4/6 Powell's WrestleMania 30 results and review: Daniel Bryan vs. Triple H winner advances to face Randy Orton and Batista in a Triple Threat for the WWE World Heavyweight Championship, Undertaker vs. Brock Lesnar, John Cena vs. Bray Wyatt
By Jason Powell
WWE WrestleMania 30
Aired live on pay-per-view and WWE Network
New Orleans, Louisiana at the Superdome
WrestleMania 30 Pre Show
Zeb Colter delivered a brief "We The People" promo in the ring... Michael Cole, JBL, and Jerry Lawler were on commentary.
1. The Uso Brothers vs. The Real Americans (w/Zeb Colter) vs. Los Matadores (w/El Torito) vs. Ryback and Curtis Axel in a four-way for the WWE Tag Team Championship. JBL stated that it was an elimination match. Torito got his big moment early when he dove onto everyone at ringside and they all fell down. Los Matadores was the first eliminated team when Jack Swagger via the Patriot Lock on one of them.
Ryback slowed things down and a fan held up "rest hold" sign. Jey Uso had a good flurry offense. Cesaro ended up in the ring with Ryback and put him away with The Neutralizer. The fans popped for the elimination. The match came down to The Uso Brothers vs. The Real Americans. The Uso Brothers cleared the Real Americans from the ring and then performed big dives over the top rope onto them.
The Uso Brothers cleared the Real Americans from the ring and then performed big dives over the top rope onto them. One of the Uso Brothers dove off the top and Cesaro caught him and followed up with a near fall. They jockeyed for position and Cesaro went for the Swing, only to have it broken up.
Jimmy Uso went for a rear splash in the corner, but Swagger avoided it and locked him in the Patriot Lock. It was broken up quickly and then there were rapid fire spots involving all four wrestlers, which drew cheers from the crowd as all four men laid in the ring and sold it. The second "this is awesome" chant of the match broke out. Later, The Uso's hit a double superkick on Cesaro, then performed a double top rope splash from opposite corners and got the win...
The Uso Brothers defeated The Real Americans, Ryback & Curtis Axel, and Los Matadores in a four-way in 16:15 to retain the WWE Tag Team Championship.
After the match, Swagger yelled at Cesaro while Colter tried to calm him down. Swagger applied the Patriot Lock briefly, but Zeb pulled him off. Zeb ordered Swagger to hug it out. Swagger offered a handshake. Cesaro got up and shook it, but then took Swagger down and delivered the Cesaro Swing to a nice ovation...
Powell's POV: A good match. The "awesome" chants were a little premature, but I like that the crowd is fired up and wants to see something special. You had to know something was coming when Cesaro lost the match before he could perform the Swing. The split was done in a way that I suspect Colter's character will try to get them on the same page on Raw.
The panel of Josh Mathews, Booker T, Trish Stratus, and Alex Riley spoke... A video package recapped the setup for the Divas Title match... The panel discussed Daniel Bryan and Triple H and then wrapped up the pre-show...
The WrestleMania 30 opening video opened the show and focussed on 30 years of WrestleMania with a New Orleans flavor... The broadcast team was Michael Cole, JBL, and Jerry Lawler...
Ring announcer Justin Roberts introduced Hulk Hogan as the host of the show. The impressive ramp had Hogan images as he walked to the ring, and the awesome stage lit up in red and yellow. Hogan got a mega pop as he headed to the ring. Once "Real American" stopped playing, the fans erupted with "Hogan" chants.
"Well, let me tell you something, brother," Hogan started. "First off, I'd like to welcome everyone here at the Silverdome to WrestleMania 30." Oops. He said Silverdome a second time. "I"m sorry, it is the Superdome, brother," Hogan said with a smile. He said he was thinking about bodyslamming Andre and corrected himself again. Hogan started talking about special moments.
Cue the glass breaking. Steve Austin made his entrance. Cole noted that it was Austin's first WrestleMania appearance since WrestleMania 27. Austin and Hogan had a quick staredown. "If you're ready for WrestleMania 30, give me a hell yeah," he said. Austin said it was good to be back at the Silverdome, and looked at Hogan and smiled.
Austin asked the crowd if they want him to open a can of whoop ass on Hogan. The crowd obliged. Austin said that's what he thought they would say. He recalled seeing everything Hogan did beginning at WrestleMania 1. He ran through the list and got "What" chants after each. He stopped at ten and said "you get the picture."
