WrestleMania weekend is absolutely crammed full of content. With WWE’s show of shows, an annual NXT extravaganza and the Hall of Fame ceremony, that’s a lot of programming to have to meet high standards of the fans. Me being the cynical critic that I am have chosen to select 5 moments from this years big weekend to pick apart for being poorly executed and/or downright horrendous.
I think WWE put together a fantastic weekend of wrestling, probably one of the better WrestleMania weekends in a while. But unfortunately, not everything can seamlessly be a hit with the audience, so here are our top 5 lows.
5. Andrade eliminates himself from ARMBAR
For a second I thought it was Andrade’s time to step up into the winners circle as the surprise winner of this year’s Andre battle royal. That wasn’t the case. In a spot that could have been a foolish mistake on his part, Andrade pulled a Khali and took himself out of contention whilst eliminating another competitor.
After hitting a fairly impressive hurricanrana, Andrade followed through and both of his feet hit the floor, eliminating himself from the match just before making it into the final few.
It seems like the former NXT Champion might need a quick masterclass in how over the top rope matches work, in case he wants to enter the Rumble or ARMBAR again next year.
Commentators quickly brushed over this and moved on, leaving Andrade seeming like a bit of a chump. A shame considering Andrade is potentially entering a big year. Let’s hope he can bounce back.
4. Golden Voice bests AJ Styles
I knew there was a reason I wanted to sit down to watch the NXT Takeover pre-show. In all honesty, I rarely watch the hour long broadcast before a takeover event, but something drew me into this debacle — somehow I knew something terrible was about to happen.
That came in the form of the finals of the 2K19 million dollar challenge, which I did actually have somewhat of an investment in. Hearing that AJ was going to face the winner of the affair live on the pre-show sounded like a lot of fun, but what followed was absolute trash.
Styles, being somewhat of a dedicated gamer, phoned it in massively against the fan. I felt cheated, watching one of the most beloved wrestlers of this age bested by an obnoxious twat in a horrific golden outfit. AJ acted like he’d never picked up a controller before and we had to suffer through this chump talking trash throughout the slaughter.
Bless Xavier Woods for trying to put that guy over, though.
3. The Animal tames himself
Batista has been nothing short of a meme factory since making a comeback in February. Of course he wasn’t going to leave WrestleMania without a couple of last bangers for the Internet to use and abuse for years to come.
Big Dave unfortunately took a tumble upon entering the ring, something that has since been edited from the actual broadcast. It was very obvious, and unfortunately Batista couldn’t do enough to play it off smoothly. I mean, wouldn’t you just hate yourself for faceplanting in front of 80k ravenous fans.
Dave was on a role after taking a front bump before the match even started. Batista’s nose ring spot left us all cringing, much like Orton had managed back in his cell match against Jeff Hardy. The moment itself was probably the best part of the match, Batista’s selling of the pseudo-bondage however made it a complete joke.
You’d think Drax the Destroyer might be slightly more adept at not overreacting to things these days.
2. Becky’s spot calling
A very petty inclusion of mine, but something that really bugged me in the main event. I’m not sure whether the ring was more mic’d up than usual, or whether Becky wasn’t aware of just how loud she was being, but she needs to learn to be a bit more subtle. Spot-calling is one of the biggest pet peeves of mine that really takes me out of a match. Obviously we all know that the wrestlers are choreographing as they go, but there’s an art to keeping that process on the down low.
You could consistently hear the three women counting down spots, communicating the next few moves to each other and acting a lot more frantic than they should have. Personally I felt like Becky especially might have been cracking under the pressure of this incredible event. I really hope that she manages to control herself more from here on, maybe rely on the ref to guide them through the match rather than calling it all herself.
Fair play for taking charge, it obviously kept all three competitors safe and kept the action flowing, but please don’t remind me that you’re doing that.
1. The HOF fan incident
There was a very unfortunate turn of events that spoiled the HOF ceremony this year. Bret Hart and Natalya were mid-speech, celebrating the careers of both The Hitman and The Anvil, when a rogue fan hit the ring and attempted to tackle Bret to the ground.
Fortunately, the surrounding wrestlers were quick to react and defend Bret and Nattie. The fan was promptly removed by security and was probably left with several bruises for the next morning.
It’s terrible to see fans make these kinds of decisions and have it actually affect the people that are in the ring. Hart has reportedly suffered a hip injury since the attack, and the fan was charged with various accounts of assault. Luckily no further incidents happened over the weekend but WWE really need to start cracking down on this sort of behaviour.