The single biggest wrestling show of the year is this weekend and we have a LOT of stuff to cover.
Let’s meet our esteemed panel…
Chad French: I write about wrestling on this website. I also enjoy Pabst Blue Ribbon in a non-ironic way. Possible drinking problem.
Drewcifer Jones: Co-host of The Road Home From Wrestling podcast and all around swell guy.
Anthony Harper: Lifelong wrestling fan,new father and a Cubs supporter from back when that meant something.
Jim Williams: Another lifelong wrestling fan and the only human being alive to love Aqua Teen more than me. Pretty solid drinker.
Lee G: Journalist. Reporter. Pro Wrestling Enthusiast. Maker & Owner of Lee G News. Cincinnati Reds fan. ‘Macho Man’ Randy Savage is Lord.
Jamie B: Another lifelong wrestling fan and brings a woman’s touch to this bunch of weirdos.
Josh Martin: Special shout out to Josh who had major neck surgery this week and still came through. Thank you my man.
Travis D: Lifelong wrestling and horror fan responsible for the
#IndyPowerRankings and Drunken Horror Adventures.
and now our latest contributor…
John Hatfield: Another Co-host of The Road Home From Wrestling podcast and writer at fieldofreviews.com
Raw Women’s Champion Ronda Rousey vs. SmackDown Women’s Champion Charlotte Flair vs. Becky Lynch (Winner Take All Match)
Chad French: We knew this was happening in November and they finally get around to putting things in place just recently. Surely they wouldn’t be dumb enough to turn the entire fanbase against them in the main event AGAIN this year…right? Becky wins.
Drewcifer Jones: Becky Lynch has to win this match. You can screw the fans on any other match. You can’t do it on this one. Becky makes Charlotte tap for the win.
Anthony Harper: Hmmm… winner takes all and 2 of them are Champs? I’m confused by all the Ronda leaving rumors, so I’ll take Becky.
Jim Williams: We all need the unification was coming after Asuka lost. Everything is screaming Becky for a great moment, but WWE sure knows how to disappoint. Pick: Becky Lynch
Lee G: The Man.
Jamie B: I’m going to ignore the rumors of Rousey leaving for this one. Rousey has been a dominant force, but that doesn’t overshadow Becky Lynch’s journey heading into this match. I’m assuming this has been building to a 4 Horsewomen face off. Everyone is pulling for Lynch here, so I’m going to be annoying and go with Rousey. She’s meant to be the baddest woman on the planet, so how could she lose?
Josh Martin: The Man makes Charlotte tap and the fans go home happy… 7 hours later. This show is waaaay too long and half of it is terrible.
Travis D: Becky beats Ronda to send the fans home happy.
John Hatfield: The Irish Lass Kicker Becky Lynch has to end this show holding both titles, if not this 6 month build will be absolutely pointless.
WWE Champion “The New” Daniel Bryan vs. Kofi Kingston
Chad French: Another situation where they backed themselves into a corner. Kofi has to win or that place will riot. Daniel has been doing an amazing job and can always win it back later. KofiMania BAYBEEE.
Drewcifer Jones: Either way this one goes will be the right decision. Kofi winning caps off this surprising organic storyline. Daniel winning just continues his incredible heel championship run. This is the hardest match to pick this year. I’m going with Daniel Bryan because that’s what my heart says.
Anthony Harper: I have to go with Kofi just because it would be a great story.
Jim Williams: I really think that Bryan is going to keep the championship because of some interference. Kofi will take the championship at Summer slam. Pick: Bryan
Lee G: Daniel Bryan.
Jamie B: Kofi Kingston’s journey to this match has purposely mirrored Daniel Bryan’s journey a few years back, especially with the “B+” talk. Kingston more than deserves this match; it’s been a long time coming. I think Bryan will start strong, and we will see some interference on the outside between Big E and Xavier Woods trying to keep Erick Rowan from costing Kingston the match. Ultimately, I see Kingston getting the win. He’s come so far and deserves this Mania moment.
Josh Martin: DB beats Kofi, fans boo again.
Travis D: Kofi Kingston wins the title to usher in a new era.
John Hatfield: My heart says give Kofi a chance as champion & sometimes the heart wants what it wants. Kingston finally hits a grand slam.
Universal Champion Brock Lesnar vs. Seth Rollins
Chad French: I’m sorry Seth but someone has to lose…you know what? Screw it, Seth wins too. Happiness all around.
Drewcifer Jones: I miss when Brock used to hop up on the ring apron during his entrance. He’s a gonna win this one. I love Brock. His matches are always awesome. I wouldn’t be surprised if John arena gets added to this match somehow and wins the title. Brock is my pick.
