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Wrestlemania 36 Preview (Plus Every Wrestlemania Match In History Ranked)

Tuesday, March 31, 2020




Wrestlemania 36 is this weekend.  Sorta.  If you're reading this in real time, you don't need the explanation, but if this blog is all that remains amidst the smoldering embers of the United States (we elected a fascist game show host President and now there's a global pandemic and things are a little dark) each match is being taped to be aired over two days.  Probably by the time the event airs most of the results will be leaked, probably not every taped match will air as a "Wrestlemania" match; probably there will be editing to improve otherwised challenged work.

Nonetheless.  It's the signature event of the professional wrestling year and I'm a professional wrestling fan and so here we are.  As of right now, here is the apparent card.  16 matches. 2 nights.


1. WWE Title: Brock Lesnar (c) vs. Drew McIntyre
This is the lineal World Wrestling Federation championship.  This title matters (in a world where you accept that any wrestling title matters) and Brock matters.  Here's every WWF/E title match in Wrestlemania history:

II-Hulk Hogan d. King Kong Bundy
III-Hulk Hogan d. Andre the Giant
IV: Randy Savage d. Ted DiBiase (tournament final)
V: Hulk Hogan d. Randy Savage
VI: Ultimate Warrior d. Hulk Hogan
VII: Hulk Hogan d. Sgt. Slaughter
VIII: Randy Savage d. Ric Flair
IX: Yokozuna d. Bret Hart, Hulk Hogan d. Yokozuna
X: Bret Hart d. Yokozuna
XI: Diesel d. Shawn Michaels
XII: Shawn Michaels d. Bret Hart
XIII: Undertaker d. Sid
XIV: Steve Austin d. Shawn Michaels
XV: Steve Austin d. The Rock
XVI: HHH d. The Rock/Mick Foley/Big Show
XVII: Steve Austin d. The Rock
XVIII: HHH d. Chris Jericho
XIX:Kurt Angle d. Brock Lesnar
XX: Eddie Guerrero d. Kurt Angle
XXI: John Cena d. JBL
XXII: John Cena d. HHH
XXIII: John Cena d. Shawn Michaels
XXIV: Randy Orton d. John Cena/HHH
XXV: HHH d. Randy Orton
XXVI: John Cena d. Batista
XXVII: John Cena d. Miz
XXVIII: CM Punk d. Chris Jericho
XXIX: John Cena d. The Rock
XXX: Daniel Bryan d. Randy Orton/Batista
XXXI: Seth Rollins d. Roman Reigns/Brock Lesnar
XXXII: Roman Reigns d. HHH
XXXIII: Randy Orton d. Bray Wyatt
XXXIV: AJ Styles d. Shinsuke Nakamura
XXXV: Kofi Kingston d. Daniel Bryan


So, it's just Brock's second lineal WWF title match at Mania, he is the 136th WWF/E Champion, squashing Kingston in a TV match in October.  McIntyre won the Rumble and here we are.  Normally here I offer some sort of prediction about result and quality, that doesn't make a ton of sense under the circumstances.  I would say a switch is less likely than might it otherwise be.


2. WWE Universal Title: Goldberg (c) vs. 

This is currently the Smackdown belt; Bray Wyatt was given a monster heel push but they backed out
of it in favor of a flash title switch to Goldberg in Saudi Arabia. At "press" time, Goldberg/Reigns is
still the advertised match, but Roman has acknowledged that he, in fact, did not/will not work
Wrestlemania given his underlying medical condition. Meltzer has Strowman as the replacement.
Hard to imagine amatch less appealing than Goldberg v. Strowman. Unless it were something like...hell, I don't know
say...Corbin against Elias. Can you imagine? On Wrestlemania? In a promotion that employs
Ricochet?

3. IC Title:  Sami Zayn (c) vs. Daniel Bryan

Bryan/Gulak worked a fairly short, really good mat based match a month ago, as long as this match isn't overly booked (at it might be, Bryan and Gulak were thrown together in a way that might suggest a Gulak turn at some point) it's the high point of my night. Cesaro and Nakamura are here; they just took my favorite guys and threw them in a pile.

How about a look at every IC match in Mania history, while we're here.

I: JYD d. Greg Valentine
II: Randy Savage d. George the Animal Steele
III: Ricky Steamboat d. Randy Savage
IV: Brutus Beefcake d. Honky Tonk Man
V: Rick Rude d. Ultimate Warrior
VI: Ultimate Warrior d. Hulk Hogan
VII: Big Boss Man d. Mr. Perfect
VIII: Bret Hart d. Roddy Piper
IX: Tatanka d. Shawn Michaels
X: Razor Ramon d. Shawn Michaels
XI: Razor Ramon d. Jeff Jarrett
XIII: Rocky Maivia d. The Sultan
XIV: The Rock d. Ken Shamrock
XV: Road Dogg d. Goldust/Ken Shamrock/Val Venis
XVI: Chris Benoit d. Chris Jericho/Kurt Angle
XVII: Chris Jericho d. William Regal
XVIII: RVD d. William Regal
XXV: Rey Mysterio d. JBL
XXVIII: Big Show d. Cody Rhodes
XXIX: Miz d. Wade Barrett
XXXI: Daniel Bryan d. Bad News Barrett/Dean Ambrose/Dolph Ziggler/Stardust/Luke Harper/R-Truth
XXXII: Zack Ryder d. Kevin Owens/Dolph Ziggler/Miz/Sami Zayn/Sin Cara/Stardust
XXXIII: Dean Ambrose d. Baron Corbin
XXXIV: Seth Rollins d. Miz/Finn Balor
XXXV: Finn Balor d. Bobby Lashley

4. WWE Raw Women's Title: Becky Lynch (c) vs. Shayna Baszler

As reflected in her being brought out to drink show closing beer with Austin a couple of weeks ago,
thepromotion perceives Lynch as their top act (their...lynchpin...see what I did there?)...she's had the
belt ayear, taking it from Rousey at last year's Mania. Baszler is a former shootfighter and projects
toughnesswell. A switch makes the most sense going forward, but as a "let's celebrate the babyface
during a timeof incredible darkness" Saturday's show ending with Becky doing the Hogan end of PPV
posing sounds like Vince.


