Kurt Angle made a long-awaited return to WWE programming after WrestleMania 33, taking over as the general manager of Raw for Mick Foley. Although the official word is that the WWE will likely refuse to clear the 48-year-old Hall of Famer to compete in the ring again, Angle is still holding out hope.
With The Undertaker retiring at WrestleMania 33, the mantle for “spooky magic evil dude” is apparently falling on Bray Wyatt. Rather than having a gimmick of being an actual dead guy, Wyatt is more of a Bayou voodoo man. So when the WWE announced that Wyatt would fight Randy Orton in a “House of Horrors” match at Payback, no one really knew what that meant.
Dramatized biographies are all the rage in the past decade or so. After all, they did wonders for Ray Charles and Johnny Cash with Ray and Walk The Line, respectively. Plus Apple founder Steve Jobs actually got two different films, and McDonald’s original boss Ray Kroc was recently portrayed on the big screen by Michael Keaton in The Founder.
Stone Cold Steve Austin had personality. It literally oozed from his pores with every flipped middle finger, every Stone Cold Stunner he hit, and every beer that he drank. It’s one of the reasons he became one of the biggest things in pro wrestling since Hulk Hogan. Sure, it might have been a combination of Austin’s skills as a performer and a bit of good luck by being the right guy at the right time, but one thing is for sure — Stone Cold was OVER!
It would have been hard to miss the story about former WWE commentator Mauro Ranallo and the reason he suddenly disappeared from television a couple months ago. Even mainstream media sources were picking up the story of JBL’s (alleged) bullying, which prompted Ranallo, who has a long public history of struggling with depression and bipolar disorder, to basically walk off the job, despite being under contract until August 2017.
For years (and years), John Cena has been the main guy for the WWE. And he was paid accordingly, topping the list of “Highest Paid WWE Wrestlers” for a long time. However, he has been working a reduced schedule lately (although still staying plenty busy with reality TV, hosting gigs, and movie work). The result is that he is no longer he highest paid guy in the company.
The timetable for Finn Balor to return from injury was always pegged as “sometime near WrestleMania.” And while the inaugural Universal Champion didn’t show up in Orlando for WrestleMania, he finally made his comeback the next night on Raw.
Overshadowed by the retirement (probably) of The Undertaker at WrestleMania 33 was the fact that it was also likely the final match of Goldberg, the former WCW champion who returned to the WWE in his 50s to capture the Universal Championship and work a handful of high profile matches against Brock Lesnar.
Between the excitement of returning superstars and the retirement of a legend, WrestleMania 33 was filled with many ups, and definitely a few downs. Here is the best and worst that was WrestleMania 33.
Traditionally, the main event of a huge wrestling pay-per-view is reserved for a big title match. With seven different individual championships being on the line at Sunday’s WrestleMania 33 (which doesn’t even include the Raw Tag Team titles), you would think that Goldberg vs. Lesnar would end the show, or at least something like Wyatt vs. Orton.