WWE's biggest pay-per-view (PPV) event of the year WrestleMania 29 is back tomorrow night (Sun., Apr. 7), live on pay-per-view (PPV) starting with the free interactive pre-show at 6 p.m. ET and rolling on into the "Grandaddy of Them All" at 7 p.m. ET. (Keep in mind that you can catch the pre-show on WWE.com, Facebook.com/WWE YouTube.com/WWEFanNation and XboxLive, as well as on the WWE App -- plus, we'll also be sure to have it posted for you to enjoy right here on CagesideSeats.com.)
Tomorrow night's show features all your favorite WWE Superstars and Divas, including The Rock, John Cena, Undertaker, CM Punk, Triple H, Brock Lesnar, Chris Jericho, Fandango, Alberto Del Rio, Jack Swagger, The Shield, Ryback, Mark Henry and more!
Luckily for you Cagesiders, our CSS staff of learned-wrestling-blowhards is faithfully here for you, yet again, in order to help you all figure out just how this latest PPV event is gonna play out. We've got our CSS Staffer predictions for each and every match on the WrestleMania 29 card coming up next!
WrestleMania 29 Match Card:
- The Rock (c) vs. John Cena - WWE Championship
- Undertaker vs. CM Punk
- Triple H vs. Brock Lesnar (No Holds Barred Match; If Lesnar wins, Triple H must retire)
- Team Hell No (c) vs. Dolph Ziggler & Big E. Langston - WWE Tag Team Championships
- Mark Henry vs. Ryback (HOSS FIGHT)
- Alberto Del Rio (c) vs. Jack Swagger - World Heavyweight Championship
- The Shield vs. Randy Orton, Sheamus & Big Show
- Chris Jericho vs. Fandango
- Wade Barrett (c) vs. The Miz - Intercontinental Championship (Interactive Pre-Show Match)
- Tons of Funk & Funkadactyls vs. Rhodes Scholars & Bella Twins
CSS STAFF PREDICTIONS:
WWE Championship - The Rock (c) vs. John Cena
The General: They didn't have Rock win last year only to turn around and build another match this year, only with the WWE championship on the line, just to have Rock win again. There is literally no way in hell Cena loses this match outside of some weird rogue referee quick counting three after going into business for himself for some insane reason. It's just not going to happen. And if you're hoping for a Cena heel turn, stop it. Two guarantees here: Cena wins and he doesn't turn heel. In fact, expect Rocky to give him a glowing endorsement after the match. Prediction: John Cena
Keith Harris: With The Rock scheduled to appear at Extreme Rules, this match is not the foregone conclusion it seems to be, as Cena could always get his big win back on the next pay-per-view. Given that everyone expects John Cena to be victorious there's always the possibility of a swerve finish. The chances of this are slim, however, given the nature of the build where they put so much emphasis on how his WrestleMania loss last year destroyed his marriage and tanked his career. So I'm still going for the obvious pick of John Cena avenging last year's defeat. Prediction: John Cena
C. J. Bradford: There is only one logical conclusion to this match; John Cena stands tall, holding the WWE Championship high above his head. His story of redemption is stronger than Rock's story of a continued part time run. For as much as people hate Cena, he is the face of the promotion. The title has been away from him for a while. It's the right time for him to win it back. Prediction: John Cena
Hulk Holland: I was a bit surprised at the time, but having John Cena lose to The Rock at last year's big show was the right move because it wasn't for the title and it sets up this year's rematch, which is. That said, this was already planned out with Cena putting Rocky over with the understanding that he gets it back in "Dirty Jersey."
