|Date: April 2, 2006
|Venue: Allstate Arena |City: Rosemont, Illinois
|Attendance: 17, 159 |Buys: 930,000
|Brand: Raw & Smackdown
|tweet me: @BastionBlogger
Big Time! That’s the theme for this show and it is certainly a show with a big time feel. There are eleven big matches making up the card of the biggest event of the year. For me, the WWE Championship is always the main event so I’ll being with that match. John Cena won the WWE Championship back at The Royal Rumble in January and the number one contender for Wrestlemania was decided by an 8 man tournament. The tournament was won by Triple H, he defeated The Big Show and Rob Van Dam in a triple threat final. Since then, Triple H and Cena have been on a collision course with the crowd being split down the middle on who they want to win. Triple H has his fans. The World Heavyweight Championship will be on the line when Kurt Angle defends the title against Rey Mysterio and Randy Orton in a triple threat match. Rey won the Royal Rumble but Orton beat Mysterio for his Wrestlemania opportunity. Due to the way Randy won, Teddy Long made the World Heavyweight Championship at Wrestlemania a triple threat match.
The World Tag Team Championships are due to be defended tonight as Chris Masters and Carlito get an opportunity at the belts held by The Big Show and Kane. Masters and Carlito were rewarded by Vince McMahon for their effort in taking out Shawn Michaels. Since then, Carlito and Masters haven’t had a lot of luck in singles matches against the champions but can they win the titles tonight? The United States title will be defended as John “Bradshaw” Layfield gets a shot at Chris Benoit. Layfield damaged Benoits hand in a match and so Benoit repaid Bradshaw by breaking his hand. The only other title set to be defended tonight is the Women’s Championship held by Trish Stratus. In the best Women’s storyline I have ever seen, Mickie James has been obsessed by Trish Stratus. Trish got freaked out and told Mickie James that they should have some time apart. Mickie ended up attacking Trish before kidnapping Stratus’ friend Ashley. Tonight, the greatest storyline in the history of the women’s division comes to a head with the title on the line.
One of the biggest storylines on Raw has been with Vince McMahon and Shawn Michaels. Vince McMahon has been giving Shawn Michaels a hard time ever since Michaels told McMahon to grow up and move on. Since then McMahon has cost Shawn Michaels the Royal Rumble, removed Michaels from the number one contender tournament and made life generally miserable for HBK. He’s forced Michaels into a 4 on 1 handicap match against the Spirit Squad, cost Michaels his match against Shane McMahon at Saturday Night’s main event and even forced Marty Jannetty to kiss his ass. McMahon then announced he would wrestle Michaels at Wrestlemania and has even made the match No Holds Barred. Another match from the Raw brand pits former friends against one another when Candice Michelle takes on Torrie Wilson in a Playboy pillow fight. Candice (and Victoria) were once friends with Torrie but Candice kicked torrie to the curb when Candice’s Playboy shoot was released. The two Playboy cover girls meet tonight.
Money In The Bank returns for Wrestlemania 22 but this time it features 3 stars from Raw and 3 stars from Smackdown. There were qualifying matches to get in, from Raw Rob Van Dam beat Trevor Murdoch, Shelton Benjamin defeated Chavo Guerrero and Ric Flair beat the man that bought back Money In The Bank, Carlito. Over on Smackdown Matt Hardy beat Animal, Finlay beat Bobby Lashley and then Bobby Lashley won a last chance battle royal to qualify. The three men on Raw have been battling each other since qualifying whilst on Smackdown, Finlay and Bobby Lashley have had big problems with one another. One of the big matches over on Smackdown will pit The Undertaker against Mark Henry in a casket match. Mark Henry cost The Undertaker the world heavyweight championship in a match against Kurt Angle on Smackdown which led Undertaker to challenge Henry to a casket match.
The other match representing Smackdown pits Booker T and his wife Sharmell against the man that has been haunting them for the past few weeks, The Boogeyman. And from Raw, Edge goes up against Mick Foley. Foley served as a special guest referee in a WWE title match between Cena and Edge, a match Cena won. Edge blamed Foley and the two now battle on the grandest stage of them all.
Let’s get to it.
On a dark match prior to the event, Viscera won a battle royal which also involved Snitsky, Eugene, Goldust, Tyson Tomko, Rob Conway, Lance Cade, Trevor Murdoch, Matt Striker, Super Crazy, Psicosis, Funaki, Steven Richards, Johnny Nitro, Joey Mercury, The Road Warrior, William Regal, and Simon Dean.
Wrestlemania kicks off with Michelle Williams (the other one from Destiny’s Child) singing America The Beautiful. There’s a nice video package then set to Seether’s “Walk Through Fire”. Plenty of old clips from Wrestlemania’s gone by. It includes a nice montage of superstars wrestling tonight compared to how they looked years ago. There is then another montage highlighting tonights matches between Undertaker and Mark Henry, Shawn Michaels and Vince McMahon, Kurt Angle, Rey Mysterio and Randy Orton and then John Cena and Triple H. Jim Ross then welcomes us to Wrestlemania as pyro goes off and we are straight into the action! JR is joined by Jerry Lawler, Michael Cole and Tazz are also here representing Smackdown.
