WWE WrestleMania XXVIII logoWWE WrestleMania XXVIII

WWE WrestleMania Results: The Best and Worst of Each Match

James DoubleUAnalyst IApril 2, 2012

WWE WrestleMania Results: The Best and Worst of Each Match

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    WrestleMania 28 is in the books!

    A few deficiencies aside, there was lots to like about tonight's show.

    I'm going to do a quick run-down of each match, pick the best and worst performers or moments, throw out a few random thoughts, and hand out some made-up awards.

    Very scientific stuff.

    I'll also throw out some thoughts on each match's implications for the WWE moving forward, and some possible storylines that might arise from them.

Epico & Primo vs. the Usos vs Tyson Kidd and Justin Gabriel for the Tag Titles

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    I got to say, I loved this match.

    It's sad to me that the state of the tag division in WWE is that the belts are defended in a dark match and one of the three teams available was thrown together last minute.

    What's good is that all six men worked well together to put on an entertaining contest.

     

    Best Team: The Usos

    I have trumpeted the Usos for some time now, but this was some of their best work. They seemed the most in tune of all the teams, they had the best combo moves (including one Uso setting up an opponent on his brother's shoulders for a Samoan Drop) and were impressive overall.

    All three teams did well, however.

     

    Best Spot: Tyson Kidd

    Kidd slipped under the other two legal men who were on a turnbuckle setting up a Superplex. Kidd lifted (or tilted, whatever) both men, sending them crashing to the ring.

    Strangely, Kidd, who was closest to the ground, looked worst off afterward, but the move itself was stellar.

     

    Award: Money for Nothing

    They earn this award because the match was money, and you got to watch it for free!

     

    Going Forward:

    I predict that things in the Tag Team division will (sadly) remain about the same, but I do see a future for Kidd and Gabriel as a full-time tag team.

Daniel Bryan vs. Sheamus for the World Heavyweight Title

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    First, the D-Bry/AJ promo:

    Weird, but totally in keeping with Bryan's attitude recently.

    AJ dancing around saying "Yes" should have been funny, but she wasn't doing it nearly Daniel Bryan-y enough.

    As to the match itself...

    I missed it!

    I literally did not see it.

     

    Award: April Fools Prank of the Night

    I don't know if that's what WWE was thinking; in fact, I imagine it's to set up a feud going forward, and that in the interests of time, this match was the one that could be most easily dropped, despite Daniel Bryan's abilities.

     

    Going forward:

    I see this ending AJ's association with Bryan. I expect Bryan to blame AJ for his loss and demand she stay away from him.

    He'll then get his rematch, lose, and then demand more opportunities, Christian-like.

Randy Orton vs. Kane Forgettable

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    It's sad that Bryan vs. Sheamus was 18 seconds and this one got to go the distance.

    It wasn't a bad match, but no one cared; there were no stakes.

    No bests here.

     

    Worst Match: of the Night

    Award: Least Predictable Finish

    Going Forward: Who cares?

Cody Rhodes vs. the Big Show for the Intercontinental Title

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    It's kind of sad that Big Show is wrestling for the IC title only months after being World Heavyweight Champion.

    But at least he's not Mark Henry.

    This was a decent match, and was about what you'd expect from Show and a talented young guy like Rhodes.

    Rhodes was like a bulldog when he got Show off his feet.

     

    Best Move: Show spearing Rhodes from mid-air.

    Lamest Move: WMD. Seriously.

    Award: Best Victory

    Big show got choked up when he won. Show has been kind of weepy lately, but I don't mind. Better than "Yes! Yes! Yes!" (Nah, that's cool too.)

     

    Going Forward: I kind of anticipate Rhodes going elsewhere (not sure to do what exactly) after this. Don't know who Show will be feuding with next, but I'm guessing he drops the belt at Extreme Rules.

Kelly Kelly and Maria Menounos vs. Beth Phoenix and Eve for About 10 Minutes

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    That's what it seemed like, anyway. I don't have any information on actual match lengths to hand.

    This match was not terrible, not great. The moves were okay; Kelly did her ridiculous spinny headscissor screamy thing. But I was actually surprised and impressed by the psychology in the match.

     

    Best Diva: Maria Menounos

    What? I know it sounds crazy, but Maria took a lot of work on her injured ribs as the heels worked the area (good strategy on their part, but with her having suffered a legit injury there recently, ouch).

    She then got (foolishly, in time for April 1) to the top rope despite looking completely demolished. I give her big props for that, if not for how the match ended.

     

    Worst Diva: Kelly Kelly

    Say what you will about how often Diva's champion Beth Phoenix has been made to lose, but Eve and Kelly Kelly didn't look as good out there. I don't even remember Eve much from the match, but Kelly Kelly pulling her two moves of doom, and then tagging a rough-looking Maria was kind of weak.

     

    Award: Value Award

    For what little went into this match, it was kind of fun. I can actually say I preferred it to multiple matches with the men.

     

    Going Forward:

    Are you kidding? No one's going to reference this again.

