WrestleMania 28: End of an era
Hello everyone, and welcome to the final edition of WrestleMania Rewind. We’ve finally come to the end of our long journey, with our final review of WrestleMania 28. We’re just a day away from this year’s mega event and before we get to that, we’ve taken a look at all the past WrestleManias as I gave my reviews and analysis. Today, we’ll be looking at WrestleMania 28, an event where Rock competed at a WrestleMania after 8 years! The past year saw the foundations being laid for a Rock – Cena match, which was billed as ‘Once in a Lifetime’ encounter. This year, we’ll be seeing it again. Yes, logic does not apply in WWE.
WrestleMania 28 came to us from the Sun Life Stadium in Miami Gardens, Florida. The main matches on the card were Rock vs Cena, which was the main event of the show, along with Triple H vs The Undertaker in a Hell In A Cell match with Shawn Michaels as the special guest referee, and CM Punk vs Chris Jericho for the WWE Championship. This PPV also saw record buy rates and revenues for PPVs in the history of the business. The card once again opened with the WHC bout between Daniel Bryan and Sheamus, who won the Royal Rumble. Without further ado, let us jump right into it.
Lillian Garcia opened the show by singing ‘America The Beautiful’. Two fighter jets flew over the Sun Life Stadium. Surreal atmosphere as we gear up for the opening bout.
Sheamus defeated Daniel Bryan (With AJ) for the World Heavyweight Championship
The opening match of the evening saw the Celtic Warrior taking on the American Dragon. Loud ‘YES!’ chants even before the show kicked off. A lot of fans came from all over the World to cheer Bryan Danielson as he walked in as the World champion. You could tell people were excited to see a guy who dedicated a decade of his life honing his craft being the World champion. The bell rang, but Bryan kissed AJ first, before turning to a big boot from Sheamus for the pin and the win! You could tell the crowd was angry for that. A poor opening ‘segment’ put Sheamus over; the crowd didn’t like, and rightfully so.
Kane defeated Randy Orton
While the crowd was still upset, it was time for the second match of the night. Kane faced Orton in what was a decent match between the two. They got about 11 minutes, as opposed to the opening match which got only about 18 seconds! The end came when Kane choke slammed Orton from the second rope for the pin and the win.
Big Show defeated Cody Rhodes for the WWE Intercontinental championship
The next match featured Cody Rhodes defending his IC title against the Big Show. I remember Cody being one of the most successful IC champs heading into the match. He was also rocking his protective mask at this point, during his ‘Dashing’ Cody Rhodes gimmick. Then he grew a moustache. Anyway, the match only received about 5 minutes, with the end coming when Show KO’d Cody to win the WWE IC title. Show was in tears after winning the belt. This showed that the main event would be receiving 40 minutes at least.
Kelly Kelly and Maria Menounos defeated Beth Phoenix and Eve Torres in a tag team match
Maria was just another guest who thought she could perform. She was wrong. The match got about 6 minutes which saw her going over the WWE Diva’s champion. And WWE wonders why no one buys into their Divas division! It was just a filler that should have been replaced by a Beth – Natalya match.
The Undertaker defeated Triple H in a HIAC match with Shawn Michaels as the special guest referee
The placing of the match on the card was good, as the people were getting restless with the matches that took place before this. This match pumped up the crowd and got about 30 minutes, with 15 more minutes for their entrances. An amazing match that saw great story being told by all the three performers. The crowd was loud and on its feet for the entirety of the bout, which was also the match of the night. Great brawling by the two veterans, as Taker repaid the favour for last year’s beat down by Triple H. The end came when Taker hit the Tombstone piledriver for the pin and the win. Post match, Shawn and Taker helped Triple H up, as the three received standing ovation from the capacity crowd. True WrestleMania moment right here.
Team Johnny (David Otunga (captain), Mark Henry, Dolph Ziggler, Jack Swagger, The Miz, and Drew McIntyre) (with John Laurinaitis, Vickie Guerrero and Brie Bella) defeated Team Teddy (Santino Marella (captain), R-Truth, Kofi Kingston, Zack Ryder, The Great Khali, and Booker T) (with Theodore Long, Hornswoggle, Eve Torres, Nikki Bella and Aksana) in a twelve man tag team match to decide the GM for both RAW and Smackdown!
Why was this featured on the card? No one knows. Maybe to book Ryder like he was a nobody. The match got 12 minutes on the card. Why wasn’t this amount of time given for Sheamus – Bryan? You don’t question the higher powers I guess. Anyway, the end sequence saw everyone getting their finishers in, and when Ryder was about to go for the Broski boot, Eve distracted him which allowed Miz to give the SCF to Zack for the pin and the win to Team Johnny. Post match, Eve kicked Zack downstairs.
CM Punk defeated Chris Jericho for the WWE Championship
The next match saw Punk taking on Jericho. Their feud started in January when Jericho returned. He almost won the Rumble, and later got into a bitter feud with Punk, which also saw the controversial instance when Jericho poured alcohol over Punk. Anyway, their match got over 20 minutes, which is the right way to go at WrestleMania. These two put on a wrestling clinic, and got great reception from the crowd. The end came when Punk trapped Jericho in the Anaconda Vice as Jericho tapped out to give Punk the win. Great match between two exceptional performers.
The most anticipated match of the night was a ‘Once in a lifetime’ affair between Cena and The Rock. This was a collision of generations, which made it memorable. Going into the match, Rock was in no ring shape, and hence blew out within 6 minutes into the match. Getting into ring shape is different from being in shape. Anyway, it was a 30 minute encounter that the crowd was hot for. The end saw The Rock giving the Rock bottom to Cena for the win, and the place went nuts! The crowd made this match memorable, but the match in itself was mediocre.
Analysis: *** ¾ (Out of 5 stars)
The highlight of the night was the Taker – HHH match, and the best technical match of the night was between Punk and Jericho as expected. The Rock – Cena match delivered only on the hype basis, but the match itself was pretty average. Anyways, that does it for the final edition of WrestleMania Rewind. It’s been an absolute blast revisiting the previous WrestleManias, and reviewing all of them. It’s time for WrestleMania 29, as the fans from all over the world gear up one more time for the entertainment extravaganza.
Check out the complete series here: WrestleMania Rewind