The Big Show & Kane (c) vs. Carlito & Chris Masters – World Tag Team Championship match
This is a first time PPV meeting between these two teams and it also marks Wrestlemania debuts for Carlito and Chris Masters. Kane is 3-4 at Wrestlemania events whilst The Big Show is 0-6 at the event. A terrible Wrestlemania record for Big Show and a bad PPV record full stop for Chris Masters who had lost all 5 of his previous PPV matches. Kane and Chris Masters kick off the show and Masters takes down Kane early. Kane then hits a dropkick to take Masters down and Big Show gives the Masterpiece a headbutt. Kane tags in Big Show who hits his trademark chops and then a powerslam. Masters rakes the eyes and quickly tags out to Carlito who gets a pop and then a chant. Big Show drops Carlito on the top rope and shakes it about. Big Show then gorilla press slams Chris Masters who gets involved. Big Show press slams Carlito all the way to the outside on top of Masters! Kane goes up top and jumps to the outside with a big clothesline, taking out both challengers.
Big Show brings Carlito back into the ring by his hair but a distraction by Masters allows Carlito to hit a dropkick to The Big Shows knee. Masters and Carlito then hit a flapjack for the first near fall of the night. The top turnbuckle has been taken off in the challengers corner. Masters and Carlito attempt a double suplex on Big Show but Big Show counters it and hits both men with a suplex. Big Show tags in Kane who hits a back body drop on Carlito and a powerslam on Masters. Kane then hits some rights and lefts on Carlito and a clothesline to Masters before taking Carlito down with a sidewalk slam. Nobody has lost as many PPV matches in history as Kane. Chris Masters locks the Masterlock on Kane but Big Show breaks it with a big boot. Big Show hits snake eyes on Masters and Carlito hits the backcracker on Kane. Big Show then attempts a chokeslam on Carlito but Masters makes the save. Carlito and Masters double team Kane who fights them both off. This match has been a free for all since the off. Masters accidentally nails Carlito with an axe handle off the middle rope. Kane then chokeslams Carlito and gets the three!
Kane and The Big Show retain their world tag team championships tonight after some miscommunication from Chris Masters and Carlito. Big Show finally wins a match at Wrestlemania! Chris Masters goes 0-6 on all PPVs. After the match Chris Masters and Carlito shout at each other in the ring and leave separately.
Coach is backstage with Shawn Michaels. Michaels says it’s going to get ugly tonight and Vince will need to pray to the God above to get through his match. Tonight Vince will endure his own personal hell.
Matt Hardy vs. Bobby Lashley vs. Finlay vs. Ric Flair vs. Rob Van Dam vs. Shelton Benjamin – Money In The Bank Ladder match
This is the second annual money in the bank ladder match. Shelton Benjamin is the only man to have featured in both last years and this years MITB matches. In terms of Wrestlemania records, Matt Hardy is 1-3, Ric Flair is 1-2, Rob Van Dam is 2-0, Shelton Benjamin is 1-2 and both Finlay and Bobby Lashley make their Wrestlemania debuts tonight. Finlay is actually making his PPV debut tonight. Personally I think you can rule out Matt Hardy, Finlay and Shelton Benjamin but any of the other three could win this. All 6 men go at each other as the crowd break out in an “RVD” chant. Lashley press slams Flair and hits Finlay with a big clothesline in the corner. Shelton Benjamin then takes Lashley down as Matt Hardy grabs a ladder. Van Dam hits Hardy with a baseball slide and then dives to the outside at Hardy. Benjamin grabs a ladder and smashes Finlay with it before setting the ladder up, running up it and taking out Lashley, Hardy and Van Dam on the outside.
In the ring Finlay sets up a ladder but Flair comes form behind and throws Finlay into the ladder. Flair then climbs the ladder but Matt Hardy climbs up the other side and hits Flair with some right hands before suplexing Flair off the top to the mat below! Flair sells the leg and looks in legitimate pain. Referee’s then assist Flair to the back. We’re down to five men in this match! RVD attempts rolling thunder on Shelton Benjamin but Shelton gets out of the way and Van Dam hits ladder. Lashley sets up the ladder and climbs up it but Benjamin climbs up the other side of it and pokes Bobby in the eye before attempting a sunset flip powerbomb! Lashley holds on though and it takes Matt Hardy and Finlay to powerbomb Lashley to the mat. More “RVD” chants break out. Hardy lays into Finlay now with right hands. Hardy has never main evented a PPV, he’s wrestled more PPV matches than anyone without main eventing. Finlay literally throws a ladder at Hardy and then throws a ladder at Lashley. Finlay takes RVD out and then pushes over a ladder!
