Will it be “stupendous“? We will definitely have to wait and see but here are our predictions for night one of WrestleMania 38.
Becky Lynch (c) vs. Bianca Belair – WWE Raw Women’s Championship Match
|Matthew Byer||Prior to Lynch’s haircut on RAW I would have picked Belair to regain the WWE RAW Women’s title. However, traditionally whenever the babyface gets one over on the heel prior to the championship match that usually means an upcoming title loss. As a result while this will be a fairly entertaining bout look for Lynch to retain her title.||Becky Lynch|
|John Powell||I cannot take Becky Lynch seriously. She dresses like a clown, her promos all seem rehearsed and stilted. Her overacting in the ring is Shawn Michaels levels of absurdity. Here’s hoping Bianca gets her revenge and Becky leaves our screens for a long, long time.||Bianca Belair|
|Bob Kapur||After the haircut, they should have added a Title vs. Ponytail stipulation to this one. I can’t see them taking the title off of Becky quite yet. So maybe they can do that stipulation at WrestleMania Backlash and have Bianca win it then.||Becky Lynch|
|betonline.ag||Bianca Belair: -550. Becky Lynch: +325.||Bianca Belair|
|Jonathan Schwartz||New champion, double turn.||Bianca Belair|
|Dave Hillhouse||I feel like everything since SummerSlam has been about doubling (and tripling) down on that bad decision to squash out Belair, and I also don’t see Belair getting the same kind of victory two Manias in a row. Lynch retains somewhat honourably and then they’ll start the process of turning her face again while keeping the belt.||Becky Lynch|
Lynch growing up has been amazing, and I think she’ll keep her title. Both women are skilled fighters, but I’m giving this one to Lynch.
Rey Mysterio and Dominik Mysterio vs. The Miz and Logan Paul
|Matthew Byer||The issue with including celebrities in matches is that the outcome is usually pretty predictable. So while there will be moments when it looks like the Mysterios will win, in the end, The Miz and Logan Paul will triumph. However, look for Dominik Mysterio to turn on his father after the loss.||The Miz and Logan Paul|
|John Powell||I have zero, none, no interest in any of these celebrity matches at WrestleMania. Logan Paul is a goof. The WWE has no confidence in The Miz as a singles wrestler at present and Rey Mysterio’s legendary status has been disrespected by the WWE since he returned there. Who cares? Not me.||Logan Paul and The Miz|
|Bob Kapur||Babyface celebrities should win their matches. But when you have someone as unlikeable as Logan Paul? I think the Mysterios win this one, with Miz taking the fall. If it were another celebrity, I could easily see a post-match angle where Miz blames him for the loss, jumps him, but then the celebrity beats up Miz and ends up being a good guy. But not here – again, Logan is just too unlikeable for that to work.||Dominik & Rey Mysterio|
|betonline.ag||Dominik & Rey Mysterio: -140. Logan Paul & The Miz: +100.||Dominik & Rey Mysterio|
|Jonathan Schwartz||Mysterios over Miz and Paul. Miz gets in Paul’s face after Miz gets pinned. Paul decks him and walks out to thunderous indifference.||Dominik & Rey Mysterio|
|Dave Hillhouse||Paul has to lose this, right? He has to be the one to take the final 619 times two and get pinned while The Miz abandons his cringy celebrity partner.||Dominik & Rey Mysterio|
|Shelby-Liza Ndumbi||I am not a fan of Paul. When I saw him, I wondered why he was there. If it was a mistake or a glitch, but no, he’s really here contaminating my screen. Please don’t let him win. Rey has been the little guy with big success and I admired him growing up. I rarely see father-son tag brawlers, so this peeked my interest. I want them to win, especially for how Dominik hasn’t been on the scene for that long.||Dominik & Rey Mysterio|
Drew McIntyre vs. Happy Corbin
|Matthew Byer||This is a match that almost no one has much interest in. McIntyre will win in order to set him up to become a challenger for the Universal/WWE Championship on SmackDown and hopefully there won’t be any rematches.||Drew McIntyre|
|John Powell||This feud has been agonizing to watch when I mistakenly leave it running, forget to mute it or skip past it. Imagine having Drew on your roster and sticking him with this crud. My how former WWE champions fall so hard from grace. And what’s Madcap Moss supposed to be wearing those suspenders and shorts? He and “Butch” are seemingly characters right out of Our Gang or The Little Rascals, Vince McMahon’s childhood.||Drew McIntyre|
