WrestleMania 36: Part 1

Updated: Jul 14, 2020


Orlando, Florida

WWE Performance Center

Attendance: 0

Announcers: Michael Cole (Smackdown), John "Bradshaw" Layfield (Smackdown), Tom Phillips (Raw), Byron Saxton (Raw)

Ring Announcers: Greg Hamilton (Smackdown), Mike Rome (Raw)

Kickoff Show Match

Drew Gulak vs. Cesaro

Michael Cole hypes this up as a potential classic. I agree it could be if given the proper time. Gulak goes for an arm bar right off the bat but Cesaro fights him off. Cesaro backs Gulak into the corner but Gulak catches him with a boot. Gulak runs at Cesaro but Cesaro catches him with a gut wrench back breaker that gets a near fall. Cesaro attempts a Neutralizer but Gulak counters into an arm bar. Cesaro fights to his feet and tries to roll through by Gulak holds on. Cesaro powers up up and slams Gulak. Cesaro goes for the Neutralizer again but Gulak rolls through to avoid it again and locks Cesaro in a crossface. Cesaro makes it to the ropes. Gulak dumps Cesaro out of the ring. Gulak hits a flying clothesline off the apron to take down Cesaro. Gulak looks to send Cesaro into the steps but Cesaro blocks and throws Gulak back into the ring. Gulak continues to target Cesaro's arm. Gulak clothesline Cesaro back out of the ring on the other side. Gulak goes out after him but Cesaro catches Gulak only for Gulak to counter with an arm drag. Gulak sends Cesaro shoulder first into the steps twice. Back in the ring, Gulak goes to the top and jumps but Cesaro catches him with an uppercut. Near fall. Gulak locks in another arm bar but Cesaro fights back to his feet and delivers knees to Gulak. Gulak comes off the ropes with a sunset flip for a near fall. Gulak locks in a dragon sleeper but Cesaro counters with a power slam. Cesaro follows up with a big boot and Gulak blocks the Neutralizer again! Cesaro pushes Gulak who almost hits the ref before catching Gulak with another uppercut. Cesaro gets Gulak up for an airplane spin. No Hands!! 1...2...3!! That was a sudden finish, They had a good match going that was criminally short. With the kickoff show being an hour, I find it hard to believe these guys can't get more than five minutes.

W: Cesaro via pin @ 4:26 (**1/2)

We start with Stephanie McMahon acknowledging that this year's WrestleMania will be different than any previous one. She says the WWE is committed to providing us with a diversion during these uncertain times and they will continue to entertain us. On behalf of all the superstars, she thanks everyone and welcomes us to WrestleMania.

A video package airs with a mix of all the people who have sang America The Beautiful at past. It includes Aretha Franklin, John Legend, Boyz II Men, Ray Charles, Michelle Williams, Fantasia, Little Richard, Aloe Blacc, Gladys Knight, Nicole Scherzinger, Boys Choir of Harlem, and Willie Nelson. This was awesome and really well done.

Another video package hypes WrestleMania. Pretty much everyone was featured and it had some comedy to it.

We kick off with our host, Rob Gronkowski! He welcomes us to night one of the biggest event of the year! Mojo Rawley joins him to get the party started and Mojo insists Gronk give him a few chops to get him hyped. They'll be watching throughout the night.

WWE Women's Tag Team Championship Match

Alexa Bliss & Nikki Cross vs. The Kabuki Warriors (champs)