Ric Flair re-emerges from the back and Finlay goes for him but Flair chops him down and throws him into the barrier. Flair sets up the ladder in the ring and climbs but Matt Hardy is once again the man to stop him. Flair lays into Hardy and Shelton Benjamin with chops and then climbs the ladder again but Finlay is back with his Shillelagh. He takes out Flair and then climbs the ladder himself but Shelton Benjamin fights Finlay at the top. Bobby Lashley then takes both men off the ladder and hits Benjamin with the dominator! Lashley climbs the ladder and there’s a good cheer for him but Van Dam springboard back in, dropkicking a chair to send Lashley flying off the ladder. Hardy climbs the ladder in the corner and then dives off with a legdrop to Lashley. Hardy is the most experienced at Wrestlemania in this match and he’s had a few ladder matches at this event too. He climbs up to a chorus of boo’s interestingly but Finlay joins him up there only for Hardy to hit a side effect on Finlay all the way to the mat below. Rob Van Dam, who has been quiet in this match, climbs up a ladder to the very top and then hits a 5 star frog splash to Finlay!
An “E-C-Dub” chant breaks out as Van Dam sets up a ladder and climbs up it. He gets to the top but Shelton Benjamin springboards on to the other side of the ladder! Matt Hardy sets up another ladder as Benjamin hits RVD with right hands. Benjamin then moves over and slugs it out with Hardy but Van Dam pushes their ladder over, sending Benjamin and Hardy flying to the outside! Van Dam then unhooks the briefcase and wins the match! Rob Van Dam wins the match and the Money In The Bank briefcase! A good match from these 6 men, probably not as good as last years but still a great match.
Josh Mathews is backstage with Mean Gene Okerland who was inducted into the WWE Hall Of Fame last night. Randy Orton then shows up and isn’t happy with Mean Gene being inducted into the hall of fame. Orton says that he’ll be going into the Hall Of Fame and tonight he’ll beat Angle the paper champion and Rey Mysterio the charity case. Batista arrives and says that it doesn’t matter who wins because Batista will be taking the title back.
The Fink announces the Hall Of Fame inductees from this year and tells us that Bret Hart didn’t feel comfortable participating. Out come Mean Gene Okerland, Sensational Sherri, Tony Atlas, Verne Gagne, William “The Refrigerator” Perry, The Blackjacks, Lanza and Mulligan and then Vickie and Chavo Guerrero represent Eddie Guerrero.
Chris Benoit (c) vs. John “Bradshaw” Layfield – United States Championship match
This is a first time PPV meeting between these two men. Layfield is joined by his manager Jillian Hall. Chris Benoit is 2-3 at Wrestlemania events whilst Bradshaw is 0-6 at the biggest event of the year. The US title has only been defended at Wrestlemania once before and that was when John Cena beat champion Big Show for the belt two years ago. JBL takes Benoit down early but Benoit repays the favour with a drop toe hold and then tries to lock the crippler crossface on but Layfield makes sure he can’t. Bradshaw applies a headlock but Benoit counters it into a leg-lock and then lays in some forearms. Both men lost at last years Wrestlemania and both men have been in world title matches in the last two years at Wrestlemania. Layfield hits a big boot but Benoit then hits him with an armdrag before trying to lock the sharpshooter on but JBL kicks him off. JBL then heads to the outside and hides behind Jillian Hall before hitting Benoit with a cheap shot.
Back in the ring and Layfield hits a big right hand and a boot to the face. Bradshaw then hits some big right hands and boots to ground Chris Benoit. Layfield hits a hard Irish whip but misses with a splash which allows Benoit to hit three German suplexes. Chris Benoit then motions for his trademark headbutt and heads to the top but Layfield crotches Benoit at the top. JBL then mocks Eddie Guerrero and looks to hit a superplex which he does. Bradshaw tries for a pin but Benoit kicks out at two. JBL hits two suplexes in the style that Eddie Guerrero used to do them but Benoit fights out of a third only to run into a big boot. Layfield gets another near fall and then applies a chinlock but Benoit gets out of it with a back suplex. Benoit then hits the three amigos, reminiscent of Eddie Guerrero. Benoit heads to the top again and this time hits the diving headbutt which earns him a near fall. Benoit misses with a splash in the corner and JBL attempts the clothesline from hell but Benoit ducks it. Layfield tries for it again but this time Benoit catches his arm and counters it into a crippler crossface! JBL rolls through it though into a pinfall and by hanging onto the ropes, Layfield gets the three! JBL wins the United States Championship tonight and ends his bad run at Wrestlemania! He could also be the only man to win tonight that won at No Way Out last month.
There’s a VT up next hyping Mick Foley and Edge.
