Review: WWE Wrestlemania 21 DVD

August 12, 2010 by Brett Mix

Brett Mix’s- WWE “Wrestlemania 21” Review:


“Who is the ultimate rebel….Hell Yes, I hear……BULLSHI*!”Roddy Piper
-WWE Wrestlemania 21 took place on Sunday, April 3rd, 2005 at the Staples Center in Los Angeles, California in front of 20,193 fans.
-This was the 21st Annual Wrestlemania event.

-During the show Hassan ripped down Eugene until Hulk Hogan came out and made the save to a standing ovation.

-WrestleMania 21 was the first WrestleMania held at the Staples Center, but the fifth to take place in the Southern California metropolitan area (following WrestleMania 2, WrestleMania VII, WrestleMania XII and WrestleMania 2000). Tickets sold out in less than one minute for the event, making it the fastest ticket sell-out in the company’s history as well as the fastest ticket sell-out at the Staples Center. The event drew a Staples Center record attendance of 20,193 people from 14 countries and 48 states and grossed more than $2.1 million in ticket sales, making it the highest grossing WWE event ever at the Staples Center, and the highest grossing of the five WrestleManias held in California. In addition to those in attendance, the event was seen by millions of fans in more than 90 countries.

-This Mania had the tagline “Wrestlemania Goes HOLLYWOOD”  with several spoofs involving Wrestler`s acting in some famous scenes from famous films over time.

-Micheal Cole and Tazz did commentary for the Smackdown! matches at Wrestlemania while Jim Ross and Jerry Lawler did the Raw ones.

-Lillian Garcia sang “America The Beautiful” before the show.

-Before the pay-per-view aired, Booker T won by last eliminating Chris Masters in a 30-man Interpromotional battle royal at 16:33.
-Now onto the PPV……………

1)  Opening Contest- Eddie Guerrero vs Rey Mysterio
Any time you have these two open a PPV, you know it should deliver, you’d figure this was a WCW PPV.
It was a shame this is Eddie’s final Mania.

At the time both Rey and Eddie were “friends” but falling apart on the Smackdown! brand despite holding the tag team straps.

Eddie Guerrero opens Mania in his low rider, comes out to a good pop, as does Mysterio.

Rey Mysterio needed a big win over Eddie here who was coming in with a lot of momentum. This should be good.
The bell rings and Eddie and Rey kick off Wrestlemania 21, LA is ready!

Rey Mysterio go face to face and Eddie’s face means business. A side headlock by Guerrero into a takedown, and now an armbar into a fireman’s carry Rey lands on his feet and off the ropes Rey runs over Eddie and gets a two. Reversed into the ropes goes Mysterio and Guerrero again with a crisp armdrag to Rey.
Eddie Guerrero tried to pin Mysterio three times with his shoulders down. A test of power now between both men with there hands locked, Rey tried a sunset flip then Eddie Guerrero launched Mysterio out of the ring. Rey tried a 619 as Eddie stood outside the ring.

LA give this offensive exchange a great ovation.

Mysterio and Eddie Guerrero back in and this time they try a test of strength and Eddie Guerrero is monkeyflipped, both men double bridge. A top wristlock by Eddie Guerrero and he takes Rey down to the mat now. Eddie Guerrero knew he had to ground the aerial Rey with submission. Mysterio leaps over Eddie, then another leapfrog and all of the sudden Rey Monkey flips Guerrero to the side of the ring, and then Guerrero landed outside the ring and brought Rey back in.

Back inside Eddie Guerrero slapped a leg lock on Mysterio which was logical to wear down his opponents body that way. Mysterio tried to get up while Guerrero extended his arms and then dropped Rey back with a nice suplex and back into a body scissors/leglock, now into a version of an STF.

All of the sudden Guerrero locked both legs behind Mysterio’s and he is stretching the arms below him. Eddie’s shoulders were down in that submisson hold so he held it on Rey for two seconds for pain, but dropped at three at risk of losing the contest.

Eddie grounded Rey with a side headlock, now into a Hammerlock by Eddie Guerrero who was so good and on his game. Rey Mysterio with an amazing armdrag to Eddie Guerrero taking him far out of the ring. Rey then charged off the ropes with a springboad corkscrew moonsault. Rey now kicks at Eddie’s legs this time.

A senton off the top rope onto Eddie, this time he tries again and runs into an elbow of Eddie.

Eddie Guerrero hits the three-amigo’s. Remember when this move wasn’t used to generate heel heat?

With Rey down he countered the second suplex with a roll-up, Eddie Guerrero kicks out and delivered a backbreaker to Rey and he kicks out.
Eddie Guerrero stalking Rey lands a snapshot vertical suplex. This time he went for a third but a hurricanrauna by Rey and now he went for the 619 but Eddie had it scouted moving and going straight into the backbreaker.

These men know each other so well. Eddie Guerrero up with Rey down now. Guerrero now hits the three amigo’s and going for a Frog Splash, Eddie crashed and burned. Mysterio with a unique pinning combo tying Eddie Guerrero’s arms behind him getting a two.