The match starts with Bliss and Asuka. Asuka dances around before tagging Kairi Sane. Kairi pushes Bliss a few times and then pushes her down to the ground. Bliss gets pissed and slaps Kairi. Bliss taunts Kairi before slamming her to the mat. Bliss taunts Asuka and drops the double knees across Kairi before tagging in Cross. Cross takes down Kairi and locks in a sleeper. Kairi backs Cross into the corner where Asuka tags herself in. They put the boots to Cross. Asuka talks some Japanese trash while she beats down Cross. Cross fights back and Bliss tags herself back in while Cross sends Asuka outside the ring. Bliss hits Kairi with a baseball slide sending her outside as well. Bliss is on the apron and takes out Asuka with a senton. Cross from the apron takes out Kairi with a high cross body. Back in the ring, Bliss gets a near fall on Asuka. Bliss tags Cross and she delivers a double axe to Asuka from the top. Asuka then decks Cross and tags Kairi back in. Cross throws Kairi to the outside and Kairi pulls her out as well. All four ladies fight outside. The champions get the better of the exchange on the outside. Back in the ring, Asuka wears down Cross as she talks trash. The champs do a good job of isolating Cross. Cross gets a near fall with a roll up. Cross is finally able to tag Bliss and she takes control. Asuka provides a distraction that stops Bliss' momentum allowing Kairi to hang Bliss in the tree of woe. Kairi heads to the top and delivers a double stomp to the face!! 2 count!! Kairi beats down Bliss in the corner. Asuka tags back in and she takes over the beat down on Bliss. Good tag team heel work by the Kabuki Warriors. Big knee strike to Bliss' face gets a near fall. Asuka goes for a running strike in the corner but Bliss gets her knees up. They both hit strikes on each other to follow and both Bliss and Asuka are down. Cross and Kairi both tag in! Cross gets the better of Kairi and goes to the top where she hits a high cross body for a 2 count. Kairi stops her momentum by raking the eyes and Asuka tags in. Asuka delivers some strikes to Cross but Cross counters and hits the Purge! Cross makes the cover but Kairi stops it by hitting the Insane Elbow from the top!!! Cross goes for a roll up but Asuka counters it into the Asuka Lock!!! Bliss hits Twisted Bliss from the top!! That breaks the Asuka Lock!! Kairi spears Bliss! Everyone is down. Kairi tags herself in. Asuka takes Cross down with a Codebreaker and Kairi goes up top looking for the Insane Elbow again. Cross gets up and cuts off Kairi. Asuka tags herself back in and they double team Cross. Asuka looks for a sunset flip power bomb but Asuka holds up Cross allowing Kairi to hit a modified Doomsday Device! Cross kicks out at 2! Kairi knocks Bliss off the apron and Cross avoids a double team that sends Asuka into the ring post. Cross hits the Purge on Kairi and tags Bliss. Bliss goes to the top and HITS TWISTED BLISS!!! 1...2...3!!! NEW CHAMPS!!! This was a good opening match for the main card although I felt it was a little long. Cross really got to shine.

W: Alexa Bliss & Nikki Cross via pin @ 15:02 (***)

Kayla Braxton interviews Sami Zayn who is with Cesaro and Shinsuke Nakamura. She asks his thoughts on his match with Daniel Bryan. Zayn says everyone thought the three of them would lose to Braun Strowman at Elimination Chamber. That didn't happen. Zayn says it's not inevitable Bryan will win because they have a plan. He says he walks in Intercontinental champion and leaves the same way.

Shayna Baszler is backstage warming up for her match with WWE Raw Women's champion Becky Lynch.

King Corbin vs. Elias

Gronk made this match. Corbin gets on a mic and says Elias will probably have to forfeit. They show highlights of when Corbin knocked Elias off a balcony some 15 feet. Of course, Elias shows up. Corbin goes to meet him on the ramp and Elias breaks his guitar over Corbin's back!! Elias beats down Corbin on the outside. They get in the ring and the match officially begins. Elias goes on the attack. All Elias in the early going. Elias hits a swinging neck breaker for a 1 count. Corbin finally catches Elias and hangs him across the top rope kind of like a stun gun. Elias falls out to the floor. Corbin yells for the ref to count Elias out but he makes it back in. Corbin goes on the attack now. Corbin sends Elias into the ring post shoulder first and gets a near fall. Corbin beats down Elias in the corner. Corbin sends Elias into the opposite corner and charges him but Elias moves and Corbin slides out of the ring and comes back in the other side to deliver a right hand for a near fall. Corbin continues the beat down. Corbin talks trash to Cole and JBL about how good he is. Elias fires back but Corbin cuts him off with a knee and sends Elias shoulder first into the ring post. Near fall. Corbin complains about the ref's count. Corbin continues to target the shoulder. Elias counters and sends Corbin into the ring post shoulder first. Both men are down. Elias gets the the advantage and takes Corbin down with a mule kick. Elias beats down Corbin in the corner. Elias hits a swinging neck breaker for a near fall. Elias goes to the top and jumps but Corbin rolls out of the way. Elias charges but Corbin catches him with Deep Six!! 2 count! Corbin charges Elias in the corner and Elias moves out of the way and Corbin slides out of the ring again exactly like he did earlier. However, this time he comes back in and Elias delivers a knee to his face. Near fall. Elias starts to go to the top but stops when Corbin rolls out of the way. Corbin catches Elias with a punch and tries to stack him up for a pin using the ropes as leverage but the ref sees the foot on the ropes and stops the count. Corbin argues with the ref and Elias rolls him up for the win!! This felt like a filler match to me and should be something seen on Smackdown instead of WrestleMania. I'm happy for them that they got on the show but it definitely didn't need to be.