Anthony Harper: Seth keeps pushing he is doing this for everyone in the locker room that hates Brock and doesn’t want him there. I may be overthinking this one, but Seth with help from the Raw locker room.
Jim Williams: Seth Rollins will make like Wrestlemania 31 and walk out with the belt. I think Brock will be ready and this will easily be one of the best of the night.
Lee G: Seth Rollins.
Jamie B: We still have Brock Lesnar as our part time champion, which is sometimes comical but often frustrating. While I enjoy Lesnar, I enjoy seeing a champ on a weekly basis even more. With the talk of Dean Ambrose leaving WWE and Roman Reigns’ recent return, it would be poetic to see one last Shield moment here, but I’m not holding out hope. I think we’re going to continue to get trolled here by our mostly absent champion; Lesnar will get the win and we will possibly see him vs Reigns in the very near future.
Josh Martin: Brock wins…boo. He isn’t going anywhere.
Travis D: I get this weird feeling Brock is going to retain because I don’t see Becky, Rollins, and Kofi all winning. With Roman back, I feel like he’ll be the one to unseat Brock.
John Hatfield: Brock Lesnar, because I’m not falling for your old tricks again this year Vince!
Triple H vs. Batista (No Holds Barred Match)
Chad French: Batista has been asking for this match for years to pay HHH back for making his career…I doubt that the Game loses this.
Drewcifer Jones: Batista better win this match. Look for run ins, and all kinds of smoke and mirrors. Batista wins to end this sort of long term feud.
Anthony Harper: Batista because I think HHH is done with the ring and wants to focus on managing. Plus, when has a retirement match every stopped anyone from coming back?
Jim Williams: The way that Batista has constantly left WWE in the past he deserves to retire Hunter. I hope they destroy each other and Batista comes out on top. He always gets a raw deal. Pick: Batista
Lee G: HHH.
Jamie B: Who’s gonna give me what I want? I’ve always been a Batista fan, but even moreso now after seeing him portray Drax in the Guardians movies. Triple H’s in ring career is on the line with this match. While I can’t see him honestly being done, I also know he is usually good about putting his opponent over as of lately, so it’s difficult to say who will come out on top of this one. As much as I enjoy Batista, Triple H has more to gain from a win, so I think The Animal will fall to The Game at WrestleMania.
Josh Martin: HHH puts over no one and ain’t retiring so he wins.
Travis D: Triple H. I doubt Batista has any long term plans with WWE.
John Hatfield: It just so happens that Batista & HHH’s original Mania match back at 21 was in Hollywood. Luckily Batista has a career there now, because Hunter is going to avenge never beating Batista & finally get that W.
Shane McMahon vs. The Miz (Falls Count Anywhere Match)
Chad French: There is no reason for Shane to win this match. Miz needs this for his fresh babyface run and to avenge his dad or something.
Drewcifer Jones: We are about to see how good the Miz has truly gotten. I think this is going to be great. They might as well bill this one as “Highspots: The Match”. Miz wins and defends his Dads honor. Wouldn’t it be great if somehow we get a Vince run in and that’s what cost Shane the match?
Anthony Harper: WHY IS THIS STILL A THING? Miz wins (but a twist, if Miz loses it will be b/c Vince comes in and helps Shane).
Jim Williams: It is weird having a face Miz, but I love the Miz. Shane also never wins at Wrestlemania. Pick: Miz
Lee G: Shane.
Jamie B: I was one of many who were frustrated by Shane McMahon winning the title of Best In The World. His feud with The Miz hasn’t been one of my favorites by a longshot, but I always enjoy seeing The Miz’s dad on TV. I’m sure Shane will destroy a table or maybe one of his hips, but will ultimately will lose to The Miz, who is always resourceful and sometimes dishonest in his tactics.
Josh Martin: Miz beats Shane because Shane jumps off something tall and cant get up.
Travis D: The Miz. Shane does his annual Mania job.
John Hatfield: I wonder what Shane will try & jump off of this show?? Either way, it’s going to cost him the match & allow The Miz to become the best in the world. Like we all know he already is.
Roman Reigns vs. Drew McIntyre
Chad French: Roman just beat cancer y’all…twice. I think he may have this one.
Drewcifer Jones: Roman will have to overcome insurmountable odds since outside interference is certain in this match. I think Roman will win with the help of Dean Ambrose.
Anthony Harper: Drew has dominated this whole thing and would kind of crap on Reigns being the top dog, so give me Roman.