Mysterio with a dropkick to Eddie, a drop toehold to the second rope and now the 619! To follow it up Mysterio springboards from the top rope off the outside apron onto Eddie but he catches him in mid-air with a Powerbomb counter by Eddie Guerrero.
Some Eddie chants break out now. Mysterio catches Eddie out of no where with a hurricanrana and Mysterio pulls off the upset!

In the end at 12:39 Rey got the best of Eddie Guerrero.

This match would of been a lot better without Rey messing with his mask after every move. I understand Mysterio likes to dress up but this got beyond annoying, it was redundant from the start and it needed to stop but didn’t.
Still though the two have amazing chemistry and busted out a lot in just the 12 and a half minutes they got to work. I would of liked to see a longer match between the two here, and with a different mask from Rey.

Thankfully they had a couple of classics together at Judgment Day and Smackdown! in 2005 to add on to this gem.

Solid opener.
*** 1/4

2) Edge vs Chris Jericho vs Shelton Benjamin vs Chris Benoit vs Christian (with Tyson Tomko) vs Kane in the first ever Money in the Bank Ladder Match
Adam Sandler applauds at ringside.
Through Kayfabe this was the creation of one Chris Jericho, to put all these deserving wrestler’s in a Ladder match together with the winner getting a title shot any time, at any show for up to one year.
Everyone’s entrance in this match felt important.

Jericho gets a good pop, Benoit gets a Monster Pop, must be because not long before this he ws World Champion. Christian has some peeps in attendance, Kane is Kane and Shelton the star of the match gets a good ovation.

Edge perhaps was the ultimate favourite and he came out to good heat. The look on his face just reads “I’m winning!”

Brawling began in the entrance way but when the bell rings Jericho gives Shelton a running bulldog. A springboard dropkick by Jericho to Benoit and Edge off the apron. Jericho with a high crossbody way off the top. Christian then flies on top of everyone.

Now Shelton Benjamin with tremendous elevation springboards over with a moonsault on everyone. Kane then took out everybody from the top with a clothesline.

One flaw in this match is how more action should of taken place and not JUST between the two shown. Kane used the Weapon as a Ladder dropping the likes of Christian. All of the sudden Jericho hurt himself with a missile dropkick on Kane.

Y2J then got up and used the ladder on the likes of Edge and Shelton Benjamin as a weapon and he smiles.

Awesome spot by Benoit releasing a German on Jericho with Ladder in hand, it went flying.

Benoit climbed the Ladder, Kane grabbed him by the throat but down on the mat Benoit slaps on the crossface to a huge pop. Edge gets Benoit off of Kane, but then Benoit puts Edge in the crossface, LA loves it.

Kane drops the top of the Ladder onto Benoit’s shoulder. Kane then put Benoit’s arm inbetween the Ladder endings and slammed them shut showing no remorse.

Unreal selling by Benoit.

Edge speared Kane. Kane then gets hit by a chair between Christian and Edge for old time sakes. Shelton Benjamin springboards back in with a double clothesline to Edge and Christian both.

Shelton Benjamin went for a thrust kick on Edge, Edge ducked and it hit Christian holding the Ladder.

Insane spots, even better wrestling. Shelton Benjamin got sent spine first into a Ladder set up at a 45 degree angle and then Edge tried a spear, Shelton lifted Edge up and he slammed head first into the ladder. Shelton chants out in LA, and no Benjamin works him over on the Ladder. Shelton hits the Stinger Splash.

It’s all about the Benjamin’s as he’s all on his own until Jericho, Christian try as well, Edge sets up one as does Benoit, all guys up there but Kane.
Jericho crashes, Benoit lands off on his bad shoulder continuing to sell it.

From the top of the ladder Shelton with a T-Bone Suplex to Edge, Unbelievable stuff right there. Crazy.

Jericho a bit groggy went to climb but Christian stopped him temporarily, and he gave him a boot to the jaw. Jericho almost at the very top all of the sudden Shelton Benjamin with the spot of the match ran up the ladder and clotheslined Jericho off the top of another Ladder.

All this after Shelton hit Edge with a T-Bone Suplex off the top of a Ladder. Awesome material. Shelton climbed to the top and tried to grab but Christian poked him off the Ladder with another one.

Kane chokeslams Shelton and he gets tied up in the ropes. Tomko comes in and gives Kane a boot while he sets up a Ladder. Lawler claims he’s just solving a problem. Kane chokeslams Tomko out of the ring. Christian beats Kane off of him, Kane then sends Christian flying off the Ladder over the top and onto Tomko outside on the floor.

Back in Kane up high and Jericho roughed him up as both guys fell off the Ladder.
Absolute human carnage here. Benoit sells the arm but still manages to set up a Ladder in the corner, somehow he dives off the Ladder with a headbutt to Kane.

He lands it, LA applauds.

Benoit the sympathetic favourite climbs the Ladder and Kane met him up high. Benoit used his head over and over and it eventually dropped Kane with headbutts.
Edge came back in and smacked Benoit’s injured arm and Edge went to the top and got the case!

Fans booed, Benoit’s arm selling was that of magic.
In the end at 15:17 Edge won the Money in the Bank Ladder Match by grabbing the Case after knocking Benoit off the Ladder, injuring his injured shoulder smacking him with a chair in the process.
A Wrestlemania Classic here, this is a match for the ages.
Not only were the spots great and innovative, the wrestling was top notch and who could forget the selling from one Chris Benoit.
This match like most original gimmick matches, is either the very best or a runner-up.