W: Elias via pin @ 8:56 (**)

Video package airs for Becky Lynch vs. Shayna Baszler.

Becky Lynch arrives to the Performance Center in a big rig with her face on it.

WWE Raw Women's Championship Match

Shayna Baszler vs. Becky Lynch (champ)

They immediately start brawling in the middle of the ring and Baszler goes for the Kirifuda Clutch early. Becky avoids it and the action spills to the outside. All Baszler on the outside. Baszler breaks the count and looks to slam Becky into the announcers table but Becky counters with a hurricanrana. Becky slams Baszler into the announce table and the steps. Back in the ring, Becky goes up top and hits a missile drop kick. Becky beats her down in the corner. Baszler hits a knee strike to stop Lynch's momentum. Becky looks for Disarm Her but Shayna counters looking for the Kirifuda Clutch again. Becky counters into a pin for 2! Take down by Baszler followed by a double under hook suplex for 2. Becky goes for Disarm Her again but Shayna throws her to the apron where Becky catches her with a knee to the face! Battling on the apron now. Lynch plants Baszler on the apron with a uranage!! Becky rolls her into the ring and covers for a 2. Becky looks frustrated and heads to the top. Shayna cuts her off with a kick and slams her to the mat. Baszler hits a double under hook suplex into an arm bar. Lynch counters and stacks Baszler up for a near fall. Baszler rolls and locks Lynch in a Disarm Her of her own! Becky rolls through to escape. Baszler hits a big knee strike to Lynch's face! Near fall! Becky rolls to the apron. Shayna goes after her and tries the Kirifuda Clutch but Becky hangs her across the top rope and locks in a Disarm Her in the ropes!! Shayna counters and locks Becky in a hanging choke using the ropes! They go to the outside where Shayna repeatedly slams Becky into the announce table. Back in the ring, Becky was lying in wait and attempts the Disarm Her but Shayna locks in the Kirifuda Clutch!! Shayna pulls Becky down to the mat but BECKY COUNTERS WITH A STACKED PIN BRET HART STYLE AND GETS THE WIN!!! I think this was good match where they played up Becky's struggle to beat a dominant Shayna. They told a good story. I think most expected Shayna to win here but Becky picked up in the win in a match that still made Shayna look good. Shayna can claim she had Becky beat and Becky got a fluke win. I didn't love the finish as we've seen it done a handful of times. Shayna walks away in disbelief as Becky holds up the title.

W: Becky Lynch via pin @ 8:30 (***1/4)

Preview of The Last Ride documentary featuring the Undertaker.

WWE Intercontinental Championship Match

Daniel Bryan w/ Drew Gulak vs. Sami Zayn (champ) w/ Cesaro & Shinsuke Nakamura

The match begins and Sami immediately stalls and gets out of the ring. Sami gets back in only to immediately get back out. This continues to happen and Bryan goes out after him only to be confronted by Cesaro and Nakamura. Gulak helps out Bryan by taking out Cesaro and Nakamura. Bryan acts like he's going to let Zayn get counted out but lures him in and finally gets his hands on him when we're two or three minutes into the match. In the ring, Bryan takes Zayn down and beats on him. Zayn tries to escape but Bryan doesn't allow it and delivers some kicks and punches to Zayn. Bryan takes out Zayn on the outside with a suicide dive and then delivers more kicks to him. Back in the ring, Bryan hits a missile drop kick from the top. All Bryan so far and Bryan beats Zayn down in the corner. Sami tries to escape the ring but Daniel goes after him allowing Sami to catch him with an elbow. Sami goes on the attack. Zayn delivers chops and punches with no effect. Bryan takes Zayn down with a running clothesline and follows with "Yes!" kicks. Bryan grabs both of Zayn's hands and delivers repeated stomps to the head. Cesaro and Nakamura are back to take out Gulak. Bryan takes both of them out with a suicide dive! Bryan heads up the top but Zayn catches him in mid air with a HELLUVA KICK!! IT'S OVER! SAMI RETAINS!! I didn't like this at all. I know Sami is a good chicken shit heel but most of the match was just him running. All he did was catch Bryan with a Helluva kick at the end. I feel these guys are capable of a much better match.

