Every year, WrestleMania features plenty of stars waiting for a chance to shine. A quick glance at the full card (per WWE.com) for WWE's marquee show illustrates that WrestleMania 29 will be no different. The chance is there for stars outside of the main event matches to steal the spotlight.
The best news for those wrestlers is that the number of big-match opportunities is about to skyrocket. Once the part-time superstars fade into the background after the year's biggest wrestling event, there are voids that will need to be filled quickly.
A strong showing at WrestleMania is a major step toward getting consideration for one of those superstar spots. Let's analyze three stars who can steal center stage while also picking up victories on the grandest WWE stage of them all.
Ryback is either on the verge of a huge breakthrough or is about to get scaled back considerably. The result of his match against Mark Henry will tell the tale. In terms of pure intrigue, it's an encounter that sits right behind the three top-tier clashes.
Before the Road to WrestleMania began, Ryback was squarely in the WWE Championship picture and had been built into an unstoppable force. He wasn't deemed ready for one of the top spots quite yet, though, and that led to a match with The World's Strongest Man.
While Henry is a reliable veteran and should eventually move back into the World heavyweight title picture, Ryback has the potential to become one of the top superstars on the roster. It's a journey that can get jump-started with a win over Henry.
Chris Jericho deserves a lot of credit. While other part-time superstars come back for limited appearances during the build to big events, he usually goes all-in when he returns. Furthermore, he isn't afraid to help get younger talent over and Fandango is the perfect example.
Which of these matches will be the best?
Fandango, previously known as Johnny Curtis, is still raw in the ring and his gimmick is just beginning to scratch the surface. Putting him in a feud with Jericho—a tremendous all-around talent—basically ensures his first big storyline can't fail.
It's going to take some more time before the WWE Universe knows if Fandango has staying power or is simply a flash in the pan. In the short term, he should score a key victory over Jericho and that will give him some momentum to build off moving forward.
Once a rising star that appeared destined for an extended stay in the main event scene, Barrett is now scheduled to defend his Intercontinental Championship against The Miz on the pre-show. It's not an ideal scenario for either superstar, but it's still a WrestleMania match.
It's also a turning point for both. One of them will walk out of MetLife Stadium as a midcard champion, a role that should be more important once the 'Mania hype dies down soon, while the other will continue to wander aimlessly from storyline to storyline.
While Miz would be the safer choice given his past success, Barrett deserves a chance to show he's still the talented superstar that was on the rise last year. Beating a former WrestleMania headliner would be a good way to start that push.