I'm supposed to believe the promotion's top star, in his prime, is going to go 0-2 at "The Showcase of Immortals" to a part-timer from yesteryear? No way, no how. Cena evens the score and gets his belt back. If that makes you groan, then you'll be thrilled to hear that by evening the wins at one apiece, it also sets up a potential rubber match. Implied eye roll. Prediction: John Cena
Sean Rueter: I don't see any compelling reason or realistic justification for Cena not to win this and reclaim his official place at the top of the WWE food chain. And as much as I'm not excited for a year of Johnny boy with the strap, I'm less excited for the rubber match between these two at the April 2014 PPV, but I think that's where we're headed. Prediction: John Cena
Rex Ivanovic: John Cena is going to walk out of WrestleMania with the titles. There is no doubt in my mind and there shouldn't be in yours either. WWE's biggest star will walk out out the biggest show with the biggest title. Prediction: Cena
Eric B. Stephen: I'm picking Cena to win this "twice in a lifetime" affair and take the WWE title for the first time in two years. He declared that 2013 would be "his year," and this would be a logical "step one" in that plan. The Rock can head back to Hollywood with his WWE Title "victory lap" as another feather in his wrestling cap. Prediction: John Cena
Hollywood Wallace: Both Cena and Rocky are all time greats in the wrestling game. Cena is still at or near the top of his game and Rock looks incredible too. But I closely studied both of Rock's matches with CM Punk and I feel that Punk was the better man in both. It was only through sheer force of will that Rock won those matches. While that may well happen against Cena, I just don't think it will be enough this time. Cena has too much to lose. Prediction: John Cena over Rock
John S. Nash: This is going to be hard, especially considering the fact that I stopped watching wrestling back in the 80s. Ironically, I stopped watching because of the WWF and the type of over-the-top Saturday Morning Cartoon style gimmicks they started doing after WrestleMania III. In the last 20 years, I don't think I've watched more than a minute of it. Even so, through osmosis and my interactions with pro wrestling fans on twitter and the forums, I'm actually pretty up-to-date on my wrestling knowledge. So, here is my highly educated be equally uninformed opinions on the upcoming WrestleMania show.
If the winner was determined by best actor this would be a no-brainer. Having just seen "Snitch" I can say the Rock is pretty limited, but having also seen part of "The Marine" I can say he's the second coming of Pal Muni in comparison to Cena. Fortunately, or unfortunately, acting chops isn't what's going to determine the winner here. While this would be the perfect time to have a "Mr. Wonderful" Paul Orndorff villain turn by one of them, both of their fan bases are apparently young kids, so this match stays clean and Cena, the guy that's going to be around next week, will be the winner. Prediction: John Cena
Undertaker vs. CM Punk
The General: If the show closing angle on Monday Night Raw earlier this week wasn't enough to convince you -- as if the Streak itself wasn't already -- then I don't know what to tell you. Undertaker is not losing here, not with the way the Paul Bearer storyline has played out and not with Punk taking a break right after. It's been clear from the outset that he's never been hot on this match but it was the best available for what WWE expects to be its biggest show ever. Whatever, it's all over soon enough and we can all go back to pretending someone might beat the streak next year. Prediction: Undertaker
Keith Harris: In front of a New York crowd, CM Punk shocking the world by ending The Undertaker's streak could work. But it won't happen, especially when Punk arguably crossed a line in the manner he mocked The Deadman for his former Manager Paul Bearer's death. Thus, it'll be a perfect 21-0 record for The Undertaker at WrestleMania. Prediction: The Undertaker
C. J. Bradford: For as amazing as Punk as been, there will only be one Streak in WWE history. Taker will forever ever remain perfect at WrestleMania. It is what it is. Prediction: The Undertaker
Hulk Holland: I wasn't sure creative was going to pull this one off, but the untimely death of Paul Bearer helped get the pre-match hype to where it needed to be for a contest that is all about The Undertaker's vaunted streak. Unfortunately, it also forced WWE to show its hand, particularly on the go-home edition of RAW. Undertaker is going to be laid out, have his father's ashes dumped on him AND lose at WrestleMania?