Mick Foley vs. Edge – Hardcore match
This is a first time one on one PPV match between these two men. Mick Foley has a 2-2 record at Wrestlemania events compared to Edge’s 4-0 record. Joey Styles joins Jim Ross and Jerry Lawler on commentary for this match. Lita is at Edge’s side for this match. Edge shows up with a baseball bat and swings it at Foley who avoids it and takes Edge down with a bulldog. Mick then ties Edge up in a tree of woe and hits an elbow drop on the rated-r superstar. Edge hits Foley with a running boot and then a clothesline. Lita hands Edge a metal tray which Edge smashes off Foley’s skull a couple of times. Edge then dropkicks a tray into Foley’s face and that looked pretty rough for Mick. Edge motions for a spear and nails it but Edge looks in more pain than Foley. Foley then reveals barb-wire wrapped around his waist! Foley clips it off and we see Edge’s shoulder is bleeding. Foley uses the barb wire on Edge’s arm as Lita watches on.
Edge gets wrapped up in the ropes so Foley pulls out his barb-wire baseball bat! Lita jumps on Foley’s back and Edge clotheslines Edge out of the ring with Lita on his back! Foley gets a near fall on the outside and then hits a swinging neckbreaker on Edge for another near fall. Edge hiptosses Foley into the ringsteps to take the advantage and then follows it up by throwing Foley into the ringsteps again. Edge pulls a table out from under the ring and sets it up by the entrance-way. He then lays Foley on the table and heads to the top rope but Foley rolls off the table. Edge goes after Mick and smashes him into the metal entrance ramp for a two count. Lita hands Edge some lighter fluid and Edge douses it all over Foley! Mick fights back and hits Edge with a piledriver for a near fall. Foley grabs a chair and chases off Lita but the distraction is enough for edge to get up a DDT Mick into a tray for a near fall. Edge grabs the barb-wire baseball bat and smashes Foley with it three times. Foley is bleeding from the face now. edge bulldogs Foley into the barb-wire bat for a near fall.
Edge takes off the top sets of ringsteps to reveal some brass knucks and a bag of thumb tacks. Edge empties the tacks in the ring but Foley hits him with a back suplex and both men are covered in tacks! Foley then pulls out Mr Socko and wraps it in barb-wire before ramming it down Edge’s throat and then Lita’s! Foley holds up the barb-wire baseball bat and swings it into Edge’s gut and then into the face. Mick drops an elbow with the baseball bat and Edge is covered in blood. Foley grabs the lighter fluid and squirts it all over the table on the outside. Lita smashes the barb-wire baseball bat into the crotch of Foley and then sets fire to the table! Edge then runs at Foley and hits him with a spear and both men go crashing through the lit table! Edge pins Foley on the outside and it’s over! Edge beats Mick Foley tonight in one hell of a hardcore match!
Booker T and Sharmell are backstage, Sharmell scared of The Boogeyman. Sharmell wants to know why the freaks are always attracted to Booker T. They walk down a corridor and Paul Burchill is practicing his sword fighting. Ted Dibiase is counting Eugene’s basketball bounces but ruins it for him at the end. Snitsky is licking Mae Youngs feet and Goldust is wearing a dress and wig. Goldust tells Booker that he needs to bring out his inner freak if he’s going to beat The Boogeyman tonight.
Todd Grisham is in the crowd with two competition winners. They’ve eaten 11 snickers between them.
Joe Theismann is in the crowd. I have no idea who he is. Michelle Williams is there too.
The Boogeyman vs. Booker T & Sharmell
This is a PPV debut for Sharmell and a Wrestlemania debut for The Boogeyman who goes into this with a 100% record on PPV. Booker T has a 1-2 record at Wrestlemania events, he wasn’t involved in last years main card but did winner a battle royal on the pre-show. The bell rings and Booker T backs out of the ring. But it’s purely for Sharmell to distract Boogeyman so Booker can attack him from behind. Booker officially tags into the match and lays into Boogeyman, hoping to be the first man to beat him. Sharmell distracts the referee so Booker hits Boogeyman with a low blow. Booker then hits a kick for a near fall. Booker chokes Boogeyman on the bottom rope. Boogeyman has wrestled one PPV match before and that was a win over JBL at the Royal Rumble a few months ago. Booker T hits more right hands and then a Book end but only for a near fall.
The two men exchange right hands and Boogeyman hits some jabs to the throat of Booker T. Booker then attempts his scissors kick but Boogeyman gets out of the way and hits an uppercut. He then throws Booker into the ringpost and pulls worms out of his pocket! Sharmell grabs the Boogeymans stick but Boogeyman turns around and kisses her with a mouthful of worms! Sharmell screams and runs to the back! Booker misses with a splash in the corner and Boogeyman hits Booker T with a double armed chokeslam! Boogeyman hooks the leg and gets the 3! Boogeyman wins at Wrestlemania and is now 2 for 2 on PPV! Worst match so far though.
There’s a VT for Trish Stratus and Mickie James next, their feud has been fantastic.
