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  • Connor Ewens

Fantasy Booking: Wrestlemania 40

The royal rumble has came and gone, meaning we are officially on the road to Wrestlemania, trademark. There is only one major stop on the way, Elimination Chamber in Perth, after that it is straight to the Lincoln Financial Field in Philadelphia for the Grandaddy of them all. It is rumoured that internally the Wrestlemania card has been finalised, hopefully with this being the 40th event we are getting a stacked event. We're all very excited to see what Big Trips has in store for us, but what do I think should happen? That is what I will be covering here today. I will run through a fantasy match card, how we'll get there and how it should play out. I am going to take into account ongoing injuries and situations and with all that is happening, it is extremely unlikely we're getting our Gunther vs Lesnar dream match anytime soon. A shame, but definitely for the best. Here is what I think, Wrestlemania XL should look like.

Wrestlemania Saturday

After the usual hype packages and national anthem song, Triple H is already in the ring and he welcomes us all the Wrestlemania. He introduces the events host, Philadelphian local and wrestling legend Kurt Angle! Should be a nice pop for him. We open with a fun back and forth promo between these two who take jabs at each others history and a mini argument over who is the greatest. Before it gets too heated, they are interrupted by The Rock who comes out, huge ovation. He says he is the great one, runs through his entertaining as always promo. This is a feel good legend segment to heat up the crowd ahead of the nights action.

The opening match of the night is a 6-man ladder match for the United States championship. After Logan Paul held onto his title at the Royal Rumble, he would defeat Kevin Owens in a no DQ rematch at Elimination Chamber. Afterwards, Smackdown GM Nick Aldis gives Logan options on who he can face at Wrestlemania, with all of these challengers wanting to face him. LA Knight, Santos Escobar, Kevin Owens and AJ Styles. Logan decides against it and doesn't want to face any of them at Wrestlemania, LA Knight calls him too much of a bitch to face any of them. Logan then says "I could defeat every one of you at the same time", Nick Aldis says that is a great idea and books them all into a match. The week before the show, Aldis reveals there will be a 6th man in the match and it is the returning Rey Mysterio! He runs down and attacks Santos Escobar, who put him on the shelf when he turned heel, then Logan Paul who took the US title from him via cheating last year. A multi-man ladder match has proven to always been a fun way to open a Wrestlemania, this would be more of the same. Escobar and Mysterio can continue their feud which I see running for several months after the show. Knight and Styles have had simmering tension which can continue to build and heat up towards Wrestlemania. Paul & Owens' feud can end here. After an exciting contest of thrills and spills, LA Knight captures the US championship, knocking down Logan to climb the ladder for the win himself. A big babyface victory to start, I imagine the crowd will like this alot.

Second match of the night, Andrade vs Dominik Mysterio. Andrade recently signed to Raw, he has overheard Mysterio and heel commentary refer to Dom as the greatest luchador ever. Andrade takes exception to this and calls himself the greatest luchador. This is just a straight up singles match, Andrade would be a great opponent to help Dom through a really good match without exposing his weaknesses. Andrade is poised to win, even managing to overcome Judgement Day shenanigans but he is rolled up by 'Dirty' Dom for a flash pinfall. Dom can now parade around as 'the best luchador of all time' and their feud can continue if you like.

Match number 3, a first time ever for WWE. Jordyyne Grace defends her TNA Knockouts Championship against the former champion, Naomi. I believe this would be the first time since 1993 a non-WWE title is defended on PPV, not since the Smokey Mountain Wrestling Tag Championships were defended at Summerslam. 2024 is going to be a big year for the partnership between WWE and TNA, it should start on a pretty big note. Their match at Hard to Kill was amazing, this could be just as good if not better. I would have Grace retain her title of course, but a great showcase match for TNA. Sometime throughout the show I would love to see a mini face-off between Grace and Ripley because I want all of that please.

The fourth match of the night is Bloodline battle between Jey Uso vs Jimmy Uso. Following the Rumble, Rikishi returns and appears on both Raw and Smackdown, attempting to rekindle the relationship of the Uso brothers. It makes some small positive progress, but it is very apparent that Jimmy is so consumed by jealousy and refuses to let Jey be successful without him. He wants the Uso's to reform and they can go after more tag championships. Jey is done tagging and wants to be a singles champion. Jimmy says he will not allow it. Rikishi tries to mediate and bring Jimmy around to supporting his brother but it backfires. After laying out Jey with a superkick, Jimmy even superkicks his own dad, demanding he stay out of Bloodline business. The battle between brothers is set up and it is going to be a family affair. The Anoa'i family want this to be settled without any interference and family members agree to be at ringside to prevent it. Wild Samoans Manu & Samu, Lance Anoa'i, Lloyd Anoa'i and of course Rikishi all surround the ring as the brothers settle their feud. An intense, emotional fight comes to an end as Jey puts away his brother and claims his vengeance. After his victory, Jey is given a lei by his family on the stage.