Pffft. CM Punk was the right guy to break the streak, but he wasn't booked that way leading up to tomorrow's show. I'm not saying he was booked improperly, he just wasn't put in a position where it make sense for him to be the "that guy." An angle of this magnitude needs the proper payoff. A six-week rush job compounded by a death in the family isn't it. Prediction: The Undertaker
Sean Rueter: As much as the mark in me wants Punk to win, and the smark in me thinks Punk should win...if Taker was going to drop the Streak there would have been a bigger build. They've done a great job of making it personal (maybe too good of a job), but that's not a build. The way they've done it is all set-up to the bad guy getting served, anyway. Plus, if Taker's shown a willingness to come back for a 21st match at WrestleMania 29...why on Earth wouldn't he come back for a 22nd at 30? This should be a fun if overrated match (IMO, the last chapter of The Streak has been solid but overly praised because of the names involved and the effectiveness of the WWE hype machine more than the matches themselves), but The Streak lives on. Prediction: The Undertaker
Rex Ivanovic: CM Punk has done arguably the best job of anyone in the company at selling this ppv, but he will not be walking out with the victory. Punk needs the time off to heal up some injuries and losing to the Undertaker will give him that chance. Prediction: Undertaker
Eric B. Stephen: 21-0, book it. The longest reigning WWE champion of the modern era may be the toughest challenger 'Taker has faced in the past several years of the streak (outside of kayfabe at least,) but I don't see Punk ending the streak. Not this year.
Hollywood Wallace: If 'Taker was irate before that whole urn ash stunt, I shudder to think about his mood now. Punk made his casket, now he has to lie in it. Prediction: Undertaker over CM Punk
John S. Nash: Undertaker is the kind of character that drove me away from wrestling. While, from the interviews and clips I've seen, CM Punk is kind of a Rowdy Piper/Larry Zbyszko/UWF Terry Taylor villain/hero. I like that. CM is apparently one of the cornerstones for the WWE, while the Undertaker is basically semi-retired with only his WrestleMania win streak left to defend. They should give Punk the win but I'm betting instead he only gets a moral victory with a draw after a grueling match. Basically Curt Hennig vs. Nick Bockwinkel back in 86. Prediction: Draw
Triple H vs. Brock Lesnar
(No Holds Barred Match; If Lesnar wins, Triple H must retire)
The General: I hate matches like this because I tend to look at pro wrestling slanted more towards what's good and right for business than I do the theatrics of it. And the business slant says Lesnar should win here. But I can't imagine Triple H is going to end his in-ring career like this, putting over a guy like Brock on the way out. Maybe his ego isn't what it once was but he's going to win here because he wants his receipt for doing the job at SummerSlam last year. Prediction: Triple H
Keith Harris: Shawn Michaels being announced in Triple H's corner on Monday night casts doubt on what until then seemed to be a certain victory for The Game. There's only two possible finishes, Shawn helps Hunter to win for a feel good moment or Shawn accidentally / purposefully costs his best buddy the match and his career. I'm going with the latter, as it makes the most sense. It keeps Brock Lesnar strong and sets up a major match for WrestleMania 30 between Trips and HBK. So Brock Lesnar beats Hunter again. Prediction: Brock Lesnar
C. J. Bradford: Lesnar won at SummerSlam, and all signs look to Triple H getting his win back. There's certainly a strong possibility of Lesnar picking up round two, especially considering he will be coming back for another year. In my mind, though, "The King of Kings" will reign supreme. Prediction: Triple H
Hulk Holland: I hate this match. Personally, I don't think these two have the right chemistry and hasn't Triple H already retired? I don't believe he's going to lose because then when does he get his revenge for all those broken arms he suffered along with his personal boy toy, Pawn Michaels? He doesn't.