Trish Stratus (c) vs. Mickie James – Women’s Championship match
This is the second PPV match between these two girls. Trish won the first at New Year’s Revolution. Mickie makes her Wrestlemania debut tonight whilst Trish has a 2-1 record at this event. Trish has held the Women’s title for well over as year, this is her sixth reign. Mickie looking to win the belt for the first time. The two girls lock up hard and Stratus takes the advantage with an elbow, some right hands and a Lou Thesz press. Trish hits some chops which sound pretty tough. Mickie rolls out of the ring and Trish gives her a hand, dropkicking her to the mat below. Trish then attempts a chick kick on the outside but Mickie ducks and Trish hits the ringpost. Mickie rolls Stratus back into the ring and then smashes her knee into the ringpost. Trish fights back in the ring but she’s hobbling around. Mickie hits a dropkick to the knee of Trish and then works on the left leg, getting a near fall.
A “let’s go Mickie” chant breaks out in Chicago. Mickie continues to work the left leg and knee of Stratus. Mickie applies a half Boston crab but has to break the hold after pulling Trish’s hair. Mickie has done well working the left leg of Trish. James applies a leg lock which Trish gets out of with a flying head scissors. The crowd are now booing Trish Stratus. Trish hits some right hands and a couple of clotheslines before dropping Mickie with a spinebuster for a near fall. Trish attempts a splash in the corner but Mickie hits her with a dropkick. Mickie then heads to the top but Trish attempts her trademark hurricanrana only for Mickie to counter and drop Stratus to the mat for a near fall. Trish rolls Mickie up for a two count but Mickie is up first and sets Trish up for a hurricanrana just for Trish to counter it into a powerbomb. Trish hits some right hands and then avoids a kick with the matrish move. Trish then attempts stratusfaction but Mickie grabs her crotch and then makes an x-rated gesture which has been edited from the version I’m watching.
Mickie hits a kick to the face and pins Trish which is enough for the three! Mickie James wins the Women’s championship at Wrestlemania! A decent match with a rushed ending.
Vince, Shane, Linda and Stephanie are all backstage admiring Vince’s physique. Vince then asks everybody to get on their knees to pray. Vince gives a prayer. Funny stuff.
The Undertaker vs. Mark Henry – Casket match
This is actually a first time PPV match between these two men. Undertaker has a 13-0 record at Wrestlemania events whilst Mark Henry, who has been around for ten years, has only wrestled one Wrestlemania match before and he lost the match. Henry attacks Undertaker as he’s taking his hat off and lays into him with right hands and forearms. Henry hits an Irish whip but then runs into a boot. Undertaker hits two clotheslines but can’t take Mark Henry down. Henry then hits a clothesline which takes Undertaker down. Henry tries to smash Undertaker into the steps but Undertaker blocks it and smashes Henry into the steps. Undertaker tries it again but this time Mark counters it and smashes Undertaker into the steps. Back in the ring and Henry chokes Undertaker. Undertaker fights back with some right hands and then twists the arm and attempts old school but Henry hits him with a right hand to drop him down to the mat. Henry asks for the casket to be opened so he can kick Undertaker into it but Undertaker hits a low blow to stop it from happening.
Mark Henry hits a hard Irish whip but once again runs into the boot of The Undertaker. Undertaker once again tries old school and this time hits it. A “Henry sucks” chant breaks out as he missed with a move and finds himself in the casket. Henry then drags Undertaker into the casket and hits him with right hands but Undertaker grabs him by the throat and then hits him with an elbow and some right hands. Both men get out of the casket and Undertaker attempts a cross body but Henry catches him and hits Undertaker with a powerslam. Mark Henry then hooks the leg but there aren’t any pinfalls in this match dum-dum. Henry rolls Undertaker into the casket but Undertaker fights his way back out. Mark Henry hits a clothesline and then some right hands in the corner but you can see where this is going and predictably Undertaker hits a powerbomb on Henry. Undertaker knocks Henry out of the ring and then dives out at him, nearly landing head first on the casket.
Back in the ring and Undertaker hits a tombstone! He calls for the casket to be opened and Undertaker rolls Mark Henry into it for the win! A pretty poor match between these two men. 14 wins for The Undertaker at Wrestlemania though!
There’s a video package next for the match between Shawn Michaels and Vince McMahon.
Shawn Michaels vs. Vince McMahon – No Holds Barred match
This is a first time meeting between these two men. Shawn Michaels has a 4-8 record at Wrestlemania whilst Vince McMahon has a 0-2 record having previously lost matches to Shane McMahon and Hulk Hogan. Shawn Michaels has only won one of his last four Wrestlemania matches. He’s lost to the likes of Kurt Angle, Chris Benoit and Stone Cold Steve Austin but did beat Chris Jericho. I don’t think I’ve ever seen Vince McMahon look as tanned. Vince poses with a copy of his muscle and fitness photoshoot but Shawn Michaels goes right for him! Michaels hits him with right hands and then throws McMahon over the announce table before laying into him with more right hands and choking him with a mic cable. A “we want Bret” chant breaks out. Michaels throws McMahon back into the ring and then smashes the framed muscle and fitness cover over his head. The Spirit Squad then show up and beat Michaels down! Kenny of the Spirit Squad then attempts his legdrop off the top but Michaels gets out of the way.