It was the Shelton Benjamin show.

 **** 1/4
3) Legend vs Legend Killer- The Undertaker vs Randy Orton

If they were ever going to end the streak, this would of been the time.

Orton’s Legend Killer gimmick mixed with the fact he needed credibility in the WORST way after a horrid babyface run.

That’s why this match had a special feel to it being at Wrestlemania.

Orton picked up steam with his father Cowboy Bob Orton appearing on Smackdown’s before the match, this feud had solid build up as well.

Orton out first and poses, then Taker has his usual grand Wrestlemania entrance where he floats to the ring to perhaps intimidate Young Orton.

It wasn’t just Legend vs Legend Killer, it was Old School Respect vs New School Attitude. Orton was seen RKOing the likes of Stacy Keibler to gain him more heel heat.

Randy Orton gets set to tie up with the Deadman in the middle of the ring of this highly anticipated match placed third on the card!

Mania 21 is on a roll.

Orton escapes The Undertaker in each corner until he lands a hard slap which wakened the beast. The Undertaker with a hard shot then a standing side headlock. Power game showing from the big man, then both men leapfrog one another, Orton hits a standing dropkick and a two count comes from it. Randy Orton gets back up and irishwhipped the Deadman to the ride and hit a big back bodydrop to the mat.

Orton sends Taker to the ropes, The Undertaker ducks and turns around landing a hard right to Orton. The Undertaker’s shots get better with age. The Undertaker lands another hard shot to Orton in the corner. Undertaker charged at Orton int he corner and he hit a cradle which got a two.

Randy Orton went for an RKO. Taker threw Orton over the top rope to the floor as a magnificent counter. The Undertaker drags Orton back in and hangs his head outside on the apron. The Undertaker liked this spot as he will drop a leg across Orton’s throat, and he does so.

The Undertaker in control coming back in on Orton. The Undertaker with an arm-ringer and the fans chant for some Old School. Taker with great agility drops Old School to the shoulder of Randy Orton.

What pacing.

The Undertaker got caught up charging for Orton and hit Hamstring first into the post. Orton knocked The Undertaker off the apron. Orton outside the ring unleashed with vicious strikes to the Deadman.

Now back inside Orton has a hand full of the Deadman’s hair and gives him a slap. Back up The Undertaker lands jabs after accepting a hard forearm by Orton. The Undertaker nailed a few more until Randy Orton bounced himself off the ropes with a desperation clothesline.

The Undertaker out of desperation now hits an awesome DDT but still a two count.

The Undertaker now with a huge sidewalk slam couldn’t put Randy Orton away. Tazz talks about who he’s going for because he belongs to Smackdown! Nobody cares Tazz.

The Undertaker lands a clothesline and connects with a Splash to Orton in the corner as the momentum of the Deadman in full force. Randy up and down with Snake Eyes, Orton somehow countered after Snake Eyes catching The Undertaker off his game and Orton levelled Taker with a surprise reverse elbow shot.
Orton now pounded away on The Undertaker and once up he got a chorus of boo’s, and did his pose. The Undertaker sits up and Orton is scared.
Fans chant “Randy Sucks” as he keeps delivering shots, a slugfest in mid-ring breaks out. All of the sudden Taker is reversed to the ropes and what looks like a double collision but Taker got the best of the clothesline.

The Undertaker locks in a Dragon Sleeper on Orton in a reverse front facelock. The Undertaker has never tapped out but with this unique move would he make Orton?
Orton manages to get into an armbar, and a desperate and effective counter by Orton to hit a DDT to Taker, he gets a two. Orton can’t waste any time goes right back on the attack with a rear chinlock. The Undertaker try’s to get up and once up he is caught in a big sleeper from Orton. The Undertaker counters walking with Orton in his grasp dropping him to the mat with a back suplex.

Both men are down. What a match this has been. Orton spotted The Deadman in the corner of the ring and charged at him but The Undertaker lifted the boot catching Randy square in the jaw. The Undertaker now off the ropes is caught by Randy Orton who scoops up the big man and drops him with a Picture Perfect Powerslam to the Deadman and Randy can’t believe he only gets a two. Orton drives a forearm shot to the head of Taker.

Randy Orton upstairs on the Deadman landed nine punches, before the tenth did his Pose and got caught as The Undertaker picked him up and went for the Last Ride, Orton countered it landing on his feet now Orton went for the RKO but Taker pushed him off into the official. Taker now went for a Last Ride but Orton shifted his balance forward.

All of the sudden “Cowboy” Bob Orton (the father of Randy and now Hall of Famer) ran out with his “cast” as he did in the original Wrestlemania Main Event and he struck the Deadman with it.
Cole claimed Orton was going to steal this one because of the move. Well there’s a little Nostalgia for you.

What a match this had been, everyone in Staple’s Center standing worried the streak might be over. “Cowboy” Bob Orton rolled the referee Hebner over to where Randy Orton put an arm over the Deadman’s chest for the cover.

