WrestleMania 24 is here with the tagline ‘The Biggest WrestleMania Under the Sun’ coming to you from The Florida Citrus Bowl in Orlando, Florida.
WrestleMania 24: The Biggest WrestleMania Under the Sun
JBL Vs Finlay in a Belfast brawl is what starts off WrestleMania 24, or WrestleMania XXIV [we are in roman numerals now]. Oh, it is a Brawl, the two of them throw everything at each other, including trash cans and kendo sticks. Finlay flies through the ropes at one point, despite his best efforts, and being as hard as anything, he is no match for JBL’s Clothesline from Hell. If you like hard-hitting matches with a hint of hardcore, this one is for you. [4.75/5]
The Money In The Bank ladder match is next up and sees John Morrison, Carlito, Shelton Benjamin, yes people he is back in this match, CM Punk, Mr. Kennedy, MVP [United States Champion], and Chris Jericho. As always Shelton is one of the best things about these kinds of matches, he always has this magical ability to make me smile and believe he can do it. Carlito and Mr. Kennedy are doing some great little comedy spots in this, along with some great wrestling.
John ‘of many names’ Morrison is also an absolute highlight in this match, doing some really innovative things, including a submission spot with Jericho on the ladder. You need to just see it to believe it. There is also a return during this match, with MVP close to winning Matt Hardy appears and takes him out of the match. This one is a wild ride. This might be controversial but after how this match went, Jericho maybe should have got the contract and not CM Punk. [4.75/5]
Batista Vs Umaga is for brand supremacy with Batista representing SmackDown and Umarga for RAW. This is another big boys slapping meat in a brutal hard hitting match. This feels like a real fight and has what Survivor Series should have. It’s just an absolute fight and something I personally really enjoy, definitely an unsung hero of this card. [4.5/5]
Kane Vs Chavo Guerrero was nothing, just 11 seconds. I can’t really talk about it other than Chavo deserved better. [0/5]
How do you even put into words the emotional turmoil and show-stopping moves that have created one of the greatest WrestleMania matches of all time? Shawn Michaels Vs Ric Flair is the standard bearer when it comes to what a WrestleMania and retirement match should be, for me nothing has compared before or since on the grandest stage of them all.
This match is just phenomenal, from the nods to Flair’s career to the chops and moonsaults, everything was on point. The figure four leg lock is put on Micheals expertly, and even though Flair is in his twilight years in wrestling he can still move quickly and smoothly with his most well know moves. He even shows us why he is the dirtiest player in the game by kicking Shawn in the balls and then later, after removing the turnbuckle pad, to distract the referee, he pokes Micheals in the eye.
The most emotional moment of the whole night is right at the end, when Micheals looks at the beaten and broken Falir, saying “I’m Sorry, I Love You” before hitting Flair with a sweet chin music for the win. [5/5]
Maria and Ashley, who are both Playboy cover girls, this was a different time, are facing off against the team of Beth Pheonix and Melina. Pheonix is the current Women’s Champion while Melina was the champion at last year’s WrestleMania.
This match is better than last year but Ashley is still quite green and not smooth, that will come with time. Maria, on the other hand, has so much potential. Her performance here is great and she looks like someone taking wrestling seriously. The big problem is that Melina and Beth are already so good that you can see the clear difference in ability between the teams and that really brings the match down. [2.5/5]
Next up is Randy Orton defending his WWE World Championship against Royal Rumble winner John Cena and Triple H. Both men have come off of injuries, Triple H was out last WrestleMania while Cena returned early at the 2008 Royal Rumble. This might be the birth of ‘Super Cena’ as we see his strength on full display, lifting both of his opponents, at various points, onto his shoulders. This one doesn’t hit the emotional punch of Flair Vs Michaels but it really is a barn burner of a match. Triple-threat matches can either be a disaster or a triumph and this one is the latter.
Everyone gets their stuff in and we get multiple moments where one wrestler takes on the other two men simultaneously. This match is also more fast-paced than many fans are used to when it comes to a Triple H or Randy Orton match, everyone benefits from this pacing. It’s hard-hitting, it’s vicious, especially between HHH and Cena, and full of great submission moves. It’s like all three are trying new things here and it works. [5/5]
Deep breath people, we now have a match? a fight? I’m not even sure. Floyd “Money” Mayweather Vs Big Show is a whole 11 minutes long and I think that was too long for this. I get this is meant to be an attraction match, a spectacle but is it needed? probably not. This is also another year where Big Show is in a nothing match. I will say seeing Mayweather inside the ring with the biggest man and the tallest referee I have ever seen is comical, this whole thing is side-splittingly ridiculous. If you need a good laugh, this is the match for you. The ending is disappointing through [1/5]
Now for our main event of WrestleMania 24, where we will see Edge defend his World Heavyweight Championship against The Undertaker. Edge is also looking to end the streak but can he do it? Will he be the one to finally achieve this? He doesn’t and this match is alright but It feels like maybe this shouldn’t have been the main event tonight. I know this happens with WrestleMania, the crowd and the audience at home are normally fatigued by this point, and that is a huge factor here. More importantly, I personally didn’t enjoy it. [3.5/5]
Match of the Night: JBL Vs Finlay | Shawn Michaels Vs Ric Flair | John Cena Vs Triple H Vs Randy Orton
Match To Avoid: Kane Vs Chavo Guerrero | Ashley & Maria Vs Beth Pheonix & Malina | Floyd “Money” Mayweather Vs Big Show