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The best of WrestleMania weekend: Raw, Smackdown and more

Do you have sensory overload yet?

After what was likely the busiest week in any one city in U.S. wrestling history, you could be forgiven if you're a little burned out, but there was so much good wrestling to be found in all corners of Central Florida. The WWE had sellout crowds for six nights in a row, if you count the always-packed Full Sail University for NXT tapings on Wednesday. Ring of Honor's Supercard of Honor on Saturday in Lakeland drew a promotion-record crowd of more than 3,000, and other promotions around the area reported brisk traffic.

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Some leftover notes from the weekend (Disclaimer: Because of my Sentinel duties, I didn't attend any non-WWE shows, though I wish I could have done more. There were only so many hours in the day):

What you didn’t see on WWE TV

In dark matches before Saturday's NXT TakeOver event: Heavy Machinery def. the Bollywood Boyz; Oney Lorcan def. El Vagabundo, who was unmasked as Elias Samson; Peyton Royce def. Aliyah. After the show went off the air, main-event loser Shinsuke Nakamura remained in the ring for a long time soaking in the fans' adulation, leading cheers and finally taking a bow. It was obvious that the Japanese star was bidding farewell to NXT and was on his way to the main roster.

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On Sunday, when the WrestleMania broadcast ended on WWE Network with Undertaker on the exit ramp, there wasn't much more to see. Undertaker just walked, slowly and gingerly, up the ramp and out of the stadium. Will it be the last time? Who knows? But his ring coat and gear lay untouched in the ring for several minutes as workers began to remove chairs and take down the stage set. Eventually one of them picked the pile up carefully and set it outside the ring.

Monday at Amway Center, after Raw went off the air, Goldberg's music hit and he came out for an unadvertised appearance. He noted he wasn't following a script but speaking from the heart, and recounted his recent WWE journey, which ended with a loss to Brock Lesnar on Sunday. He said the main reason he came back to WWE was so his 10-year-old son Gage could see "a little taste" of the wrestling star Goldberg used to be. He invited Gage to join him in the ring – when he slipped coming over the railing, his father joked that was "one more bump" than Goldberg took in his current WWE tenure before the Lesnar match. Goldberg said you might not see him in a ring again, but added "never say never." It was a touching scene, and even most of Goldberg's fiercest critics were applauding him by the end.

On Tuesday, in a dark match before SmackDown got started, American Alpha defeated the Vaudevillains. On Wednesday, it was announced that Simon Gotch of the Vaudevillains had been released from his contract. After Shinsuke Nakamura's surprise appearance on SmackDown (which drew the biggest cheers of anything at Amway Center all week), during a commercial break, Dolph Ziggler entered and challenged Nakamura to a match in "tonight's main event." The match took place later, after the WWE Network's 205 Live show. It was a solid eight-minute match – nothing too spectacular, but crisp and entertaining as you'd expect from these two. Nakamura won with the Kinshasa kick to send the crowd home happy.

Best WWE match of the weekend

If you haven't watched the Authors of Pain's NXT tag-team championship defense against the Revival and DIY, and you have WWE Network, do yourself a favor and check it out. DIY and the Revival are two of the best tag teams in the United States, but they are physically dwarfed by the Authors of Pain, which led to an entertaining back-and-forth beatdown. The two smaller teams worked together to put AOP's Akam through a table, then Gargano executed a top-rope superplex to the floor onto the rest of the combatants.

Honorable mentions: The Hardy Boys' tense and high-flying tag-team ladder match victory on Sunday; Seth Rollins vs. Triple H on Sunday; Nakamura vs. Bobby Roode on Saturday, the short but hard-hitting Brock Lesnar vs. Goldberg on Sunday; AJ Styles vs. Shane McMahon on Sunday; the 4-way cruiserweight match from 205 Live on Tuesday; Seth Rollins and Finn Balor vs. Kevin Owens and Samoa Joe from Raw on Monday.

Biggest reactions

I haven't been in many crowds more heated than Monday's when Roman Reigns entered Amway Center. Reigns remained silent for more than 10 minutes – not that he could have been heard anyway – as fans moved from straight-up boos to vulgar chants and back again. He did a masterful job of egging the crowd on, lifting the microphone to speak but then stopping repeatedly. When he finally said simply, "This is my yard now," then dropped the mic, the crowd came unglued.

The Hardys' surprise return on Sunday was the loudest cheer I heard this weekend, followed by the growing noise throughout the 5-minute Brock Lesnar vs. Goldberg match. But considering the noise of 15,000 people vs. 70,000, a lot can be said for the aura of Nakamura, whose surprise Smackdown debut drew the most delight from the Amway Center faithful.

Honorable mentions: The surprise entry of the Revival on Monday and two entrances during the Hall of Fame ceremony. John Cena was greeted by a tuneful "John Cena sucks," while inductee Kurt Angle heard his traditional "you suck" chants. And of course, one is meant derisively and the other is meant lovingly. Such is life in WWE.

Reach Jay at jreddick@orlandosentinel.com or on Twitter @runninjay. For more wrestling news from The Suplex blog, visit orlandosentinel.com/prowrestling.

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