Austin said they have been very protective of their legacies. He said he has nothing but respect for Hogan and appreciates everything he's done for the business. "Some give 'Stone Cold' Steve Austin a hell yeah," Hogan said. Austin said he would love to stay and flap his gums, but this is the night for the current regime. Austin reminded fans that "Austin 3:16 says I just whooped your ass."
The Rock's entrance music played and he made his entrance. Rock slapped hands and gave quick hugs to both men. After a brief setup, Rock delivered the "Finally, The Rock has come back to New Orleans," line. "Which means finally, The Rock has come back to WrestleMania." Rock said that he, Hogan, and Austin have finally come back to the Superdome.
Powell's POV: Rock smiled and looked at Hogan while saying the drawn out Superdome, and Austin got a big laugh.
Rock said that when he looks across the ring, he doesn't just see legends and icons. He said he sees his good buddy Austin and his childhood hero Hogan. Rock said they are the two biggest names in the history of WWE. He said he's had the honor and privilege of facing them both at WrestleMania.
Rock said both men have had an incredible effect on the locker room. He said a man would come out and fight in the name of hustle, loyalty, and respect (cue the boos) and said he wouldn't have done that if it hadn't been for Hogan's "say your prayers" line back in the day.
Rock said a man would come out and rise against The Authority. The fans chanted Yes! Rock said that wouldn't be happening if it hadn't been for Austin whooping the boss's candy ass. Rock delivered a fun line about how many WWE fans are born nine months after WrestleMania, then capped it off with a rhyme about "Rock Babies."
Rock ran through a list of names that ended with Sheamus and said that if they fought the three of them "we'd stick our boots right up their anus." Rock said it was boots to asses time and concluded with "If you smell what The Rock is cooking." Austin delivered his "That's the bottom line because Stone Cold said so." Hogan asked "whatcha gonna do" when Rock, Austin, and the Superdome run wild on you. The fans popped for the Superdome line. Austin, Rock, and Hogan drank beer in the ring together...
Powell's POV: A cool and memorable moment with three icons of the WrestleMania era. It's a shame that they let the word out about Austin and Rock appearing because I think it would have felt even more special had it been a surprise. Of course, that's easier said than done. Still, a cool moment to start the show. Hogan's Silverdome vs. Superdome slip turned out to be fun.
A Daniel Bryan and Triple H video package aired...
Stephanie McMahon stood in the ring in a unique outfit that begged for a riding crop. She introduced Triple H, who was brought out on a throne Conan-like gear on, and three blondes surrounding him. Daniel Bryan made his entrance next to 70,000 fans doing the "Yes!" routine. Stephanie flashed a nasty scowl at Bryan, who was all smiles as he reached the ring and surveyed the crowd before leading them in a big Yes! chant. Bryan had his shoulder bandaged to sell the Raw attack. Stephanie kissed Hunter...
1. Triple H (w/Stephanie McMahon) vs. Daniel Bryan. The back of Bryan's boots were furry. After a staredown across the ring, a smug Triple H offered a handshake. Bryan kicked it away. Bryan threw kicks at Hunter, who rolled to ringside, where Stephanie tried to calm him down. Hunter returned to the ring and went after Bryan's shoulder, but Bryan put him down with a dropkick.
At 4:50, Bryan threw kicks to Hunter's gut, but Hunter caught his leg and wrenched it as he took Bryan to the mat. Hunter tried to bring Bryan came right back and ended up performing a tornado DDT on Hunter at ringside. Bryan went for a flip or something off the top and Triple H propelled him into the barricade. Oddly enough, Bryan was the first man up.
Triple H took control and went for a Pedigree on the announcers' table, but Bryan fought back. Hunter grabbed Bryan's bad arm and wrenched it into the table. At 8:00, Triple H brought Bryan back inside the ring and targeted Bryan's arm. Bryan came back and ran the ropes to tease a suicide dive onto Hunter on the floor, but Triple H reached in and caught Bryan with a shot.
With both men on the ring apron, Hunter put Bryan's arm behind his back and picked him up, then fell to the floor, causing Bryan to land on the ring apron. Cool move. Stephanie applauded and gave Triple H a kiss as Bryan was on the floor and the referee made his count. Bryan returned to the ring to beat the count.
Triple H applied a crossface chicken wing. The fans chanted Bryan's name. Hunter took Bryan down and applied the cross face. Bryan reached the ropes and Hunter held onto it until the referee counted to four.
