Sometimes WWE is accused of not giving the fans what they want. On Sunday night, three stories got their happy endings as the biggest matches ended with the beloved faces claiming their titles.
Going into Wrestlemania on Sunday, there were three challengers trying to rise up and claim their titles after long journeys: Becky Lynch, Kofi Kingston and Seth Rollins. Many thought that there was no way that all three would win their matches. However, arguably the most unlikely, Rollins, happened right off the bat.
The main show started with Paul Heyman coming out and insisting that if Brock Lesnar wasn't in the main event, then they would have the match right now. Rollins obliged and the two started fighting outside the ring. Lesnar threw Rollins around ringside, including hitting an F5 on the outside before the match officially started. When it did start, Lesnar hit a few German suplexes before the ref was accidentally knocked to the outside. That allowed Rollins to hit a low blow and then three stomps to claim the Universal title.
Kingston would challenge Daniel Bryan in the middle of the card. The crowd response to him and The New Day was easily the loudest of the night as the crowd was desperate for Kingston to finally get that win. The match weaved its way through some technical wrestling, brawling and some wild near-falls. After the other members of The New Day took out Rowan, Kingston was finally able to hit Trouble in Paradise for a win as the crowd exploded in cheers. An emotional moment took place in the ring as Kingston’s two sons joined him, Xavier Woods and Big E in celebration. While this wasn't the longest build of the matches at Wrestlemania (although you could argue that this was a night 11 years in the making), it was the one that seemed to have the most resonance with the fans, and they were rewarded by seeing Kingston finally win the big one.
Finally, the women got their chance to shine in the main event. Lynch's eight-month voyage to this point culminated in a wild win to claim both the Raw and Smackdown women's titles. There was a lot of back-and-forth action as all three women seemingly had chances to win. Finally though, when it looked like Ronda Rousey might get a final advantage, Lynch rolled through into a crucifix, and pinned Rousey for the win. While she had won the Smackdown women's title during this build, this felt like the natural conclusion to everything they had been building toward since August. She took the Smackdown women's championship from her rival Charlotte Flair. She pinned Rousey, becoming the first woman to do so. And, at least for a moment, she became the first women to hold both the Raw and Smackdown belts at the same time. She truly became “The Man” and Wrestlemania closed on a high note for the first time in several years.
Fans have been trained by WWE not to expect anything. It was a running joke throughout Wrestlemania weekend in New York that if you expected wins from all three, you haven't been paying attention. However, in this case, WWE pulled the trigger, creating an incredibly memorable night for all those in the building and those watching at home.
The rest of Wrestlemania
-Kurt Angle had his final match and, in true wrestling tradition, he went out with a loss to Baron Corbin. He had the advantage in the match, but went for a moonsault. Corbin took advantage and hit the End of Days for the win.
-Speaking of retirements, Triple H beat Batista after a brutal match to avoid having to end his career. Ric Flair ended up factoring into the finish, as he handed a sledgehammer to Triple H and then distracted Batista. Triple H hit him with the sledgehammer, hit a pedigree and got the pin. After the match, Batista tweeted that he is “officially retired from sports entertainment.”
Kofi Kingston, an 11-year veteran of WWE, went one-on-one with reigning champion Daniel Bryan at Elimination Chamber on Sunday night.
By Aaron Oster
Feb 18, 2019 at 12:15 AM
-Elias started playing a concert, but he was interrupted by John Cena. Not just any John Cena though. The Doctor of Thuganomics came out at MetLife Stadium (including with the Thugonomics theme). He ran down Elias, before hitting him and leaving him lying.
-AJ Styles beat Randy Orton in a solid outing that kicked off the main part of the show.
-The IIconics won the women's tag team titles. Beth Phoenix hit Bayley with a top rope Glam Slam, but didn't realize that Billie Kaye had tagged herself in. The IIconics threw Phoenix to the outside and pinned Bayley for the win.
-Roman Reigns beat Drew McIntyre. McIntyre got a decent amount of offense in, but Reigns, after a headbutt from McIntyre, hit a Superman Punch and Spear for the win.
-The Usos beat The Bar, Rusev and Shinsuke Nakamura, and Ricochet and Aleister Black to retain the Smackdown tag titles.
-Finn Balor (as the Demon) beat Bobby Lashley to regain the intercontinental title in a quick match.
-Samoa Joe beat Rey Mysterio quickly. Mysterio may have been nursing an injury that he suffered on Monday, which would account for the quick match.