1…2…The Deadman Lives to a huge pop. Orton Senior looks concerned outside the ring. The Undertaker sits up and now Orton is scared. A staredown and the two battle with rights to one another. Undertaker missed Orton with a boot and caught his hold man with a boot knocking Orton Senior off the Apron.

The Undertaker grabbed Orton by the throat and the spot of the match takes place.

Orton countered a Chokeslam from The Undertaker into an RKO!

After Orton’s finisher and in a counter of all things, this would of been a memorable way to beat the streak so people were worried but Taker kicked out to a loud pop.

Orton had The Undertaker up in a Tombstone position now!

Undertaker reversed it into one of his own and dropped the Legend Killer.
In the end at 14:14 Taker won the match going 13-0 at Mania after defeating Orton with a Tombstone Piledriver.

This match is excellent, one of Orton’s finest performances and definitely one of the The Undertaker’s best at Mania.
This match’s rating is also taken into consideration that the story was done so well with “Legend versus Legend Killer” which built great drama and suspense.

 Superb stuff.


4) Trish Stratus (c) vs Christy Hemme (with Lita) for the WWE Women’s Championship 

Okay so Lita has been training Christy, as if that’s supposed to make us believe the tough enough winner could go. She’s improved in TNA as of this writing but is no where near good.

Here she was terrible, poor Trish.

Trish Stratus had to take a step down from her usual Mania matches against the likes of Victoria, Jazz, Lita, etc.

Stratus was a five time Women’s Champ, and Christy was on the cover of Playboy. They have it as a storyline where Trish was jealous, even though she had no reason to be considering she was more attractive, babe of the year multiple times, the better wrestler, and the champion.

None the less, the bell rings.

Christy puts her dukes up and it looks laughable at best. Christy falls to the floor as Trish Stratus kicks her. Trish Stratus then threw Christy ever so gently into the steps. Back in the ring Trish grabbed green Christy awkwardly into the corner turnbuckle.

Fans chanted “WE WANT MATT” to Lita.

Stratus landed a chop to Christy in the corner. Christy nailed Trish with a low blow with one leg up, Christy takes the leg out of Trish and pins her in a unique combination scoring a two. Trish Stratus chops Hemme again back into the corner.

Trish Stratus went for Christy but she opened her legs which shouldn’t be a stretch for Hemme dodged Stratus and hit a sunset flip and got a two. Trish knocked her to the outside for some more punishment. Trish Stratus pushed Lita into the barricade after she was trying to help Christy.

Trish talks trash and Hemme rolls up Trish from behind and got a two out of surprise. Christy lands some brutal kicks and keeps her fists up. Christy slammed Trish Stratus into the turnbuckle repeatedly.

Hemme sent Trish to the corner and as she backed off she hits the Twist of Fate which obviously Lita tought here. Christy dishes out more blows and as Christy charged at Trish she applied an inside cradle and got a two, and then Hemme reversed the cradle and still a two.

Once both up Trish Stratus landed a chick kick high to Hemme putting her away with it and Lita didn’t look pleased.

So in the end at 4:11 Stratus retained her title after winning with the Chick Kick.

This match is a tad better then I remembered, I must of been thinking of Ashley because Christy wasn’t THAT bad but still by all means was bad. One full star for Trish Stratus and her efforts alone.
5) Shawn Michaels vs Kurt Angle in an Interpromotional Match
Angle and Shawn had been a Dream Match for the longest time, it was now finally going to happen.

Angle desperately wanted to wrestle the Hitman as his ultimate dream match, so why not go for the next best thing. Shawn Michaels, Mr. Wrestlemania.
The feud was great, we saw hilarous moments with Angle trying to one-up Michaels by doing most things in his career outside of Losing his Smile.
The build-up was also intense as was it entertaining.
But now it was show time, the talking was done, the bell rang and the drama was about to unfold.
The two stood toe to toe. This was going to be exciting and everybody knew it.
Kurt Angle had something to prove, he wanted Michaels to tap.
Michaels heard some “You screwed Bret” chants straight away. Michaels wanted to see if he could still go.
The crowd was interesting because it seemed like half or more were actually cheering for Kurt Angle.

Crowd were hot, both guys were ready to steal the show!

Kurt Angle told all media outlets this was going to be the match of a life time coming in, this was the main one they put in the middle of the show. The main attraction, sort of like Michaels and Undertaker at Wrestlemania 25, or Ric Flair and Macho Man Randy Savage at Wrestlemania 8.

Kurt Angle representing Smackdown, Shawn for Raw and it arguably wasn’t about that.

Shawn slaps Angle and Kurt jumps on him in every which way aggressively, as he rides him into a front facelock, Shawn kept trying to counter out of waistlock by Angle but Shawn eventually grabbed the ropes.

The crowd applaud the early mat work.

Kurt Angle hit with a hammerlock by Michaels into a side headlock takedown on Angle. Angle rolled Michaels on his back but got a two out of it, Shawn back into the side headlock grounding Angle. Angle slowly rises up and Angle chants build up in LA.

Shawn Michaels cuts off Angle’s attempt out of the side headlock again as he keeps it on in mid-ring. Somehow Michaels retains the headlock despite being back suplexed by Angle. Michaels is determined here in the early going. Shot off the ropes Shawn hit a shoulder block, back into a hiplock takeover and back into a side headlock.

