As we always do around this time, we need to set our sights on the build to the biggest pay-per-view of the year, WrestleMania. The event is coming up in just a few weeks and the card is starting to fill up, but it might not necessarily be as good as we were individually hoping it would be. That being said, what would you do if you were in charge? What matches would have been scheduled if you had anything to say about it?
Here are the rules:
1) You need to justify your choices within a reasonable mindset of what WWE has in store. Just because someone is a favorite of yours does not mean WWE would be pushing them to the title in any realistic fashion.
2) You cannot include people who are not a member of the roster, whether they are retired, working for another company, or obviously deceased. You can, however, work under the assumption that injured stars might possibly return in time for certain events (if it is within reason). Also, be realistic when it comes to bringing NXT stars up to the main roster. WWE never brings up 15 people in a year, so don't flood the market.
3) The earliest time frame you can begin planning from as a reference point is last year's WrestleMania, although considering.
Note: I restrained myself to an even shorter time frame, angling around Survivor Series rather than WrestleMania and keeping in tact all of the injuries that are currently out there.
Primary Commentary Team = Michael Cole, John "Bradshaw" Layfield and Jerry "The King" Lawler
Pre-Show Commentary Team = Mauro Ranallo, Corey Graves and Byron Saxton
Backstage Interviews = JoJo, Rich Brennan and Eden Rhodes
Pre-Show Hosts = Tom Phillips and Kyle Edwards
Kickoff Panel = Renee Young, Shawn Michaels, Booker T and Mick Foley
Master of Ceremonies = John Cena (but he doesn't get any big amount of time dedicated to him)
If this is going to be a two hour pre-show, then one hour should be dedicated to promos and recaps and the other hour should feature a match or two and something special that you should actually want to watch.
United States Championship: Cody Rhodes (c) vs. The Miz
Back when Alberto Del Rio was holding the title, I would have skipped over Kalisto and instead, reintroduced Cody Rhodes back into the fold, ditching the Stardust character that has been going nowhere for quite some time. After the passing of Dusty Rhodes, Cody would come back and talk about how Del Rio is making a mockery out of the title which his father had won before and which stands for—obviously—the American Dream. Cody would have won the title from Del Rio and then, started a feud with The Miz, who claims that the real "American dream" is to be rich and famous, like he is, which conflicts with Cody's family idea of the working man. Cody retains here as a means to open the show in a positive light.
Andre the Giant Memorial Battle Royal #3
Everybody who I don't mention somewhere in this is thrown into this match, including The Social Outcasts, Big Show, Damien Sandow, Dolph Ziggler, Fandango, Goldust, Jack Swagger, Kalisto, Kane, Neville, The Prime Time Players, R-Truth, Rhyno, The Ascension, The Dudley Boyz, Tommy Dreamer (if possible), Tyler Breeze, Zack Ryder and more. The winner of this comes down to either Mark Henry or Ryback.
Tag Team Championship: The New Day vs. The Usos with The Rock
If you skip over all the matches these two teams have had against each other and you set it up so this is the first true encounter they will have had since Jey Uso was injured and it doesn't sound like as tired of a concept.
Divas Championship: Charlotte (c) vs. Sasha Banks vs. Becky Lynch vs. Paige
Make this about the four corners of the Divas Revolution. Sasha wins the belt.
The League of Nations vs. The Wyatt Family
If I had even more control than what I've limited myself to here, I would have pitched John Cena, Mark Henry, Jack Swagger and Kurt Angle to form a Team America of sorts to face The League of Nations. However, that is not only impossible when it comes to Cena's injury, it's also improbable since Angle isn't with the company and Swagger isn't a high priority by any means. On The Wyatt Family side, it would have been interesting to see The Undertaker, Kane, Sting and Finn Balor team up in a crazy war of mysticism and super powers and whatnot, but that's also not happening.
For the most part, this just becomes a situation where I don't know what else to do with these two quartets, and every other scenario I could think of felt like it diminished them. Why not just do a heel vs. heel match to assert dominance? Between the two, The Wyatt Family could play babyface to the crowd if need be.
Intercontinental Championship: Chris Jericho (c) vs. AJ Styles
These two never would have had matches ahead of time. Instead of Dean Ambrose winning the title from Kevin Owens at TLC, Jericho would have won it at the Royal Rumble. He then would turn heel around Fastlane and start his feud with Styles then, leading up to their first encounter here, where Styles would win the match and the championship.
No Disqualification Match: Brock Lesnar vs. Dean Ambrose
I've had this in my notes for months and I'm so glad WWE is doing it! For the most part, I would have kept the idea the same, with Ambrose just being his normal self and picking a fight with Lesnar by the two of them getting in each others' ways.
The Undertaker vs. Kevin Owens
If Sting wouldn't have gotten injured, I definitely would have gone with him as Undertaker's opponent, but alas, that happened many months ago. As a backup plan, I think Kevin Owens is the next best option. This would be a tough fight for both men, but in the end, Undertaker would come out on top. For the record, I would hold off on bringing Sami Zayn onto the main roster until the night after WrestleMania, where he would reignite his feud with Kevin Owens, as The Undertaker will assuredly be taking time off and not continuing to fight Owens at Payback and Extreme Rules.
Hall of Fame Recap
This gives fans a chance to run to the bathroom.
WWE World Heavyweight Championship: Triple H (c) with Vince McMahon vs. Roman Reigns with Shane McMahon
Rather than having Shane compete, the two McMahons would be in the corners of the opposition and would scuffle on the outside at some point. For an added bonus, if you really want it, put Stephanie and Linda out there supporting Triple H and Roman Reigns if you need to, but that's not necessary.