The main event between Batista and Randy Orton failed to captivate the audience, but the surprise appearance by Daniel Bryan and his beatdown of those two Superstars and Triple H popped the crowd and made for a truly lasting image heading into WrestleMania.
Bryan finally showed that edge, aggressiveness and anger that he has been missing over the last eight months as he heads into what should be the biggest night of his career.
Triple H, to his credit, did an outstanding job of selling the beating and really put Bryan over as a force of nature that the King of Kings may have underestimated.
Batista and Orton are largely irrelevant, even if the former has finally gotten back in his comfort zone as of late. They will be happy to collect the paycheck that comes with being in the WrestleMania main event, but it will be Bryan or Triple H who steals Sunday's show.
Cena Outsmarts Wyatt
John Cena's outsmarting of Bray Wyatt Monday night provided the feud with a hot segment to lead it into WrestleMania. So good was it that the fans in Washington erupted for the unmasking of Cena...then reverted back to their typical chorus of boos when they remembered that, no matter how cool it was, they are supposed to hate Cena or risk losing their coolness factor.
Wyatt curling up on the ramp afterward showed that he was clearly rattled, which left many to wonder what he may be capable of now that he has been backed into a corner. Will he strike back or falter under the pressure?
Cena's promo later in the evening was everything it needed to be, and the last line really emphasized the seriousness and intensity with which he approached the feud.
Eight-Man Tag Team Match
Perhaps their disappointment over being bumped to the pre-show had something to do with it, but Los Matadores, The Usos, The Real Americans and RybAxel appeared motivated to steal the show from an in-ring standpoint on Monday night. They did just that, delivering a quality eight-man tag match that saw Diego score the win for his team when he pinned Jack Swagger.
The match was an excellent way to hype the kickoff show, even if the performances of all involved indicate that they belong on the main show.