That's why Lesnar will be booked to lose -- but lose strong -- and since it's no holds barred, Trips will have some kind of sledgehammer finish and Paul Heyman will be running around screaming and blah, blah, blah. There's no love lost for either Lesnar or Heyman in the McMahon-Helmsley empire, so this one goes to "The Game." Prediction: Triple H
Sean Rueter: Similar to my thinking on Taker and the Streak, if this was really the end of the in-ring line for Hunter, we'd have had a better build. And I also think he'd want one of his boys (either HBK - and more than a one week "he's gonna corner me" add-on, or one of these youngster we keep hearing he's so high on) to be involved. Brock's mystique doesn't depend on wins and losses right now, and I can't see Trips going out without considerably more fanfare. Prediction: HHH
Rex Ivanovic: Rex Ivanovic: This one is really a coin flip in my book. It came up heads so I am going with Lesnar. Prediction: Lesnar
Eric B. Stephen: With his career on the line, I see Triple H coming away victorious in a very hard fought affair. I see a stiffly worked match, Attitude Era levels of blood, and Triple H standing tall at the end. Let's just say that I don't think either of these guys will be feeling good on Monday morning. Trips may lose a retirement match one of these days, but I don't see this being it. Prediction: Triple H
Hollywood Wallace: I don't see any way for Triple H to win here. Brock is as beet-faced and pumped up as ever and I think we may see another broken arm before the night is through. Prediction: Brock Lesnar over Triple H
John S. Nash: I don't know anything about Triple H, but if he can stuff the takedown and has any sort of striking game, he should win this. Brock just hasn't been the same fighter post diverticulitis. Prediction: Triple H
Team Hell No (c) vs. Dolph Ziggler & Big E. Langston - WWE Tag Team Championships
The General: With the idea in mind that Ziggler will leave WrestleMania with the world heavyweight championship, I think Team Hell No retains the belts here after Ziggy and Langston fail to gel in a real match as an actual tag team. In fact, I think this could be the next story arc after Dolph wins the belt, that Big E. slowly starts to go against him and possibly turns babyface in the process, something like Batista did with Triple H in 2005, though this is obviously on a much lesser scale. So that starts with a loss here. Prediction: Team Hell No
Keith Harris: If Ziggler is winning the World Heavyweight title earlier in the night, then he doesn't need to win the tag team belts with Big E Langston too, unless they want to make them a Championship stable. I think the latter will happen, that Dolph Ziggler & Big E. Langston will beat Team Hell No, causing a long overdue breakup between Kane and Daniel Bryan. Prediction: Dolph Ziggler & Big E Langston
C. J. Bradford: I've been calling for Team Hell No to drop the belts for months now, and yet they still hang on. However! I believe tonight will be the night the Tag Team Championship will finally change hands, and Ziggler and Big E will start a strong run as heel champions. Prediction: Dolph Ziggler & Big E Langston
Hulk Holland: The best thing about this match is that we finally get to see Big E. Langston in action. I don't believe that Team Hell No is in jeopardy of losing the titles because this is the moment when Dolph Ziggler cashes in his MITB briefcase. Even if he doesn't, Ziggy and Biggie are not going to get wrapped up in the tag team scene. For what?
Sooner or later, Dolph is getting rid of that metal albatross and since the next MITB pay-per-view is quickly approaching, he doesn't have much choice, unless he plans on winning that one, too, and holding both titles at once a la Chris Jericho. This match is an excuse to put them all on the WrestleMania card, if for no other reason than AJ'S THIGHS. Prediction: Team Hell No
Sean Rueter: Will Hell No ever break up? Can Langston win in his first official WWE match? Would putting the belts on Team Ziggler balance out the IWC outrage of the win seemingly contradicting the reason why you couldn't put the same belt on Rhodes Scholars? A big part of the problem is that most of these matches were so thrown together that they feel like the first act of the story rather than a peak or resolution. Prediction: Hell No
Rex Ivanovic: Hell No needs something to spark their break up and losing the titles at Mania to Ziggler and Big E is the way to do it. Prediction: Ziggler and Big E
Eric B. Stephen: It seems like Team Hell No has been on the verge of collapse for months now, but every time they need to defend their titles, they manage to pull through. And while I'm hopeful we'll see big things out of Dolph Ziggler down the line, I don't see the Tag Titles as part of that, especially not when his partner will be making his first official appearance in a WWE match. Prediction: Team Hell No
Hollywood Wallace: I haven't seen an active team in the WWE who can hold a candle to the duo of Kane and Bryan. As long as their tempers stay in check they should roll here. Prediction: Kane & Bryan over Ziggler & Langston
Mark Henry vs. Ryback (HOSS FIGHT)
The General: I'm so intrigued by the train wreck this match could be. I'm also utterly fascinated because it could totally steal the show. There are so many things at play here, I don't know what the hell is going to happen. No matter what, the babyface is going to go over, so "Big Hungry" gets to keep eating. Prediction: The Ryback
Keith Harris: It seems clear that the WWE creative team wanted an impressive scalp for Ryback to defeat at WrestleMania and Mark Henry was chosen for that spot. The only question is whether Ryback can pick Henry up for the Shellshock without botching the spot. Prediction: Ryback
C. J. Bradford: This match was set up for the sole purpose of watching Ryback hit the shell shock on Henry. It would be odd for Ryback to land his finisher and not get the win, no? Prediction: Ryback
Hulk Holland: I've kind of been back and forth on this one. You can make the argument that Mark Henry moves into a program with Alberto Del Rio for the title, just as Ryback could make a run if Swags pulls it off in "The Garden State." The only thing standing in their way is Dolph Ziggler, who I think is going to be cashing in his briefcase tomorrow night after the world heavyweight title match. Where does that leave Ryback and Henry?