Michaels fights off the Spirit Squad one at a time, disposing of them! But it does distract Michaels long enough for McMahon to get up and knock Shawn down with a clothesline. McMahon hits some knees and shoulder charges on Michaels in the corner and then chokes the former WWE Champion. Both men are actually former WWE Champions. Vince whips Michaels with his belt before choking him with it. McMahon imitates Bret Hart and then motions for sweet chin music but Shawn Michaels catches his foot and hits him with some chops and a flying forearm. Michaels nips up and whips Vince with the belt. His shots sound a lot more painful than Vince’s earlier. Michaels hits a powerslam and then heads to the top and drops an elbow. Michaels motions for sweet chin music but Shane McMahon appears behind him and takes Michaels out with a kendo stick! Shane pulls out handcuffs but Vince has other ideas and pulls down his pants. Shane grabs Michaels but Michaels elbows Shane and shoves his face into his daddies crack! Michaels hits Vince with a low blow and then disposes of Shane.
Michaels handcuffs Shane to the middle rope, throws away the key and then smashes Shane with the kendo stick! Michaels grabs a chair and smashes it over Vince’s head. Michaels then motions for sweet chin music but decides against it. Vince falls down to his knees and Shawn instead grabs a ladder out from under the ring. Shawn slides the ladder into the ring and runs it into Vince’s face which busts him wide open. Michaels then motions for sweet chin music again but once again decides against it. Michaels pulls a table and some trash cans out from under the ring and puts them into the ring. Shawn smashes a trash can into Vince’s face and then sets up the table. Michaels lays McMahon on the table and sets up the ladder before climbing to the top of it. Michaels decides against it and climbs back down. He throws the ladder out of the ring and hits Shane with a right hand before pulling out an even bigger ladder from under the ring.
Michaels sets the huge ladder up in the corner and then pulls Vince off the table. Michaels hits some right hands and then puts the trash can over Vince and lays him back down on the table. Michaels climbs to the top of the huge ladder, makes the DX gesture and dives off with a huge elbow drop through the table! Shane McMahon and the referee were both holding the ladder to steady it there. Michaels looks like he’s lost his head as he kicks away doctors and then throws the ladder out of the ring. He stands Vince McMahon up and then hits him with sweet chin music! Michaels hooks the leg and it’s over! Shawn Michaels beats Vince McMahon tonight! Decent enough match between these two. Vince McMahon gets wheeled up the aisle on a stretcher pointing the middle finger up.
There’s a VT hyping the World Heavyweight Championship match up next.
Kurt Angle (c) vs. Rey Mysterio vs. Randy Orton – Triple threat match for the World Heavyweight Championship
This should be a good match. Kurt has a 3-3 record at Wrestlemania events, Mysterio a 1-2 record and Randy Orton a 1-1 record. Rey Mysterio has a live music intro from P.O.D. for his entrance. They’re certainly building him up as the underdog, could tonight be his night? Randy attacks Angle with the title belt before the bell rings, disposing of him. Orton then takes out Mysterio and gets a near fall. Kurt gets back in the ring and hits Orton with a german suplex before German suplexing both Orton and Mysterio. Kurt goes back to work on Orton, popping him on the top rope. Mysterio then runs at Angle who back drops him onto Orton, Mysterio hitting Orton with a hurricanrana off the top. Rey Mysterio is getting a few boo’s in this one. Kurt hits Orton with a suplex for a near fall. Angle then tries for the angle lock but Orton fights him off. Angle hits Mysterio with a clothesline for a two count. Mysterio hits a kick to the head for a two count. More boo’s for Rey.
Mysterio hits a tilt-a-whirl head-scissors on Angle and then attempts the 619 but Angle catches the legs and applies the ankle lock. Mysterio taps out but the referee is distracted by Randy Orton who has a chair. Kurt hits a German suplex on both men and then a second for Orton before hitting an Angle slam on Mysterio out of the ring. Kurt Angle is a machine. He applies the ankle lock on Orton and Orton taps out but this time Mysterio distracts the referee. Angle kicks Mysterio off the apron and then puts the ankle lock back on Orton but it gets broken up by Mysterio. Angle throws Mysterio into the ring post and then pulls down the straps. He tries for the Angle slam on Orton but Orton counters it into an RKO! Randy hooks the leg but Kurt kicks out at 2. Randy climbs to the top but Angle darts up and hits him with a belly to belly. Mysterio then attempts the 619 on Kurt but Mysterio slips down the ringpost. Mysterio gets back up and completes the move before dropping the dime for a near fall.
