30 years ago today, WWF presented Wrestlemania 2: What The World Has Come To (WWE Network link) from the Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum in Uniondale, New York, the Rosemont Horizon in Rosemont, Illinois, and the Los Angeles Memorial Sports Arena in Los Angeles, California. A combined 40,085 were in attendance, with 319,000 homes watching on closed circuit television and PPV. That's down from 398,000 for the first Wrestlemania.
This was the first Wrestlemania to be made available to a national PPV audience. It was the first, and to this day, only Wrestlemania to air on any night other than a Sunday, and the only Wrestlemania to take place from multiple venues. This was perhaps a response to the previous year's Starrcade emanating from two venues at once.
Match ratings are from Wrestling Observer Newsletter's Dave Meltzer as recorded in the Internet Wrestling Database. All star ratings are out of five.
- Don Muraco and Paul Orndorff fought to a double countout. (0/5)
- Randy Savage defeated George Steele to retain the WWF Intercontinental Championship. (1)
- Jake Roberts defeated George Wells. (2)
- Mr. T defeated Roddy Piper by disqualification in a boxing match when Piper bodyslammed Mr. T at 1:15 of the fourth round. (-5)
- The Fabulous Moolah defeated Velvet McIntyre in just 85 seconds to retain the WWF Women's Championship. (0)
- Corporal Kirchner defeated Nikolai Volkoff in a flag match. (0)
- Andre the Giant last eliminated Bret Hart to win a WWF/NFL battle royal. Other participants were B. Brian Blair, Big John Studd, Bill Fralic, Bruno Sammartino, Danny Spivey, Ernie Holmes, Harvey Martin, Hillbilly Jim, Jimbo Covert, Jim Brunzell, Jim Neidhart, King Tonga, Pedro Morales, Russ Francis, Ted Arcidi, The Iron Sheik, Tony Atlas, and William Perry. Dick Butkus and Ed Jones were special referees. (2)
- The British Bulldogs (Davey Boy Smith & The Dynamite Kid) defeated The Dream Team (Brutus Beefcake & Greg Valentine) to win the WWF Tag Team Championship. (4)
- Ricky Steamboat defeated Hercules Hernandez. (3)
- Adrian Adonis defeated Uncle Elmer. (1)
- The Funk Brothers (Hoss Funk & Terry Funk) defeated The Junkyard Dog & Tito Santana. (3.5)
- Hulk Hogan defeated King Kong Bundy by escape in a steel cage match to retain the WWF Championship. Actor Robert Conrad was the special referee. (1.25)
19 years ago today on Nitro from Huntsville, Alabama (WWE Network link), Ultimo Dragon defeated Prince Iaukea to win the WCW World Television Championship.
13 years ago today on RAW from Milwaukee, Wisconsin, The Rock defeated Jeff Hardy. To date, this is The Rock's last non-PPV match.
3 years ago today, WWE presented Wrestlemania 29: Greatness vs. Redemption (WWE Network link) from Metlife Stadium in East Rutherford, New Jersey. 80,676 were in attendance, with 1,048,000 homes watching on PPV. Strong number, but it's down from 1,253,000 homes for Wrestlemania XXVIII.
Just over 52,000 tickets were sold the day tickets were first made available, a company record. Also a company record was their gross, an astounding $72 million.
One match on the show, Tons of Funk and the Funkadactlys versus The Rhodes Scholars and The Bella Twins, was cut from the show, but no mention of the cut was made. Allegedly, it was used as a primary plot point for their upcoming reality series Total Divas. (For the record, the match did happen the next night on RAW, with Tons of Funk and the Funkadacytls winning.)