Powell's POV: I would have popped big if Hunter had been the one to say, "I have till five."
Bryan started to come back and they traded punches, then Bryan caught Hunter with a running forearm to the head. Bryan got to his feet and threw kicks at Hunter, who cut him off with a kick to the gut. Bryan tried to flip off the top rope, but he landed on his feet and ended up performing a pair of German suplexes for two counts.
Triple H slid behind Bryan and went for the cross face chicken wing again, but Bryan avoided it. Hunter hooked Bryan's arms from behind and performed a wicked tiger suplex that the crowd gasped over. At 15:10, Hunter placed Bryan on the top rope and went for a superplex, but Bryan blocked it.
Bryan threw punches to the side of Hunter and then performed a top rope sunset flip into a powerbomb. Bryan caught Triple H with two running dropkicks in the corner, but Hunter was waiting for him and drilled him with a clothesline when he went for a third. Stephanie cheered loudly from the corner.
Triple H went for a Pedigree, but Bryan performed a double leg takedown. Bryan blasted Bryan with a kick to the head. At 18:00, Bryan went for a top rope move, but Hunter lifted his knee and Bryan took it in the face on the way down. Triple H applied the Crossface again.
Bryan ended up escaping the Crossface and countered into the Yes! Lock. Triple H reached the ropes. Bryan broke the hold and Hunter rolled to ringside. Bryan hit him with back to back suicide dives. Bryan threw two kicks at Hunter and then rolled him back inside the ring. Bryan performed a missile dropkick, but Bryan came up selling the shoulder from the landing.
Bryan kipped up. With Hunter kneeling, Bryan threw repeated kicks to his chest and then one to the head and went for a cover, but Hunter kicked out at two at 22:15. Bryan backed to the corner and led "Yes!" chants. Bryan charged at Bryan for the running knee, but Hunter turned it into a spinebuster. Triple H hit the Pedigree and covered Bryan for the 1-2... Bryan kicked out for a big pop.
Bryan went for a small package, but Hunter escaped the pin. Hunter worked him over. Triple H went for a pedigree, but Bryan backdropped him into a pin for a two count. Bryan caught Triple H with a kick and then Hunter went for a Pedigree, but Bryan avoided it, kicked Hunter, and then caught him with the running knee for the win.
Daniel Bryan pinned Triple H in 26:00 to advance to the WWE World Heavyweight Championship match.
After the match, Stephanie looked shocked. Bryan celebrated with the fans. Stephanie entered the ring and slapped Bryan across the face, then Hunter blasted him with a clothesline. Hunter wrapped Bryan's arm around the ring post and then slammed it with a chair. A trainer tended to Bryan, and Hunter and Steph left ringside to boos. They stopped at the top of the stage to mug for the crowd. Meanwhile, Bryan was holding his arm at his side and yelled, "I'm fine" at the trainer...
Powell's POV: One hell of a match. I must admit that I was concerned during the opening minutes when it didn't seem like they were still trying to find the groove, but they definitely got there. The highlight for me was when Bryan kicking out of the Pedigree. You knew it was coming at some point, but it was one of those moments where you weren't entirely sure whether he would survive it. The guys watching at my place popped big when Bryan kicked out of that move. The post match attack was well done and the fans were receptive...
A commercial aired for Mountain Dew... The New Age Outlaws made their entrance and Road Dogg did a quick bit of mic work, before The Shield's music played. The Shield members came out wearing skeleton half-masks. Kane made his entrance with the Outlaws...
2. Seth Rollins, Roman Reigns, and Dean Ambrose vs. Kane, Billy Gunn, and Road Dogg in a six-man tag. Reigns worked over The Outlaws to start. He stacked them over the ropes and then went to the floor and performed his running kick on both men. He went for a Superman punch, but Kane had checked in and caught him by the throat. Seth Rollins had already tagged and cut off Kane's chokeslam attempt.
After all six men brawled in the ring, Rollins and Ambrose ended up diving onto the Outlaws on the floor. Reigns performed a spear in the ring on Kane, then caught the Outlaws with a double spear. The Shield performed a two-man Triple Powerbomb on The Outlaws, and Rollins pinned Gunn...
The Shield defeated Kane and The New Age Outlaws in 2:55.