5. WWE SmackDown Women's Title: Bayley (c) vs. Lacey Evans vs. Naomi vs. Sasha Banks vs. Tamina Snuka

Bayley and Charlotte have switched off as champs a couple times over the past year, Bayley's held it since October; the other worker in the match is Banks; she and Bayley are aligned and you could see the value in having Banks either take the belt or somehow screw Bayley out of it. This is a promotion where Lacey Evans is on the Wrestlemania card and Ricochet is not.


6. NXT Women's Title: Rhea Ripley (c) vs. Charlotte Flair

NXT, as you're aware, is the developmental arm of the promotion; consistently for several years now
beingeasily the top "brand" in WWE. They're doing a crossover here; Flair won the Rumble and chose to
go after Ripley's belt. None of these women's matches will be as good as you'd want them to be given
their profile.


7. Smackdown Tag Titles: TBD

The Smackdown tag title was going here, but Miz got sick, so even though it
s still being advertised, apparently it's a Morrison/Uso/Someone in the New Day ladder match configuration.  Might still be for the tag titles (something's got to hang above the ladder)

Something I like to mention, because it's bizarre and reflective of what the promotion does not value, is that neither these belts nor the RAW belts are the lineal WWF tag titles, those belts were deactivated in 2010 (Tyson Kidd and Davey Boy Smith's son were the final champs and that's a helluva trivia question). These belts have only existed since 2016. Morrison returned to the promotion early in the calendar year after many years away; he reunited with former partner Miz and they took these belts from the New Day in Saudi Arabia.

8. WWE Raw Tag Team Titles: Street Profits (Angelo Dawkins and Montez Ford) (c) vs. Angel Garza and Austin Theory (with Zelina Vega)

The RAW belts are older than their counterparts; they were launched in 2002 (Angle and Benoit were
theinitial champions, so that lineage is unlikely to ever get a lot of screen time). The Street Profits are
still pretty green; they took the belts from Rollins and Buddy Murphy on TV a month ago; Andrade has a
secondary singles belt and was supposed to defend it against Mysterio...but Rey's in quarantine and
then Andradegot hurt so this was thrown together. Speaking of green, Austin Theory. Yikes.

9. Women's Tag Tag Titles: The Kabuki Warriors (Asuka and Kairi Sane) (c) vs. Alexa Bliss
and Nikki Cross

-Asuka's shrieking gimmick is a rough watch in 2020. She's in the category of really good worker who
doesn't have many really good main roster matches along with most of the other really good workers
in this endlessly frustrating promotion.

10. Edge vs. Randy Orton

This match might be the main event; it's certainly the best built program.  Edge returned at the Rumble after a 9 year layoff, the following night his former partner Orton left him laying, ostensibly to keep him from further harming himself by persuing an active wrestling career.  Orton subsequently laid of Edge's wife Beth Phoenix and here we are.  It's a match that really will miss the lack of crowd heat.

11. John Cena vs. "The Fiend" Bray Wyatt

Cena is a very seldom used part timer now; he's returning here to put Wyatt over. This is ice cold.

12. The Undertaker vs. AJ Styles

Undertaker is a very seldon used part timer now; he's returning here to go over Styles.

13. Kevin Owens vs. Seth Rollins

Look, even under normal circumstances, this is a bad card - other than Bryan/Zayn the only match
from a work perspective that I have any interest in is this one (whatever that ladder match winds
up being could be good) Rollins and Owens have been feuding
for months and months, they're both good workers and now they meet and it's a pretty hot match
(in a world where any match is a hot
match and any promos from the last two weeks count in any quantifiable way; really what I'm saying
is the match feels hot to me based on the last two weeks of promos)


14. Aleister Black vs. Bobby Lashley 

Black's pretty good.  Lashley's big.

15. Dolph Ziggler vs. Otis 
Otis is a comedy wrestler.  Ziggler is not, they're fighting over a hot girl.  Like George the Animal Steele and Savage feuding over Liz.

16. Elias vs. King Corbin

Hey, wait a second...

So - there we go.  It's going to be a happening. Apparently it's already happened.


I'm not old enough to have seen every Super Bowl, but I was 14 for the first Wrestlemania - the build for which was right in my not yet critical of corporate homogeneity brain.

I've seen every Wrestlemania match multiple times.  This is, I believe, all of them.  Ranked in order of quality, for whatever reason.  Match times are rounded; the Wrestlemania at which the match took place is in parentheses; there's a star rating for every *** and up match.

Now updated through WM34

1      IC Title: Razor Ramon d. Shawn Michaels 19 min (10) 5
2.       Owen Hart d. Bret Hart 20:30 (10) 5

3.       Bret Hart d. Steve Austin 22 min (13) 4 ¾
4.       IC: Ricky Steamboat d. Randy Savage 14:30 (3) 4 ¾

5.    World Title: Chris Benoit d. HBK d. HHH 24:30 (20) 4 ½
6.       WWF Title: Kurt Angle d. Shawn Michaels 27:30 (21) 4 ½
7.     Undertaker d. Shawn Michaels 30:30 (25) 4 1/2
8.       WWF Title: Shawn Michaels d. Bret Hart 62 min (12) 4 ½
9.       Tags: Edge/Christian d. Hardys d. Dudleys 22 min (16) 4 ½
10.    Tags: Edge/Christian d. Hardys d. Dudleys 15:30 (17) 4 ½