Michaels wears down Angle slowly on the mat with the side headlock, this reminds me a lot of Bret Hart doing this to him in the Ironman match at Wrestlemania 12.
Once again Angle tried to get out shooting from the ropes but Michaels kept it locked on.

Half the crowd say “Lets go Angle” the other half say “Lets go Michaels”! Great excitement now as the headlock is broken and Angle has a clean break cornering Michaels.
The two tie-up, Angle with a waistloack, Shawn Michaels with a standing switch and back into a side headlock taken down. An overhead wristlock turned into a waistlock by Angle, and off the ropes he levelled Shawn with an elbow shot.

This time off the ropes Angle hit a hiplock on Angle. Now Shawn Michaels wears Angle down some more with the arm-scissors, Angle rolls out and got a two, Michaels reverses back and he had to be careful in his hold that he wasn’t pinned himself.

Angle rolled Shawn Michaels’s shoulders but Shawn used his leg strength with the leverage applied to hold Angle down. Now Angle in unique fashion lifts Shawn Michaels up in the air, Shawn counters it into a sunset flip, Angle kicks out. Angle with a cradle and a near fall, both men get up and Shawn Michaels goes right back to the side headlock takeover.
Shawn with the headlock STILL on Angle for which feels like an eternity is fought back by Angle. Michaels wrapped his legs around Angle meanwhile he choked out Shawn in the corner.

Shawn Michaels again retaliating in the corner trying to shutdown Angle.

Angle levelled Michaels with a hard forearm to his back into the Ankle Lock. Shawn gets out in a hurry having had it scouted and levelled Kurt with a forerarm, then a clothesline taking them both over the top rope to the floor. Good stuff.

Shawn now outside the ring moves the television monitor’s as LA likes this. Angle catches Shawn and hits A European uppercut twice on Michaels. Angle gets ready to suplex Shawn but he lands back on his feet. Angle though picked up Shawn for an Angle Slam and drove him back first into the ring post.
It was supposed to be Shawn’s lowerback which he had surgery on that was supposed to of hit, but it was more like the leg of Michaels. Still though Angle drove his knee to the back of Shawn.

Angle through him in the ring, Angle hits a Suplex and a two, then another two.

Angle is frustrated so elects to go into a body scissors.

Angle had Michaels seemingly where he wanted him, down and out on the ring canvas and slapped it in.

Fans still chanting for both men, Shawn Michaels back up chopped Angle in the corner as a way out of Angle’s grueling bodyscissors submission hold. Michaels is irishwhipped by Kurt Angle into the corner, he swings upside down bumping like he usually does so well and lands back on his feet selling the back.
Angle hits a belly to belly overhead suplex! More pressure to the injured lower back. A hiplock to Shawn and now Angle drives the right knee into the damaged lowerback of Michaels. Shawn in a reverse chinlock by Angle and Kurt applied extra tork on Shawn wth this hold slapped on.
Fans continue to chant Angle and Michaels’s names, as they were split. This helped the atmosphere in the match that much more.

Shawn Michaels chopped his way out and Angle landed a shot. A big slugfest in mid-ring between two Warriors until Angle clotheslines Shawn Michaels, and just a two and Angle is getting frustrated. Angle placed Shawn in the corner and landed two more European Uppercuts. Angle sets up Shawn and his bad bck from the top rope.

Michaels pushed Angle off the top to the canvas and went for an elbow drop. Angle had it scouted and moved, Michaels unfortunately landed on his hurt back. Angle dropped the straps went for an Angle Slam and Shawn Michaels hit an armdrag. Angle came in charging at Michaels with momentum and he backdropped him to the outside on the floor.
Shawn Michaels flies off the top rope catching Angle with a crossbody out on the floor.

Tremendous stuff here, as Michaels hung onto the ropes, Angle tried to German Suplex off the apron through the table behind them. Angle squeezed and Shawn hung on. Eventually Shawn Michaels elbowed Angle and hit a low blow to Kurt with his boot behind the officials back, this gets him a series of boo’s but Shawn Michaels was a desperate man here. Angle kicked onto the table.

Michaels then springboards off the ropes to hit a crossbody onto Angle on the table, and the table doesen’t even give. Very good spot.

Both guys down and the crowd applaud both men’s efforts thus far.

Both break the ten count, Angle with blood in his mouth, Shawn with a bad lowerback.

They made it seem like the two have gone to hell and back with the way they were SLOWLY slugging it out.

Either way it was still a fine match.

Shawn Michaels hits a forearm kicks up, builds momentum dropping Angle with two clotheslines. Shawn powerslams Kurt and now goes up top for his favourite elbow drop to Angle. Now it was time for Shawn Michaels to do what he came here to do, the Sweet Chin Music.

Shawn Michaels tuning up the band and as he goes for it Angle caught his leg and Angle goes for the Ankle Lock. Angle countered Shawn Michaels’s sweet chin music in mid-air, Michaels rolls out but Shawn Michaels is still in agony as Angle kept it on every chance he got.
Michaels reversed the Ankle Lock into a victory roll out of no where and got a two. Angle almost hit with a Superkick from no where by Shawn Michaels and Angle countered it into an Angle Slam. 1..2…Shawn Michaels kicks out!

