There’s a new signature video to start the show, not too dissimilar to the previous one.
Kayla Braxton, Booker T, Jerry Lawler, JBL, and Peter Rosenberg are on the kickoff panel. It appears to be overcast and Braxton acknowledged the rain. There are fans near the panel and JBL couldn’t wait to get them to chant his name. Braxton acknowledged that Sasha Banks vs. Bianca Belair match would be tonight’s main event. (If you’re not watching, the pre-show panel is sitting in front of a big backdrop, so you can’t really see anything and there’s not much to look at. Basically, it looks and feels like the pre-show for every other PPV.) They ran down Cesaro vs. Seth Rollins and The Miz & John Morrison vs. Damian Priest & Bad Bunny. Rosenberg let us nerds know how popular Bad Bunny was and said he’s been training every day at the Performance Center. There was a Hall of Fame recap. The announcers and a cluster of fans (some of whom were not wearing masks) applauded JBL. The fans near the panel chanted for Sonya Deville who joined the desk to talk about the tag team turmoil match and the Smackdown women’s title match. They ran down Bobby Lashley vs. Drew McIntyre which opens tonight’s show. As the panel spoke about the match, Braxton started to get excited because she could hear the live crowd cheering in their seats. Enjoy the show, everyone.
WRESTLEMANIA 37 - NIGHT ONE
The first shot was of the stadium as the ring announcer introduced Vince McMahon.
McMahon stood on the stage in front of the entire roster. He said the wrestlers performed tirelessly the past year but something was missing — the WWE universe. He thanked the fans and welcomed everyone to WrestleMania. The wrestlers applauded the fans.
Bebe Rexha sang America the Beautiful. The wrestlers remained on the stage for the performance. The fans cheered as jets flew over the stadium.
Michael Cole, Byron Saxton and Samoa Joe are the announcers.
Cole said they were informed that there is, unfortunately, a weather delay.
Sarah Schreiber interviewed Shane McMahon backstage. Shane said he had goosebumps standing in front of the crowd. He was ready to go and to take out Braun Strowman. He didn’t have a problem with Strowman, he just liked poking fun at him.
Bobby Lashley and MVP interrupted Shane’s interview so they could talk themselves. MVP said McIntyre was not winning the title back tonight. McIntyre barged in and argued with MVP as MVP held back Lashley. McIntyre said mother nature would not help him and he was ready to fight in the back. Jessika Carr and Jamie Noble separated them.
Lashley and MVP left. McIntyre talked to Schreiber about having to wrestle at the PC last year and now the weather was interrupting his match. He was ready to go right now even if he had to fight in the back.
Kevin Patrick interviewed the New Day. Kofi Kingston said they accepted the challenge by AJ Styles and Omos because they were fighting champions. Patrick wondered if they were intimidated by Omos’ size. Xavier Woods said no, because they’ve been this size since they started wrestling (which was funny). Big E showed up as Woods spoke. Big E said we’d find out why they were the best tag team on god’s green earth. Big E massaged Patrick’s shoulder.
Schreiber interviewed Braun Strowman. He was also ready to go.
Kevin Owens spoke about Sami Zayn. He said they met in 2002 and they connected because of their passion for pro wrestling. He spoke about all of the different places they wrestled around the world. In the 20 years they’ve known each other, no two people were talked down upon more than them but they’d get their chance tomorrow. He was going to stun Zayn and if Logan Paul wanted to try something, he’d be ready.
Bianca Belair spoke to Schreiber. She was ready for tonight and was happy for the fans. Schreiber said she was making Herstory tonight.
Seth Rollins talked to Patrick. Rollins didn’t know Patrick’s name. He also kept mispronouncing Cesaro’s name. Rollins was going to prove that he was Mr. WrestleMania.
Schreiber interviewed Miz and Morrison. They said what they always say.
Titus O’Neil and Hulk Hogan entered the stage. O’Neil and Hogan hyped up the crowd. O’Neil came across great here.
Bobby Lashley (w/MVP) defeated Drew McIntyre to retain the WWE Championship (18:21)
McIntyre entered at about 8:40pm ET and the match started at 8:45pm. McIntyre got a big babyface reaction.
They fought back-and-forth until McIntyre hit consecutive overhead suplexes and a neckbreaker. Lashley tried fighting back but McIntyre hit a Northern Lights suplex for two.
Lashley responded with a clothesline and Dominator for a two count. McIntyre hit a headbutt but Lashley came right back with a spinebuster for two. McIntyre hit a reverse Alabama Slam for two. McIntyre seemed to attempt the Claymore but Lashley connected with another spinebuster. The crowd chanted for McIntyre who told Lashley, “bring it, bitch.”
McIntyre hit an overhead suplex and three consecutive Future Shock DDTs for a nearfall. The crowd chanted “this is awesome.”