11.   WWF Title: Randy Savage d. Ric Flair 18 min (8) 4 ¼

12. WWF Title: Seth Rollins d. Brock Lesnar/Roman Reigns 16:30 (31) 4
13. WWF Title: Brock Lesnar d. Kurt Angle 21 min (19) 4
14. Undertaker d. Shawn Michaels 24 min (26) 4
15.   WWF Title: Steve Austin d. The Rock 15 min (15) 4
16. Kurt Angle d. Chris Benoit 14 min (17) 4
17. Eddy Guerrero d. Kurt Angle 21:30 (20) 4
18. HHH d. Brock Lesnar 22:30 (29) 4
19. Money in the Bank 15 min (21) 4
20.   IC: Bret Hart d. Roddy Piper 14:00 (8) 4
21. Shawn Michaels d. Chris Jericho 22:30 (19) 4
22. Daniel Bryan d. HHH 26:00 (30) 4
23. WWE Title: Kofi Kingston d. Daniel Bryan 24 min (35) 4
24. Undertaker d. CM Punk 22 (29) 4
25.   Ultimate Warrior d. Randy Savage 20:30 (7) 4
26. RAW Tags: Hardys d. Cesaro/Sheamus d. Cass/Enzo d. Anderson/Gallows 11 min (33) 4
27. Undertaker d. HHH 29 min (27) 4
28.   WWF Title: Steve Austin d. Rock 28 min (17) 4
29.   WWF Title: CM Punk d. Chris Jericho 22:30 (28) 4
30. IC: Seth Rollins d. Finn Balor/Miz 15:30 (34) 4
31.   Undertaker d. HHH 30:30 (28) 4

32.   Edge d. Mick Foley 14:30 (22) 3 ¾
33. IC Ladder Match 15:30 (32) 3 3/4
34. IC Ladder Match 14 min (31) 3 3/4
35.   MITB: 14 min (24) 3 ¾
36.  WWF Title: Steve Austin d. Shawn Michaels 20 min (14) 3 ¾
37. WWF Title: Hulk Hogan d. Randy Savage 18 min (5) 3 ¾
38. WWF Title: Daniel Bryan d. Randy Orton/Batista 23:30 (30) 3 3/4
39. WWF Title: AJ Styles d. Shinsuke Nakamura 20:30 (34) 3 3/4 
40. AJ Styles d. Shane McMahon (33) 3 ¾
41. Smackdown Women's Title: Charlotte Flair d. Asuka (34) 13:30 3 3/4 
42. Women's Title: Charlotte d. Sasha/Becky 16 min (32) 3 3/4

43.   IC/Euro: Chris Jericho &Chris Benoit d. Kurt Angle 13:30 (16) 3 ½
44.   WWF/IC Titles: Ultimate Warrior d. Hulk Hogan 23:30 (6) 3 ½
45.   WWF Title: Diesel d. Shawn Michaels 20:30 (11) 3 ½ 
46.   World: Undertaker d. Batista 16 min (23) 3 ½
47.   World: Rey Mysterio d. Kurt Angle d. Randy Orton 9:30 (22) 3 ½
48.   Rock d. Steve Austin 18 min (19) 3 ½
49.   Christian d. Chris Jericho 15 min (20) 3 ½
50.   MITB 19 min (23) 3 ½
51.   MITB 12:30 (21) 3 ½
52.   Undertaker d. HHH 18 min (17) 3 1/2
53.   Randy Orton d. Seth Rollins 13:30 (31) 3 1/2
54    WWF Title: HHH d. Rock d. Mick Foley d. Big Show 36:30 (16) 3 ½
55.   Shawn Michaels d. Ric Flair 20:30 (24) 3 ½
56.   World Title: Undertaker d. Edge 24 min (24) 3 ½
57.   Brainbusters d. Tito Santana/Rick Martel 9 min (5) 3 ½
58    MITB 13:30 (26) 3 ½
59.   MITB 14:30 (25) 3 ½
60.   WWF Title: John Cena d. Shawn Michaels 27:30 (23) 3 ½
61.   Rock d. John Cena 30:30 (28) 3 ½
62.   John Cena d. Rock 24 min (29) 3 1/2
63.   US Title: Kevin Owens d. Chris Jericho 16:30 (33) 3 1/2

64.   Smackdown Tags: The Usos (Jey Uso and Jimmy Uso) (c) d. Aleister Black and Ricochet, Rusev and Shinsuke Nakamura (with Lana), and The Bar (Cesaro and Sheamus) 10 min (35) 3 1/4
65.   Brock Lesnar v. Dean Ambrose 13 min (32) 3 1/4
66.   Ric Flair/Randy Orton/Batista d. Mick Foley/Rock 17 min (20) 3 ¼
67.   Rey Mysterio d. Eddie Guerrero  12:30 (21) 3 1/4
68.   Chris Jericho d. AJ Styles 17 min (32) 3 1/4
69.   Tags: Cactus Jack/Chainsaw Charlie (Terry Funk) d. New Age Outlaws 10 min (14) 3 ¼
70.   Matt Hardy d. Jeff Hardy 13 min (25) 3 ¼
71.   World Title: Chris Jericho d. Edge 15:30 (26) 3 ¼ 
72.   Undertaker d. Diesel 16:30 (12) 3 ¼
73.   Randy Orton d. CM Punk 15min (27) 3 ¼
74.   US: John Cena d. Rusev 14:30 (31) 3 1/4
75.   John Cena d. Bray Wyatt 23 min (30) 3 1/4
76.   World Title: Edge d. Alberto del Rio 11:30 (27) 3 ¼
77.   Tags: Nastys d. Hart Foundation 12 min (7) 3 ¼
78.   Rockers d. Haku/Barbarian 10:30 (7) 3 ¼
79.   Kurt Angle/Ronda Rousey d. HHH/Stephanie 21 min (34) 3 1/4
80.   World: Alberto del Rio d. Jack Swagger 12:30 (29) 3 1/4
81.   Steve Austin d. Savio Vega 10 min (12) 3 ¼
82.   Hart Foundation/Danny Davis d. British Bulldogs/Tito Santana 9 min (3) 3 ¼
83.   Tags: British Bulldogs d. Greg Valentine/Brutus Beefcake 12 min (2) 3 ¼
84.   Terry Funk/Dory Funk d. Tito Santana/Junkyard Dog 11:30 (2) 3 ¼

