. This is another match where we can make a logical argument for either side to win. I think a decade after Rock and Hogan, it is symbolic, but who really cares? This is still going to be a match for the ages and I think just one match won’t be good enough. I am, either way, excited no matter the out come. Well, unless Miami Riots.
Gesus' Predicted Winner - Rock
Rikki's Predicted Winner – Cena
Stacy Predicts - Rock vs Cena
I'm probably solidly in the minority who like John Cena the person, and Dwayne Johnson's movies, but really isn't enjoying most of the Cena v. Rock insult trading card game. They've had some good bits, and I like that Cena's worked in some edge to his work from time to time, but I've not been all that interested in the story as such. Now if Cena actually loses, we'll have to go through months of him moping around questioning his faith in himself and his fans faith in him – which was no fun the last time. If The Rock wins or loses, he'll be back on his movie sets, until his schedule allows other appearances in the WWE. Not a problem, right? Well, it might be – it's tough to be the people's champion if you aren't the champ, and worse if you've lost to a fruity pebbly guy with lady parts. I'm leaning towards this match setting up a new feud for Cena – someone will come in and help The Rock even if he doesn't really need it, probably without him even knowing it happened. Rocky will pick up the win, Cena will learn who screwed him over, and a new feud for Cena will be born. If we're lucky, it will bring out edgy, cranky Cena, and mopy sad Cena won't be heard from at all.
Stacy's Predicted Winner – The Rock
Ken Predicts - WWE Championship Match – CM Punk (C) vs Jericho
Yay! This is the other match that I am really excited about. I think Jericho has been holding back in the ring since his return. I really would have loved to see Jericho – the Jericho who was the first Undisputed Champ – going against Punk as he is today. That clash of egos would blow the roof off the place, even though there really isn't a roof over this match. I'm sure this match is going to be awe inspiring and could very well steal the show for the ring work, as well as the passion. As much as I love Jericho, I don't see any reason for him to go over here. He's done a great job of both building up and tearing down Punk since his return, but why go through all that only to beat Punk at WrestleMania? That makes less sense to me than Rocky losing only to pass the torch. I think after an amazing struggle, Punk is going to win and retain the Title. I don't think their feud is done with this match, so I'm wondering what they're going to come up with next, what Jericho will do to get into Punk's mind. Punk will be winning this one, even though Jericho will be convinced that Punk either cheated or did something that made the win not count. Actually it could be quite fun to watch Jericho back peddle on RAW after it's all over.
Ken's Predicted Winner – Punk
Gesus Predicts - WWE Championship Match – CM Punk (C) vs Jericho
Here is a feud that has really picked up steam in the last few weeks. Though I hate what Punk did on Monday, and how nonsense I think it was, it’s still is going to be a great match. This match has the potential to be the Macho Man v. Steamboat of Wrestlemania 3. Sadly probably should have been Greg ‘The Animal’ Steele. These two can work, and the fact they haven’t bumped before should make this really excited and fresh. You can make a logical argument for either way this match will go. Punk has had a great run as champ and what has made both the WWE and the WHC matches seem great is the “lengthy” run that they’ve been given. This is a solid feud. The only thing I have a problem with is that Punk isn’t larger than life. I will touched on that when talking about Rock. I hope this match gets enough time. 25-30 mins would be perfect. These two have quite the story to tell, and better get enough time to tell it. These two have comparable styles, and I hope they mesh them. Punk needs this match to launch what I believe his falling stock. This will solidify him as a main eventer. I don’t see Jericho coming back to WWE only to lose to 3 straight PPV’s. He has to go over. I am looking for potentially Jericho making Punk snap and creating a nice fall from straight edge angle. It would be great having him reduced and tempted like his "family." It would make for great television and a great feud that if done right could get us through the post Mania slump.
Gesus' Predicted Winner – Jericho
Rikki's Predicted Winner – CM Punk
Stacy Predicts - WWE Championship Match – CM Punk (C) vs Jericho
This should be a good match to watch, though it's a tough one to call. I like Jericho and his work, and I'm really enjoying Punk right now too. Who gets the rights to call themselves 'best', since that's what this match really is? Jericho's not above a bit of cheating, in much the same way the land is not above the sky. He'll pull out all the stops to be able to claim he's the best at what he does. But just because Punk is a face he's not oblivious to this, thankfully, and I think its kept his character from becoming boring. Leaping to a conclusion, in my opinion Jericho has more opportunities to scheme and snarl if he doesn't win, and Punk can continue to push Laurinaitis a little longer as a champ.
Stacy's Predicted Winner – CM Punk
Ken Predicts - Streak/End of An Era – Undertaker vs Triple H w/ Special Guest Ref HBK
A lot of people think that HBK as Special Guest Ref makes this match less special, I think it makes the match more. The very first HIAC was between Taker and HBK. I watched it last week, how Trip was locked out of the cell and how big of a deal this match was. If this was Taker's last WrestleMania, then it would make sense for him to face HBK, or possibly Trip as there's so much history there, in a HIAC, but I don't think this is Taker's last WrestleMania. I have to believe it's not because I will not be there to see this and there's a possibility I might make it to New Jersey next year. That last shred of hope is what's keeping me from being as upset as I would otherwise be. Though I don't want to see Taker face Brock next year, I'm still holding out hopes that Taker faces his brother in his last WrestleMania, but that's my own personal feeling. I have never made any qualms about being a huge Kane mark.