- In a preshow match, The Miz defeated Wade Barrett by submission to win the WWE Intercontinental Championship. (1.25/5)
- The Shield (Seth Rollins, Dean Ambrose, and Roman Reigns) defeated Sheamus, Randy Orton, and Big Show. (2.5)
- Mark Henry defeated Ryback. (0.5)
- Team Hell No (Daniel Bryan & Kane) defeated Dolph Ziggler & Big E Langston to retain the WWE Tag Team Championship. (2.25)
- Fandango defeated Chris Jericho. This was Fandango's WWE in-ring debut. (3)
- Alberto Del Rio defeated Jack Swagger by submission to retain the World Heavyweight Championship. This would be the final World Heavyweight Championship match in Wrestlemania history, as the championship was unified with the WWE Championship later in the year. (2.75)
- The Undertaker defeated CM Punk. (4.5)
- Triple H defeated Brock Lesnar in a No Holds Barred match. If Triple H lost, he would retire. (2.5)
- John Cena defeated The Rock to win the WWE Championship. Early in the bout, The Rock injured his pelvis. The injury would alter plans for Wrestlemania XXX. (3.5)
3 years ago today, New Japan Pro Wrestling presented Invasion Attack (NJPW World link-not all matches on the show are included) from Ryogoku Kokugikan (Ryogoku Sumo Hall) in Tokyo, Japan. The show's hook is participation from wrestlers not associated with New Japan, including CMLL, NWA, and freelancers.
- Time Splitters (Alex Shelley & Kushida) defeated Apollo 55 (Prince Devitt & Ryusuke Taguchi) to retain the IWGP Junior Heavyweight Tag Team Championship. Post-match, Devitt turned on Taguchi and aligned himself with the returning King Fale, who would be known from that point as Bad Luck Fale. The alliance led to the formation of Bullet Club.
- Akebono, Hiroyoshi Tenzan, Manabu Nakanishi and Super Strong Machine defeated Chaos (Bob Sapp, Takashi Iizuka, Tomohiro Ishii and Yoshi-Hashi).
- Tama Tonga and El Terrible defeated La Máscara and Valiente to retain the CMLL World Tag Team Championship.
- Complete Players (Masato Tanaka and Yujiro Takahashi) defeated Great Bash Heel (Togi Makabe and Tomoaki Honma).
- Minoru Suzuki defeated Toru Yano.
- Hirooki Goto and Yuji Nagata defeated Laughter7 (Katsuyori Shibata and Kazushi Sakuraba) by referee stoppage. Sakubura dislocated his elbow in the bout, forcing the stoppage.
- Rob Conway defeated Satoshi Kojima to retain the NWA World Heavyweight Championship.
- Shinsuke Nakamura defeated Davey Boy Smith Jr. to retain the IWGP Intercontinental Championship.
- Kazuchika Okada defeated Hiroshi Tanahashi to win the IWGP Heavyweight Championship. The bout was rated five stars by Dave Meltzer of Wrestling Observer Newsletter and was voted Match of the Year by readers of the publication.
2 years ago today, Rycklon Stevens, aka Ezekiel Jackson, announces via Instagram that his contract had expired with WWE and would not be renewed. Stevens
"In July 2008 I made my #smackdown television debut with "Thee Brian Kendrick"... much love to TBK for seeking me out and choosing me. I was fulfilling a dream I had as an 8 yr old kid who saw and fell in love with professional wrestling for the first time through my neighbors window in #Guyana South America... On April 6th 2014 my contract expired so #WrestleMania 30 was #bittersweet. I thank God for all the blessings he's bestowed upon me in the last 7 years. In my time in the #wwe I became the last #ECW Champion and a one time Intercontinental Champion... I've also traveled the world given the opportunity to do what I love. Encountering some of the most passionate and reliable fans in the world... I am deeply appreciative to Vincent McMahon and the #WWE for allowing a snotty nose lickle bai from Victory Valley Linden Guyana to live out my childhood dream on the highest level. #Godspeed to the company and all of my friends and colleagues. #beblessed Extremely excited for the next chapter in my life. I'm looking forward to this new season.... I'm still 290 pounds and #healthy. I can be reached for bookings, sponsorship and signings through my manager at: Rjsmanandco@gmail.com #Godbless"
After a brief run in TNA, Stevens appeared on the first season of Lucha Underground as Big Ryck. He left the promotion, citing traveling conflicts. His last notable appearance came for the German promotion Westside Xtreme Wrestling.
2 years ago today on RAW from New Orleans, Louisiana (WWE Network link), Paige makes her main roster debut by defeating AJ Lee in just 79 seconds to win the WWE Divas Championship. The win ends Lee's 295-day run as Divas Champion, the longest in company history. It also makes Paige the first person to hold both the NXT and the WWE's ladies championships.
On the same show, Ultimate Warrior makes his first appearance on RAW since June 1996. It would also be his last. Warrior dies of a heart attack less than 24 hours later.