In limbo. Maybe we can get an open-ended finish so that these two can keep feuding with one another before eventually returning to their respective roles as squashers. Ryback can slap around the Usos a few more times and Henry can beat the stuffing out of Zack Ryder (again).
Or, they can get paired off with leftovers from various other feuds on the WrestleMania card. I guess when push comes to shove (literally), Ryback as a monster face needs the win more than "The World's Strongest Man." Prediction: Ryback
Sean Rueter: Big Hungry needs a winning streak, and Mark Henry needs to be feuding with Del Rio - hopefully in the not too distant future after he's done with Swagger. Prediction: Ryback
Rex Ivanovic: HOSS FIGHT! Potential is here for a pretty solid strong man match that could lead to a hosspitalization and make hosstory. I should probably stop with the puns now before I continue down a bad path. Prediction: Ryback
Eric B. Stephen: Ryback wins this "hoss fight." They'll trade blows, show off their strength, but I see Ryback getting his "WrestleMania moment" when he shell shocks the World's Strongest Man in Henry. Prediction: Ryback
Hollywood Wallace: Strength isn't everything, but I think that Ryback could even give Henry a run for his money in that department. Should be a colossal collision. Prediction: Ryback over Mark Henry
John S. Nash: This looks like the second coming of Hulk Hogan vs. Jerry Blackwell. I think Hogan won that by disqualification, so I'm going to guess Ryback wins this one the same way. Prediction: Ryback
Alberto Del Rio (c) vs. Jack Swagger - World Heavyweight Championship
The General: Uh ... who cares? Really, the only outcome that would be satisfactory in this match is if Ricardo Rodriguez somehow managed to leave with the world heavyweight championship because he's the only one who manages to draw a legitimate reaction at this point. That or a Dolph Ziggler cash-in following a Del Rio victory. I'm going to say that happens because nothing else sounds even remotely interesting. Prediction: Alberto Del Rio
Keith Harris: With both Alberto Del Rio's and Jack Swagger's weaknesses being exposed under the glare of the Smackdown main event spotlight, it seems most probable that neither man will have the World Heavyweight title at the end of the night. The timing seems perfect for Dolph Ziggler to successfully cash in his Money In The Bank briefcase, but who on? Most likely, Alberto Del Rio squeaks a win over Swagger, but gets beaten down by the two xenophobes, leading to Ziggler taking advantage of the situation. Prediction: Alberto Del Rio
C. J. Bradford: There should be no doubt the American Hero will go over xenophobic challenger on the grandest stage of them all. This is a night for good guys, and this good guy will retain. Prediction: Alberto Del Rio
Hulk Holland: It's sad when the most entertaining part of this feud comes from Ricardo Rodriguez and Zeb Colter, the two respective sidekicks of Alberto Del Rio and Jack Swagger. "The Mexican Aristocrat" was an entertaining heel but as a face, particularly a champion, he's paint-by-numbers and his "run" has been a bit bland.
The only thing he has going for him is how awful Jack Swagger is. Maybe he can be a "superstar," but clomping around backstage and deadpanning WE. THE. PEOPLE. is not the way to do it. The fact that Brock Lesnar and Ryback can get away with being inept on the stick should give you an indication of how special they are in terms of having "it."
Jack Swagger is not special and has no reason to leave with the title on Sunday night. Even Del Rio deserves better. Prediction: Alberto Del Rio
Sean Rueter: I'm in the camp that believes this will be a fun match. I'm also a Del Rio fan (yes, we exist) who just wants this feud to go away so we can see if he can start to get regain some traction as an old-fashioned babyface. But then, I've been shaking my head in disbelief at this since Swagger returned. And won at Elimination Chamber. And wasn't fired for getting arrested.