Jim Williams: I actually think this will be a great and physical match. Drew needs to win this so he can be the top heel to face Rollins at Summer Slam. All that being said, no one else just beat cancer and are at their first Wrestlemania back. Pick Reigns
Lee G: Roman Reigns.
Jamie B: This is probably the match I am least excited for, mainly because Drew McIntyre is on my nerves for reasons too lengthy to include here. I’m stoked that Reigns beat this battle with leukemia and hopeful that he is in good health. This match gives us another opportunity for one last Shield moment, and Reigns has much more to gain from a victory here; he needs to reestablish himself and prove he hasn’t lost a step. I think Reigns gets a clean win.
Josh Martin: Roman wins, he defeated cancer so Drew shouldn’t be a problem.
Travis D: Roman Reigns wins to give him some momentum.
John Hatfield: Wouldn’t it be crazy if Drew McIntyre continued his reign of terror? It would be, because Roman Reigns wins this easily.
WWE Women’s Tag Team Champions Bayley & Sasha Banks vs. Beth Phoenix & Natalya vs. The IIconics vs. Nia Jax & Tamina (Fatal 4-Way Match)
Chad French: My heart says the IIconics. Actually it says anyone that isn’t named Natalya, Tamina or Nia. Everyone else is cool.
Drewcifer Jones: I want the IIconics to somehow win this through comedic shenanigans. You know what? That’s my pick. IIconics win in hilarious fashion. They can’t lose every match right?
Anthony Harper: I have no idea where this is going, so Nia and Tamina
Jim Williams: The other teams deserve this in no way at all. Why is Nia Jax and Tamina involved in everything. Hopefully a no-brainer. Pick: Sasha and Bayley
Lee G: Beth and Natalya.
Jamie B: I’ve always been a fan of Beth Phoenix, so it’s exciting to see her returning. Bayley and Banks were the obvious choice to win the women’s tag titles, but I’m not sure if they are destined for a long title reign. Natalya and Phoenix winning would make for a great moment, but I suspect the IIconics will somehow manage to slip in at the right time and steal a win. They have the best chemistry out of all 4 teams in this match and would be controversial and interesting champions.
Josh Martin: I’m rooting for the…IIconics (does pose). They need the straps.
Travis D: Bayley and Sasha retain.
John Hatfield: Nattie wears Anvil’s jacket to the ring as a tribute to her late father & also takes the pinfall to the IIconic’s who walk out new champs.
AJ Styles vs. Randy Orton
Chad French: I think they blew Randy’s big spot on SmackDown. AJ wins.
Drewcifer Jones: I have no clue what a win here does for Randy Orton. I’m going with AJ Styles. It’s almost guaranteed this will be a rematch on tv two days later. Stupid WWE rematch crap.
Anthony Harper: AJ.
Jim Williams: This will be great if they both bring it, and this is a huge match up of legends. I feel that Styles should never lose and I pick him. Pick: Styles
Lee G: AJ Styles
Jamie B: It’s a little sad that I honestly can’t recall how this match was put together. No doubt it’ll be great, I’m just drawing a blank on these two. I’m going with Randy Orton, RKO outta nowhere, a Styles Clash or two, and Randy will get the pin. Either way, I’m good.
Josh Martin: RKO beats AJ so the feud continues.
Travis D: Orton wins with an RKO. This has gotta be a way to begin a way to freshen up AJ’s character.
John Hatfield: Have either of these guys actually had a match in the last month? Randy Orton hits an RKO & picks up the victory.
United States Champion Samoa Joe vs. Rey Mysterio
Chad French: If Rey is hurt and they give us Cena/Joe I will be up for it. Either way Joe deserves this shit.
Drewcifer Jones: This will be really good. Samoa Joe has to win. A win here can help him start climbing back up the card.
Anthony Harper: Joe.
Jim Williams: With Almos and Mysterio wrestling again on Smackdown, I really feel he finds his way in this match. I also feel that he will win. Pick: Andrade
Lee G: Rey Mysterio (by DQ)
Jamie B: Rey Mysterio and Andrade Cien Almas had some killer matches on Smackdown, so I’m happy about Mysterio getting this title shot. Joe winning the US title was somewhat of a surprise, but well deserved. I think Mysterio will win at Mania, which will hopefully lead to another run of matches between he and Almas.
Josh Martin: Joe kills Rey, probably a squash.
Travis D: Samoa Joe retains.
John Hatfield: Samoa Joe walks in as champion and walks back up that ramp as champion.