The problems I have with this match, as it sits, is that Trip suffered a neck injury not that long ago (at the hands of Nash backstage). It might be that I'm a chick, but certain people going into certain matches when they get to a certain point in their careers, I worry. I am worried about both Trip and Taker in this match. In some ways I think they have too much to lose going into a match where they will straight up try to destroy each other. They were right on the money when they said that they're from a different era. It's not just the Attitude Era, it's the era where they fought tooth an nail for their spots on the roster and did everything they could to get to the top. Miz whined about not being allowed into the locker room, that's nothing compared to some of the things that used to happen backstage.
I think it's all of those things that makes me worry that one of these guys really won't be able to leave the ring under their own power. I'd hope that they're both careful, but accidents happen, even to the best in the industry, and neither of them are as young and spry as they were twenty years ago, or even ten. But, after saying all that, Taker is going to win and the streak will remain intact. To do anything else would be unconscionable. Oh, I hope we see Paul Bearer, but I'm not holding my breath. Almost as good would be to see Kane come out to support his brother, but again, not holding my breath.
Ken's Predicted Winner – Taker
Gesus Predicts - Undertaker vs Triple H w/ Special Guest Ref HBK
First thing's first. I think it would be a darn shame to have this match without Good Ol' JR calling it from announce. This is the end of an era and who better to call it than the voice of the Attitude Era? The build of this match is an interesting tale for me. If I were creative I would have booked a completely different scenario for Taker to return. That’s a different tale for another time. When they started the storyline between the two, I was really? 4 years in a row between what is ultimately the same story line between HHH and HBK? Then they announced it was going to be a HITC match, and I was instantly marking out. I was so excited and anxious. Then they announced HBK as the special guest Ref. The balloon was instantly deflated. I have found out that I am apparently in the minority on that view. I think HBK really takes a lot from this match. Though I guess it’s needed for the end of an era. A great way to solidify, and punctuate this storyline. I have come around because there is a lot that could happen in this match and I am just being a pessimist. There are a lot things that make me excited for this match.
I am really looking forward to seeing how they are going to get the cell together. As far as the match is concerned there is a hell of a story to be told. Very many unknown factors too. Will HBK call down the middle? Will he screw someone over? How brutal is this match going to be? Will we get to see blood? Will they stop it if there is? Are they going to leave the cell? How will Takers body hold up? Those are just a few of the things running through my head for this match. These guys better have the green light to just go. I know last year they were fined for chair shots to the head, but I don’t think they worry about fines. I wonder how long this match is going to go. I see a minimum of 30 minutes and just as emotional if not more than last year.
I still think you have to be crazy to think Taker will lose this match. There is no way Taker can go 19-1. My opinion the man doesn’t have that great of a legacy without it. Putting HHH over would also do nothing for the business. HHH doesn’t need the rub in this match. I have maintained that if Taker was going to lose he had to give the rub to a younger talent. It’s just better for the business. Also as much as WWE wants to make us forget, I couldn’t buy HHH winning finally, after this third match. Yeah, third time is the charm, but that’s not how the match is booked so I just don’t see it as logical. I hope there isn’t a screwy ending to this match. There is so much to offer with this match, I would hate for it to have a poorly booked finish. I fear that’s just my TNA side showing but it is what it is. I am going to watch this match as a fan, and as kid to simply enjoy this match. I am excited.
Gesus' Predicted Winner – Taker
Rikki's Predicted Winner – Triple H
Stacy Predicts - Undertaker vs Triple H w/ Special Guest Ref HBK
And now, the big one. Number 20? It's really got to be Undertaker's 20th win at WM28. The question is how we get there, and does HBK screw over his best friend? I think it's reasonable to presume Taker will be off TV for a while after this show, I don't think we can presume so much for HHH. Will Laurenitis try to help screw over HHH? Is HBK working for Laurenitis, the Board of Directors, or himself? I wouldn't be surprised to find that TV storylines and internal corporate management struggles are related somewhat, and we see the disagreements between HHH and Larenitis start boiling over during the shows. HHH should have the time and motivation to deal further with Laurenitis if he loses. I think it's safe to say Taker will win, despite HBK's aid to HHH, and HHH will be reminded who his friends are.
Stacy's Predicted Winner – Taker
This WrestleMania has the possibility to be the best we've seen in almost a decade. The WWE has really stepped up their game these past couple months, something they needed to do to bring some of their fans back. The WWE has been struggling without any competition and I think the product has severely suffered for it. I'm hoping this WrestleMania will turn things around, I worry that they will drop the ball during the post WrestleMania lull. Here's to hoping that doesn't happen. I also want to mention that I wouldn't be shocked to see JoMo make a return, but that's neither here nor there. See you in the Live Blog!
KB, Gesus, Stacy & Rikki