After every WWE PPV, we ask you all to rank each match on the show using the star rating system made famous by Wrestling Observer’s Dave Meltzer.
The results are in from WrestleMania 38, this year’s Granddaddy of Them All. Here’s how our little corner of the wrestle web graded what happened in the ring in AT&T Stadium on April 2-3 — and how our subjective grades compare to Meltzer’s.
Many have asked “why Dave?”, which to me is fairly obvious. Love, hate, or don’t care about him, the Observer Star Rating is the proverbial industry standard. No one else’s are tracked by Wikipedia and other web outlets. You can’t place online bets on what grades other pundits will give big matches.
But in order to not make this all about Meltz, we added another fan-voted rating to the mix - this one from Cagematch. That site uses a ten point scale, so we’ve halved their ratings for ease of comparison.
Here’s what that all looks like:
As usual, we were generally on the same page as Meltzer and Cagematch voters. There were a few those systems didn’t rate because of their brevity, and Dave didn’t do the Jackass match because he hates fun (I kid, I kid! The Observer doesn’t rate matches it deems as comedy... so maybe I’m not joking). There’s also the obligatory instance of Meltz breaking his own scale, this time to give negative stars to Vince McMahon.
But he gave more stars to things you’d expect him to, like the men’s tag trios match and Sunday’s main event. As is often the case, we were more enthusiastic about almost all the women’s matches — except for the one we were equally excited about.
That bout, Becky Lynch vs. Bianca Belair, got our highest star rating of the weekend... despite the fact it didn’t win our “Match of the Night” poll from immediately after WrestleMania Saturday ended. The one that did, Cody Rhodes vs. Seth Rollins, did get our second highest score. The same thing happened on the next night, where WrestleMania Sunday “Match of the Night” runner-up Pat McAfee vs. Austin Theory edged winner Sami Zayn vs. Johnny Knoxville in stars.
Yes, two of the celebrity matches were our top rated. That’s indicative of what was a very up and down weekend. When you break it down match-by-match, it almost seems like an average show. It didn’t score as well in this exercise as last year’s ‘Mania did (that show had an average Cageside Community Star Rating of 3.34 to this one’s 3.23). But the highs were so high — in athleticism, storytelling, sheer entertainment value, or all the above — that our lasting impression of WrestleMania 38 is going to be a positive one.
If they’d been different events, Saturday’s 3.45 average Cageside Star Ratings would have tied it for our fourth favorite WWE event of the past year. Sunday’s 3.06 would have made it our fourth least favorite. You can see where it ranked as one in our rundown of scores for every WWE show since WrestleMania 37:
Do Cageside’s Community Ratings match up with your personal ones? Any final thoughts on WrestleMania 38?