85.   Tags: Shelton Benjamin/Charlie Haas d. Eddie Guerrero/Chavo Guerrero d. Chris Benoit/Rhyno 8:30 (19) 3
86.   Tags: Vader/Mankind draw Owen Hart/British Bulldog 16 min (13) 3
87.   Jr. Title: Taka Michinoku d. Aguila 6 min (14) 3
88.   IC: Chris Jericho d. Steve Regal 7 min (17) 3
89.   Mr. Perfect d. Blue Blazer (Owen Hart) 6 min (5) 3
90.   Greg Valentine d. Ricky Steamboat 9 min (4) 3
91.   LOD/Ahmed Johnson d. Farooq/Savio Vega/Crush 11 min (13) 3
92.   Too Cool/Chyna d. Eddie Guerrero/Perry Saturn/Dean Malenko 9:30 (16) 3
93.   IC: RVD d. Steve Regal 6:30 (18) 3
94.   Kurt Angle d. Kane 11 min (18) 3
95.   Orient Express d. Rockers 7:30 (6) 3
96.   Cody Rhodes d. Rey Mysterio 12 min (27) 3
97.   US: Chris Benoit d. MVP 9 min (23) 3
98.   AJ Styles d. Randy Orton 16 min (35) 3
99.   WWF Title: HHH d. Chris Jericho 18:30 (18) 3
100.   WWF Title: Randy Orton d. HHH d. John Cena 14 min (24) 3
101.   Euro: Shane McMahon d. XPac 8:30 (15) 3
102.   Euro Title: HHH d. Owen Hart 11:30 (14) 3
103.   WWF Title: HHH d. Booker T 18:30 (19) 3
104.   WWF Title: Randy Savage d. Ted DiBiase 9 min (4) 3
105.   WWF Title: John Cena d. Batista 13:30 (26) 3
106.   WWF Title: John Cena d. HHH 22 min (22) 3
107.   HHH d. Sheamus 12 min (26) 3
108.   IC: Razor Ramon d. Jeff Jarrett 13:30 (11) 3
109.   RAW Womens Title/Smackdown Womens Title: Becky Lynch d. Ronda Rousey, Charlotte Flair 21:30 (35) 3
110.   Universal Title: Brock Lesnar d. Bill Goldberg 5 min (33) 3
111.  Universal Title: Brock Lesnar d. Roman Reigns 16 min (34) 3
112.   WWF Title: Hulk Hogan d. Sgt Slaughter 20:30 (7) 3
113.   Tatanka d. Shawn Michaels 18:00 (9) 3
114.   Steiners d. Headshrinkers 14:30 (9) 3
115.   Shawn Michaels d. Tito Santana 10:30 (8) 3
116.   Ted DiBiase d. Jake Roberts 12 min (6) 3
117.   Seth Rollins d. HHH 25:30 (33) 3
118. Undertaker d. Shane McMahon 30 min (32) 3
119.   Shawn Michaels d. Vince McMahon 18:30 (22) 3
120.   Shane McMahon d. Vince McMahon 14 min (17) 3
121.   World Title: HHH d. Randy Orton 23:30 (25) 3
122.   Brutus Beefcake d. Mr Perfect 8 min (6) 3
123.   Tags: Demolition d. Rick Martel/Tito Santana 8 min (4) 3

