The Aftermath – WrestleMania XXVI

This aftermath post wraps up our WrestleMania XXVI coverage. Duan, Alan, and Big D all watched the show on PPV while I was live in Glendale, so our perspectives might be a slight bit different. All in all, we loved the show and it was one of the better WrestleMania shows in recent memory.

Here’s what we had to say about the show:

Big D
Thumbs Up
Best Match: Shawn Michaels vs. The Undertaker
Worst Match: Good Divas vs. Bad Divas

Easily one of the top 5 Manias of all time. Cena/Batista, Edge/Jericho, and Punk/Rey were all tremendous matches and matches where I can see the feuds continuing. There is something about Cena and Batista working together that brings the best out of them. Punk and Rey was exactly what I thought it would be and people need to quit bitching about the time. Edge/Jericho was incredible, with awesome reversals and a surprise finish that keeps the feud going.

Bret/Vince was the worst blow off to a major angle in the history of the business and was quite frankly boring. Swagger will be the first man to cash in and job (written before Friday’s Smackdown). How the hell did Orton get so over? It seems overnight.

Undertaker/Shawn knew what they needed to do. Rather than focus on spotty near-falls to repeat last year, there was a lot more psychology and they actually did not use virtually any plunder other than the one table. The finish mirrored the Flair/HBK Mania 24 finish in terms of drama and that final chapter closing, sorta like Rocky when Creed goes “ain’t gon be no rematch” and Rocky goes “dont want one”.

Duan
Thumbs Up
Best Match: Shawn Michaels vs. The Undertaker
Worst Match: Good Divas vs. Bad Divas

This was a major return to form for Mania after a hugely disappointing effort last year. This was just an incredible show. There was hardly a bad match on the card. I say hardly because sadly the Diva’s match did exist, but aside from that everything delivered.

Taker and Shawn managed to put together a match completely different to last years classic, but every bit as good if not better. Cena and Batista had one of the best matches of either man’s career. Edge vs. Jericho was very good, but maybe a little bit below what i expected. The Bret/Vince thing was what it was. They did all they could considering their limitations, and I’m very pleased with how well Bret has performed since his return. All the undercard matches were perfectly enjoyable too.

The most important thing to take from this show though was that the right man went over in each match. It gives me confidence in the direction WWE are going. I believe they can keep building on this momentum now even with certain notable members of the roster missing. The infrastructure is in place for guys to take that step up.

Alan
Thumbs Up
Best Match: Shawn Michaels vs. The Undertaker
Worst Match: Bret Hart Vs. Vince McMahon

Easily in the upper echelon of Mania’s for me. Absolutely loved the show. It had some disappointments sure but there was enough good to great stuff that it more than made up for it.

(Shawn and Taker was) better than last year. Much better story, tons of stiffness and hate and just… more layers. I’m gonna have to re-watch it ASAP.

(As for Bret vs. Vince) if they did what they did in 3 minutes, I’d have been fine with it. However 15 minutes of that was death. The only redeeming things were Nattie’s slap straight out of a dirty BattlARTS ring surrounded by a couple of Yakuza members and Yuki Ishikawa’s dog, and Bret showing that he still has the best Sharpshooter in wrestling.

And I gotta mention Cena and Batista, because they delivered HYOOOGE in their match. Both have proved more than reliable on the big stage.

GG
Thumbs Up
Best Match: Shawn Michaels vs. The Undertaker
Worst Match: Good Divas vs. Bad Divas

What an end to a wrestling show. I think Shawn Michaels vs. The Undertaker is my favorite match in at least 5 years. It gave me everything that I thought was lacking in last year’s match and then some. It was the greatest ending to a show I’ve ever seen. Nearly everything else was at least solid and the matches that seemed to get shafted on time, should get more time to continue their feuds at the next PPV. This is the only time since they stopped doing brand specific PPVs that they really could go back to it if they wanted to. On the Smackdown side, who wouldn’t want to see Jericho/Edge/Swagger get 25 minutes and the same for Punk/Rey? I really enjoyed Cena/Batista and Edge/Jericho, but they were just appetizers for the main event and that main event delivered.

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2 Comments

  1. “The finish mirrored the Flair/HBK Mania 24 finish in terms of drama and that final chapter closing, sorta like Rocky when Creed goes “ain’t gon be no rematch” and Rocky goes “dont want one”.”

    Except, of course, there WAS a rematch between Creed and Balboa… comparing Rocky I to the “final chapter” of anything may be a bit misleading.

  2. Nice.

    I don’t think Sly ever anticipated a second film, and yes, by having Rocky II, it kind of ruined that Rocky I moment.

    And we may even see a HBK/Taker match a few years down the line too. WrestleMania 30 in the Garden, I can see it now.

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