It is everyone’s favourite time of year. It is Wrestlemania season. And the build to Wrestlemania 38 outside of a couple of matches has been underwhelming, to say the least. Not to mention the card itself is not as eyeing popping as it was in years.
Outside of Brock Lesnar vs Roman Reigns in a “unification” match, the other things that stand out are Stone Cold Steve Austin, Edge vs AJ Styles, Becky Lynch vs Bianca Belair, and that is pretty much it. Not to say the other matches won’t be any good, some might be, but you can clearly see because of the cuts over the past year and a half, WWE is having a hard time filling up the card for a two-night show.
Reason For Two Night Wrestlemania
The reason Wrestlemania 36 and 37 were two-night affairs was because of COVID. Especially 36, because it was when the pandemic had just hit and WWE had to hold its biggest show of the year in the Performance Center in front of no fans. Last year, they had fans for both nights, though not sellouts because of rules capping capacity at a certain level. However, this year both nights were to be full capacity and with a poor product with a poor build, people are not coming out to see Wrestlemania.
And why would they especially for two nights? It makes booking and putting the match selection together even more difficult because you are not sure what matches should go on what nights. We know Brock vs Roman is the main event of the weekend, so it will be the last match on Sunday, April 3rd. Originally Ronda Rousey vs Charlotte was to headline night one on Saturday, April 2nd, but with Stone Cold Steve Austin returning, he gets the headlining role.
Not to mention the price for Wrestlemania has skyrocketed over the years and who wants to pay to go to both nights, when there are only six matches announced for each night. That right there alone should tell WWE they need to combine Wrestlemania going forward because 12 matches used to be the norm for a Wrestlemania.
However, WWE is getting away from what Wrestlemania was supposed to be. It was a night where the best matches with the best storylines culminated. There was great drama and build around these matches. And if certain wrestlers did not make the show, WWE did not try to add them on last minute to give them a payday. If you missed out, it meant you had to try harder the following year. Now WWE is allowing everyone on the show. And no offense to those working in the company, but they do not need everyone on the show.
And while the company may think it is a good idea based on money and revenue generated from the weekend, it makes it harder to watch because traditionally Wrestlemania is one night. And the best matches are saved for that one night. Nobody is saying make it seven hours. As a matter of fact, make it four hours plus a one-hour pre-show. As stated above, not every wrestler does not need to be on the card.
Hard To Book Two Nights
If you look over the past two years, one night is usually better than the other night. And for argument’s sake take Wrestlemania 37. Night one was clearly the better night, but night two had some good matches. The reason people remember Night one is because of the main event between Bianca Belair and Sasha Banks. And thanks to the whole Bray Wyatt and Randy Orton debacle, night two turned into a mess. Even though Night two had Roman Reigns on it.
However, over these last three including Wrestlemania 38, there are just random matches thrown on the card for filler. That should not happen on a Wrestlemania. If you look at the golden age of Wrestlemania’s from X7 through 21 there was maybe one or two filler matches and they had a purpose of being there. But every other match had a big story culminating at Wrestlemania.
But outside of a couple of matches, everything for this year’s Wrestlemania fills rushed and not necessary. Who says WWE will keep this format going. They just might, which means each night could be longer and longer. But why do that when the model for success is there? Take the best storylines and put on the Grandest Stage of Them All.
It is Wrestlemania, not some random PPV in the middle of the summer. Time to get back to basics.