The crowd chant “you fucked up” at Rey Mysterio. Poor guy. Randy disposes of Kurt and then hits his trademark neckbreaker off his shoulder for a two count. Randy prepares for the RKO but Angle hits him with an Angle slam for a two count. Kurt then attempts an Angle slam on Rey but Mysterio arm drags Kurt out of the ring and then dropkicks Orton, hits him with a 619 and then drops the dime for the three count! Rey Mysterio wins the World Heavyweight Championship! He gets a decent pop. Good match between these three. Very fast paced. Chavo Guerrero and Vickie Guerrero celebrate with Rey after the match.
John Cena and Triple H are shown getting ready backstage. Jim Ross tries to explain that the fans will cheer for Triple H because he’s a traditional wrestler. Sure.
Torrie Wilson vs. Candice Michelle – Playboy pillow fight
This could be terrible. It’s one fall to the finish though. Torrie Wilson has a 1-0 record at Wrestlemania, Candice makes her Wrestlemania debut tonight. There is a bed and pillows set up in the ring. The two girls are in big gowns and they get right into it as the bell rings. Torrie chokes Candice as the two girls roll around on the floor. Torrie hits a suplex and then back body drops Candice onto the bed. Torrie then tips the bed over onto Candice and jumps on top of it. Torrie then grabs her dog and rubs its backside into Candice’s face. Torrie strips Candice of her dress which causes the crowd to pop. Candice is looking for her first PPV victory tonight. She hits a boot and then a reverse leg scissors over the ropes. Candice slams Torrie’s face into the mat and then hits a snapmare onto the bed. Candice goes to the middle rope and hits some sort of jumping move on Torrie before grabbing some scissors and cutting off Torrie’s dress.
Candice celebrates with Torrie’s dress and then grabs what looked like a dildo and threw that out of the ring. She instead opts for her issue of playboy and rubs Torrie’s face in it. Torrie then rolls Candice up in a schoolboy for the three! Torrie wins the match tonight which surprised me a little bit as Candice is flavour of the month.
There’s a short VT showing what Triple H and John Cena had to say at a press conference.
John Cena (c) vs. Triple H – WWE Championship match
It’s main event time. And it’s a first time PPV meeting between these two men. John Cena has a 2-0 record at Wrestlemania following victories over The Big Show and John “Bradshaw” Layfield. Cena has left both previous Wrestlemania’s as a champion. Triple H has a 5-5 record at Wrestlemania. Both men have pretty cool entrances. John Cena is led by gangsters, one of which is CM Punk. The match starts with a bit of chain wrestling with Triple H getting the upper hand. The crowd are definitely backing Triple H. A “fuck you Cena” chant breaks out. JR continues to say that this is old school vs. new school. Cena looks for the FU early but Triple H nips down and takes Cena down with a right hand. Triple H tosses Cena out of the ring and then mocks him from the inside. Cena gets back into the ring and nails Triple H with some right hands and elbows and then a back body drop for a near fall. I’ve never heard Cena get boo’d so loudly. Cena hits a fishermans suplex for a two count and then applies a chinlock.
Triple H gets out of it but Cena hits more right hands and then an Irish whip hard enough to send Triple H out of the ring. Cena back body drops Triple H onto the metal ramp and then heads back into the ring. Triple H gets back into the ring and hits a knee to the face of Cena and then lays in some right hands. On the outside Triple H throws Cena into the ring steps. Back in the ring and Triple H hits a suplex and then a knee drop. Triple H hits a facebuster and a clothesline for another near fall. Helmsley hits a neckbreaker and gets another near fall. Triple H hits a swinging neckbreaker and then applies a neckvice. Cena gets out of it and knocks Triple H down with a clothesline. This match definitely has a big fight feel to it and the crowd are loud. The two men slug it out but Cena takes the advantage with two clotheslines and a powerslam. Cena hits a sideslam but Triple H hits him with a spinebuster for a near fall. Cena hits another sideslam and then the 5 knuckle shuffle.
The crowd are so hot in this one. Cena looks on the STFU in the middle of the ring but Triple H manages to crawl to the ropes. Cena sets up for the FU but Triple h nips down and rams Cena into the referee! Triple H then hits a low blow and it takes out both John Cena and the referee! Triple H gives Cena the DX sign, interesting that we saw Shawn Michaels do that earlier too. Triple H grabs the sledgehammer but Cena kicks him and hits it out of Triple H’s hand. Cena bounces off the ropes but Triple H grabs the sledgehammer and smashes it into Cena’s face. Triple H covers John Cena who kicks out at 2! Cena hits the FU out of nowhere but Triple H kicks out! Cena goes up top and tries for a high cross body but Triple H gets out of the way! Triple H then sets up for a pedigree but Cena counters it into an STFU! Cena applies the pressure and Triple H taps out! Cena wins the match and retains the WWE Championship!
