What I’ve Heard for the Two Night Event in Dallas
So far from what we’ve seen WWE is having a hard time selling out the two night event of WrestleMania 38 in Dallas, Texas at Jerry’s World (AT&T Stadium). They are trying to sell 100,000 seats a night which everyone knew would be hard. WWE is doing their best to pull out all stops to bring in legends from Texas and big matches. It has been said from Ringside News that WWE is wanting all pitches with just 5 weeks to go. Is this too late to build matches that will save it?
I’ve spoken to many different sources about many topics since Sunday, February 20th. Putting together this card to try to get matches that fans will buy tickets for was brought up numerous times. It seems like WWE Creative is struggling to understand the fans and what they want, but also what Vince McMahon thinks fans want. To me, it sounds like a disaster.
It is my understanding that we will be seeing The Undertaker (Hall of Fame Inductee), Stone Cold Steve Austin, JBL, Shawn Michaels and Booker T along with any other wrestling superstar that has a Texas connection. We have already seen Kevin Owens trashing Texas in promos and on social media in case someone else besides Stone Cold Steve Austin has to step in. Personally, I hope we get The Undertaker as an alone inductee in the WWE Hall of Fame with numerous people talking about him. Let’s discuss the card.
WrestleMania 38 Working Card
Here is the WrestleMania 38 working card from what I was told as of yesterday:
Roman Reigns vs Brock Lesnar
This is no surprise. As soon as The Rock was found not to be available for Dallas then the WWE pivoted to Brock Lesnar. There are some social media fans or hardcore fans that say they are tired of seeing Reigns vs Lesnar, but casual fans want a big match. Or at least one that has a big match feel. Now they have added the Winner Take All Part of the match with both championships going to the winner. They will not be unified at this time according to sources. If unified then it will be WM 39, but may hold off for the Big Celebration at WM 40. The men’s championship will be the last one unified.
Charlotte Flair vs Ronda Rousey
This is the match that should not have been. According to sources I spoke to in November and December, the main event women’s match was to be Becky Lynch vs Ronda Rousey. This was switch for many reasons which I go into detail about on the Pro Wrestling Overtime podcast episode about this card. Can WWE get the hardcore/social media fans to get on board with what is really a heel vs heel match? Most casual fans love Ronda Rousey from her UFC/Olympic days and will root for her over Charlotte Flair. It is only the wrestling community that they will need to win over about this match. My sources said that there will probably be a triple threat women’s match, so leading contenders to be added to this match are Asuka, Sasha Banks and Bayley.
Becky Lynch vs Bianca Belair
I know Bianca Belair’s fans have wanted this match since SummerSlam and it makes sense on paper with Becky Lynch’s 26 second defeat of Bianca. However, the issue in this one is that like the match above it doesn’t make real sense. This is a babyface vs babyface match. WWE has tried to push Becky Lynch as a heel since she came back, but it is not working. Becky isn’t a heel in her personality and as much as she may want to be one. She’s not. Most fans still see her as the steam punk underdog before she rose up and became The Man. Let’s face it Big Time Becks has not gotten over with most fans.
I go into the how and why Becky Lynch was inserted into the SummerSlam match and who was really supposed to have the championship at that time on the Pro Wrestling Overtime podcast episode about this card. The 26 second defeat was done last minute and was not planned out. Therefore, this match wasn’t planned. Up until the end of December, Becky Lynch was supposed to take on Ronda Rousey in the rematch of their WrestleMania match. I know Bianca’s fans want to believe this is her redemption, but please don’t plan on that from what I’m hearing. There may be a heel added to this match. It would be Alexa Bliss with her doll, Lilly.
The Usos vs The New Day
There is no one else. Literally, a source said this. There is no one else. You will more than likely see The Usos taking on The Viking Raiders on a future Smackdown episode. However, they are not seen as a strong contender to have the championships. The Usos and The New Day are the two big rivals that everyone knows. Plus, I’ve been told that many believe that Big E deserves something, so The New Day as of right now will be getting the championships back.
Sami Zayn vs Johnny Knoxville
I don’t even want to talk about this match or the next one. I know WWE WrestleMania is famous for bringing in Hollywood stars. However, I’m not sure that I think Johnny Knoxville or Logan Paul are “true” stars. I know this is easy money for Sami Zayn playing this crazy character, but he can do so much more. I just wish he would get to show it to a big audience. Obviously, WWE has forgotten Zayn’s past.
Logan Paul/The Miz vs The Mysterios (Dominic and Rey)
The only thing in my mind that makes this match different than the one above is The Mysterios. So many fans are predicting that Rey and Dominic breaking up as a tag team, but I’m hearing that WWE knows that it will eventually happen just not now. Rey Mysterio has recently been on the cover of 2022 WWE 2K game along with having a special package in it where you can play different years of Rey Mysterio. Plus many fans are ready for Rey to give up. the mask and give it to Dominic. I think this happens, but not this year. I’m hearing from sources around Rey that he’s enjoying himself and Dominic is learning a lot from the tag team. Neither are ready for it to end. So look for the start of the breakup to be teased more, but it not happen.
Drew McIntyre vs Baron “Happy” Corbin
Poor Drew McIntyre. He’s working injured from what I’ve been told and probably needs some time off. He is penciled in as Roman Reign’s opponent this summer for SummerSlam and the Labor Day PPV rematch in the UK. If they truly want this then I think that WWE has some rebuilding in the fan’s eyes for Drew. He has been misused and hasn’t been seen as someone that can seriously defeat Roman in months…actually since being put on Smackdown. His use of the sword is now a running joke on the internet and being in this feud with Corbin and Madcap Moss hasn’t helped at all. Right after this match, the rebuild needs to begin. However, does Drew need to take time off before that starts?