|Bob Kapur||Is this feud still going on? Better question: WHY is this feud still going on? Hopefully we see a definitive end to this one here with a straight win by Drew.||Drew McIntyre|
|betonline.ag||Drew Mcintyre: -1000. Happy Corbin: +500.||Drew Mcintyre|
|Jonathan Schwartz||Drew over Happy or we riot.||Drew Mcintyre|
|Dave Hillhouse||Not only does Corbin lose his winning streak, but he’ll lose his partner-in-crime here too. McIntyre pummels Corbin, and Moss has something to do with his loss, causing Corbin to turn his anger on him. Cue the Moss face run.||Drew Mcintyre|
Finally! I’ve been waiting for Drew to get his hands on Corbin’s neck. This is it. That’s all I have to say.
The Usos (c) vs. Shinsuke Nakamura and Rick Boogs – WWE SmackDown Tag Team Championship Match
|Matthew Byer||The Usos will retain the SmackDown Tag Team Championship and move onto their next challengers.||The Usos|
|John Powell||Nakamura has been reduced from a strong style killer in the ring with NJPW to a comedy act in WWE. He needs to go back to NJPW. The Usos retain because…Bloodline.||The Usos|
|Bob Kapur||I don’t know what to think about Boogs. I can’t stand the character, but he plays it well. And I can totally see Bruce Prichard and Kevin Dunn loving this character. Doesn’t mean his team wins, though. Side note: remember when they had Nita Strauss come in and play Nakamura’s theme song? That was truly stupendous.||The Usos|
|betonline.ag||The Usos (c): -200. Shinsuke Nakamura & Rick Boogs: +150.||The Usos|
|Jonathan Schwartz||Boogs gets pinned and Usos are fresh for tomorrow night’s run-in.||The Usos|
|Dave Hillhouse||The Usos are a legitimately great tag team who just happen to be caught up in a somewhat forced Bloodline story. They can win or lose and it won’t diminish them. That being said, Nakamura & Boogs are not the team to take them down.||The Usos|
|Shelby-Liza Ndumbi||I’m not saying I don’t want the Usos to win because they have been for years, and they thrive at it so well. But, I think their technique has been lacking a little as I watched them (and I might be wrong), so I’m torn. I’ll wait and see.||
Nakamura and Boogs
Charlotte Flair (c) vs. Ronda Rousey – WWE SmackDown Women’s Championship Match
This may end up the best match on night 1 of WrestleMania. The easy prediction is for Rousey to win the SmackDown Women’s Championship, but there remains a small possibility that The Queen retains.
|John Powell||What has happened to Ronda Rousey? She is called the “Baddest Woman On The Planet” yet Charlotte destroys her on Smackdown over and over again. If that weren’t bad enough is it me or did she look better in the ring during her first stint with WWE? There are all manner of timing and technical issues this time around. I have a funny feeling that if the WWE makes this the main event of night one, it will leave fans scratching their heads and leave them disappointed.||Ronda Rousey|
|Bob Kapur||This could be great if Charlotte is in a mood to work with Ronda, lead her through the match, and make her look good. For many fans, the Rousey bloom is off the rose – and this newest stint in WWE doesn’t seem to be generating much mainstream buzz. So I could see Charlotte winning. It’s not like they need a happy ending to this match, since Austin’s return will accomplish that.||Charlotte Flair|
|betonline.ag||Ronda Rousey: -600. Charlotte Flair (c): +350.||Ronda Rousey|
|Jonathan Schwartz||Ronda is your winner.||Ronda Rousey|
|Dave Hillhouse||How many times have I looked at what seemed like an obvious loss looming for Flair only to be foiled by her ludicrous victory count? Well, fool me thirteen or so times, I guess: I’m predicting Rousey.||Ronda Rousey|
|Shelby-Liza Ndumbi||I didn’t choose her only because I like her but I believe she could win or at least try to. She is the baddest woman on the planet. Rousey is a phenomenal wrestler and person and having her win this title would be a great step up given she’s won the Women’s Royal Rumble this past year.||Ronda Rousey|
“Stone Cold” Steve Austin on the Kevin Owens Show
Owens and Austin will hurl some insults at each other, it will descend into a street fight, and by the end Austin will hit the stunner for the 1-2-3.