McIntyre did the Claymore countdown and the crowd loudly chanted along but MVP pulled Lashley out of the ring. McIntyre wiped them both out with a flip dive.
McIntyre blocked a Hurt Lock but Lashley responded with a nice suplex and Flatliner. McIntyre blocked the Hurt Lock again and slammed Lashley into the turnbuckle before applying a kimura but Lashley got a rope break.
McIntyre hit a headbutt but became distracted by MVP. That caused him to miss a Claymore kick and Lashley applied the Hurt Lock. McIntyre tried the Bret Hart counter, pushing off the ropes, but Lashley held on. McIntyre passed out and the referee called for the bell. Lashley retained.
The crowd seemed ready for McIntyre to win but that’s not what happened. The match itself was pretty good.
O’Neil spoke with Hogan, Scott Hall, Kevin Nash and Sean Waltman but they were interrupted by Bayley. She spoke about how huge her show was and wanted props from everyone but they all ignored her, except for Waltman.
There were about five commercials between segments.
Natalya & Tamina won Tag Team Turmoil (14:07)
Thumbs In The Middle Pointing Down
-Billie Kay & Carmella defeated Naomi & Lana
Billie Kay pinned Naomi in about two minutes.
-The Riott Squad defeated Billie Kay & Carmella
Carmella tried to help Kay cheat but the referee caught her. Riott gave Kay a senton off the top for the elimination. Carmella attacked them after getting eliminated.
-The Riott Squad defeated Mandy Rose & Dana Brooke
Rose and Brooke wore matching gear to help make themselves indistinguishable. Rose slipped during her entrance thanks to the wet stage. Brooke tried a senton off the top but Morgan transitioned into a rollup for the pinfall.
-Tamina & Natalya defeated The Riott Squad
Tamina gave Ruby a diving splash for the pinfall win. Tamina and Natalya earn a tag title shot. This was bad.
Cesaro defeated Seth Rollins (11:27)
Cesaro wore black and yellow. Rollins wore black and red.
Cesaro immediately hit an uppercut and went for a swing but Rollins got the ropes. Rollins followed soon after with a superplex into a falcon arrow for two (less than three minutes into the match). Cesaro came back with a variety of uppercuts and a clothesline for two.
Rollins dodged a few swing attempts until Cesaro finally swung him about eight or nine times until his arm gave out. He tried a sharpshooter but Rollins quickly got to the ropes. The crowd wanted another swing. Rollins dodged an uppercut and hit a flying knee and slingblade. Rollins followed with a very nice corkscrew splash for a two count.
Cesaro abruptly hit the Neutralizer for a nearfall. Rollins followed that with a Pedigree for a nearfall. Rollins hit a few strikes and went for a curb stomp but Cesaro lifted up into an uppercut (reminiscent of the Randy Orton RKO years ago). Cesaro then did an airplane spin/UFO (airplane spin with no arms).
Cesaro did a big swing. Cole claimed it was 23 swings, it was more like 19 or 20.
Cesaro followed with a Neutralizer for the pinfall win. Cesaro celebrated like this was a big win and the crowd was happy. Very good match.
Braxton interviewed Dolph Ziggler and Robert Roode. They put over AJ Styles and Omos. Ziggler would welcome Omos with them. Roode knew Styles for a long time and wouldn’t bet against him.
Big E came out on the stage to do New Day’s entrance.
AJ Styles & Omos defeated Kofi Kingston & Xavier Woods to win the Raw Tag Team Championships (9:30)
Omos wore normal clothes. Cole tried to claim that he was 400lbs.
New Day beat up Styles and cut him off from tagging Omos. Woods even let us know that they were successfully cutting the ring in half. Styles finally got enough separation to tag Omos and the crowd popped.
Woods tried a few strikes to no effect. Kingston tagged in and tried an axe handle but Omos grabbed him by the arm and yanked him down. Omos handed out backbreakers to Woods and Kingston. Styles leapt off Omos’ shoulders and took out Woods with a Phenomenal forearm.
Omos gave Kingston a tree slam and covered him with his foot for the pinfall win. This was a good showcase for Omos.
Steel Cage Match: Braun Strowman defeated Shane McMahon (11:25)
Elias and Jaxson Ryker attacked Strowman with chairs before he could enter the ring, specifically attacking his leg. The ref started the match and Shane hit unconvincing kicks to the leg. Shane grabbed a piece of metal off the top of the cage and hit Strowman with it. Shane tried escaping but Strowman yanked him away and drove him into the cage.
Strowman went for a running powerslam but his leg unconvincingly gave out which allowed Shane to slip out and take control. Shane followed with a “coast-to-coast” dropkick for two. Elias and Ryker tried climbing the outside of the cage but Strowman ran into the cage to knock them off (while also knocking Shane down).
