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Following a two night Wrestlemania that produced plenty of magical moments it has to be said that the WWE Universal Championship match between Goldberg and Braun Strowman was anything but magical and is a match that will not live long in the memory of WWE fans. 

This match was expected to main event however it's final position on the card was co-main event of night one behind The Boneyard Match between The Undertaker and AJ Styles, this cinematic masterpiece was worthy of ending any Wrestlemania.

The Universal Championship match itself was more Kick-Off show than main event however in fairness to Goldberg and Braun a series of unfortunate events leading up to Wrestlemania put them in a tough situation. Firstly Goldberg's original challenger Roman Reigns rightly pulled out amid health concerns, what irked fans however was the fact that the WWE continued to promote Reigns versus Goldberg at the show of all shows. Reports then surfaced that Braun Strowman would be the man to replace Reigns and Triple H suggested the story of 'The Monster Among Men' replacing 'The Big Dog' would be played out in a 'unique way'. This wasn't the case however and the half hearted announcement with no explanation on Strowman's inclusion made it difficult for fans to invest in or be excited about a match with zero build or history.

It's hard to argue Braun doesn't deserve a chance, he came close in the past against Roman Reigns and Brock Lesnar so him going over at Wrestlemania was definitely the right outcome.

The fact that the WWE didn't play out the situation on TV or explain his opportunity could actually create an angle on who will challenge the the new Universal Champion on Smackdown. It could almost be an open challenge situation with superstars believing Strowman was gifted an opportunity out of nowhere, so what's stopping them challenging him for the title? So who's ready to "GET THESE HANDS!?"



If there was ever a chance to give Cesaro the push that many feel he deserves then this could be it? The Swiss Superman is a world class in-ring performer and appears incapable of producing a poor wrestling match. Its probably fair to say that his average promo work has held him back somewhat as captivating an audience on the mic shares equal if not more importance than captivating them in the ring.

Cesaro also has recent history with the Champion as he helped Sami Zayn defeat Braun at Elimination Chamber for the Intercontinental Championship. His stable mates Nakamura and Zayn have had there time, but now it's Cesaro's turn to challenge for gold and with Sami as his mouthpiece he might just have found a way to become the total package and finally challenge for one of the top prizes in WWE.



Following a lengthy spell on the sideline through injury The Celtic Warrior finally returned back in January and looks to be in the best shape of his career. His comeback so far has been relatively low key, consisting of squash matches and a short feud with Shorty G but now that the cobwebs have been dusted off it could be time for him to make a real statement. 

Despite winning just about everything there is to win in the WWE he is yet to win the Universal Championship, this could act as fuel for a fire burning stronger than ever to get back to the top of that ladder. Sheamus certainly won't be intimidated by Strowman and this could be the perfect way to integrate him back into the title picture.

Jeff Hardy


Following my point on a possible open challenge scenario who better to answer the call than Jeff Hardy. If there is one return that had me jumping out of my skin and crying like a baby then it was the surprise return of the Hardy Boyz at Wrestlemania 33 and the crowd would get behind him like no-other.

The popular high flyer is probably my wildcard pick as doesn't have much if any real history with the former Wyatt Family member but new rivalries have to start somewhere. It would also be interesting to see Jeff's extreme style go up against Strowman's power game and I for one would expect it to create some exciting matches.

Roman Reigns


As the original challenger to Goldberg at Wrestlemania this is the most obvious choice for Strowman's first title defense. Without Roman pulling out Braun wouldn't have even been on the card let alone fighting for the Universal Championship so 'The Monster Among Men' owes the 'The Big Dog' at title opportunity doesn't he? 

With a history between the two and the champion coming up short against Reigns in the past he may decide to go down the 'you had your chance' route and deny Roman another opportunity which could be an interesting angle.

Universal Championship No.1 contender tournament anyone?

Big E


Last year Kofi Mania provided us with one of the best storylines and Wrestlemania payoffs in recent history, it truly was a magical and historical moment that I'll never forget. Kofi Kingston became the first ever African American WWE Champion and he did it all with the support of his brothers and New Day members Xavier Woods and Big E.

I've considered the thought of the New Day breaking up or Big E turning heel however thinking about it they're too good a tag trio to rip apart and remove from an already floundering division. So why not have this year belong to Big E's single push with Kofi and Woods taking on the tag team duties.

It's easy to forget that Big E was a former NXT Champion and formidable singles competitor as he has been such an integral part of The New Days tag team success in recent years. These two also have some history going back to the many battles between the New Day and the Wyatt Family and I could actually see him become the second ever African American WWE Champion.

Other opponents I considered were "The Fiend" Bray Wyatt and while there is history between the two I would prefer him to fight for redemption rather than the Universal Championship. His feud with John Cena ending with the truly spectacular Firefly Fun House match should be the blueprint for Bray Wyatt until he makes amends for all his past failures. 

John Cena going for his record seventeenth WWE Championship is something I also considered however if and when Cena finally breaks the record it needs to be epic. Right now I'm not sure that a match with Braun Strowman would be enough to make the moment special. Also I'm intrigued to see what affect the Firefly Fun House has on him and his character before deciding what his next move should be.

With the time of year, potential draft and trades between brands you could also look at RAW's former WWE Champion Brock Lesnar who made the switch to Smackdown this same time last year or NXT's North American Champion Keith Lee who looks certain to become a star on the main roster in the near future.

I really hope the WWE give us a title feud that not only builds Braun as a credible Universal Champion but also elevates his opponent in the process, whether that be reviving the career of a Sheamus or Jeff Hardy or giving Cesaro or Big E the push they deserve.

Who would you chose as Braun Strowman's first challenger? Get in touch on twitter @wnwnews. 

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