Undertaker vs. Triple H for Whatever the End of an Era Means, Ft. Shawn Michaels

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    Now we're getting to the good stuff.

    I didn't really get why WWE was doing this match, but whatever the reasoning, it came out pretty well.

    There was a lot of nice back and forth, lots of psychology, and everyone in the cell (including Michaels and another referee) ended up looking completely destroyed at some point or other.

    You rarely hear that much talking during a match, and it's kind of disappointing, because this was great. Not that you'd normally get dialogue of this quality. (Not depth or intricacy exactly, but simple worked here.)

     

    Best Move: Triple H powering out of the Hell's Gate

    Best Sell: Undertaker trying four or five times to sit up after the match was over but being unable to do so.

    Best Performer: Shawn Michaels for his emotional rollercoaster during the match.

    Award: Match of the Night

     

    Going Forward: 

    Well, I imagine Michaels returns to retirement, Undertaker goes into retirement, never wrestles at another WrestleMania, and Triple H disappears from TV for a bit, possibly to show up later this year to screw with whoever's GMing at the time.

Team Johnny vs. Team Teddy for the GM Position of RAW and SmackDown

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    Well, a 12-man tag team match that devolved into chaos. Who would have guessed?

    Lots to think about with this one. When you add in the GMs, the standard bearers, the WAGs, and all, there were fully 20 people at ringside.

    Madness!

    There was a lot of predictable stuff going on here; some examples include Great Khali coming in and giving someone a big chop, the catfight at ringside, Johnny trying to distract Santino, Santino nailing a Cobra anyway...and so on.

    There were also some cool moments like the three-man over the top rope somersault attack.

     

    Worst Performer: David Otunga.

    Was he even in this match? I was more impressed by Great Khali.

     

    Best Performer: Dolph Ziggler

    This guy could sell a 40-year-old refrigerator to a dead Eskimo.

     

    Best WrestleMania Moment: The Miz

    After a huge losing streak and almost missing the PPV altogether, Miz comes through in a big way.

     

    Worst WrestleMania Moment: Zack Ryder

    Ryder's had an even harder 2012 than Miz or McIntyre. He manages to get to his first WrestleMania, has a couple big moments, like when he went for a Rough Rider, then got tossed overhead and landed it on ZIggler.

    And Eve distracts him from his Broski Boot, and then adds injury to insult.

     

    Award: Instant Replay Button-Masher

    Lots of moving parts, you need a program to follow the action.

    Also, the award for least surprising swerve of the night. Eve was playing Zack all along? Gasp!

     

    Going Forward:

    This match has the biggest repercussions of the night. Obviously, short-term, John Laurinaitis will actively bore us even more, and also screw with lots of the faces, give Christian one more match, etc. How exactly this will play out long-term is beyond me.

    Who (other than CM Punk) will contend with Johnny? Will the board become involved again? Will we ever hear Teddy Long's theme and have him put together another tag team match?

CM Punk vs. Chris Jericho for the WWE Title, Best in the World Status

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    This was almost two matches in one.

    In the first, Jericho tried to needle CM Punk intending to get him to disqualify himself.

    When that didn't work, the two then had a straight-up match the rest of the way.

    This one had some great chain wrestling, lots of great reverses, and a number of times where one move was set up once, then called back to later.

    Best example, Jericho used the rope to avoid a three count, and used knees to work out of the Anaconda Vise. Later, he tried both methods but failed when trying to get out of the Vise again.

     

    Best In the World: CM Punk

    Best Moment: When Jericho set the walls in again, and had his knee in the back, old school style.

    Worst Moment: When he then slipped into his now-standard clutch position and Cole said he "really had it locked in now." 

    Award: Best (standard) Match of the Night

     

    Going Forward:

    I imagine Jericho is going to stay around for most of the rest of the year (minus perhaps a certain stretch for touring with Fozzy). These two could continue to feud, with Lauinaitis trying to screw Punk out of the title.

John Cena vs. the Rock for Once

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    I wouldn't say I called it before, but after I'd seen Jericho lose to Punk, I called the ending of this one.

    Not the best match of the night, but lots of fun.

    Rock did "you can't see me," and Cena set up for a People's Elbow. It cost them both, but the one more than the other.

     

    Best Moment: Spinebuster

    Everyone in the world probably disagrees with me, but the Spinebuster is probably my favorite Rock move (except in video games, where it's chained Sharpshooters). I love that the Rock has signature moves that aren't finishers by default.

     

    Best Surprise Move: Rock off the top rope.

    What a rarity.

     

    Award: Best Swerve of the Night

    Cena gets flashy and pays the ultimate price? Wow.

     

    Going Forward:

    Well, Rock has business to attend to, and I imagine he's out of here. But what will it mean to Cena that he basically cost himself this match? Don't say heel turn, I don't believe it. Will he feud with Laurinaitis? Join forces with Punk? Find Zack Ryder a damn date? No idea!

That's a Wrap!

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    And that's the whole thing!

    Which match did you think stole the show?

    Which had the biggest repercussions?

    Who was the best performer of the night?

    What was your favorite WrestleMania moment?

Where can I comment?

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