At last year’s WrestleMania 33, The New Day were chosen to act as hosts for the event, rather than competing on the card. Some could argue that it was a demotion, while others could say it was an honor.
At the very least, it put them in the same small group of people who have hosted the event in the past, such as The Rock (WrestleMania 27), Hulk Hogan (WrestleMania 30) and plenty of celebrities who have shared lesser hosting duties in the past, including Donald Trump literally hosting the event at his venue two years in a row.
So far, there hasn’t been anything of a peep from WWE as far as mentioning something like this, but every year, there’s always some buzz on forums and such with people speculating if it will happen and who will be filling those shoes.
Naturally, I mulled over the topic in my own brain and figured it was worth a little bit of discussion, so I wanted to share my thoughts and get everyone else’s opinions, too.
Should there be a host for this year’s WrestleMania event, and if so, who do you think would be the realistic predictions and/or best options for the job?
First things first, I don’t think we should have a host for WrestleMania 34, as I’m starting to get worried that the card will be too packed as it is, with over a dozen matches—possibly something like 15—and little time to play around with other than those fights.
I’d rather see another match on the card than to have that time sacrificed in order to give a host a few backstage segments and goofs for filler content, even though that has been used at various times in the past for great effect and could always potentially be a positive for a show.
With that being said, I started to spitball some ideas of names to throw around for the discussion, depending on the preferred approach.
As far as celebrities go, I have to admit that I’m not someone who has his finger on the pulse of every facet of modern day pop culture, as I don’t bother with scandal gossip columns or have a high school environment to be in the now for the latest hot musicians and whatnot, so I’m nowhere near the go-to authority on who would make the biggest splash.
All of the suggestions I’ve been seeing on various websites are ones that make me cringe, like Kanye West, Justin Bieber, Amy Schumer, Kendall Jenner, Beyonce and whatnot. I can’t picture Adam Driver hyping the crowd up for a wrestling event or Jennifer Lawrence giving a shit whatsoever.
If this were back in the day, and he were a fan, Will Smith would be a great choice for the role, but I don’t feel like it would be a hit in early 2018. Maybe after he turns in his performance as The Genie in the new Aladdin film, who knows?
Plus, in my mind, the celebrities tend to subtract from the show, rather than add to it. You can find a popular singer to perform the national anthem and it’s a great idea, but I don’t need to see Al Roker introduce John Cena ever again.
I’d have to instinctively go with someone within the wrestling field, which also narrows it down to a person who doesn’t already have a bigger role at WrestleMania and is within the WWE family to begin with, as there’s no way WrestleMania is hosted by someone who’s never established themselves within these walls.
Even someone like a Matt Striker, who I always felt was underrated and underutilized, isn’t in the position to do something like this while he works for another company. (Side note: I would definitely like to see him return at some point to become a general manager.)
If you’re looking for the easy call, you have to bring The Rock into the conversation. He’s done it before, there’s no doubt that he’s charismatic and has the crowd in the palm of his hands every time he just stands there, let alone talks, and there’s an added bonus that he would be able to get involved in the Ronda Rousey match to help settle the score that started three years ago, as it’s doubtful he’ll be legitimately stepping in the ring for a full-on match in that regard.
With his filming schedule, I don’t think that’s going to happen, so I started pondering some other alternatives.
Hulk Hogan? Nope, he’s still on the outs with the company and I don’t think WWE would bring him back and immediately slot him into something so huge. Rather, he’ll probably return in a much smaller capacity so if it doesn’t go over well, it’s not a colossal blemish on the company.
Mick Foley? I love the guy, but in this zeitgeist, I don’t think his appearance would budge the needle too much, particularly since he’s more reserved than the crazy party atmosphere of New Orleans would be receptive to. He’s more of a New York kind of guy, so maybe next year.
HBK? My favorite of all time, but nope, this isn’t his type of gig. Big Show? Not the craziest idea in the world, I think, but I can sadly picture the crowd not giving him a chance to just be a host and chanting “please retire” or something like that. Jerry Lawler will be probably hosting the Hall of Fame, and R-Truth probably wouldn’t excite people all that much to be worth it.
I wouldn’t want to see The New Day back in this position, either, as I’d much rather see them competing for the SmackDown Tag Team Championship this year, either going in as champions or walking out with the titles.
In the future, this is going to be a perfect thing for The Miz to do, and if he were injured and unable to perform, he would possibly be my top pick, but unless Maryse’s pregnancy has something to say about it, he should be busy defending the Intercontinental Championship on the card instead.
Oddly, one of the suggestions I’ve seen put out there that I like more and more as I think about it is either The Bella Twins or Stacy Keibler. Having a woman host the show would check another box for the Women’s Evolution, Nikki and Brie aren’t likely going to be doing anything for the show at all and their fans would appreciate seeing them, and in the case of Keibler, she was one of the few noticeably absent names from the Raw 25 special that should have made an appearance, but didn’t, for some reason. She was always extremely popular and she does still carry at least a little bit of celebrity clout, even though it dwindles more and more as time goes on.