Intercontinental Champion Bobby Lashley vs. “The Demon” Finn Bálor
Chad French: The Demon wins and we get Lashley/Lesnar MMA rules at Summer Slam.
Drewcifer Jones: This is my “who could possibly care?” match of the night. I’m guessing Finn wins because unfortunately Lashley is heading up the card.
Anthony Harper: I swear to God if The Demon loses to Bobby Lashley, I’m challenging Vince to a match. Haha. Finn aka The Demon wins the title back.
Jim Williams: Finn needs to win this and Bobby Lashley is absolute trash. Don’t waste the demon on this trash can as well. Pick: Finn
Lee G: Lio Rush (I don’t know! Something is gonna happen…lol)
Jamie B: The return of the Demon! I hate to say it but I am not big on Lashley as IC champ. Nothing against him, it’s just simply not holding my interest. Balor came back from injury after relinquishing the Universal title and has been struggling to get back to the top ever since. I assume we see Lio Rush causing issues outside the ring, but Balor will overcome and will pin Lashley to become our new champion.
Josh Martin: The Demon always wins, new champ.
Travis D: Balor wins the title without controversy this time around.
John Hatfield: Big Demon Daddy Bálor doesn’t lose when he’s all painted up.
Kurt Angle vs. Baron Corbin (Kurt Angle’s Farewell Match)
Chad French: Kurt Angle goes out a winner if this is who they stay with. Corbin needs a reboot in the worst possible way. Let’s just hope Kurt’s neck survives this.
Drewcifer Jones: “You come in on your back. You go out on your back” Baron Corbin wins because Kurt Angle that’s the way it should be.
Anthony Harper: Dumbest match ever and my only hope is that all of Kurt’s friends kick Baron’s ass before the match and Kurt win!
Jim Williams: The secret Cena match will be him vs Angle. Sorry Corbin, but no one gives a shit about you. Angle beats Cena for the final match. Pick: Angle
Lee G: Kurt Angle
Jamie B: There are maybe 4 people in this entire world who want to see Angle vs Corbin. I think Corbin comes out and John Cena interrupts, taking Corbin out and putting Cena in the match with Angle to give him a proper farewell match. Angle definitely wins here and gets his big send off at Mania done the right way.
Josh Martin: Corbin beats Angle. Tradition says Kurt puts the guy over and fans boo the f out of it.
Travis D: Kurt Angle wins quickly and then Cena comes out and Angle does the job to Cena.
John Hatfield: I have a feeling this won’t be the actual match at Mania. For Kurt’s legacy, I pray he doesn’t take a loss on his way out to Capt Snooze Baron Corbin.
SmackDown Tag Team Champions The Usos vs. Ricochet & Aleister Black vs. The Bar vs. Shinsuke Nakamura & Rusev (Fatal 4-Way Match)
Chad French: I would honestly be good with any of these teams winning but the Usos just re-signed for 5 years. It’s still them.
Drewcifer Jones: The NXT call ups get the win. They’re getting pushed hard mid card style. This is a must win for that plan to work.
Anthony Harper: I think fans want to see fresh faces as Champs. R and AB in what I think might turn out to be a really good match.
Jim Williams: Jimmy and Jey sign those big new deals, and it probably includes holding the belts too. Pick: Usos
Lee G: The Usos. They deserve an actual title defense ON PAY PER VIEW and not the kickoff show. I love Shinsuke, I love Ricochet, but I’ll be pulling for Jimmy and Jey. (bars!)
Jamie B: So, I didn’t realize this WASN’T a Mania match until they made it official on Smackdown. The pairing of Nakamura and Rusev is an odd one, and I’m not sure if Nakamura is even sticking around, so they’re out. I’m thinking we’re going to get something new and see Black and Ricochet as our new champions.
Josh Martin: Usos keep the belts because they’re the best.
Travis D: I see The Usos retaining here, because there’s just no storyline going in. This is a complete kickoff show match even if it doesn’t end up on the kickoff show.
John Hatfield: The Uso’s penitentiary is going to lock up all these teams & retain the gold.
Andre the Giant Memorial Battle Royal
Chad French: Lars Sullivan has to come in at some point right?
Drewcifer Jones: I wish Elias would win this, but I think it’s going to go to one of the new guys. My guess is Velveteen Dream debuts and wins. Gosh I hope not though….
Anthony Harper: Braun wins.
Jim Williams: WWE will do something stupid and have Rob Gronkowski or Pat McAfee win. Pick: me at the Liquor store getting a refill.
Lee G: I haven’t the slightest idea!