|John Powell||I am pretty sure this talk show segment will be nothing more than that and lead to an actual match between the two on night two.||None|
|Bob Kapur||KO will start off with some blatant disingenuous compliments, but then he’ll say something about Texas. Leading to Austin cutting a “What?”-laden rant. He’ll pretend to make peace with a beer, go for the Stunner, but Owens will be ready for it, try for one of his own, Austin gets out of it, and Stuns Owens before throwing a Texas-sized beer bash.||N/A – won’t be a match|
The most obvious track is a disrespectful performance by Owens leading to a cavalcade of stunners. That would be fine. But how about this? It’s all a ruse! Steve Austin is there to become Owens’ manager! Owens is then immediately named as the opponent for Rollins, who takes stunners like a champ while Austin and Owens celebrate with beer and … something that’s not beer for Owens.
The New Day vs. Sheamus and Ridge Holland
The New Day will win in order to avenge the injury of Big E.
|The New Day|
|John Powell||New Day win one for Big E, who might even be at ringside.||The New Day|
|Bob Kapur||If they want the new Sheamus faction to look like a threat, they should get the win. But I could actually see Big E come out to ringside and spur his team on to victory.||The New Day|
|Jonathan Schwartz||New Day over the Pesky Blinders. New Day dedicates their win to Big E.||The New Day|
|Dave Hillhouse||Woods and Kingston will flop and fly to make their opponents look strong, but positivity will prevail. “Butch” will mostly look menacing from the floor.||The New Day|
|Given how swiftly Woods beat Holland’s ass last week, I was thinking (and hoping) he would do it again with Kofi’s help. Momentum is key. I’m glad to see Woods back.||The New Day|
Seth Rollins vs. TBA Opponent
Is there any doubt that Rollins opponent will be Cody Rhodes? Didn’t think so. The greatest question is who will win. WWE’s track record with a wrestler coming from another company where they were a pretty big star is to have them lose their first couple matches. Will that happen here? Perhaps, but WWE is aware that a lot of the younger AEW stars they would be interested in signing in the future might not react well to Rhodes being buried here (as they might believe WWE would do the same to them if they joined the company). Thus, look for Rhodes to get the victory after a spirited effort by Rollins.
|John Powell||If it is Shane, Rollins wins. If it is Cody Rhodes, Rhodes wins.||Take your pick|
|Bob Kapur||I think bringing Cody Rhodes here would be a mistake. He shouldn’t lose in his first match, but he shouldn’t get a big win over a big name at such a big event. They’d do better bringing him in on RAW on Monday where he can cut a promo and establish a direction for him based on the fan reaction. I fear it will be Goldberg returning. I would actually like to see a returning Bray Wyatt come in or some other big surprise return. They freak Seth enough that he takes the forfeit or countout loss.||Seth Rollins’ mystery opponent|
|Jonathan Schwartz||TBA over Seth Rollins. More on this in my next column.||TBA|
|Dave Hillhouse||Two things I’m sure of: Rollins will lose, and it won’t be to Cody Rhodes. He’s a Raw After Wrestlemania kind of deal. So … John Cena? The Undertaker? I feel like it’s going to be an old name in a short match.||Not Rollins|