Angle can’t believe it and now he stalks Shawn once more putting on the straps just to take them back off again. Kurt Angle goes for a Moonsault and hits nobody on the canvas, he crashed and burned and this bought Shawn Michaels some time to re-group now!

Michaels with a bad back fearless goes to the top rope and sells it with pain and slowly he couldn’t do anything.

Kurt Angle quickly jumps up to the top turnbuckle and he hits ANOTHER Angle Slam to Shawn Michaels from the top rope! Shawn Michaels kicks out!
Angle is crying. Angle grabbed Michaels and trash talked saying he would tap, all of the sudden Shawn hit Angle with a Superkick in mid-ring knocking him out.
This would even it all out as Shawn and Angle both got there blows in on one another. Michaels slowly goes to cover Angle with his arm, 1…2…Kurt kicks out.

Jim Ross says he has no doubt both Angle and Michaels will be in the Hall of Fame some day. Interesting. Angle stalks Shawn and out of no where got the Ankle Lock on as everyone stood.
What a climax. Shawn Michaels tried everything to roll out but each time Angle kept it on and the fans loved it. Shawn Michaels showing the pain through his face and eventually after two minutes in the lock he taps!

In the end at 27:25 Angle made Michaels tap, finally, with his Ankle Lock after it had been applied for minutes.
This match seems over-praised in parts by a select few, but still with saying that you do get a very thrilling ride, and although a bit slower in the start, it definitely picked up as it went along.

This was a Classic in 2005 and while I don’t hold it as high as the re-match the two had at Vengeance, this one still felt like more of a Spectacle happening at Mania with a hot crowd.

Just excellent, and match of the night all things included.

**** 1/4




Piper’s Pit with Stone Cold Steve Austin 

-It was a good idea to have two personalities like Austin and Piper in the same ring together.

This was just a unique idea to add to the spectacle of Mania, something extra for the fans.

Austin looked a tad rusty on the mic here which is unfortunate, Carlito got a chance to shine. After Piper and Austin trashtalk one another, Carlito trashtalks both them and Piper spits an apple at him.

Austin Stunners Carlito. Austin and Piper celebrate and Austin then stuns Piper in a pool of beer, to a good pop. 3:16 rules, and the segment is over. If you go into this with lower expectations it is not a bad segment.

6) Akebono vs The Big Show in a Sumo match

No ropes and everyone in giant pieces of underwear.


Big Show tried to throw Akebono out of the circle but could not gain enough leverage. A shoving match and both men stay on each side. Show signalled for a big chokeslam which was downright hilarious.
Even more-so because Akebono just tosses Show out of the ring to the outside.

Not only a waste of time we get to see Big Show in a thong as well.


In the end at 1:02 Akebono was the winner after he over-powered Show.

This match had basically nothing. They wanted to add to the Spectacle of “Wrestlemania” but this was the wrong route to go about it. There’s always that saying “Well at least we tried that…”


7) John Cena vs John “Bradshaw” Layfield (c) for the WWE Championship 
JBL had been Champion almost one year building up his credibility. For him to drop the title to Cena here was a big question mark.
JBL has an excellent entrance with dollar bills falling to the floor with JBL on them.

So the WWE puts the title on Cena at a early age.
Cena was getting hot but I would of waited a bit of time, especially since JBL’s long reign could of added more credibility with a win over Cena.

Hell, the crowd barely pop when Cena wins the title. It felt very anti-climatic.

This match has one of the worst systems any match has.

I really hate this match.

John Cena’s time is now apparently as he comes out to that theme. Bradshaw kissed the WWE title and gives it away for the final time in his career, the official is Nick Pattrick.
JBL with a test of leverage drops a shoulder block, Cena lands one this time but charging into JBL he is hit with a big boot in the corner. JBL tackled Cena down showing his football backgorund. Bradshaw chops Cena in the corner of the ring.

A neckbreaker by John Bradshaw Layfield, and now as Cena got up slowly JBL hit a swinging neckbreaker. I can’t help but laugh at Cole calling it “Vintage JBL”. Everything is Vintage to him. JBL choked Cena on the top rope and Cena was hung on the second rope, JBL drops his bodyweight on top of him.

A boot to the face by Cena out of desperation but JBL got back in control landing a hard spinebuster. Another neckbreaker to Cena, so this should be easy to beat Cena.

What’s remarkable is that not only is Cnea kicking out of all this, but the crowd doesen’t react to any of it.
For more comedy, Cole says it Vintage John Cena to battle back. JBL drops Cena with a straight forearm-short arm clothesline. Cena did all he could do to put his leg on a bottom rope.

Bradshaw kicks at Cena and his ribs, before a snapmare and an elbow to the spine of Cena.

Bradshaw up to his vertical base choked out John Cena but he out of desperation managed to lift a bigger Bradshaw and drop him to the mat with a side suplex. The move by Cena will catch him a moment to breathe. Cena ducks a clothesline from hell and drops Bradshaw with a clothesline.

Literally no one in LA cared.

It is depressing.

JBL applied his third neckbreaker of the match, this time outside the ring on the floor. They took the action outside for a moment but Cena kicks out. Cena set up on the top buckle but JBL continues the punishment with Cena up high. JBL lands a superplex to Cena.