Powell's POV: A lopsided squash win for The Shield. I had convinced myself that the Outlaws and Kane could step up and this could be a decent match, but it wasn't laid out in a way that would give them a chance to do that. The right team went over strong, yet I still feel letdown by The Shield's role in WrestleMania 30.
Backstage, Sgt. Slaughter and Hacksaw Duggan played with action figures as former heel referee Danny Davis made the count. Ricky Steamboat delivered an embarrassing war cry as he entered the picture in his gear. A suit took the toy set and said he believes it belonged to someone else. Ted DiBiase showed up and said everybody has a price for the Million Dollar Man. Ron Simmons popped up and gave a "Damn!"...
3. The 30-Man Andre the Giant Battle Royal. Show and Sheamus were the only televised entrances. Cesaro, Yoshi Tatsu, Xavier Woods, and David Otunga were the entrants I don't recall seeing advertised (buy one of them must have been). Yoshi was the first man eliminated. Later, there was a brief Fandango moment after he eliminated a wrestler and the crowd started humming his song.
Sheamus broke up the Fandango moment with repeated forearms to the chest of Fandango, who was standing on the ring apron. Sheamus stopped and gave a light shove that caused the weary Fandango to fall to the floor.
Later, Kofi was tossed over and it looked like he was supposed to land on the stairs, but he fell to the floor. He ended up lying on the ringside mat and pointed at his feet on the ring steps, and the referee allowed him to continue. He took the Cesaro Swing and was eliminated shortly thereafter.
The final four was Big Show, Cesaro, Sheamus, and Alberto Del Rio. Sheamus and Del Rio ended up eliminating one another simultaneously, leaving Show and Cesaro in the ring. Cesaro ended up catching Show and body slamming him over the top rope and onto the floor for the win. Afterward, Show reached in and shook Cesaro's hand. Cesaro then posed with the trophy and then picked it up...
Cesaro won the Andre the Giant Memorial Battle Royal in 13:40.
Powell's POV: All the hype with the armored truck carrying the trophy on the pre-show and the whole thing felt rushed. I thought we were going to see Big Show take the Cesaro Swing, but they are wisely saving that. The moment was obviously the big body slam, and the crowd was receptive. A cool surprsie winner. I just hope they have something big planned for Cesaro aside from the obvious program with Jack Swagger.
The broadcast team set up a John Cena vs. Bray Wyatt video package...
A voodoo dance number took place on the stage. The Wyatt Family did their backstage entrance line. The Wyatt Family entered as their theme was played live on the stage by a band wearing bird masks and the singer/songwriter on vocals wearing face paint. John Cena walked onto the stage, turned back and nodded, then headed to the ring...
Powell's POV: The Wyatt Family entrance was really cool. The look of the band really worked with their vibe. Cena's nod suggests that he has backup waiting. My guard is up for run-ins to counter Luke Harper and Erick Rowan.
4. John Cena vs. Bray Wyatt (w/Luke Harper, Erick Rowan). Wyatt dropped to his knees and told Cena to be the monster he is and finish him. Cena got the better of Wyatt, who responded with laugher. Cena threw repeated punches at Wyatt in the corner. Harper stood on the ring apron, but Wyatt told him no. Harper went back to the floor with Rowan and motioned in a way that suggested he was told no.
At 6:30, Wyatt kicked Cena and slammed him. Wyatt pounced on Cena and threw punches at him while making aggressive noises. Wyatt threw a clothesline that Cena ducked, and Cena followed with a dropkick. Wyatt came right back with a sleeper hold at 7:40.
Cena performed some of his signature spots and then smiled at the crowd before setting up for the Five Knuckle Shuffle. When he bounced off the rope, Wyatt was in crab walk position. Cena acted shocked and backed away, then had to chase Harper off the ring apron, and Wyatt took advantage of the distraction. A group of fans briefly sang "He's Got The Whole World In His Hands."
Powell's POV: There's your favorite to be the Fandangoing moment for this year's Raw after WrestleMania.
Cena went for a leg drop off the top, but Wyatt caught him and slammed him down powerbomb style for a two count. Cena came right back and hit the Five Knuckle Shuffle and went for the Attitude Adjustment, but Wyatt avoided it and caught Cena with an awkward gut buster.
They fought onto the ring apron and Cena went for the Attitude Adjustment, but Wyatt avoided it and performed a DDT-like move in which he drove Cena's head into the apron yet Wyatt landed on his feet at ringside. The singing started up again. Wyatt looked to the loudest fans and held his arms out, then swayed briefly as he walked over to Cena and hit him again.
