So now, to try and compensate for that, let's look ahead to my thoughts on the upcoming mega-card. I put eleven matches on the show, which may be a lot, but the WWE has done a great job of elevating many of its younger stars in the past year, so there are more wrestlers who deserve a place on the card.
I also put the matches in order that I think that they should happen, not necessarily in the order of "biggest" matches.
Intercontinental Title Match: Santino Marella (c) vs. Evan Bourne
Before I get going here, I need to say that the Honk-a-meter is the greatest thing that wrestling has seen in a long, long time, and it needs to continue for several more months.
Bourne has been showing up a great deal on RAW lately and has been getting some pretty large pops, so he would be an ideal choice to be a mid-card face challenging for a mid-card title (which hasn't been defended at Wrestlemania in 7 years, how crazy is that?). Either Santino would cheat to win once more, or they could have Honky Tonk Man show up, blast Marella with a guitar, costing him the title, which would be the greatest thing since the Honk-a-meter.
Money in the Bank Match: MVP vs. John Morrison vs. Shelton Benjamin vs. The Miz vs. THE Brian Kendrick vs. Kane vs. R-Truth vs. JBL
The annual tradition of super-fun but spotty match to get more people on the card. This match is a little Face heavy, but I assume that MVP will be a full-fledged face pretty soon. Speaking of Mr. Porter, I listed the participants in the order that I think that they should win and I think that he would be a perfect winner for this match.
Grudge Match: CM Punk vs. Kofi Kingston
Yes, I know that these two seem destined to go after the tag titles together in the very near future, but I think that the real money is in the two of them fighting one another. It would be perfect to have one of them (hopefully Punk) turn on the other after they fail in their title shot. This would be a great, fast-paced match between two of the E's rising stars. It doesn't really matter who wins, because it would be such a fun match.
Who is Mr. Wrestlemania?: The Undertaker vs. Shawn Michaels
Some of the biggest highlights of the last two Royal Rumbles have been the interaction between these two men. After being sneaky to eliminate Taker last year, only to be eliminated himself by Mr. Kennedy, HBK looked up in terror at the Dead Man. Luckily for Michaels he was able to escape and run away. The two have had no interaction since then. Another Rumble run-in would be a great way to set up a match to determine just who is the best Wrestlemania performer ever, and what better place to do it than the home state of both of these men?
World Tag Team Title Match: Simply Priceless (c) vs. Finlay and Hornswoggle
Simply Priceless need to have an extended run with the tag titles, no questions asked. I can't think of too many people on RAW that they should feud with, so I'll go with the logical choice of ECW's top tag-team. Ohh and seeing Rhodes or Dibiase beat up a midget on such a grand stage would help get them to be mega-heels in no time.
ECW Title Match: Matt Hardy (c) vs. Chris Jericho
Sadly, I don't see Jericho's World Title reign lasting until Wrestlemania. I wouldn't be too surprised if he ends up dropping it at or around Survivor Series/Armaggedon to someone to be named later on in the post. Hardy's reign on the other hand, should last a while. He has plenty of matches left with The Miz, John Morrison, and hell, even Jack Swagger or Mike Knox if need be. This feud can be set up pretty easily, since Jericho can decide to pursue the ECW title (with the talent exchange agreement and all) in order to cement his claim as the greatest of all time. Plus, this match would be simply amazing if given enough time. Hardy would need to retain though, to set up a huge moment later on in the evening.
(P.S. Check back to last year's prediction, and note who I had as the ECW Champion then....)
Mega Tag-Team Showdown: Rey Mysterio & Mr. Kennedy vs. Big Show & Floyd "Money" Mayweather
I bet you forgot about Mayweather didn't you? Well after Wrestlemania XXIV, there was a lot of talk about him coming back again later for a one time deal, and this seems like the perfect chance! The original plan for him last year was a match involving Mysterio, but Rey's injury prevented that one. I think that it would be great for him to be invited as a "Special Guest" of Rey's only to end up turning on him and joining Vickie and the Big Show (since the man just plays such a natural heel), and Show can say that he is proud to team up with "the one man to have kept me down" or something of that sort. I added Kennedy to the mix since I needed someone in there, and his anti-authority nature, and solid mic skills make him a natural addition to this match. He could easily be substituted for MVP or R-truth if need be.
One Last Match: Stone Cold Steve Austin vs. Triple H
I think that Austin's return to competition for Wrestlemania is in the cards, as rumours have been circulating that there are plans to give him a Ric Flair style retirment this year. Triple H would be a pretty logical opponent as they do have a long history together, it would be a good match, and H would be able to work safe with Austin (like he did with Michaels in 2002). I think that the dynamics would work best with Triple H as a heel, as opposed to a face-face match that Flair-Michaels ended up being. It would be extra great if Austin ends up (inadvertently) costing Triple H his title around the Rumble to set up this match.
Divas Tag Team: Beth Phoenix & Natalya vs. Kelly Kelly & Gail Kim
Yup, it's that time for some throw away divas match, and this was the best option I could come up with. Kelly Kelly is rumoured to be the next one to pose for Playboy, so she logically needs to be involved (see Maria, Ashley, and Christi for proof of that one), and Gail Kim is supposed to be signing with the WWE soon, and I think that she would be needed on the Smackdown side of things. I think that Natalya will be the Divas Champion by Wrestlemania, so it seems logical to have the two heel champions team up. This could even be made into a "Winner Take All" style match where both titles are on the line.
World Title Match: Batista (c) vs. Randy Orton vs. John Cena
I know, I feel dirty having one of the Main Events be a Triple Threat for the second year in a row, but this is too huge of an opportunity to miss out on. Batista seems likely to win the title from Jericho soon enough, and he already has built in history with both Orton and Cena (who are both currently injured) and the two of them have a long history with one another. They could easily paly this match up as a "Who Will Carry the WWE for the Next Generation?" since they all have huge claims to be the best. You know, Orton won the title first, Cena held the title the longest, and Batista has the most reigns (counting the one that I am giving him here).
What could possibly top that? Easy....
WWE Title Match: Edge (c) vs. Jeff Hardy
I almost had the WWE Title Match as a Triple Threat involving Triple H, and had Orton as an opponent for Austin, but in the end I like the dynamic of this one much better.
And yes, I know these two have had several matches over their careers, but never a big one-on-one in a major setting. They have been playing up how close Hardy has been for months now, and it seems like it is building for him to take the title at Wrestlemania. Add to the fact that it's against a LONG time rival, and you've got a ready made story. Of course, the show should end with Jeff winning the title, only to celebrate with Matt at the end of the show as streamers fall down and both men hug with their titles. Yes, I know that it's been done before, but that was a moment that the WWE should want us all to forget, given the participants.
So that's how I see this years big show taking place, my apologies to Hurrican Helms, Umaga, Mark Henry, Vladmir Kozlov, Cryme Tyme and the Colons who all probably deserve a spot on the card. Not sure if I'm reaching too far on some of these, but I guess we shall have to wait and see.
Until next time,