Cole says this could be it, Cole apparently forgot who John Cena was for a moment. My god at least guys like Hogan had some offense at times. In 2009 (today) Cena isn’t booked this bad, it’s rare or for a good reason.

This is just terrible. Cena up top pushed Bradshaw back and hit a desperate crossbody off the top buyng himself time. Cena drops clotheslines, a back bodydrop and then a clothesline. John Cena hits a hiptoss and then a side suplex.

Cena goes for one of the worst moves in Wrestling history, the Five Knuckle Shuffle, half the cowd boo. Bradshaw off the ropes goes for a clothesline from hell and Cena sucks and lifts JBL up for the FU and finishes him.

So in the end at 11:26 Cena becomes WWE Champion for the first time in one of the most uneventful fashions you will ever see done after FUing JBL out of no where.

Boring chants were heard loud and clear throughout the entire duration.

Lots of time during the match you were thinking “What are they even doing, this is a Main Event? Let alone at Mania” No way…unfortunately that was the sad reality.

This was a standard HEEL beating on the BABYFACE the entire match until a SUPERMAN comes back out no where. To make matters worse, this was sloppy, boring and for the WWE title, and it was at Wrestlemania!


The crowd reaction said it all.

This pathetic “match” was a disgrace not only to the WWE title, but to Wrestlemania.

8) Main Event- “The Animal” Dave Batista vs “The Game” Triple H (c) (with Ric Flair) for the World Heavyweight Championship

By far the most build to any match on the Card, but it was the Main Event and rightfully so.

The WWE was going for a Orton-Hunter program for Mania and after that idea flopped due to Orton’s poor face turn and the handling of his character, they went to Plan B.
B as in Batista.

Batista was over winning the 2005 Royal Rumble and seperating himself from Evolution. But could the Animal win the big one at Mania and would Hunter lose two years in a row in the main event, that was the big question mark, especially since Cena had already won.

Batista was still a bit green coming into this match with Hunter but he was there to help carry him to a solid Main Event at Wrestlemania.

Batista was over with the crowd at least, it was just his Wrestling and Mic skills which needed improvement.

Referee Mike Keota (who usually gets Main Event at Mania slots) lifts The Game’s World Title up and Naitch is on the outside looking on at the staredown between Trips and Batista.
Crowd chant Batista and HHH wanted to sulk in this moment to make it that much more special. The bell rings, the time for talking was over.

The two circle around one another until a tie-up in mid-ring eventually and in the early going Batista takes Hunter to the ropes, HHH does the same getting Batista back, and then they step bak into the center and the two men break off.

The power game didn’t go in favour of either man. Now if that was Lesnar versus Goldbeg it would of been booed to hell. It was essentially the same move.
Batista sends Hunter to the ropes and knocks him down with a shoulder block, Ross on commentary illustrates it was like running into a brick wall. Hunter not slaps a side headlock on, ducks a clothesline and the Game runs over Batista with a shoulder block, the Champ in control.

Naitch loved it. Hunter went for the Pedigree but Batista powered out of it hitting a modified powerslam taking Hunter off his game. (No Pun)

Hunter hard irishwhipped but got the elbow up on Batista. Batista though cornered Hunter still and dropped righthands to Triple H. Off the ropes Batista simply drops Hunter with a back bodydrop, big time elevation for a big man to perform a move like that. Triple H runs back in the ring and hits a high knee to Batista. Batista goes out to the floor and now he has words with Flair which distracts Batista.

The Cerebral Assassin took advantage of Batista’s ignorance and jumped him from behind. Bringing Big Dave back in Hunter dropped an elbow right to Batista. Hunter then viciously choked out Batista on the bottom ring rope.

Hunter choked him out with everything he had, because he knew he had to do it!

Flair then choked Batista with his jacket behind Keota. Helmsley drives Batista’s lowerback into the barricade and back inside the ring Triple H drops the elbow to the lowerback region of Batista.

This is where Helmsley is best, Methodically disecting the “Good Guy’s” weakness. The Game continuing pressure on his back driving his knee into his spine. Hunter now hits Dave with a snapshot vertical suplex. Batista kicked out but just barely due to the lowerback being damaged by the Game.

Hunter wanted to weardown The Animal some more driving his knees into the Godfather. Flair hen comes from behind choking out Batista. Batista finall starts to slug his way back in but on the apron, the Game uses leverage and drops his neck on the top rope as he swings back onto the floor.
Triple H lands a hard uppercut on Dave Batista in the corner of the ring and proceeded to follow that up with an elbow shot. Batista fought back with righthands to Triple H out of desperation.

Fans get back into it as the Animal gained momentum, Batista after a series of a righthands dropped Hunter with a Spinebuster Slam, Trips kicks out.
Hunter back to his vertical base drops Batista with a neckbreaker.

Triple H the World Champion caught two crushing blows to the abdomen by Batista. Triple H wanting to set up for the Pedigree and Batista hit a back bodydrop having that scouted. Hunter off the ropes delivered a facebuster to Dave Batista. Hunter in control goes up high for some reason, He usually doesen’t fly but he flies off the top and Batista clotheslines him in mid-air.
Helmsley crashed and burned. I don’t think he’ll be flying again anytime soon. This bought Batista some time and he lands a sidewalk slam on Huner and got a nearfall.