Cena fought back and went to the top rope. Cena dove onto Harper and Rowan at ringside rather than onto Wyatt. Bray regained control at ringside and went to hit Cena with the ring steps, but Cena avoided it. Cena ended up hoisting the ring steps over his head and let out a primal scream. Cena hesitated while telling a story that really doesn't make much sense.
Back in the ring, Wyatt hit his running body splash. Cena came back with an Attitude Adjustment and went for a cover. Wyatt kicked out. Harper caught Cena with a kick that put Wyatt back in control. Wyatt threw Cena to the floor. Harper stood with his arms in the crucifix pose, and Cena stood up and speared him into the timekeeper's area.
Wyatt went to the corner and mugged for the crowd, then leaned over backwards and looked at Cena. Wyatt set up for his finisher. Cena escaped without taking the kiss and applied the STF. Wyatt reached the ropes to break the hold. They got to their feet and Wyatt performed Sister Abigail for a two count at 20:15.
Wyatt tore apart the Spanish announce table. The feed froze a few times for a few seconds, but picked up where it left off. Wyatt grabbed a chair and returned to the ring. Wyatt put the chair down and then knelt down with his arms out and challenged Cena to hit him. Cena seethed and wound up. Rowan stood on the apron and Cena ran past Wyatt and struck Rowan with the chair to knock him down.
Wyatt rolled up Cena for two. He went for Sister Abigail, but Cena slipped into the Attitude Adjustment and scored the clean pin. The broadcast team said Cena kept his legacy by staying true to himself and not giving in to the dark side. Cena celebrated with his father at ringside...
John Cena defeated Bray Wyatt in 23:00.
Powell's POV: A disappointing match with a bizarre story. I get the idea that Cena had to fight off the temptation of going too dark with the chair shots and violence, but I don't feel like that was set up with the story they told leading into the match. Years from now people will watch this match on WWE Network and assume they need to go back and watch Raw to see the setup, and they will be left confused and disappointed if they do. I had a few network glitches, but it doesn't sound like it was a widespread issue.
Multiple commercials aired, then a video package on the WWE Hall of Fame was shown... Howard Finkel introduced the members of the 2014 WWE Hall of Fame class. Mr. T's mother would be so proud. They saved Ultimate Warrior for last and he got a smaller reaction than I anticipated... Backstage, a trainer examined Daniel Bryan's shoulder... A video package setup the Undertaker vs. Brock Lesnar match...
5. Undertaker vs. Brock Lesnar (w/Paul Heyman). There were 22 coffins with the names of the Streak match losers rolled onto the stage as part of Taker's entrance. The last coffin had Lesnar's name on it. Brock showed no fear this time around. Undertaker wore a black hat and jacket with red trim on each. Taker and Brock had a staredown beforehand.
The bell rang and they went right after one another. Taker won the first exchange with quick punches, but Lesnar clotheslined him in the corner and then caught him with a wicked suplex. Lesnar clotheslined Taker to the floor and Taker landed on his feet. Cool spot. Taker came back from the floor by clotheslining Lesnar by pulling his neck over the top rope.
The crowd was very quiet for the initial exchanges, but an Undertaker chant broke out around 2:00. Taker took it to Lesnar on the floor and ran his shoulder into the ring post. The crowd was quiet again as they rolled back inside the ring. Taker went for Old School, but Lesnar punched him down and then drove his shoulder into Taker's gut repeatedly. Taker went for a running shoulder block, but Taker moved and Brock went through the ropes and into the post.
At 4:10, Taker performed a legdrop on Lesnar, whose neck was draped over the edge of the ring. Moments later, Taker grabbed Brock by the throat, but Lesnar avoided it and went for an F5, but Taker avoided that. The crowd was quiet again as they went back to fighting on the floor.
The crowd remained nearly silent as Lesnar worked over Taker with punches at 10:45. Lesnar shot Taker into the ropes and Taker caught him with a DDT. Brock got back to his feet and went toward Taker in the corner and took a boot to the face. The crowd woke up when Taker caught Lesnar with a big boot. Taker followed up with a leg drop for a two count.
At 13:00, Taker signaled for the chokeslam and didn't get much of a reaction until he performed the move, which got him another two count. Lesnar came back and hit the F5 out of nowhere for a two count at 14:05. Heyman yelled that Lesnar has him where he wants him.
