Wrestlemania 30: Rookie Footage of the Major Participants (Video)
With a sublime combination of cuisine, bars, and a complete lack of curfew, decorum, or rules (not to mention a massive domed stadium within walking distance of all the debauchery), New Orleans is the best city in the country at doing big events.
Commons.wikimedia.org/ Randy Orton, a Wrestlemania veteran.
It was a little over a year ago that New Orleans hosted one of the best Super Bowls of the last couple decades, a nail biter between Baltimore and San Francisco that included everything from a Jacoby Jones near-MVP performance to a power outage in the middle of the game.
Well, hopefully, the good folks running the Superdome have done their power checks again, because this weekend Wrestlemania 30, essentially the Super Bowl of professional wrestling, takes place in that very same Superdome.
As Wrestlemania cards go, I would call the anticipation for this one somewhere between a B and a B+ (with the understanding that the Wrestlemania "brand" is so strong that anticipation will always have an absolute floor of a C+).
Among the storyline highlights and most anticipated payoffs:
1. Daniel Bryan, the most popular wrestler in the company and the MVP of the promotion for the last two years, is getting his shot at the company's Chief Operating Officer, son in law of Vince McMahon, and WWE legend Triple H, with the winner getting a shot as the third man in on the World Title match in the main event between Randy Orton and Batista. If Bryan doesn't come out of the Superdome with the belt, look the hell out on Bourbon Street. (Actually, if Bryan does come out of the Superdome with the belt, look the hell out on Bourbon Street. Basically, always look the hell out on Bourbon Street.)
2. The Undertaker puts his undefeated streak at Wrestlemania (21-0 and counting) on the line against the beast incarnate, Brock Lesnar, or as Lesnar's manager Paul Heyman calls him "MY CLIENT....BBUHHHHROCK LEEEESSSNNNUUUHR...." I love that! This bruising match will look drastically different (read: slower) than the Undertaker's last five Wrestlemanias, which included two matches apiece against Shawn Michaels and Triple H and last year's classic with C.M. Punk.
3. Bray Wyatt's first step onto the biggest stage in the business. Through a combination of creativity, near flawless promotion through vignettes and production, and solid in ring work, Wyatt has gotten over huge as neither a heel, or a babyface, he's just over as "Bray Wyatt." (Wrestling term alert: "over" means gained popularity, "heel" is a bad guy, "babyface" is a good guy. We good? OK, let's keep it moving...)
4. For the first time in a few years, no Rock at Wrestlemania, which is just fine.