Date: April 2, 2021
Location: Tropicana Field, St. Petersburg, Florida
Commentators: Michael Cole, Corey Graves
We are running out of shows before Wrestlemania and the card is mostly set. WWE has already announced that the Smackdown Tag Team Titles will be defended (for the first time since they were won almost three months ago) and that we will get the Andre the Giant battle royal next week, but that leaves a lot of things to cover tonight. Let’s get to it.
We open with a recap of the Fastlane main event with Edge costing Daniel Bryan the Universal Title. Then last week, a triple threat match was announced for Wrestlemania.
Here is Edge to get things going. Edge thinks he might have been naive to think he could have gone down the Road to Wrestlemania without hitting some road kill like Daniel Bryan. That was important to Edge because Bryan was one of the reasons he thought this comeback was possible. He was so focused on Roman Reigns that he never saw Bryan.
Bryan had all of these scenarios about what to do with Wrestlemania, and all of them were so brave. At the end of the day though, Edge has to admit that he was out played. When Edge looks in the mirror though, he sees the man he needs to have looking back at him: the Rated R Superstar. We see the graphic for the Wrestlemania triple threat, which Edge called Adam Pearce’s masterpiece. Edge gets a lot more serious and talks about how he is finally the man he needs to be because he snapped at Fastlane. Hitting Bryan with that chair felt so, so good and Edge won’t hesitate at Wrestlemania.
Edge says he won’t feel bad if Daniel Bryan can’t make it through his street fight with Jey Uso tonight.
Here is the Alpha Academy for a chat. Chad Gable brags about how great Otis has been as of late and promises to peak hard next week. They are going to win the Tag Team Titles next week and they are going to do it for the Academy.
Alpha Academy/Dolph Ziggler/Robert Roode vs. Rey Mysterio/Dominik Mysterio/Street Profits
During the entrances, Roode and Ziggler brag about being champions, the Mysterios want to be the champs and the Profits dub the Mysterios the Flying Familia. Dominik starts fast with a tornado DDT on Ziggler and everything breaks down with the villains all being sent outside. Some dives drop them again and we take an early break. Back with Dawkins throwing t-bone suplexes but Ziggler gets in a shot to take Dawkins down.
Otis rips at Dawkins’ face and it’s back to Roode for a suplex. The neck cranking is on again but Dawkins fights up for a double clothesline. Why Dawkins didn’t run over for a tag when he hit the ropes six inches away from Ford isn’t clear, but he gets over and tags Ford in a few seconds later. A standing moonsault gets two on Gable and everything breaks down. Gable German suplexes Ford and Otis’ middle rope splash finishes at 8:31.
Rating: C+. They kept this mostly fast paced and it worked out well with so many people in there. It’s kind of nice to have more than two teams fighting over the titles, but Roode and Ziggler have gone so long without defending them that most of their impact is gone. I could see the titles going in a few different directions next week and that is a nice feeling to have for a big match.
Paul Heyman comes in to see Sonya Deville and Adam Pearce. Heyman makes it simple: he wants a clause in the street fight saying Jey Uso cannot be held accountable for what he does. Deville things it’s a good idea and we seem to be set.
Seth Rollins and Cesaro are in the ring for a face to face chat. Cesaro says Rollins is right about his shortcomings but there is something different this time around. Rollins does not like the mention of Cesaro swinging him because he can’t be shaken. He is unshakable at this time of the year and we get some comparisons of classic Wrestlemania moments to his own great Wrestlemania moments. Cesaro says Rollins may not be unshakable but he is certainly swingable. That sends Rollins over the edge so Cesaro tells him to take a swing. Rollins leaves instead.
Nia Jax/Shayna Baszler/Reginald sneer at Carmella.
Natalya vs. Shayna Baszler
Tamina is here and Nia Jax is on commentary, with Reginald next to her. They fight over rollups to start and Natalya wins with a small package in 36 seconds. I’m going to assume there was something off there.
Post match Jax comes in for the big brawl but the Riott Squad and Mandy Rose/Dana Brooke come in for the save (with Brooke mistiming a handspring dropkick in the corner). Lana and Naomi come in to clean house but Tamina makes the save and a Hart Attack leaves Natalya laying. Is there a reason most of the Raw women were in their gear?