124.   Rey Mysterio d. CM Punk 6:30 (26)
125.   Jr. Title: Matt Hardy d. Rey Mysterio 5:30 (19)
126.   Jr. Open 10:30 (20)
127.   Undertaker d. Ric Flair 19 min (18)
128.   Vader/Owen Hart/British Bulldog d. Yokozuna/Ahmed Johnson/Jake Roberts 11:30 (12)
129.   World Title: Batista d. HHH 21:30 (21)
130.   US Title: JBL d. Chris Benoit 10 min (22)
131.   Brock Lesnar d. Undertaker 25:30 (30)
132.   WWF Title: Roman Reigns d. HHH (27 min (32)
133.   Undertaker d. Bray Wyatt 15 min (31)
134.                        JBL d. Fit Finlay 8:30 (24)
135.                        IC: Rick Rude d. Ultimate Warrior 9 min (5)
136.                        Boss Man/Akeem d. Rockers 8 min (5)
137.   Universal Title: Seth Rollins d. Brock Lesnar 2:30 (35)           
138.   Daniel Bryan/Shane d. Kevin Owens/Sami Zayn 15:30 (34)
139. Fandango d. Chris Jericho 9 min (29)
140.                        Randy Savage d. Crush 9:30 (10)
141.                        IC The Rock d. Ken Shamrock 5 min (14)
142.  IC: The Demon Finn Balor d. Bobby Lashley 4 min (35)
143.  Undertaker v. Roman Reigns 23 min (33)
144.                        Hardcore Title: Kane d. Raven d. Big Show 9 min (17)
145.                        Hardcore Title Battle Royal 15 min (16)
146.                        WWF Title: Bret Hart d. Yokozuna 10:30 (10)
147.                        Bret Hart d. Bob Backlund 9:30 (11)
148.                        Roddy Piper d. Goldust 12 min (12)
149.                        Shane McMahon d. Miz 15:30 (35)
150.                        WWF Title: John Cena d. Edge d. Big Show 14:30 (25)
151.                        Euro: Eddie Guerrero d. Test 8 min (17)
152.                        IC: Boss Man d. Perfect 10:30 (7)
153. The Shield d. Sheamus/Randy Orton/Big Show 10:30 (29)
154.                        Roddy Piper d. Adrian Adonis 7 min (3)
155.                        Randy Savage d. Greg Valentine 6 min (4)
156. Tags: Daniel Bryan/Kane d. Dolph Ziggler/Big E Langston 6:30 (29)
157.                        Women's Title: Mickie James d. Trish Stratus 8:30 (22)
158.                        Hulk Hogan d. Vince McMahon 20:30 (19)
159.                        HHH d. Batista 24:30 (35)
160.                        Islanders/Bobby Heenan d. British Bulldogs/Koko B Ware 7:30 (4)
161.                        Hart Foundation d. Greg Valentine/Honky Tonk Man 7:30 (5)
162.                        Hulk Hogan/Mr. T d. Roddy Piper/Paul Orndorff 13 min (1)
163.                        Tags: Money Inc d. Hulk Hogan/Brutus Beefcake 18:30 (9)
164.                        Hardcore Title: Bob Holly d. Al Snow d. Billy Gunn 7 min (15)
165.                        Undertaker d. Randy Orton 14 min (21)
166.                        Hulk Hogan d. Rock 16:30 (18)
167.                        Edge d. Booker T 6:30 (18)
168.                        IC: Road Dogg d. Ken Shamrock d. Goldust d. Val Venis 8:30 (15)
169.                        Lex Luger d. Mr Perfect 11 min (9)
170.                        Roman Reigns d. McIntyre 10 min (35)
171.                        WWF Title: Undertaker d. Sid 21:30 (13)
172.                        Ricky Steamboat d. Hercules 7 min (2)
173.                        Hercules d. Haku 6:30 (5)
174                         US Title: Jinder Mahal d. Randy Orton/Bobby Roode/Rusev (34) 8 min
175.                        HHH d. Goldust 14:30 (13)
176.                        Tags: Owen Hart/Jeff Jarrett d. DLo Brown/Test 4 min (15)
177.                        Tags: Owen Hart/Yokozuna d. Smoking Gunns 9:30 (11)
178.                        Mankind d. Big Show 7 min (15)
179.                        Headbangers d. Doug Furnas/Phil Lafon d. Godwinns d. New Blackjacks 10:30 (13)
180.                        Goldust/Luna Vachon d. Marc Mero/Sable 9 min (14)
181.                        Euro: DDP d. Christian 6 min (18)
182.                        Randy Orton d. Ted DiBiase/Cody Rhodes 9 min (26)
183.                        Bobby Lashley d. Umaga 13 min (23)
184.                        Undertaker d. Kane 17 min (14)
185.                        Baron Corbin d. Kurt Angle 6 min (35)
186.                        HHH d. Sting 18:30 (31)
187.                        Women: Trish d. Victoria d. Jazz 7 min (19)
188.                        Chris Jericho d. Jimmy Snuka/Roddy Piper/Ricky Steamboat 9 min (25)
189.                        WWF Title: Miz draw John Cena 15 min (27)
190.                        WWF Title: Yokozuna d. Bret Hart 9 min (9)
191. RAW Women’s Title: Bayley d. Charlotte d. Sasha d. Nia 12 min (33)
192. League of Nations d. New Day 10 min (32)
193.                        Floyd Mayweather d. Big Show 11:30 (24)
194.                        APA/Taz d. Goodfather/Val Venis/Bull Buchanan 4 min (17)
195.                        Rick Martel/Ton Zenk d. Don Muraco/Bob Orton 5:30 (3)
196.                        12 Man Tag 11:30 (28)
197.                        RVD/Sabu/Sandman/Tommy Dreamer d. Elijah Burke/Matt Striker/Marcus Cor Von/Kevin Thorne 6:30 (23)
198.                        Undertaker d. Mark Henry 9:30 (22)
199.                        IC: Big Show d. Cody Rhodes 5 min (28)
200.                        Bill Goldberg d. Brock Lesnar 13:30 (20)
201.                        Steve Austin d. Scott Hall 10 min (18)
202.                        Tags: Natural Disasters d. Money Inc 8:30 (8)
203.                        Tags: Billy Gunn/Chuck Palumbo d. Hardys d. Dudleys d. APA 14 min (18)
204.                        British Bulldog/Lex Luger d. Blu Brothers 6:30 (11)
205.                        Tags: Men on a Mission d. Quebecers 7:30 (10)
206.                        Boss Man/Bull Buchanan d. D Lo Brown/Godfather 9 min (16)
207.                        Kane d. HHH 11:30 (15)
208.                        Tags: RVD/Booker d Dudleys d. La Resistance d. Mark Jindrak/Lance Cade 8 min (20)
209.                        Smackdown Tags: Luke Harper/Eric Rowan d. Usos/New Day 6 min (34)
210.                        IC: Rocky Maivia d. The Sultan (Rikishi) 9:30 (13)
211.                        US: John Cena d. Big Show 9 min (20)
212.                        Rikishi/Kane d. XPac/Road Dogg 4:30 (16)
213.                        Ted DiBiase draw Brutus Beefcake 10 min (5)
214.                        WWF Title: Hulk Hogan d. King Kong Bundy 10 min (2)
215.                        Tags: Kane/Show d. Carlito/Chris Masters 6:30 (22)
216.                        Boss Man/Virgil/Slaughter/Duggan d. Mountie/Repo Man/Nastys 6:30 (8)
217.                        Demolition d. Tenryu/Kitao 4:30 (7)
218.                        Tags: Demolition d. Powers of Pain/Fuji  9 min (5)
219.                        Lawrence Taylor d. Bam Bam Bigelow 11:30 (11)
220.                        Greg Valentine/Brutus Beefcake d. Rougeaus 4 min (3)
221.                        Tags: Nikolai Volkoff/Iron Sheik d. Barry Windham/Mike Rotundo 7 min (1)
222.                        Killer Bees d. Iron Sheik/Nikolai Volkoff 6 min (3)
223.          The Shield d. Kane/NAO 3 min (30)
224.                        IC Randy Savage d. George The Animal Steele 7 min (2)
225.                        Batista d. Umaga 7 min (24)
226.                        Kane d. Randy Orton 11 min (28)
227.                        Undertaker d. Big Boss Man 10 min (15)
228.                        Undertaker d. Jake Roberts 6:30 (8)
229.                        Roddy Piper draw Bad News Brown 7 min (6)
230.                        Rick Rude d. Jimmy Snuka 4 min (6)
231.                        Ted DiBiase d. Jim Duggan 5 min (4)
232.                        Ted DiBiase d. Don Muraco 5:30 (4)