This one is back and forth unlike the last title match.
Batista with serious power reverses an irishwhip off Triple H and tosses him all the way outside to the floor. Triple H was making Dave look very good here, he’d bump for him a lot better at

Vengeance 05 in the Cell which arguably helped make him.
This time Hunter catches Batista and he throws him shoulder first into the steel steps. Batista is full of stickers from JBL’s entrance as he layed on the floor. Now the Cerebral Assassin attempted perhaps a Pedigree to Batista on the steel steps.
Batista though at the last second reverses it dropping Hunter and now catapolting him to the steel ring post from the steps. Hunter is dazed and has bladed by now. Hunter walks around the ring knowing he could of put Batista away just a bit earlier but now its Batista in complete control.
The Challenger, Batista holds up Triple H’s head and he drives his bloody mess of a head into the steel steps repeatedly.
Batista back in control drops a forearm on the bloodied Game, Naitch goes crazy on the outside meanwhile Batista is relentless in his attack to a bloody Hunter. A big kick off the ropes scores a round of applaud.

There’s no where for the Champion to go as he drops big clotheslines to Hunter in both corners, and now The Game is a bloody mess in a sitting position.
Triple H catches elbow shots to the head by the Animal. Batista threw HHH to the corner and this time hit a third vicious clothesline knocking HHH on his ass. Batista chants after a large roar proving he was well over. Batista wih a powerslam now to the Game and it scores him a nearfall. HHH goes for a walk outside the ring and limps as a bloody mess.
Flair tried a cheapshot on Batista and he payed for it. HHH grabbed a chair and the official took it out of his hands. Batista hit HHH in the groin and tossed him back in the ring. Flair grabs the World title belt and Batista drops him with a Spinebuster Slam!

Triple H though grabbed the belt behind the official’s back and knocked Batista out. A huge pop when Batista kicks out as many boo’s thought Helmsley was going to retain just there.
Now a bloody mess in the Game runs into the Spinebuster by Batista. Batista has Triple H but the Game scores with a lowblow.
Hunter back in control but is still a bloody mess! Triple H, the defending champion of the World hit a lowblow, and now has Batista in position for a Pedigree. Batista doesen’t move as Hunter is a bloody mess and worried, Triple H is worried seeing his grip being spread, and now with Animalistic power he drops Hunter upside down for a modified slam.
And now the momentum swings back in control of Dave Batista. He signalled for the thumbs down and scooped up Hunter and finally slammed the Game with the Batista Bomb.

He got him!

Ross screams “Batista has won the World Title!”
In the end at 21:34 Batista put Triple H away after hitting him with the Batista Bomb. The place erupted on the three, and while the match ended on a positive note, the entire match wasn’t very great as a whole.

This match was DECENT but not “Main Event of Wrestlemania” quality, or anywhere near it. It had a better second half, and was much better than I had recalled, at least it had that going for it.

Hunter helped Dave put on a watchable main event, and despite the lackluster Main Events the show ended on a positive note with Batista taking the title off of Triple H!

** 1/2
Final Rating for WWE Wrestlemania 21  = 6.5/10

This Mania was a lot like Wrestlemania 8, where in the sense it seemed to have a good undercard and atmosphere until the second half rolled around. The Main Events took away from that special feeling the entire first half of the show delivered. It can’t be ignored that the show ended on a sour note so its overall rating is lower as a result. I would still pick it up for everything else on the show, there is a few great to classic matches on this edition of Mania.

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6 Comments left on this article...

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  1. Jay Karia says:

    This was the first ever WrestleMania that I watched since I started watching WWE and I thought that was an excellent event.

  2. Anonymous says:

    In Brett’s defence, with the possible exceptions of Wrestlemania 2000 and XXIV I think that’s the worst WWE Championship match ever at Wrestlemania. Oh no hang on Hulk Hogan fought Yokozuna didnt he. But JBL thought it was outrageous that they didnt close the show and usher in the Cena era. Its ironic but if he was wrestling anyone else he probably would have! I’m trying to figure out who sucks more out of the two. JBL was not a believable champion to me having watched him ‘grow’ from 1996 and Cena wasn’t the big name he is now. They were making him into that. I was shocked when JBL won the title, but this is the period of time when the WWE stopped giving the fans what they wanted and decided to try to make the fans want John Cena. It didnt work at first and after a few years I think you just had to get used to him. You can’t knock his work rate, but its the WWE machine that has made him a star. They never gave up on him. No, its definitely JBL that sucks more.

  3. Billy says:

    You need to think about your ratings before you type them. JBL/Cena a DUD?!?!?! So your saying that Cena vs. JBL is just as good as Torrie Wilson vs. Candice Michelle from Wrestlemania 22?! Yeah your right Cena and JBL put on a DUD…

  4. pogilvie652 says:

    the first half of this show was f’n awesome! if it wasn’t for the 2 main events this would be the best mania of all time

  5. Ross says:

    Angle vs Michaels deserves the full 5 stars

  6. Efrain says:

    LOL! “Bradshaw off the ropes goes for a clothesline from hell and Cena sucks and lifts JBL up for the FU and finishes him”.

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