We are less than two months away from WWE WrestleMania 33 and only two matches have been confirmed. While nothing is official, rumors and common sense can dictate at least the probable main card for this year’s marquee event.
This year’s WrestleMania appears as if it will return to the big-match format. Injuries and a depleted talent roster produced one of the most lackluster cards on paper last year. On the contrary, the depth of talent this year thanks to the brand extension and a couple of “dream match” scenarios bring a lot of excitement back to the big event this year.
With less than eight weeks to go, we have only one confirmed match and one probable. Yet thanks to plenty of rumors and innuendo, the bulk of the main card is locked down internally. Here is a look at what the main card may look like if rumors and logic align as predicted.
Bill Goldberg vs. Brock Lesnar – This is the only match locked down as we sit several weeks out from WrestleMania 33. No matter how this is positioned by the WWE, this is the main-event. It’s also the marquee match that was missing from last year’s disappointing WrestleMania 32 lineup.
I have to give credit where credit is due. Somehow, the creative team took a match that was universally regarded as one of the worst in all of WrestleMania history (think about that for a second) and turned this rematch into one of the most anticipated Mania matches in recent memory. For all of his doubters and I was one of them, you have to give Goldberg the respect he deserves here as he will likely go down after this event as one of the biggest draws in WrestleMania history.
Randy Orton vs. Bray Wyatt for the WWE world title – This is another one I will give WWE creative a lot of credit for. If you told me six months ago that a feud between Randy Orton vs. Bray Wyatt would be one of the most anticipated matches heading into WrestleMania I would have told you that you were nuts. As a result of what appears to be the culmination of long booking program between the two, these guys will probably tear down the house.
Triple H vs. Seth Rollins – We all saw this one coming from the day Rollins returned from his injury. As a matter of a fact there are plenty of rumors floating around that this match was booked for WrestleMania 32 before Rollins had to miss the show due to injury. Unfortunately Rollins’ status for the show after sustaining another injury is up in the air. I wouldn’t expect the company to wait a full year before booking this match again if Rollins can’t make the show.
The Undertaker vs. Roman Reigns – This was an obvious match coming out of the Royal Rumble. I like the creativity here as nobody expected this one and it makes a lot of sense when you look at the big picture. The big question here is the Undertaker and whether he can still go at an elite level after years of punishment and injuries. I foresee a match almost identical to Reigns’ match with Brock Lesnar at WrestleMania 31 where Reigns takes a beating for fifteen minutes but unlike that match, coming out with his hand raised.
Kevin Owens vs. Chris Jericho for the WWE Universal and or United States championships – Another predictable match and while this feud has had its fun moments the silliness of the content has gotten a little too ridiculous for my tastes. I am sure they’ll have a great match but it’s really hard to take this seriously after Jericho has been positioned as a mid-card guy since he returned.
John Cena and Nikki Bella vs. The Miz and Maryse – I have to admit I was a little surprised when I saw this match rumored for WrestleMania 33. Like Bray vs. Orton and Goldberg-Lesnar, if you would have told me several months ago we’d be seeing a rematch of one of the most underwhelming main-events in WrestleMania history, I’d call you crazy. I get it and the match is more about paying tribute to Nikki Bella as she enters retirement. However, I have to think there are a half of a dozen better matches to book Cena in to get better value than this one.
Big Show vs. Shaquille O’Neal – Shaq made headlines last year when he was a surprise entrant in the Andre the Giant Memorial Battle Royal. Shaq vs. Show has been rumored for years and according to numerous reports, it’s booked for Mania. It will probably be entertaining and get the WWE some mainstream press, but I wouldn’t expect much more.
Those are the big matches and one of the first things that stick out to me is where is AJ Styles? Styles is a top guy on the SmackDown brand and arguably the best in the company yet he appears to be boxed out of the main card. Samoa Joe and Finn Balor are also two guys that are nowhere to be found in this lineup. My hunch is that Joe ends up in the Andre Battle Royal and may even win it, but at this point their positions are just pure conjecture.