233.                        Tatanka d. Rick Martel 4:30 (8)
234.                        Randy Savage d. Butch Reed 4 min (4)
235.                        WWF Title: Hulk Hogan d. Andre the Giant 12 min (3)
236.                        Battle Royal 12:30 (30)
237.                         Battle Royal 10 min (4)
238.                        Battle Royal 9:30 (32)
239.                        Battle Royal (2)
240.                        Tag Team Battle Royal 8:30 (14)
241.                        Razor Ramon d. Bob Backlund 4 min (9)
242.                        Virgil d. Ted DiBiase 8 min (7)
243.                        Barbarian d. Tito Santana 4:30 (6)
244.                        Rick Martel d. Koko B Ware 6 min (6)
245.                        Honky Tonk Man d. Jake Roberts 7 min (3)
246.                        IC Title: Brutus Beefcake d. Honky Tonk Man 9 min (4)
247.                        Tito Santana d. Executioner (Buddy Rose) 5 min (1)
248.                        IC Title: Junkyard Dog d. Greg Valentine 7 min (1)
249.                        Undertaker d. Kane 8 min (20)
250.                        Ricky Steamboat d. Matt Borne 4:30 (1)
251.                        Rick Rude draw Jake Roberts 15 min (4)
252.                        British Bulldog d. Warlord 8 min (7)
253.                        Mark Henry d. Ryback 8 min (29)
254.                        Hercules draw Billy Jack Haynes 8 min (3)
255.                        Harley Race d. Junkyard Dog 3:30 (3)
256.                        Tags: Big Show/Miz d. John Morrison/Truth Killings 3:30 (26)
257.                        Randy Savage d. One Man Gang 4 min (4)
258.                        Women: Victoria d. Molly Holly 5 min (20)
259.                          RAW Women: Nia Jax d. Alexa Bliss
260.                        Undertaker d. Jimmy Snuka 4:30 (7)
261.                        Tags: Rikishi/Scott Taylor d. APA d. Charlie Haas/Shelton Benjamin d. Bashams 6 min(20)
262.                        Hardcore: Spike Dudley d. Maven d. Goldust 3:30 (18)
263.                        Undertaker d. John Cena 3 min (34)
264.                        Bushwackers d. Rougeaus 5 min (5)
265.                        Paul Orndorff draw Don Muraco 4:30 (2)
266.                        Doink d. Crush 8:30 (9)
267.  Women's Tags: The IIconics (Billie Kay and Peyton Royce) d. The Boss 'n' Hug Connection (Bayley and Sasha Banks) (c), Nia Jax and Tamina, and Beth Phoenix and Natalya 10:30 (36)
268.  John Cena/Nikki Bella d. Miz/Maryse 9:45 (33)
269.                        Butterbean d. Bart Gunn 30 sec (15)
270.                        Mr. T d. Roddy Piper 10 min (2)
271.                        Hulk Hogan d. Sid 12:30 (8)
272.                        WWF Title: John Cena d. JBL 11:30 (21)
273.                        Women: Jazz d. Lita d. Trish 6:30 (18)
274.                        WWF Title: Yokozuna d. Lex Luger 14:30 (10)
275.                        Bret Hart d. Vince McMahon 11 min (26)
276.                        Don Muraco d. Dino Bravo 5 min (4)
277.                        Butch Reed d. Koko B Ware 3:30 (3)
278.                        One Man Gang d. Bam Bam Bigelow 3 min (4)
279.                        Earthquake d. Greg Valentine 3 min (7)
280.                        8 Man 1:30 (27)
281.                        Ultimate Warrior d. Hercules 4:30 (4)
282.          Paige/AJ d. Bellas 6:30 (31)
283                        Big Moss Man d. Akeem 2 min (6)
284. Women: 14 Divas Match (30) 6:30
285. Smackdown Women: Naomi d. Alexa/Becky/Carmella/Mickie/Natalya 5:30 (33)
286.                        John Morrison/Trish Stratus/Snooki d. Dolph Ziggler/Layla/Michelle McCool 3:30 (27)
287.                        Kelly Kelly/Maria Menounos d. Beth Phoenix/Eve 7 min (28)
288.                        Women: Chyna d. Ivory 2:30 (17)
289.                        Women: Wendi Richter d. Lelani Kai 6 min (1)
290.                        Beth Phoenix/Melina d. Maria/Ashley 6:30 (24)
291.                        Women: Trish d. Christy Hemme 4:30 (21)
292.                        Torrie Wilson/Sable d. Stacy Keibler/Jackie 2:30 (20)
293.                        Women: Alundra Blayze d. Lelani Kai 3:30 (10)
294.                        Women: Sable d. Tori 4:30 (15)
295.                        Women: Melina d. Ashley 3 (23)
296.                        LOD d. Power&Glory 1 min (7)
297.                        Owen Hart d. Skinner 1 min (8)
298.                        Ultimate Warrior d. HHH 1:30 (12)
299.                        Tags: Demolition d. Andre the Giant/Haku 9 min (6)
300.                        Test/Albert d. Al Snow/Steve Blackman 7 min (16)
301.                        RAW Tags: Braun Strowman/Underaged Child d. Cesaro/Sheamus 4 min (34)
302.                        Jim Duggan d. Bad News Brown 4 min (5)
303.                        Earthquake d. Hercules 5 min (6)
304.                        Jim Duggan d. Dino Bravo 4:30 (6)
305.                        Dino Bravo d. Ronnie Garvin 4 min (5)
306.                        Jake Roberts d. George Wells 3 min (2)
307.                        The Mountie d. Tito Santana 1:30 (7)
308.                        Andre the Giant draw Hulk Hogan 5:30 (4)
309.                        King Kong Bundy/Lord Littlebrook/Little Tokyo d. Hillbilly Jim/Little Beaver/Haiti Kid 4:30 (3)
310.                        Gimmick Battle Royal 3 min (17)
311.                       Undertaker d. Big Show d. Albert 10 min (19)
312.                        Torrie Wilson d. Candice Michelle 4 min (22)
313.                        US Title: Samoa Joe d Rey Mysterio 1 min (35)
314.                        Akebono d. Big Show 1 min (21)
315.                        Kerry Von Erich d. Dino Bravo 3 min (7)
316.                        Undertaker d. King Kong Bundy 6:30 (11)
317.                        Adrian Adonis d. Uncle Elmer 3 min (2)
318.                        Rock d. Eric Rowan 30 sec (32)
319.                        King Kong Bundy d. SD Jones 30 sec (1)
320.                        IC: Rey Mysterio d. JBL 30 sec (25)
321.                        Hart Foundation d. Bolsheviks 30 secs (6)
322.                        WWF Title: Hulk Hogan d. Yokozuna 30 secs (9)
323.                        Earthquake d. Adam Bomb 30 secs (10)
324.                        Red Rooster (Terry Taylor) d. Bobby Heenan 30 sec (5)
325.                        ECW Title: Kane d. Chavo Guerrero 30 sec (24)
326.                        Sheamus d. Daniel Bryan 30 sec (28)
327.                        Corporal Kirschner d. Nikolai Volkoff  1:30 (2)
328.                        10 Woman Tag 3:30 (26)
329.                        Women: Fabulous Moolah d. Velvet McIntyre 1 min (2)
330.                        Brutus Beefcake draw David Sammartino 12:30 (1)
331.                        WWF Title: Randy Orton d. Bray Wyatt 10:30 (33)
332.                        Great Khali d. Kane 5:30 (23)
333.                        Andre the Giant d. Jake Roberts 9:30 (5)
334.                        Bodyslam Match: Andre the Giant d. John Studd 6 min (1)
335.                        Boogyman d. Booker/Sharmell 4 min (22)
336.                        Dusty Rhodes/Sapphire d. Randy Savage/Sherri Martel 7:30 (6)
337.                        Bam Bam Bigelow/Luna Vachon d. Doink/Dink 6 min (10)
338.                        Terri Runnels d. The Kat 2:30 (16)
339.                        Miss Wrestlemania Battle Royal 6 min (25)
340.                        Jake Roberts d. Rick Martel 8:30 (7)
341.                        Undertaker d. Giant Gonzalez 7:30 (9)
342.                        Michael Cole d. Jerry Lawler 14 min (27)