And that was the 22nd annual Wrestlemania. It definitely had a big show feel and although some of the matches weren’t as good, overall it did feel like a good show. The opener wasn’t too bad. They were given the task of kicking off the show so the crowd were hot and they had to get the energy levels up. I think if this match was later on the card then it wouldn’t have been as good. Kane and Big Show made light work of Carlito and Chris Masters though and this match also served as a way of splitting up Masters and Carlito. I think Carlito will turn face and those two guys will continue to feud. The Raw tag team division is pretty poor so I don’t know who will be up next for the champions. Decent way to start the show though.
Money In The Bank was the entertaining spotfest that we had hoped for. Shelton Benjamin was arguably the star of the match, he showed his athletic superiority in this one. I really like Rob Van Dam as the winner although it does seem like it’s two years too late. Van Dam is possibly the most over babyface on Raw though and it’ll be an exciting time with RVD as the briefcase holder. Finlay had a good part to play in the match whereas it just felt like a way to get Flair, Lashley and Hardy on the card. John “Bradshaw” Layfield then beat Chris Benoit which I don’t mind but it seems like Chris Benoit has been on a big journey to get the title only to lose it a month later. The match was fairly average but it was in a tough spot following the Money In The Bank. I’m sure we’ll get some entertaining promos with JBL as US Champion but I wouldn’t be surprised if this rivalry was to continue.
Edge and Mick Foley had a great match. They really pulled out the stops for Wrestlemania and it’s amazing that you still get spots (like the flaming table) that you’ve never seen before. Edge is definitely a main event player and I look forward to seeing him back in the mix. This is possibly Foley’s most memorable Wrestlemania match so he won’t be ashamed of his performance. I like seeing Foley come back, he’s recently worked with the likes of Edge, Carlito and Randy Orton. The Boogeyman, Booker T and Sharmell were up next in what was the weakest match of the night. This was a bit of a joke really and gave the crowd a bit of a rest from intense action. The Boogeyman won the match which continues his undefeated streak. He’s now beat Booker T and JBL on PPV who are two of the top heels on Smackdown. How far can they actually go with this gimmick? Booker T will bounce back, he’s been fantastic as of late.
Mickie James beat Trish Stratus in a good match with what felt like a rushed ending. This has been the best feud in the history of the Women’s division and unless Trish is taking a break I can see this rivalry continuing on. Trish got a few boo’s in this match and the crowd sided more with the charismatic Mickie James. They’ll have to find a way to counter this unless they want a double turn. The women’s division is pretty weak at the moment with Victoria (and possibly Smackdown’s Melina) the only viable contenders. Jillian Hall over on Smackdown actually has a lot of talent too. There are a lot of models like Ashley, Maria and Candice Michelle who are in the division but can’t really wrestle. I think they have to carry on with Trish and Mickie for the time being. The Undertaker then beat Mark Henry, extended his undefeated Wrestlemania streak, in a pretty poor match. It was the right result but I’m not convinced by Henry in the main event scene at the moment. He’s better off feuding with someone like Lashley, putting him over.
Shawn Michaels beat Vince McMahon in a fun match. I loved the spot at the end, covering McMahon in a trash can and then diving off the huge ladder. This will probably put an end to this feud and I hope it does as I like to see Wrestlemania as the end of the wrestling calendar, starting afresh the next night on Raw. It was a great conclusion to the feud and a good way to end it and I loved Vince been taken to the back on a stretcher with his middle finger held high. Lots of crotch chops from the likes of Shawn Michaels and Triple H tonight, could a DX reunion be on the cards? Rey Mysterio won the World Heavyweight championship in a decent triple threat match between these men. Randy Orton took the fall but going forward I can see Orton continuing the feud with Mysterio. Kurt has been a beast but I’m not sure where he goes next, there isn’t a lot of top tier talent on Smackdown at the moment.
Torrie beat Candice in a the playboy pillow fight. What can I say about this? It served its purpose. I was surprised that Torrie won as Candice is the most recent playboy cover girl and seems to be the flavour of the month. Torrie has a decent PPV record though and is definitely the best wrestler of the two. Then in the main event John Cena retained his WWE Championship against Triple H. Should Mysterio have ended the show being that it had the title change? Maybe. It didn’t though and John Cena was the man to close the show with his title held high. This was a really good match and the crowd were totally into it, even though they were behind Triple H more than they were behind John Cena. Triple H looks like he could be on the verge of a face turn which generally doesn’t work with Triple H and people will soon get bored of it. Great match between these two men. Overall a good show with more strong matches than weak ones.
Overall Rating: 56.3/100 (ranked 111th out of 192)
Match Of The Night: John Cena vs. Triple H
Worst Match Of The Night: Torrie Wilson vs. Candice Michelle
Surprise Of The Night: Torrie Wilson beats Candice Michelle
Worst Booking Of The Night: Not having Rey Mysterio on last
Superstar Of The Night: Rey Mysterio
Wrestlemania 22 Will Be Remembered For: Rey Mysterio winning the World Heavyweight Championship