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WrestleMania SmackDown results, recap, reactions (Apr. 9, 2021): The pre-show

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Are you ready for a good time?

It’s WrestleMania weekend. The big one. Last Monday on Raw, I was very underwhelmed by the way they booked the show to get me excited for their matches. It was not up to the great quality we know they have in them.

This show, however, used promos and video packages to make SmackDown’s matches stand out. There isn’t one match for the blue brand that I am not excited to see.

That was my hope for Raw too. It just didn’t happen. I’m sure that we’ll see greatness regardless, though. WWE does pay-per-views well. They’ve proved that time and time again.

Who’s excited for WrestleMania 37? Who’s excited to see people again?

I’m ready to lose my mind.

Let’s get to the main hits and misses of this show. For a full rundown of SmackDown, check out the live blog by Rev. Claire Elizabeth!


One more miracle

Edge has had some fire promos since returning last year, but whew boy was this one the best.

He told about how being at WrestleMania 6 made him want to be a wrestler. He did everything he could to be in the WWE. He did it! But he never got to end his career on his terms. He said he didn’t come back for a greatest hits tour, he came back to steal the show and main event WrestleMania, and he won’t apologize for that. He called Daniel Bryan an indie bookstore clerk, and he doesn’t owe Roman Reigns anything since he modeled his career after the Rated-R Superstar and called him the Samoan Edge!

Sunday night is ten years to the day after his retirement, but nobody wants to talk about that. He emphasized how impossible his comeback was and the pain he went through to get back.

Phenomenal. The lights out spotlight gimmick ruled. This was the best promo and I almost think its because it felt more real than any of the ones he did with Randy Orton.

Bryan started the show with a promo talking about how every time he was told no, his parents and mentors told him to ignore the negativity and say yes. He’s not bringing the regular Yes man, though. He’s gonna be dangerous, he’s gonna be violent, and he’s going to do whatever he needs to do to win.

Roman Reigns ended the show and said Edge and Bryan have each had one good week, but he’s been killing it since he came back 30 weeks ago. He changed everything since he came back and at WrestleMania, he’ll smash ‘em, stack ‘em, and pin ‘em.

Roman. My goodness.

All three men sold WrestleMania for me, as did most of this show. But Edge... I don’t know. Edge really brought it home here. His passion matched Bryan and it solidified his tweener role in the feud. It was exactly what he needed to make all three players go into this where they needed to be. The presentation of it was incredible too.

But, who is going to walk away with the title? This is a tough one to predict. Either man could realistically walk away with it.

I’m so excited for this.


Historic

Bianca Belair and Sasha Banks are the main event of WrestleMania night one.

Incredible.

For way too long, we’ve had the same look in the main events. The women’s evolution only meant that eventually, we’d see a women’s main event of a pay-per-view, which we got. Then it led to an all women’s pay-per-view, and we need another one of those.

Then it led to a WrestleMania main event two years ago.

But this one feels different. And of course, it’s because for the first time ever, two African American women will main event for a top title. In 2021, it shouldn’t be the first time.

It shouldn’t, but we can’t change the past. We can now only hope and pray that this positive change leads to more.

Congratulations to Bianca and Sasha. This was well deserved.

And Bianca deserves this win.


No more playing games

WWE played a video package with Big E talking about his roots.

This was a really great video package that reminded me of Big E’s 24 documentary WWE filmed a few months ago.

Big E took us to his barber, where he goes to get grounded and focused. They then took us to Raymond James Stadium, where Big E played football. It was a great way to give us a more human side of Big E. Not that we needed that necessarily, but it played to the contrast of Apollo Crews using his roots for evil, so to speak.

E’s blood runs through Raymond James Stadium, and he’s not going to lose at home.

Honestly, I feel like this is going to be the time Apollo gets the win. I’m not really playing into the “hometown boy/girl loses trope” WWE does, it just feels like Apollo’s booking needs to have purpose. This has been quite a drastic change from just 6 months ago, when Apollo was the smiling babyface facing Lashley for the U.S. Title.

He lost a lot leading up to this, which sucks. But I think it’s going to be his hand raised at the end of the match.


The Rest

The Dirty Dawgz retain the SmackDown tag team championships

Roode and Ziggler started the match making sure Dominik Mysterio couldn’t reach a corner. Unfortunately for Roode, Gable tagged himself in and went to take Dom’s arm off. Rey tagged in and bounced off the ropes into a DDT. Both Mysterios flew over the ropes to take out Gable and Otis. After the commercial Ford and Roode were the legal men, and Roode hit a great spinebuster on Ford. All the heels took advantage of Ford being the other man and had moments to take him out, but Ford did a spinning powerbomb to tag Dawkins. Almost thought that the Mysterios had it won, but Otis broke the pin. Ford tagged in but Gable didn’t see it and suplexed Dawkins, Ford flew through the air and hit the frog splash, and Roode tagged in to get the victory.

I was expecting the father/son duo and was super excited when I thought it was happening, but Otis ruined it. I don’t really see why not put the titles on a different team going into the post WrestleMania show and beyond. They really haven’t done much with the Dirty Dawgz except two title defenses since Royal Rumble. If we get some new life into the tag divisions, I’ll see why. If not, there’s no reason why we don’t have new champions right now.

Jey Uso won the Andre the Giant Memorial Battle Royal

Very strange decision at the start of this where Ali, disgraced former RETRIBUTION leader, led former RETRIBUTION members and the rest of the men in the ring in taking out Shelton Benjamin and Cedric Alexander. And they all... listened to him. That was quite a head scratcher. They made it look like Alexander and Benjamin would survive, but they were both just tossed out moments later. Mace and T-Bar eliminated Elias and Ryker, and then Ali eliminated them. I did not expect that, either. Of course Ali’s behind was tossed out moments after that. Angel “Buns of Steel” Garza and Murphy were on the apron and Murphy tore Garza’s pants off. Thank you and sorry for getting eliminated right after by Corbin, Murphy.

The final three were Jey Uso, Shinsuke Nakamura, and King Corbin. Uso and Corbin took turns taking down Nakamura, but Uso turned on him and almost got him out. Nakamura eliminated Corbin and fought with Uso. Nakamura hit him with the Kinshasa but Uso reversed the throw and eliminated Nakamura to win the Andre.

Wrong decision in my opinion. I really thought Nakamura was winning this. He was set up perfectly for it, too. Just off a loss to Rollins, and Jey hasn’t won anything in months. It was perfect for Shinsuke. Reigns hasn’t expressed a need or desire for Jey to win things anymore so I kind of feel like he didn’t need this.

Tamina vs. Nia Jax ends in a disqualification

THAT SLAP THOUGH! I started this off like “Why?” and then said “YEAH!” Tamina shoved Jax but Reginald got involved so Jax could take advantage. Then there was a disqualification because of course. This was mainly to show some dominance by Tamina and hey ya know what? I liked it! No complaints this time. After the match, they then tore through the other women in the gauntlet tomorrow night. That I wasn’t too pleased with. The rest of them didn’t have to be taken out.

Kevin Owens attacked Sami Zayn

Sami Zayn went to commentary to tell them that WWE is against him because they didn’t get the rest of his interaction with Logan and Jake Paul. I cannot believe I just typed that. As the Andre wrestlers were coming down to the ring, KO attacked Zayn and Zayn ran away before he could get stunnered. Logan will be there and hopefully it won’t take away too much from KO and Zayn having their first ever singles match at WrestleMania.

Grade: B

What are your predictions for WrestleMania, Cagesiders?