The ESPN 64 Player Bracket Final Four

Sunday, March 29, 2020



You can get to the rest of my brackets here.

The ESPN tournament came down to Bird/Jordan/Magic/Shaq.

My Final Four is Kareem/Breanna Stewart/Chamique Holdsclaw/Walton

Kareem v. Stewart
Holdsclaw v. Walton

Alcindor went 88-2; player of the year 2 out of his 3 years, was top player in the tournament all 3 years, averaged 26-15 for his career, won the title every year. Kareem had as close to a perfect career as any college basketball player has ever had.

Stewart went 151-5 and won the title all four years; she averaged 17-7, was AP player of the year 3 times. 

Holdsclaw won three titles, had an undefeated season, she's the all time leading scorer and rebounder in women's tournament history, she went 131-17, was player of the year twice,

Walton had back to back undefeated seasons, won 88 straight games, won two titles, shot 65% from the floor for his career, was player of the year all 3 seasons

So?  Who wins? 

I don't think there's a wrong answer; I'd almost rather the bracketing allowed for the two men to compete and the two women to compete as that's more of a dollars to dollars comparison.  Looking at the top half - neither Stewart or Alcindor ever lost, Alcindor only played 3 years to Stewart's four..but that's because he wasn't allowed to play as a freshman (and playing for the freshman UCLA team, he beat the varsity, who was the best team in the country).

UConn was just as dominant as was UCLA...but Alcindor was just a little more dominant within his world than Stewart was within hers, and that's enough for the edge. 

Lew Alcindor d. Breanna Stewart

On the other side, Walton's UCLA squad won one fewer title than Holdsclaw's Tennessee teams - but Walton had that 88 game streak.  Holdsclaw holds the all time tournament records - but doesn't quite have Walton's regular season numbers.  Holdsclaw also had Catchings, another all time great player.  It's narrow - but it's Walton.

Bill Walton d. Chamique Holdsclaw 

And that leaves the two UCLA big men - here, the tie goes to the man who came first. 

I don't really think there's a wrong answer here - but my answer is Kareem.

Lew Alcindor d. Bill Walton

Kareem, in my view, is without much question one of the 4 greatest players in NBA history (with LeBron, Jordan, and Wilt) and here, I'll say he's the greatest player in college history.


2020 NFL Draft Big Board

Friday, March 27, 2020

There was no tournament; there's no baseball, so my prep attention has turned to the NFL Draft.  Here's my initial big board. Edits to come.



1. Joe Burrow QB LSU
2. Chase Young Edge Ohio St
3. Tua Tagovailoa Alabama QB
4. Jerry Jeudy Alabama WR
5. Jeffrey Okudah Ohio St CB
6. Ceedee Lamb Oklahoma WR
7. Isaiah Simmons Clemson LB
8. Derrick Brown DT Auburn
9. Henry Ruggs WR Alabama
10. Andrew Thomas OT Georgia
11. Jedrick Wills OT Alabama
12. Tristan Wirfs OT Iowa
13. Javon Kinlaw DT South Carolina
14. Justin Jefferson WR LSU
15. Grant Delpit S LSU
16. Xavier McKinney S Alabama
17. CJ Henderson CB Florida
18. Justin Herbert QB Oregon
19. Lavishka Shenault WR Colorado
20. Tee Higgins WR Clemson
21. Josh Jones OT Houston
22. AJ Epensa Edge Iowa
23. Kristian Fulton CB LSU
24. Trevon Diggs CB Alabama
25. Jalen Reagor WR TCU
26. Jaylon Johnson CB Utah
27. Mekhi Becton OT Louisville
28. K’Lavon Chaisson Edge LSU
29. Jeff Gladney CB TCU
30. Zack Baun Edge Wisconsin
31. Kenneth Murray LB Oklahoma
32. D’Andre Swift RB Georgia
33. Brandon Aiyuk WR Arizona St
34. Cesar Ruiz C Michigan
35. Jake Fromm QB Georgia
36. Ross Blacklock DT TCU
37. Yetur Gross Matos Edge Penn St
38. Jordan Love QB Utah St
39. Ashtyn Davis S Cal
40. Curtis Weaver Edge Boise
41. Julian Okwara Edge N Dame
42. Antoine Winfield S Minnesota
43. Denzel Mims WR Baylor
44. Michael Pittman WR USC
45. Jonathan Taylor RB Wisc
46. Netane Muti G Fresno
47. Terrell Lewis Edge Alabama
48. Patrick Queen LB LSU
49. Jordan Elliott DT Missouri
50. AJ Terrell CB Clemson
51. Neville Gallimore DT Oklahoma
52. Kyle Dugger S Lenoir Rhyne
53. JK Dobbins RB Ohio St
54. Noah Igbinoghene CB Auburn
55. Tyler Biadasz C  Wisconsin
56. Damon Arnette CB Ohio St
57. Marlon Davidson Edge Auburn
58. Bryce Hall CB Virginia
59. Tyler Johnson WR Minnesota
60. Akeen Davis Gaither LB App St
61. Tony Pride CB N Dame
62. KJ Hamler WR Penn St
63. Zach Moss RB Utah
64. Justin Madubuike DT A&M
65. Clyde Edwards Helaire RB
66. Austin Jackson T USC
67. Jacob Eason QB Washington
68. Cole Kmet TE N Dame
69. Darrell Taylor Edge Tenn
70. Ezra Cleveland OT Boise
71. Hunter Bryant TE Washington
72. Adam Trautman TE Dayton
73. Bradley Anae Edge Utah
74. Jonah Jackson G Ohio St
75. Lucas Niang T TCU
76. Josh Uche Edge Michigan
77. Raekwon Davis DT Alabama
78. Cam Akers RB Florida St
79. Cameron Dantzler CB Miss St
80. Anthony Gordon QB Wash St
81. Kenny Willekes Edge Michigan St
82. Anfernee Jennings Edge Alabama
83. Matt Hennessy C Temple
84. Antonio Gandy Golden WR Liberty
85. K’Von Wallace S Clemson
86. Harrison Bryant TE FAU
87. Jalen Hurts QB Oklahoma
88. Jared Pinkney TE Vandy
89. KJ Hill WR Ohio St
90. Van Jefferson WR Florida
91. Devin Duvernay WR Texas
92. Troy Dye LB Oregon
93. Nick Harris C Washington
94. Geno Stone S Iowa
95. Logan Stenberg G Kentucky
96. Brycen Hopkins TE Purdue
97. Markus Bailey LB Purdue
98. Isaiah Wilson T Georgia
99. Lynn Bowden QB Kentucky
100. Jonathan Greenard Edge Florida

