I have to admit, the WWE has done a hell of a job over the last year building up the WrestleMania 28 main event (or should I say, featured match?) between John Cena and The Rock. Sure there were some bumps in the road along the way. And yes, we had to endure the senseless feud between John Cena and Kane just as filler material. But overall, WWE creative has done a solid job at building the anticipation for this match up.
Apparently, anytime Vince McMahon comes up with a good idea, eh has to ride it until the wheel falls off. Hell in A Cell was a unique concept that became it’s own PPV. Same can be said for Money In The Bank and the Elimination Chamber. But apparently, despite the risk of booking 12 months in advance and keeping your fingers crossed that nothing plagues either performer, there was talk of Vince making it a new yearly tradition in having the main event of next year’s Wrestlemania planned and booked the day after this year’s WrestleMania. Therefore every year, there would be one main event/featured match that would be announced 12 months in advance. Not sure how I’m feeling about that one.
It was a nice novelty when it was done the day after WrestleMania last year. The Rock is a solid performer and still in great physical condition. But if a rematch isn’t on the menu for next year, then who else can they try to book for a 12 month program? Word around the campfire was that Cm Punk vs. Stone Cold Steve Austin was next on the slate – but there are a million concerns that come weighing down on that dream match.
First off, Austin is not in the same condition as The Rock is. Austin has been gone for so long that this generation needs to get re-introduced to him to make this work. At least for The Rock, he has a phenomenal film career with franchise movies like Fast and The Furious and G.I. Joe. I doubt anyone is renting or watching Steve Austin’s straight to DVD movies. The Rock can still work and bring his A-game. Austin is rusty, maybe out of shape and broken down. Punk would run circles around him while The Rattlesnake is limited to punching, kicking and slipping in the Stunner. On top of that, Austin is great on the mic, but can he build the drama in his promos for 12 months? He’s not as entertaining as The Rock. And in order for Austin to get over, he has to do what he normally does, and that is nail EVERYONE on the roster with the Stunner. So now, everyone has to take his finisher to make him a star again. After the first few stunners, it pop will quickly fade. So does it work?
Secondly, this is Wrestlemania. Sure it was built on as the super bowl of pro wrestling where the biggest feuds of the year are settled one and for all in the biggest matches of the year. But is it right to have a “featured match” outshine your championship main event? It’s already bad enough that there are two heavyweight titles to be contested and both of them are overshadowed by the Undertaker’s streak. So will the future of Wrestlemania be built around the special attraction rather than the hardest year round workers? bTeh thought of the rubs the wrong way.
Lastly, let’s say Rock and Cena prove to be a classic. Let’s imagine that Punk vs. Austin happens and makes me eat my words… Then what? Who do you book in the future? What legends return for one more match? What dream matches do you build for? And with all joking aside, a lot of the legends who I’d like to pair against today’s young starts are either way to old… or dead.
How many times can you rehash the same concept before “jumping the shark”? This is Wrestlemania. Let it be Wrestlemania. And don;t let a featured match take away from the importance of your main event. If it does, then all those Vince Russo haters will be eating their own words because they allowed the main event championship match to be nothing more than a prop so it the the company can whore itself out for some press.