RK-Bro vs Alpha Academy (The Street Profits)
Damian Priest vs Austin Theory
*Stone Cold Steve Austin vs Kevin Owens
*Sasha/Bayley vs Lita/Trish vs Carmella/Zelina Vega vs The Bella Twins
*A.J. Styles vs Edge (Shawn Michaels)
*Seth Rollins vs Cody Rhodes
*The Men’s and Women’s Battle Royals
The above are the leading pitches right now that I’m hearing. Meaning have heard about the Riddle/Randy Orton WM match. Well guys, that was supposed to be a championship match when pitched and when discussed. Riddle was in line to be the WWE Champion before or after WM. However, they have decided to keep RK-Bro together. Nick Khan loves their merchandise numbers. Randy Orton is loving working half the time in a tag team plus working with Riddle. Maybe you see this around SummerSlam or next year.
Damian Priest vs Austin Theory and A.J. Styles vs Edge may be interchangeable between some of these men. Finn Balor came out to answer Damian Priest’s open challenge. He may win before WM, so that the rematch would be for WM. However, the plan as of Sunday is for Austin Theory to get rewarded for his recent jump up into the scene and his bumping all over the place for Brock Lesnar. Styles may take on Edge, but if they move Finn Balor to Edge then Styles could take on Shawn Michaels, Texas homegrown boy.
The Women’s Division is a mess. I talk more about it on the podcast episode. WWE Creative hasn’t forgotten about the women’s tag team championships, but Vince McMahon isn’t interested in anything they are pitching unless it involves the legends. Look to hear these names in the next couple weeks as competitors or as turning down WWE: Beth Phoenix/Natalya, The Bella Twins and Trish/Lita. Trish has accepted a hosting position for the two Canadian shows weekend before WM. They were supposed to open up negotiations with Lita this week and The Bellas.
At one time, the WWE had Sasha Banks, Bayley, Charlotte Flair, Becky Lynch and Asuka as the top five women in the world. Alexa Bliss was just out of the top ten. Four of these women currently are not on the WM card. Please don’t write me about Bayley not being back. From what I’m hearing she will be cleared in two to three weeks. Not sure if that means back immediately or not. Asuka has been cleared for awhile, but hasn’t been used. Same with Sasha Banks who hasn’t been used on Smackdown, but has been at the show. Does WWE get the legends tag team vs the current group (which would include Carmella/Vega and Sasha Banks/Bayley) done? Banks and Bayley would get back together due to a challenge issued by Trish/Lita or The Bellas.
Personally, I would like a fatal four way of Alexa Bliss vs Asuka vs Bayley vs Sasha Banks. I think that match could be a steal the show match if given a little build and some time. Do I think it actually happens? WWE hasn’t given me a reason to believe this would be green lighted. I don’t want all of these superstars in a women’s battle royal though. Why? Honestly, I’m a little afraid they will get hurt working with some of the women they are thinking about putting in it. Remember WWE, sometimes less is more.
The one thing everyone wants to know is when is Cody Rhodes coming? When is Stone Cold Steve Austin coming? I’m hearing they are trying to get one on the March 4th Miami Smackdown show or on the March 5th Madison Square Garden live show. Which one? If I had to bet…Stone Cold. Why? Well, his contract should be easier to do. He is currently under a WWE Legends contract and a WWE promotions contract for WM 38. So if you hear Stone Cold is signed then this is why. He is. However, they have not completed his working contract.
Austin is wanting a three year contract with big money dates in Saudi Arabia. You will see him around two to three times a year. Think Goldberg, more than Brock this time. Austin would build matches, but not be wrestling tag matches before an event like WWE likes. It would be promos only with the match taking place in Saudi Arabia or at a premium live event. Why Kevin Owens? Well, Stone Cold Steve Austin will be choosing his opponents very carefully. Remember Austin has many chronic and serious injuries that can be re-injured easily. Flat out, Kevin Owens is a brawler that they do not have to do a ring match and he is SAFE. That is the most important part. In my opinion, you will not see Austin vs Goldberg because bottom line…Goldberg is not a SAFE worker.
I’m hearing he is enjoying his time in “retirement” with his baby. Now, I know some wrestling sites are saying he’s in Orlando at the PC, but I understand he was down there one day to look at the facilities. He wants no part of WWE NXT unless he’s running it. Yes, Cody has asked for a WWE Creative and/or a management position. He’s not wanting to leave himself hanging like some others who came back to the WWE have done. Cody has no interest in a year or longer in NXT, a year or longer jobbing out to WWE and fighting on the mid card before moving up for a year or longer. He has already put in his time doing all that and has been on the upper card for years now.
Also everything I’ve heard, he’s not waiting around. There are other promotions and other projects he could be doing. So many people in and around the wrestling business have said they can’t see Cody waiting until after WM to debut. He wants them to take advantage of his star power for the WM stage. I know many fans want WWE to “punish” him. Why? It just will hurt the WWE in the long run. Remember WWE wants a chance at Wardlow, Jade Cargill and MJF when their contracts are up. If WWE buries Cody or treats him badly, believe me, these three will know and won’t be signing with the WWE.
Let me know what you think or if you have any questions, comments, problems or protests. Write to me at ProWrestlingOT@gmail.com or on Twitter @ProOvertime I’ll talk to you soon and hopefully I’ll see you down the road.