That ESPN 64 Player Bracket Midwest Region

Thursday, March 26, 2020

South is here

Round 1
1. Bill Walton d. 16. Steve Alford
-Walton shot 65% from the floor for his career

9. Sabrina Ionescu d. 8 Wilt Chamberlain
-I mean, Wilt was Wilt, however good you think he was he was better than that - but Ionescu played in a hundred more games and at a really high level.

5. Maya Moore d. 12. Steph Curry
-I'm a Warriors fan, but Moore had back to back perfect seasons.

13. Brittney Griner d. 4. David Thompson
-Thompson was terrific, this is a really tough matchup - in Griner's junior year she blocked more shots than any other team, that's enough.

11. David Robinson d. 6. Jay Williams
-They each won the Wooden and the Naismith; Williams won the national title; I think for me the extraordinary talent disparity between the two supporting casts gets the Admiral a narrow win.

3. Cheryl Miller d. 14. Chris Webber
-three time Naismith; Miller is Ralph Sampson.

7. Elvin Hayes 10. Tim Duncan
-Hayes averaged 31-17 for his career

2. Michael Jordan 15. Nancy Lieberman
-Jordan won the Wooden, won the Naismith, won a title, that's enough in a super close match

Round of 32
1. Walton d. 9. Ionescu
-3 Naismith's, 2 titles, 2 tournament MVPs

5. Moore d. 13. Griner
-Moore went 150-4 in her college career.

3. Miller d. 11. Robinson
-3 Naismiths for Miller

7. Hayes d. 2. Jordan
-Did I mention the 31-17?

Sweet 16
1. Walton d. 5. Moore
-Walton won 90 straight; Moore 88 straight - this is a really comparable matchup; Moore played in many more games and that might be enough for the edge, but in the end Walton's '73 title game performance (21 of 22, 44 points) is unparalleled.

3. Miller d. 7. Hayes
-This is really tight; Hayes still has the rebounding record for the tournament, but Miller was the transformative player in women's college basketball

Elite 8
1. Bill Walton d. 3. Cheryl Miller
-Could be the crosstown UCLA v USC matchup is too much to pass up; I might go Moore over Miller. honestly, the Walton/Moore matchup seems a little tighter.  UCLA mens basketball and UConn womens basketball for the respective eras had similar types of dominance, that career shooting % for Walton is a really special kind of regular season might.






That ESPN 64 Player Bracket South Region

Wednesday, March 25, 2020

East is here

Round 1
1. Christian Laettner d. 16. Jimmer Fredette
-Laettner's the career points leader in the tournament

8. Danny Manning d. 9. Zion Williamson
-There isn't a single argument for Williamson.  Not a single one.

12. Larry Johnson d. 5. Carmelo Anthony
-I'm still salty about that Manning/Zion thing.  This is a lot closer than that but the same basic "you just played one year, sir" idea.

4. Chamique Holdsclaw d. 13. Trae Young
-What's with the one and dones in the South?  Holdsclaw won 3 straight titles.

11. Tamika Catchings d. 6. Chris Mullin
-This is really close; they both had long careers and similar levels of dominance; Catchings won the Naismith, Mullin won the Wooden.  But Catchings had that undefeated season.

14. Glen Rice d. Magic Johnson
-This is also close; Magic was the better player, but Rice played in more than twice as many games, also won a title and his 1989 tournament run is maybe unmatched.

7. Candace Parker 10. Kevin Durant
-Again with the one and dones; Parker won two Woodens and back to back titles.

2. Patrick Ewing 15. Jerry Lucas
-Close like Rice/Magic, but the huge games disparity gives it to Ewing.

Round of 32
8. Manning over 1. Laettner
-They each won a Naismith and a Wooden, each won titles (Laettner won a second) I mean, it's by a hair, but Manning was a little bit better in the regular season and with less help.

4. Holdsclaw d. 12. Johnson
-Holdsclaw's the leading scorer and rebounder all time in the tournament

14. Rice d. 11. Catchings
-Close - but Catchings had significantly better teammates, as evidenced by Holdsclaw's advancing

2. Ewing d. Parker
-The 3 straight finals apearances in a hotly contested time seals it for Ewing.

Sweet 16
4. Holdsclaw d. Manning
-3 straight titles and an undefeated season for Holdsclaw

2. Ewing d. 14. Rice
Won a title like Rice but also had two more finals appearances

Elite 8
4. Chamique Holdsclaw d. 2. Patrick Ewing
2 Naismiths and a Sullivan Award.  I didn't look at this bracket ant automatically think Holdsclaw, but she's the winner for sure.

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