Taker came back with Hell's Gate and Lesnar teased tapping. Lesnar powered Taker up and slammed him down to break the hold. A horribly unconvincing JBL said he thinks that might be all Undertaker had left. He talked about Taker going out like a true gladiator, then Cole said he was calling that too early.
Taker once again went for Hell's Gate and Brock once again teased tapping. Heyman was the loudest person in the building as he yelled, "You're Brock Lesnar!" Brock once again picked up Taker and slammed him to the mat. "What does Undertaker have to do?" Cole asked. Um, a Tombstone or two? At 18:40, Taker caught Lesnar in the Kimura. Lesnar reached the ropes to break the hold.
At 20:10, Taker went up for Old School, but Brock pulled him into F5 position and performed the move for a near fall. Very cool spot. Lesnar hit a couple of rough looking German suplexes that didn't get a reaction from the crowd. Heyman told Lesnar that Taker is going to be 21-1 and that he is the one. "You're Brock Lesnar, you're a conquerer," Heyman yelled.
Lesnar started throwing punches at Taker while standing on the second rope. Taker low blowed him and then performed The Last Ride. At 25:55, Taker performed the Tombstone Piledriver and draped Lesnar's arms over his chest while pinning him, but Lesnar kicked out.
Taker did his sit-up, then did the throat slash gesture. Taker set up for another Tombstone, but Lesnar countered into his third F5 and scored the clean pin. The fans booed and Heyman flipped out in celebration. "You did it! You did it! You did it!" Heyman said. Lesnar smiled and Heyman raised Brock's hand in victory.
The crowd continued to boo. Taker struggled to get to his feet. Both broadcast teams stood and clapped. The fans let the dorks clap on their own, but then once they stopped they gave him an Undertaker chant and applause. Taker left the ring to applause and his music played as he walked up the ramp.
Brock Lesnar defeated Undertaker in 25:15.
Powell's POV: What the hell was that? Yes, it's a shocking WrestleMania moment, but I can't believe they would have a part-timer wrestler who is already made be the person to end The Streak rather than someone who could truly benefit from it. Yes, Lesnar gains something and will have momentum going into a program with Daniel Bryan if they want to go there next, but it's such a short term boost for a guy who is unlikely to pay dividends long term. The match was disappointing and the crowd was destined to react this way because the buildup left so much to be desired. This was not a great Streak match, and the broadcast team did absolutely nothing to help it with their embarrassingly bad call. JBL was especially bad and ineffective. If this was the end of the line for Taker, it's a shame that he didn't go out with more fanfare or at least with a story that would have elicited a better reception to the match. If there's a silver lining to this it's that Paul Heyman's Raw promo should be glorious
At ringside, the broadcast team spoke about Taker and spoke about him in past tense while praising him...
6. A.J. Lee vs. Naomi vs. Cameron vs. Brie Bella vs. Nikki Bella vs. Natalya vs. Eva Marie vs. Emma vs. Aksana vs. Alicia Fox vs. Summer Rae vs. Rosa Mendes vs. Layla vs. vs. Tamina in a single-fall match for the WWE Divas Championship. Vickie Guerrero watched the match from ringside. Natalya went for a Triple Sharpshooter early that was broken up. The Bella Twins worked together and then had a brief moment against one another. A.J. hooked Naomi in the Widowmaker for the win...
A.J. Lee retained the WWE Divas Championship.
Powell's POV: I was distracted throughout the match by some technical fun and clearly the live crowd was still in hangover mode from the Undertaker shocker.
Backstage, Gene Okerlund interviewed Hulk Hogan. Paul Orndroff and Roddy Piper interrupted and bickered at Hogan over losing the first WrestleMania match. Mr. T showed up for Hogan. Pat Patterson entered in his referee gear and told them it's been 30 years. They all shook hands. Piper was the most reluctant to shake hands with T...
Justin Roberts introduced Bruno Sammartino, Harley Race, Dusty Rhodes, Bob Backlund, and Bret Hart, who were seated in the crowd... Rev Theory performed Randy Orton's entrance theme as he made his entrance...
7. Randy Orton vs. Batista vs. Daniel Bryan in a Triple Threat for the WWE World Heavyweight Championship. Daniel Bryan sold his shoulder by leading his pre-match Yes! chant with one arm. Cole raved about the value of WWE Network before the opening bell, then noted there were no DQ's or count outs in a Triple Threat match.