Jamie B: Past winners have included Cesaro, Big Show, Baron Corbin, Mojo Rawley, and Matt Hardy. Braun Strowman challenged the SNL guys for some odd reason, so they’ll be a part of this as well. It would be incredible to see EC3 win this and establish himself on the main roster. Realistically though, I have to go with Strowman, especially with seeing his name so closely associated with this match over the past few weeks.
Josh Martin: Braun has to win. Via SNL stupidity I’m sure.
Travis D: Braun because he doesn’t have shit else to do.
John Hatfield: Ali (minus the Mustafa). This guy has been on a roll here lately. Braun is a logical choice, but he’s too focused on the dumb SNL Weekend Update guys.
WrestleMania Women’s Battle Royal
Chad French: Poor Asuka. This is hers to lose.
Drewcifer Jones: I’m going to go with Asuka. I’m sad she isn’t in a singles match for Mania. Hopefully she will get this as a consolation prize.
Anthony Harper: Naomi wins.
Jim Williams: This will be Lacy Evans. Pick: Lacy Evans
Lee G: Naomi
Jamie B: Last year, Naomi walked away with a win after eliminating Bayley. This year, she will also compete and will no doubt be one of the last women standing. Asuka will also participate in this battle royal, and I hope we see a lot out of her, especially after she dropped the title to Charlotte. I’m really pulling for Nikki Cross to win this year. She is fierce and unique, and would be a great choice to win and establish herself in a singles run to follow.
Josh Martin: Asuka wins because she has to or it’s pointless
Travis D: Shayna Baszler. Don’t know if she’s in it, but she’s my pick anyway.
John Hatfield: Asuka, strictly as a pity victory for suddenly taking the SD Women’s Title off of her. If Lacey Evans doesn’t strut down the half mile ramp & then back up I’ll be highly disappointed.
WWE Cruiserweight Champion Buddy Murphy vs. Tony Nese (Kickoff Match)
Chad French: Buddy Murphy retains until someone better comes up and or in to the division. Hell give it to Lio.
Drewcifer Jones: Other than Lashley, are these the two blandest wrestlers in WWE? Probably. It won’t matter though as they can both wrestle their asses off. I think Tony wins because they’ve really been putting in the work pushing him. You know, through winning matches!
Anthony Harper: Buddy.
Jim Williams: Buddy Murphy is the man and he should stay the man. He really deserves to be competing for bigger titles. Tony has been a jobber for the most part. Pick: Buddy
Lee G: Buddy Murphy
Jamie B: The cruiserweight division has been getting stronger and stronger, and I am overly excited about this match. Both men are talented and both would make for great champs, but Murphy has worked tirelessly to bring prestige to the title and he isn’t ready to let it go. I hope Nese gets another shot at the title in the future, but he won’t win at Mania.
Josh Martin: Murphy wins I guess… who’s Tony Nese?
Travis D: Buddy Murphy retains.
John Hatfield: In the battle of the abs, Tony Nese leaves as the new king of the cruiserweights in the match that should steal the preshow.
Raw Tag Team Champions The Revival vs. Curt Hawkins & Zack Ryder
Chad French: I love the Revival but this has feel good story all over it. New Champs.
Drewcifer Jones: The Revival lose this match. They must be punished!
Anthony Harper: The losing streak ends and the Major Brothers win. Curt starts his own Wrestle Mania streak, it’s a funny story line. Revival just never caught traction in the WWE.
Jim Williams: Hawkins and Ryder because Vince says Fuck the Revival.
Lee G: The Revival. Crenshaw P thinks they are the best f*cking thing ever since Arn & Ole, so I’ll give em the nod.
Jamie B: My good friend Dylan predicted this match days ago, and blew me up when it was officially announced. I’m so torn because I love The Revival, but it would be such a fun moment to see Hawkins not only break his losing streak, but to walk away from Mania with a title. Forgive me, Dash and Dawson, but I have to go with Ryder and Hawkins.
Josh Martin: The Revival because Cornette likes them.
Travis D: Revival because again, no storyline.
John Hatfield: It breaks my heart, because The Revival are my favorite tag team currently, but Curt Hawkins’ ending his losing streak is a Wrestlemania caliber moment. Curt Hawkins & Zack Ryder win the Raw tag straps.
I think we are all looking forward to Sunday and to see how right and or wrong that we were. Thanks to everyone for reading and please come back soon!
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Drewcifer Jones- @Drewcifertweets
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Anthony Harper @ harper2354
Lee G @therealleegnews
Jamie B @BolshoiB00ze
Chad French right here.
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