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We’ve come to the most exciting time of they year, where the 2020 WWE Royal Rumble has jump started our car onto the Road To WrestleMania! There is always (too) much talk about what match will “main event” the show. I use quotes because there is a chief point to keep in mind: we as the online fanbase put way more stock in this notion that the last match is the main event.
WWE uses that distinction when it wants to—like the women being in the main event of WrestleMania 35. That card really had three main event matches: one that opened the show (Brock Lesnar vs. Seth Rollins), one in the middle (Kofi Kingston vs. Daniel Bryan), and the show closer (Ronda Rousey vs. Charlotte Flair vs. Becky Lynch). We get caught up in it because CM Punk told us to, but really it’s less of an issue.
Now that I have completely undermined the purpose of this article, let’s see what could close the show at WrestleMania 36!
WWE Championship: Brock Lesnar (c) vs. Drew McIntyre
This one is first because it carries with it a very interesting wrinkle. Drew McIntyre is not a WrestleMania main eventer. Not yet. But I bet many people reading this believe he is. But if you hated Roman Reigns being in the main event of WrestleMania 31 against Brock Lesnar, you should hate this. You don’t, but you should.
Go back and watch that match, and some of the build. “Roman’s not ready” was part of that story, and JBL sold it, brilliantly, on commentary. Plus it served as the perfect backdrop for Seth Rollins to cash in his Money In The Bank contract.
Fast forward five years and we have Drew McIntyre in the midst of a meteoric push. But just because the internet wants him doesn’t mean he’s shown he can draw in that spot. His opponent has proven it, but anyone can draw against Brock Lesnar.
Universal Championship: The Fiend / Bray Wyatt (c) vs. Roman Reigns
Many people (myself included) had Roman Reigns penciled in as the Royal Rumble winner. Drew McIntyre eliminating Brock Lesnar would be enough to put him in position as Brock Lesnar’s challenger, but him winning the Royal Rumble will likely go down as being far more than just icing on the cake.
Much like his Raw counterpart, Bray Wyatt’s The Fiend is unstoppable. He’s destroyed everything in his wake, and is the perfect foil for Roman Reigns in the old-school-babyface sense. Roman is the hero and Fiend is the monster the hero has to overcome.
The timing is perfect for Roman Reigns as well. He’s battled Leukemia, and since his return he’s stayed as far away from the world title picture as possible. People will (mostly) want to see him in this role as we roll into Tampa. A victorious Roman Reigns will go over much better with the hardcore WrestleMania crowd than it did at WM32 or WM33.
Raw Women’s Championship: Becky Lynch (c) vs. Shayna Baszler
Shayna Baszler was another Royal Rumble assumption made by many a pundit such as myself, and her entering at #30 all but cemented it for me at the time. But my good man PC Tunney ended up being correct, as it was LOLCHARLOTTEWINS all over again when The Queen Of WWE eliminated The Queen Of Spades to capture this accolade for the first time.
Given the nature of Charlotte’s likely WrestleMania role (more on that in a moment), she probably had to win, as there are other ways to get to this match without Shayna Baszler winning the Rumble match.
Shayna Baszler, then NXT Champion, beat Bayley and Becky Lynch in the main event of Survivor Series. Becky Lynch didn’t love that—not one bit—as she did her best to break Shayna’s back to close the show, “getting her heat back” in the process. At that moment, this WrestleMania showdown became obvious.
Becky Lynch is already a proven main eventer, and she can bring Shayna Baszler to that level in April if WWE lets her.
Edge vs. Randy Orton as the WrestleMania main event?
A bit of a wildcard (bitches!) for you is Edge vs. Randy Orton. No title is involved here, but both men have “WrestleMania main eventer” on their resume. They both also have “Hall Of Famer,” Randy’s just says “future” in front of it.
It sounds crazy, but it could work. Edge has a ton of momentum returning after a 9-year absence. Randy Orton can tell one hell of a story when working heel—just look at his run with Daniel Bryan during the WrestleMania 30 build. He’s the perfect opponent to bring Edge back to the WrestleMania main event.
The precedent is there, as well. It largely involves The Undertaker (vs. Shawn Michaels and vs. Roman Reigns), but closing the show with modern day legends can overcome not having a world championship at stake. These guys can pull that off.
NXT Championship: Rhea Ripley (c) vs. Charlotte Flair
No one wants to see Charlotte Flair vs. Bayley, Charlotte Flair vs. Lacey Evans, or Charlotte Flair vs. anyone on Smackdown except maybe Sasha Banks. And right now that’s a big maybe as Sasha is hurt.
But Charlotte Flair vs. Rhea Ripley as the show-closing match at WrestleMania 36 is crazy enough to work. Rhea has been the recipient of a monster push, and it shows no signs of slowing down. Charlotte already has a WrestleMania main event to her credit, and she can help fast-track Rhea to that level.
So What’s It Gonna Be?
I have to be honest, I don’t see either of the women’s matches closing the show, even though I’d love to see either to it. But I’m the guy who thinks WWE waited one year too long to put women in the final match at WrestleMania… that should have been Charlotte Flair and Asuka at WrestleMania 34.
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As much as I love Edge, his match with Randy Orton falls slightly below the two men’s championship matches. It really is a slight drop, though. I would personally love to see them shock everyone and run this out last.