Shane climbed to the top and there was a toolbox on top of the cage for some reason. He smashed Strowman in the face with it. Shane climbed out of the cage to the outside but he stuck his hand through to mock Strowman. Strowman grabbed him by the hand and smashed through the cage, which was admittedly pretty cool, and hammered away at Shane.
Strowman pulled Shane to the top of the cage. As they both stood there, Strowman asked him who was stupid now. Strowman chucked Shane from the top of the cage to the ring, which didn’t look fun.
It seemed like the crowd was ready to accept this as the finish, but instead of leaving the cage, Strowman climbed back into the ring and gave him a powerslam for the pinfall win. There was a big fireworks display which I assume they wanted to do earlier but couldn’t.
Michael Cole said it was time to honour the hall of famers when he was abruptly interrupted by Bayley, who jumped into his spot. She said she was taking over for O’Neil and Hogan and cut to the hall of fame video.
JBL, William Shatner, Brie & Nikki Bella, Jushin Liger, Titus O’Neil (Warrior Award winner), British Bulldog, and the nWo were honoured for the 2020 hall of fame.
Steve Austin let us know that WrestleMania 38 in 2022 will be held at AT&T Stadium in Arlington, Texas.
Booker T joined commentary for the next match.
Steve Austin let us know that WrestleMania 38 in 2022 will be held at AT&T Stadium in Arlington, Texas.
Booker T joined commentary for the next match.
Damian Priest & Bad Bunny defeated The Miz & John Morrison (15:02)
Thumbs In The Middle Pointing Up
Bad Bunny had a cool entrance that defied the laws of time.
Priest was going to start but Bad Bunny tagged in to the crowd’s delight. Miz put his hands behind his back and taunted Priest so Bad Bunny punched him in the face. Bad Bunny tackled Miz and hammered away but Miz kneed him in the gut and took over. Bad Bunny countered a takedown into a takedown of his own and Miz bailed to the outside. Bad Bunny used a nice rollup for two. The crowd cheered as he posed. Miz took him down for a moment but Bad Bunny did a spinning leg scissors takedown. Morrison tagged in and distracted the referee which allowed Miz to hit a cheapshot and the bad guys took over.
Bad Bunny fought back and caught Miz in a rollup for two, but Miz took him down with a big boot. The heels worked over Bad Bunny and Morrison did a Spinarooni as Booker watched on commentary.
Miz was too distracted by the crowd so Bad Bunny hit a boot and tornado DDT before tagging in Priest.
Priest beat up Miz and Morrison. He suplexed Morrison into Miz before chokeslamming Miz but Morrison broke up the cover. Priest and Bad Bunny each hit Miz and Morrison Broken Arrows at the same time but they both kicked out.
Priest wiped out Miz and Morrison with dives and Bad Bunny followed with a dive of his own. Priest tried his finisher and Miz countered into Skull Crushing Finale but Bad Bunny broke up the cover.
Bad Bunny gave Morrison a damn Canadian Destroyer on the outside.
Priest hoisted Miz on his shoulders and Bad Bunny hit a flying crossbody for the pinfall win.
This was way, way, better than I would’ve thought. Bad Bunny was great, and Miz and Morrison obviously did their part.
Bianca Belair defeated Sasha Banks to win the SmackDown Women’s Championship (17:15)
Banks had blue and green hair with green and black gear. Belair wore purple. Belair was emotional before the match and the crowd was very into this as it started.
Belair went for a Glam Slam early (which the announcers didn’t catch) but Banks knocked her out of the ring. Banks used Belair’s braid to drive her into the post. Banks tried a suicide dive but Belair rolled through and very impressively pressed her back into the ring. Belair tried a moonsault but Banks caught her by the hair and hit a series of kicks.
(A big negative was the announcers letting us know that this match was presented by the sponsor as the camera panned out to show the logo.)
Banks went for double knees but Belair intercepted and slammed her. Banks tried grabbing Bianca’s hair for leverage again but Belair used it to yank Banks into the post. Belair followed with a crazy delayed suplex.
Belair used tackles, a dropkick, a standing shooting star and a version of the Glam Slam. Belair went for a 450 splash but Banks got her knees up.
They traded counters until Belair hit a powerbomb for two. Banks got frustrated and kicked away at Belair before hitting a tornado DDT for two. Belair followed with a frog splash for two.
Banks became extra frustrated and wrenched Belair’s arm into the rope before tossing her into the steel steps. Banks put Belair into the crossface (using Bianca’s hair for leverage) but Belair got a rope break. They battled for position off the top. Belair avoided a double knee strike and hit a 450 splash for a nearfall.
There was a tug of war with Bianca’s hair. Belair whipped Banks with her hair and hit KOD for the pinfall win. Belair is the new champion.
This was extremely good.
(Michael Cole completely messed up the finish and said the Banks kicked out, even though that clearly didn’t happen.)
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