Bryan took some early punishment and sold on the floor. Orton got the better of Batista at ringside and then performed a move to drop Bryan on the barricade. Orton and Batista went back to the ring with Orton still in control until Bryan returned with a missile dropkick. He threw some kicks, but was cut down quickly.
Bryan came back with a top rope headbutt at 8:40 and locked in the Yes! Lock on Orton. Triple H and Stephanie McMahon ran to ringside, and Hunter pulled the referee out of the ring. Stephanie glared at Bryan, who turned and walked into a spinebuster. Hunter sent new referee Scott Armstrong into the ring. Batista hit the Batista Bomb on Bryan, who kicked out.
The crowd came to live with "Yes!" chants at 10:00. Batista charged at Bryan, who moved, causing Batista to crash into the corner. Bryan kicked referee Armstrong, then drove onto Hunter and Armstrong, and Steph was bumped in the process by Orton. Triple H got a sledgehammer and slid it into the ring. Bryan grabbed it and struck Triple H with it.
Bryan rolled up Batista but Orton broke up the pin. The match spilled out to the floor and both Orton and Batista worked over Bryan. Hunter and and Steph were helped to the back and the crowd chanted the "goodbye" song at them. Orton and Batista exchanged a long look that showed they were working together. They took both announce tables apart.
Batista set up for a Batista Bomb on Bryan on one table, and Orton waited on the other and performed an RKO on Bryan on the way down. The table broke and Orton took a nasty bump onto one of the monitors. Orton came up with some blood on his back, but he was able to brawl with Batista on the floor as the trainers tended to Bryan.
Batista continued to fight and Batista rolled Orton inside the ring as the trainers put a neck brace on Bryan and eventually put him on a stretcher. Orton hit Batista with a hanging DDT off the ring apron and onto the floor. Bryan started shoving the medical crew away and got off the stretcher.
Orton was there waiting for Bryan and whipped him into the ring steps. Orton rolled Bryan back inside the ring. A loud "Daniel Bryan" chant started at 19:00. With Bryan lying on the mat, Orton looked at the fans and motioned for them to keep it coming, then he struck the Viper's pose.
Orton went for the RKO. Bryan recovered and applied the Yes! Lock in the middle of the ring. Batista returned to the ring and hit Bryan from behind to break it up. Bryan quickly put Batista in the Yes! Lock. Batista teased tapping, but Orton was there to break it up. Orton threw punches at Batista, and the crowd once again chanted for Bryan.
Orton struck the Viper's Pose and went for the RKO on Batista, but Batista shoved Orton aside. Batista went for a spear but Orton jumped, and Batista speared Bryan and knocked him out of the ring. Orton hit the RKO on Batista and went for a pin, but Batista kicked out at the last second in an excellent near fall.
At 23:00, Batista hit the Batista Bomb on Orton, only to have Bryan immediately blast Batista with the running knee. Bryan applied the Yes! Lock on Batista and Batista tapped out to end the match.
Daniel Bryan defeated Randy Orton and Batista in a Triple Threat match in 23:20 to win the WWE World Heavyweight Championship.
The crowd chanted "Yes!" as Bryan celebrated. He went to ringside and picked up both title belts and stood on the broadcast team's table and pumped them into the air as confetti was shot off. His shoulder was suddenly better, but we'll suspend disbelief and credit the adrenaline. Bryan brought family members into the ring and celebrated with them. He stood on the second rope and held both title belts in the air. They stuck with Bryan's celebration for a bit and then Cole delivered the sendoff as Bryan celebrated by himself with both title belts to close the show...
Powell's POV: The match was excellent down the stretch. I'm amazed that Orton was able to get up after he landed on the television monitor. The Triple H and Stephanie interference was logical from a storyline standpoint even if I could have done without it. The post-match scene was excellent with massive amounts of confetti and a live crowd that was as flat as possible during and especially after the Undertaker match really came to life.
Overall, the show had the happy ending that it desperately needed. The Undertaker loss is just baffling and the match and especially the finish were just major buzz kills. The undercard was what we thought it was, but there were enough strong moments to make this a memorable WrestleMania event. I have a feeling the reaction to the show is going to be very polarizing, but perhaps the biggest victory for WWE is that the WWE Network feed did not have any major widespread issues. Thanks for watching along with us tonight.
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