So, I'm not underestimating Vince's stubbornness when it comes to pushing Jack. I'm also torn, though, because I don't believe that every title will change hands, but I also don't think that faces will win every match (just most of them). But does a Cena win count as a win for the good guys? Oooh, let's just say... Prediction: Jack Swagger (and, no, Ziggler will not cash in.)
Rex Ivanovic: WWE believes they have something they can build upon for a long time with Del Rio as champion. Swagger isn't catching fire like he had early in the feud. Prediction: Del Rio
Eric B. Stephen: Out of the four "main event" matches (if one can still reasonably consider a World Heavyweight Championship match as part of the "main event,") I see this one as having the biggest chance to surprise us. Still, I see Del Rio defeating Swagger to hang onto the WHC. Prediction: Alberto Del Rio
Hollywood Wallace: Del Rio had showcased a varied and powerful moveset in the last few months. I think that will overcome the sheer leverage that Swagger employs. Should be a close one though. Prediction: Alberto Del Rio over Jack Swagger
John S. Nash: If Jack Swagger has a good head kick I'll take him, otherwise Del Rio retains the belt. Prediction: Del Rio
The Shield vs. Randy Orton, Sheamus & Big Show
The General: I absolutely believe The Shield should go over here but WrestleMania is a babyface PPV, one where the good guys almost always prevail. The right business is to keep the group strong and let Show, Orton, and Sheamus self-destruct, like the story would naturally play out based on the past history between the three, but I don't think we get that. I think they wait until later for that. So the good guys go over again here. Prediction: Show, Orton, Sheamus
Keith Harris: The build has been completely focused on Sheamus's squabbles with The Big Show while Randy Orton has stood by playing peacemaker, which is the perfect scenario for Orton to make his long rumoured heel turn by joining with The Shield to beat down his two partners. Thus, The Shield remains undefeated. Prediction: The Shield
C. J. Bradford: The "faces" here have been slowing gaining the upper hand over The Shield, which of course should mean the heels get the win on the big show. A loss for Sheamus, Orton, and Show hardly hurts them, especially if it is done with one turning on the others. A loss for The Shield brings an end to their angle, and it is far too early for that. Prediction: The Shield
Hulk Holland: Something is not right here. I understand that Big Show is now a face because he shares a common enemy with Sheamus and Randy Orton, but this is a bout that makes me wonder which one of these faces is turning heel and costing them the match. It sure as hell isn't Sheamus.
That means Big Show has been playing them or Orton will finally get to cash the heel check WWE post-dated when "The Viper" continued to get cheers. At this point, it's irrelevant, because my job is to try to pick who walks out of MetLife the winner. What happens with a win? The faces high-five and bro hug, then set sail and go on their merry way? Not likely, something sinister is afoot. Prediction: The Shield
Sean Rueter: Not sure what the point of this is. I guess Big Show eats a triple powerbomb after Orton bails on his team. I don't see any reason why Ambrose, Reigns and Rollins would have their winning streak end here, but I don't know where they go next either. They should go after the tag straps - they can scream about the injustice of a submission machine like Bryan and destroyer like Kane being turned into kid-friendly comedy guys. I'm fantasy booking these a lot more than making actual picks, aren't I? Prediction: The Shield
Rex Ivanovic: The Shield have taken the WWE by storm and established all of its members as the company's brightest young stars. Whether it involves a long rumored heel turn or not- the Shield will come out on top. Prediction: The Shield
Eric B. Stephen: It always seems that WrestleMania is the time of the year where good always triumphs over evil, and if there was a time for the the Shield to see their first defeat, this would be it. However, even knowing that, I'm not sure I can rightly pick the mismatched trio of Sheamus, Orton, and Show over the machine-like precision that the Shield brings to the table when they team up. They have a way of turning these matches into a series of 3-on-1's, and I think it will be just too much to overcome. Prediction: Shield
Hollywood Wallace: Too much star power. Let's not forget how green the shield is here. Prediction: Orton/Sheamus/Show over The Shield