W: Sami Zayn via pin @ 9:18 (**1/2)

Triple Threat Ladder Match for the WWE Smackdown Tag Team Championships

Kofi Kingston vs. Jimmy Uso vs. John Morrison (champ)

The first person to retrieve both titles will win the match for their team. JBL thinks this is the greatest collection of guys to ever be in a ladder match. Everyone goes for some super kicks early and they're all ducked and/or avoided. Then they all try to monkey flip each other but all land on their feet. They all bring ladders in the ring and set them up. They all climb and fight on the top of the ladders. They get within arms reach and Morrison kicks Uso's ladder over. Kofi delivers head butts to Morrison and Jimmy pulls Morrison off the ladder. Kofi dives off the ladder and hits a cross body on Jimmy. Morrison runs up a ladder but is stopped by Kofi. Morrison gives Kofi a knee to the face and then goes after Uso. Kofi is back up. Morrison tries to neck breaker Kofi on the ladder but Kofi blocks and attempts SOS and Morrison blocks. Kofi tries Trouble in Paradise but Morrison ducks it and also misses a springboard kick. Uso tries to climb but Kofi is up to meet him. A head butt by Kofi sends Jimmy off the ladder. Morrison knocks Kingston off to prevent him from winning. Uso stops Morrison from getting the titles and knocks him off the ladder. Morrison and Uso trade blows in the ring and Kingston springboards off the top rope and leaps through the middle of a ladder but Morrison and Uso catch him!!! They toss him out of the ring!! That was impressive by Kofi. Morrison and Uso are back at it. Morrison ducks a hit from the ladder and thumbs Uso in the eye before hitting him with the ladder. Morrison hits him again in the leg with a ladder. Uso catches Morrison with a chop and right hand before putting him on the top turnbuckle. Uso wedges a ladder between and stands on it to attempt a superplex on Morrison. Morrison stops it and trips Uso so he falls on the wedged ladder. Morrison stands on top of the ring post and HITS A CORKSCREW DIVE ONTO USO WHOSE ON A LADDER!! Morrison kicks Uso and he falls out of the ring. Morrison sets up a ladder and climbs. KOFI SPRINGBOARDS INTO THE RING HITS MORRISON WITH A HURRICANRANA BRINGING HIM OFF THE LADDER!!! Both men hit hard! Kofi climbs but Jimmy stops him. Kofi throws him out of the ring and then dives out onto Morrison onto a ladder! Kofi gets another ladder and Jimmy tries to run the rail but Kofi throws the ladder into him knocking him off the railing. Kofi puts another ladder on the ring and barricade to make a bridge. Kofi puts Uso on the bridge. Morrison starts to climb to the top turnbuckle but is stopped by Kofi. Kofi goes to the opposite turnbuckle looking to do something to Uso who is still lying on the bridged ladder. Morrison is back up and RUNS ACROSS THE TOP ROPE TO MEET KOFI AND HITS A SPANISH FLY ON HIM!!!! USO SPLASH ON MORRISON!!! Jimmy and Kofi both climb until Jimmy knocks Kofi off. Kofi climbs the ladder from under it and is able to knock Jimmy off. Kofi is close but Morrison stops him. They trade shots on top and Morrison falls but he keeps Kofi from climbing. Kofi jumps off and delivers a double stomp to Morrison! Kofi clears the ring and Uso tries to put a ladder in the ring and they make a bridge with it across the ropes. Jimmy keeps Kofi from climbing and throws him face first into the bridged ladder. "Eat that Kofi." Morrison tries to jump off the bridged ladder but Uso catches him with a super kick. Uso puts Morrison on the bridged ladder and climbs a different one. Morrison is up and pushes Uso's ladder over and Uso falls to the floor!! Morrison clears the ring and starts climbing. Kofi has a pulse and climbs up to stop him. They trade blows and Uso is back to set up a ladder next to theirs. THEY ALL BRAWL AND THE TITLES BECOME UNHOOKED BUT THEY ALL HAVE THEIR HANDS ON THEM. KOFI AND JIMMY BOTH HEAD BUTT MORRISON AND HE FALLS ONTO THE BRIDGE WITH THE TITLES!!! All these guys took a beating and put on a hell of a match. They did some crazy stuff for their being no crowd to feed off of. Props to all men involved.

