WrestleMania 32 onsite report: Big screen encourages crowd chants during matches, the in-person perspective on the biggest show of the year

wrestlemania322Dot Net reader Nathan Saegi attended WrestleMania 32 in Dallas, Texas and sent the following report.

Getting into AT&T Stadium was a complete mess. This is my third Mania and by far the worst experience in terms of just entering the building. Even 20 minutes before start time of the main show there were sections half empty.

The pre show was what it was with the highlight being a WWE Women’s Title introduction. Thank God.

The ladder match was epic. Every guy pulled his weight and the crowd loved it. Sami Zayn in particular was predictably super over with this crowd. That suplex on Kevin Owens on the ladder looked brutal. Sin Cara’s flip off the rope was pretty awesome too. It was cool to see Cody Rhodes get a good pop with his Dusty ladder, and Zack Ryder was a well received surprise. His interview later was great, you could feel his joy.

Chris Jericho vs. AJ Styles was a pleasant surprise as they had a heap of time to deliver. The crowd took a while to get into it and were buying into a heap of the false finishes as well. A surprising result as I think most people expected Styles to win but it was not to be.

New Day got a great ovation and entrance but after the unicorn stampede bit, there was little interest. League of Nations is just… Meh. No heat at all. The result made sense when Shawn Michaels, Mick Foley, and Steve Austin came out. The eruption for Stone Cold was on a par with the loudest I’ve heard in person. It was an enjoyable moment with the New Day after they cleared out the lads. Shawn looked like he retired yesterday. He’s in phenomenal shape. Side note, the jumbotron showed graphics that read “Ayyyye, we want some New Day” and “New Day Rocks” at different stages of the match. New Day are over and this is like having that creepy uncle like something you thought was cool. It became less cool instantly and does a disservice to the talent. And it was doubly frustrating to have the phrases appear because the big screen stopped showing the action, which is doubly frustrating.

Dean Ambrose vs. Brock Lesnar was underwhelming. I thought Ambrose would hold on longer but it looked like they sacrificed a little of what they could have done here to save a big spot for later. It was fine for what it was. This was the second time they involved the scoreboard, this time with a running suplex count. Ugh.

The women’s match was fantastic. It was so good to see them get plenty of time and not be a buffer match before the main event. Snoop Dogg’s rap was cool, as was Charlotte’s entrance. They looked rushed in the first five minutes but it steadied into a nicely done Triple Threat. It did take the crowd a little while to warm up to it, but I think part of that was an expectation that the match wasn’t a high priority for WWE and wouldn’t last long. I was happy to see Charlotte go over as having watched NXT there is a much better story to tell with Sasha Banks. This feels like the start of the WWE revolution. Let’s hope so. Really enjoyable match. This was the third, and thankfully last, match marred by stupid suggested chants on the jumbotron (this time it read “woooo” each time Charlotte applied the Figure Eight).

Shane McMahon vs. Undertaker was interesting. There were large amounts of silence when there wasn’t dueling chants. Everyone was invested and watching, just unsure who to support. They really booked themselves into a ‘sit on your hands and watch’ corner. The match came off well enough. Obviously, that jump was insane. I wasn’t alone saying I had shakes as he stood up there. That was beyond what I expected from him. I kept waiting for that point on the climb where he’d stop and drop but he just kept going. Insane. Glad he’s ok. It was one hell of a moment but I don’t want to see that again.

The Dre was what it was. Shaq was a cool surprise, I guess. No real standout fan favorite to get behind made this pretty weak.

The Wyatt burial is complete. I enjoyed the segment mainly because I no longer hold any hope for the family. John Cena received a huge pop and of course we sang, but there’s a palpable respect coming through it. I’m glad he got to be a part of it.

That brings me to the ‘main event’ of Triple H vs. Roman Reigns. The match itself was incredibly slow and a section of the upper deck opposite the hard camera was trying to start the wave. There were “ole ole” chants and at one point a pretty loud boring chant. I did not enjoy this match, and admittedly I was one of the boo birds. The booing was seriously loud. If it didn’t come across they messed with the audio. We were all thinking there had to be a heel turn coming but nothing. Just another stubborn decision to ignore the crowd. Taker vs. Shane should have finished the show with the way these matches were laid out. I’m off to Raw tonight and still hoping for a heel turn as it’s beyond required at this point. Time to stop pretending he’s John Cena getting a mixed reaction or respect. He’s not. John received a huge reaction. Roman is getting close to go away heat.

All in all a truly enjoyable show live and another great WWE experience. The production values are so good and the match quality was solid to great.

The Best of The Boom features Jim Ross joining Jason Powell in this May 9, 2018 discussion regarding his relationship with Vince McMahon, why Vince sticks with Roman Reigns, how Triple H has changed over the years, and more. New episodes of the Boom are typically available mid-week...

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