John S. Nash: I've read that the Shield is the new Freebirds. If that's the case, they can't lose this match because what's the point of being the best three-man team if you lose in 6-man tag matches? I don't remember the Freebirds losing many of those at the Civic Center. Prediction: The Shield
Chris Jericho vs. Fandango
The General: The most intriguing match on the card because we don't know what Fandango will look like once he's actually forced to work a legitimate bout. The good news is he's got Jericho to help him along, as he's been doing throughout the entire feud, and with what we know about the situation, it sounds like "Y2J" will do the job to help get the young guy over. And kudos to him for that. Prediction: Fandango
Keith Harris: Though Chris Jericho seems committed to WWE for the long term, outside of occasional Fozzy tours, clearly that's not enough for Vince McMahon to make him anything more than a setup guy on this biggest show of the year. It would be disastrous for Fandango to lose in his debut match, so he must go over here. Prediction: Fandango
C. J. Bradford: I know Jericho loves to put talent over, and Fandango is going to have a fun ride in the near future, but I cannot see Y2J losing against in the rookie's first match. That is just too far a drop. Prediction: Chris Jericho
Hulk Holland: Last week, Chris Jericho conducted an interview where he flat-out admitted that Fandango was a gimmick that Vince McMahon was in love with and how "Y2J" was the man with the tools to help put him over. That means Jericho's job is to let the effeminate dancer win -- and look good in the process -- tomorrow at WrestleMania. No analysis required, this one has already been decided for us. Prediction: Fandango
Sean Rueter: I think part of the challenge that convinced Y2J to go all in on this match was, "you win, but figure out how to put him over at the same time". Prediction: Chris Jericho
Rex Ivanovic: This match is my pick to the steal the card. I have been the driver of the Fandango bandwagon from the beginning and his work with Jericho has made it very crowded on here. The more the merrier! Prediction: FAAAAAAAAAAAAAANNNDDDAAAAAAAAAANNGGGGGGOOOOOOOOO
Eric B. Stephen: Common sense is just telling me to take Jericho here. Fandango is definitely a wildcard since we've yet to actually see him in official WWE action, but when in doubt, go "chalk," and in this case, "chalk" means picking the multi-time world champion and future WWE Hall of Famer in Jericho. Prediction: Jericho
Hollywood Wallace: Fandango has hundreds of hours of footage, both of the wrestling and dancing variety, on Jericho. Y2J will have to figure out Fandango on the fly. I don't like those odds. Pick: Fandango over Jericho.
John S. Nash: It's amazing how much I know about Chris Jericho even though I've never seen him. Every time I mention Earl Caddock "The Man of a Thousand Holds", I have to read "armbar". I know he's held in high regards by the fans, I know that he ripped off Nick Bockwinkel for his persona (that's a compliment, "good artists borrow, great artists steal") , and I also know he's opponent is a frigging salsa dancer. All of his makes it hard to believe he'll lose...but he will.
This is WrestleMania III all over again when Jake the Snake took on the ridiculously annoying Honky Tonk Man in a match everyone was sure would end with Honky Tonk's head split open from a DDT. But, to the consternation of every fan back then Honky Tonk won and then kept on winning. What had been thought of as the worst gimmick in all of wrestling soon became its best. A fucking Elvis impersonator who couldn't lose. Genius. WWF will try to see if they can repeat history here. Fandango by pinfall. Prediction: Fandango
Wade Barrett (c) vs. The Miz - Intercontinental Championship
(Interactive Pre-Show Match)
The General: It's free on the pre-show, it's WrestleMania, most of the matches seem predictable, and it's media darling Miz against the black hole for heat himself, Barrett. Yeah, I'm thinking title change here and that's probably the right call. Prediction: Miz
Keith Harris: Having a title switch hands on the pre-game show of WrestleMania would only bury the Intercontinental Championship, so I expect Wade Barrett to retain here. Prediction: Wade Barrett
C. J. Bradford: Barrett has done absolutely nothing with the Intercontinental Championship since winning it. He's been made to look like a joke. No one has any respect for him, and I'm not sure if Barrett respects himself. The Miz, on the other hand, is due for a push. Look for him to take the strap here. Prediction: The Miz.