W: John Morrison via retrieving the titles @ 18:32 (***3/4)

Video package to show the history of Seth Rollins and Kevin Owens.

Seth Rollins vs. Kevin Owens

Rollins is out in full white gear because you know at WrestleMania he becomes a God. Rollins starts by begging off and then hits Owens with a cheap shot. A couple more shots by Rollins before he bails. KO goes out after him and they brawl outside. Owens sends Rollins into the barricade. Back in the ring, Rollins goes for a stomp but KO avoids it and beats down Rollins in the corner. KO is in control. KO hits a clothesline and follows with a senton. KO talks trash and hits another senton. KO looks for a cannon ball but Rollins bails again. KO goes out after him and lights him up with a chop. KO sends Rollins into the barricade again and again on the opposite side of the ring. KO breaks the count and continues the beat down. They fight on the apron and KO attempts a power bomb but Rollins back drops KO on the apron!! ROLLINS PICKS UP KO AND DELIVERS A FALCON ARROW ON THE APRON!!! Rollins talks trash and hits a suicide dive on him. More trash talk and he hits another suicide dive. The third time isn't the charm as KO catches Rollins with a forearm to the face. Sling blade by Rollins and he beats down KO with punches and kicks. Rollins goes for the stomp but KO avoids it twice and spikes Rollins with a DDT!! Super kick and cannon ball by KO! KO goes up top and hits a swanton! Near fall! KO looks for the Pop-Up Power Bomb but Rollins counters. This leads to multiple counters by both men ending with KO hitting Rollins with a big lariat. They fight in the corner where Rollins rakes KO's eyes and attempts a sunset flip but KO blocks and Rollins hits the buckle bomb!! Super kick by Rollins! Another one!! ROLLINS GOES FOR THE STOMP BUT KO COUNTERS WITH THE POP-UP POWER BOMB!!! ROLLINS KICKS OUT AT 2!!! Rollins rolls out of the ring and tries to run. KO catches him and ROLLINS HITS KO WITH THE RING BELL FOR THE DQ!!! KO grabs a mic and calls Rollins a little bitch and wants the match to continue NO DQ! Rollins accepts and takes control. Rollins throws KO outside and throws him into the barricade twice. Rollins hits KO with the steps, and a chair multiple times before clearing the announcer's table. KO hits Rollins with the ring bell. Another shot with the ring bell and Rollins is out on the announce table. KO walks off in the ringside area. KO IS ON TOP OF THE WRESTLEMANIA SIGN! HE JUMPS OFF ONTO ROLLINS PUTTING HIM THROUGH THE TABLE!!! HOLY SHIT!! KO THROWS ROLLINS BACK IN THE RING AND DELIVERS A STUNNER FOR THE WIN!!! They were heading towards a great match but I think the false DQ finish hurt it as it killed the momentum. If a no DQ match was the end goal, it would of been better to make it that from the beginning. I think it was a great match that suffered from bad booking.

W: Kevin Owens via pin @ 15:22 (17:16 if you count the time between restarting) (***1/2)

We're back with Rob Gronkowski and Mojo Rawley when 24/7 champion R-Truth interrupts them. Gronk tries to win the 24/7 championship when Mojo stops him and wins the title for himself!

Charly Caruso interviews Paul Heyman. Heyman says Drew McIntyre should be afraid of Brock Lesnar. Heyman talks up Brock saying Drew will be exposed as a big bitch wannabe and Lesnar will conquer him.

Commentary talks about the matches that will take place on night two of WrestleMania.