Carmella is watching in the back when Billie Kay comes up with her resume. This seems to get Carmella’s attention.
Logan Paul arrives and Sami Zayn is rather pleased.
Here is Sami Zayn for the premiere of the trailer for his documentary. Sami gives a rather flowery introduction to Logan Paul, who seems happy to be here. After Paul says he wants to see the trailer, Sami invites him to Wrestlemania, with Paul accepting. We get the trailer, which talks about Sami being ripped off by referees, developing a hatred for zebras, and possibly being a flat Earther.
Logan says that was a lot to take in but doesn’t exactly buy what he just say. Sami almost snaps on him but asks what Paul thinks. Paul says Sami put a lot of effort into it…and here’s Kevin Owens to Stun Sami and promise to beat some sense into him at Wrestlemania. Paul added nothing here other than a celebrity name.
Edge tells Sonya Deville and Adam Pearce that he will be on commentary for the main event. I’d be surprised if he wasn’t.
Sami Zayn jumps Kevin Owens in the back.
Bianca Belair is glad that the real Sasha Banks is coming to Wrestlemania, because she wants the one who will do anything to win.
Bianca Belair vs. Carmella
Carmella jumps her before the bell to start and Bianca goes into the steps as we take a break. Back with Belair fighting out of a chinlock and getting up a boot in the corner. The hair whips have Carmella in trouble and it’s the KOD to finish her off at 2:45.
Post match here’s Sasha Banks to grab Belair but they just stare each other down instead.
King Corbin vs. Drew McIntyre is set for Raw.
Corbin is sick of the disrespect around here and is ready to take it out on McIntyre.
Apollo Crews wants his Wrestlemania Intercontinental Title shot against Big E. to be a Nigerian Drum Fight, which sounds like a street fight.
Paul Heyman talks to Edge, who doesn’t care because he knows Heyman has a plan.
Daniel Bryan vs. Jey Uso
Street fight with Edge on commentary. It’s a brawl to start with Bryan knocking him out to the floor. Uso grabs a chair and the suicide dive is cut off by a shot to the head. The chair is wrapped around Bryan’s leg but he avoids a splash Pillmanization. Bryan cracks him over the back with the chair but here are Roman Reigns and Paul Heyman to watch from the stage as we take a break.
Back with Bryan in trouble and Edge looking very pleased as Jey sends him into a chair wedged in the corner. A chain shot sets up the Superfly Splash for two, followed by a hard whip into the steps. Bryan manages a suplex from the steps to the floor and the chair crushes Uso this time. Back in and Bryan hits a missile dropkick to set up the YES Kicks. The YES Lock makes Uso tap at 13:06.
Rating: C+. Good brawl, but these two have fought each other so many times now that it is almost impossible to get excited about it again. Bryan was more aggressive here though and that is the idea they were trying to get over, so they certainly accomplished the goal. Uso’s main event run seems to be over, but he’s fine as the gatekeeper for Reigns.
Post match Bryan hits the running knee on Edge and sends him into the post for a bonus. Bryan goes up the ramp, ducks Reigns’ chair toss, and hits a running knee on him as well. The YES Lock goes on until referees break it up, leaving Bryan to pose to end the show.
Overall Rating: C. WWE is not great at multitasking and that was on display here. There were two stories receiving any kind of time and everything else felt like it was filler or not important. The Universal Title stuff worked well and the match is all but set. Then you have the Sami vs. Owens stuff, which is little more than a way to act like Logan Paul is the biggest star in the world. Everything else was just kind of there, which means you had one well done story, one story that was pure WWE, and a lot of nothing else. They are stumbling towards Wrestlemania and it is getting more and more obvious every week.
Alpha Academy/Dolph Ziggler/Robert Roode b. Dominik Mysterio/Rey Mysterio/Street Profits – Middle rope splash to Ford
Natalya b. Shayna Baszler – Small package
Bianca Belair b. Carmella – KOD
Daniel Bryan b. Jey Uso – YES Lock
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