Hulk Holland: I'm so happy this bout is on the pre-show. That means I don't have to look at my wife during WrestleMania and say, "I paid for this." I'm not even sure it's worth tuning in for free, because I don't have any desire to see The MIz win the Intercontinental title by way of haphazard figure-four leglock. You know it's happening.
Wade Barrett is a total bore and has no direction. Let him pick up the U.S. title after Antonio Cesaro -- who should be on this card but isn't -- graduates to bigger and better things. Like taking the Intercontinental strap off The Miz. Prediction: The Miz
Sean Rueter: They keep shoving Miz down our throats. And credit where credit is due, I've liked his ring work more lately and he does seem to be learning the psychology of setting up the Figure Four. Anyway, time to put a belt on him. Prediction: The Miz
Rex Ivanovic: Does anyone actually care about this match? Barrett has been booked very poorly by the company and a transition of the title, even if it is to the Miz, is needed. Prediction: Miz
Eric B. Stephen: Barrett hasn't won me over with this weak reign as Intercontinental champion, and even though I don't think much more highly of the Miz, I see Miz coming away with the win and the title here. Prediction: Miz
Hollywood Wallace: Miz is better than people give him credit for, but he needs to ditch the commentating, rehire Alex Riley, and refocus on his in ring work. He was a great WWE Champ! Barrett is too much here, but his theme song is still atrocious. Prediction: Wade Barrett over Miz
Tons of Funk & Funkadactyls vs. Rhodes Scholars & Bella Twins
The General: This is a showcase for the ladies more than anything else and it seems there is a lot of untapped potential with Cameron and Naomi. The Bella Twins will be okay for what they want to get out of them either way, so let's go ahead and pencil in another one for the good guys. Prediction: Tons of Funk & Funkadactyls
Keith Harris: With the heels being put over strong on television and there being no point having them win again,Tons of Funk & The Funkadactyls will make sure to have a victorious dance party to get the 70,000+ fans in the arena pumped for more action. Prediction: Tons of Funk & Funkadactyls
C. J. Bradford: You know who loves Team Rhodes Scholars? Everyone. You know who loves Tons of Funk? No one? You know the obvious conclusion of this match? Tons of Funk goes over, Team Rhodes Scholars do the job, and the Divas are shown as second classed talent. Prediction: Tons of Funk and The Funkadactyls
Hulk Holland: When you kick off the WrestleMania pay-per-view, you do it on a high note. This is exactly the kind of feel-good match to get it done, because The Rhodes Scholars are the guys you love to hate, while Tons of Funk are the guys who get the kids dancing. That means we can expect the faces to go over, the crowd to cheer, the kids to boogie and the smarks to groan. True, it's a tired formula, but it still works. Embrace it, Cagesiders, it's what we do. Prediction: Tons of Funk & Funkadactyls
Sean Rueter: Just please keep Brodus out of the ring as much as possible in between happy dancing fun times. Prediction: Tons of Funk & Funkadactyls
Rex Ivanovic: Like the Lesnar-HHH match up, I am not really sure where they will go in this match up. Both directions make complete sense for the company. Since I predicted Ziggler and Big E, I will go with Tons of Funk and the Funkadactyls here. Prediction: Tons of Funk & Funkadactyls
Eric B. Stephen: I'm going with Tons of Funk and the Funkadactyls to come away with the win here. However, the most entertaining aspect of this match will probably be whatever promo the Rhodes Scholars get to cut. Prediction: Tons of Funk & Funkadactyls
Hollywood Wallace: Tons of funk over Rhodes scholars. Intelligence and hygiene are both important virtues. Size is normally less important. Despite that, I like the big guys to win here and really put their stamp on the tag team division. Also, correct me if I'm wrong, but I think sweet t is a better dancer than clay. High praise. Prediction: Tons of Funk & Funkadactyls over Rhodes Scholars & Bellas
John S. Nash: Tons of Funk doesn't have Terry Funk managing them or something does it? If they do, that's awesome, but even if they don't, I hope they win based on their name alone. Prediction: Funk
Those are our picks and predictions, Cagesiders. What are yours? You know what to do, join us in the comments below and let us know what you think.