WWE Universal Championship Match

Braun Strowman vs. Goldberg (champ)

They circle each other and talk trash. Goldberg kicks Strowman in the gut. Goldberg misses his first spear attempt then connects with one!! A seconds spear!! A third spear by Goldberg!! Strowman kicks out at 2!!! A FOURTH SPEAR BY GOLDBERG!! GOLDBERG SETS STROWMAN UP FOR A JACKHAMMER BUT STROWMAN COUNTERS WITH A POWER SLAM!! A SECOND POWER SLAM!! STROWMAN WITH A THIRD POWER SLAM!! A FOURTH POWER SLAM AND STROWMAN WINS THE TITLE!!! You could say it was a case of right place, right time but Braun Strowman finally wins the big one. It wasn't much of a match but it was what it needed to be.

W: Braun Strowman via pin @ 2:11 (*)

WrestleMania 37 will be March 28, 2021 in Los Angeles, California.

Video package for AJ Styles vs. Undertaker.

Boneyard Match

AJ Styles vs. Undertaker

We are taken to the boneyard where a hearse is arriving to old school Undertaker music. A casket is pulled out of the hearse and AJ was in the casket. He says what a ride. He says it's not so scary. He hears the Undertaker's motorcycle in the distance. Undertaker arrives as a hybrid between the dead man and american bad ass. Styles talks trash about how he dug Taker's grave and how he's an old man. Styles grabs a rock and takes a swing but Taker goes on the attack. Taker tries to drag Styles towards the grave but he runs away. Taker calls him Allen as he follows him. Taker slams Styles on the casket multiple times. Taker picks up something and attempts to spike Styles but Styles moves and Taker's arm goes through the window of the hearse. Taker's arm is bleeding. Styles fights back but Taker slams him on the windshield then they fight on top of the hearse. Taker pummels Styles for talking about Michelle. Styles throws some dirt into Taker's eyes to stop his momentum and then low blows him. Styles drags Taker towards the grave but Taker fights back. Taker delivers a punch and Styles falls into the grave. The Good Brothers are here now and say the party is just getting started. Some druids are here and they all circle Taker. They make the mistake of attacking one at a time and he makes quick work of all of them. Gallows and Anderson attack. They grab a shovel but Taker fights back and uses the shovel on them. STYLES HITS TAKER FROM BEHIND WITH A TOMBSTONE!!! Not the move but an actual tombstone!! Styles talks trash as he beats on Taker before tackling Taker through a wall. Styles talks about how Taker doesn't have it any more and calls Taker a broken down old bitch. Styles hits Taker with a shovel and he falls into the grave. Styles uses the bulldozer to try to bury Taker but Taker appears behind him!! Taker starts whooping his ass and Styles tries to get away. Styles climbs to the roof as Taker follows him while talking trash. Taker raises his hands to summon the fire trapping Styles on the roof. The Good Brothers are back to try to help. Taker throws Gallows off the roof and tombstones Anderson on the roof!! STYLES TRIES TO FIGHT BACK BUT TAKER CHOKE SLAMS STYLES OFF THE ROOF!!!! Taker talks trash to Styles as he takes him over to the grave. Styles begs Taker not to bury him and says he's sorry. Taker tells Styles he fought his ass off and hugs Styles. Taker turns his back on Styles and then changes his mind and gives him a 300 kick into the grave!! TAKER USES THE BULLDOZER TO BURY STYLES!!! TAKER REMOVES THE LEAVES FROM THE HEADSTONE TO SHOW AJ STYLES AND 1977-2020. Taker gets on his motorcycle and puts his arm up as we see the trademark Undertaker symbol light up in the background before he rides away into the night with Metallica playing. I wasn't sure what to expect but I thought this was great. It was very entertaining and I think it exceeded anything they could of done in the ring at this point in Taker's career. This is a great match for Taker to end his career on with the perfect opponent!

W: Undertaker via burial @ 18:45 (****)

Overall Rating: 7/10

It's honestly hard to give this WrestleMania a rating. It's a mixed bag and I feel the WWE put out their best effort under the circumstances of COVID-19. Sure, it wasn't going to be an all-time great WrestleMania but shame on anyone who thought it would be. However, there were some good quality matches on the card and also some good WrestleMania moments.

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