Match 5 is Randy Orton vs Solo Sikoa. Following his title loss at the Rumble, Orton continues to feud with the Bloodline but cannot get his hands on Roman Reigns. His feud with Solo is built off Orton feeling they share a lot of things in common. Orton was brought in as the young understudy of Triple H in Evolution, he was destined to achieve greatness like Solo is. However, Triple H tried to keep him under his thumb to prevent being overtaken. Reigns is doing to same thing to Solo. He tries to convince him that Solo does not need Reigns or the Bloodline anymore, he can become even bigger and more dangerous on his own. Sikoa doesn't fall for it, staying loyal to his Tribal Chief and focusing on wiping out Orton. Solo is ready to win, he sets up the Samoan Spike but an RKO out of no where seals a win for the Viper. I don't think a loss hurts Solo too much, he has plenty of years in him and just sharing the ring with Orton so early in his career will be a benefit. It is shown backstage later that Reigns is PISSED at how poor the Bloodline is performing tonight. He says like usual, he will go and get the job done.

We get a segment to break up the show a little. Host Kurt Angle is out talking about the night we already had. He takes the time to mention the attendance and shout out some of the celebrities in the front row. Probably some famous football stars or whoever. Grayson Waller and Austin Theory come out, talking trash and being stuck up pricks. They mock Kurt Angle and the celebrities, leading to a confrontation. A football guy can hit Waller with a big shoulder tackle or something, Angle gives Theory the Angle slam. It's a feel good home town segment to pop the crowd.

We have a 4-way match for the Women's World Championship. Since the Royal Rumble, 3 women have set their sights on Mami. Lynch wants a first time ever singles match with Rhea, Nia wants to be the one to destroy the annihilator and recently returning Liv Morgan wants revenge on Ripley for putting her out of action. Rhea being the bad bitch she is, invites them all to be destroyed at Wrestlemania. To make it even more fair, she makes it an elimination match so she can pin each of them herself. That is exactly what she does too. It starts very competitive, both Lynch and Liv teaming up against their stronger foes. Morgan is eliminated first after a Riptide. Jax is eliminated second following a super Riptide. We're down to Lynch and Rhea, but Becky seems to have the champions number. She cannot keep her down for the 3. Eventually Rhea does manage to score the pinfall on Becky, reversing a disarmer into a leverage pin, using the ropes. It will be her first unconvincing win, setting up a singles programme between the two going forward as Becky can claim Rhea cannot beat her.

Our penultimate match of the night is a Philly Street Fight between the Final Testament (Karrion Kross, Akam & Rezar) and the Pride (Street Profits and Bobby Lashley). This stays around 10 minutes. An explosive, fast-paced hardcore match full of weapons and table spots to satisfy the crowd. This should be a bit of fun carnage, I would have the Final Testament walk out as victors.

The first main event of Wrestlemania weekend is going to be Roman Reigns vs Cody Rhodes for the Undisputed Universal Championship. There is little story that needs adding because it is all already there, it just needs finishing. This will be an excellent rematch, with all the bells and whistles of the first one except for one twist. Jimmy Uso tries to enter but he is ran off by his brother Jey. Solo Sikoa begins his march down the ramp as he is about to enter the ring we here "IF YOU SMELLL" for the second time tonight. The Rock comes down, he fights with Solo and keeps him at bay. This allows Cody to hit a trifecta of Crossroads' onto Reigns for the 1-2-3. The reign of Roman is finally over, Cody finally finishes his story for a wholesome end to the first night. This shouldn't be the last match of the entire weekend purely because it's far too predictable. The story must end here. The Rock gets involved enough to continue that development, but not enough to tarnish Cody's victory which should be as clean as possible.

Wrestlemania Sunday

After the usual openings, Samantha Irvin introduces the host Kurt Angle. He just starts his speech before he is cut off by a very stressed looking Paul Heyman who marches down to the ring. He says Philadelphia is his town so he is opening tonight's Wrestlemania. He talks about last night but most importantly the biggest injustice in the history of wrestling. Heyman says he knows Dwayne is still here, so is the Tribal Chief. Heyman says that Roman Reigns has sentenced The Rock to public humiliation and a challenge is issued for tonight, Roman vs Rock, anything goes. Heyman leaves, there is no confirmed answer but the tease is too major for it not to happen.

Our opening contest sees Finn Balor & Damian Priest of the Judgement Day defend their Undisputed Tag Championships against the Awesome Truth, The Miz & R-Truth. Recently, the Judgement Day officially "kicked out" Truth from their faction even though he was never a member. R-Truth has been comedy gold recently. The Miz has been a reformed ally and I would like to see them continue right up to Wrestlemania. The match isn't going to blow anyone away, but R-Truth is so hot right now that seeing him win the tag titles will get a huge reaction I am sure. His first non-24/7 title win since 2019. Balor and Priest argue after their loss.

Match number 2 is a dream match, Jade Cargill vs Bianca Belair. Sometimes, you don't need an elaborate story. Jade is a dominant new face in WWE, Bianca has been the dominant face for the past few years. Jade is still a little green but she is a megastar and Bianca is more than capable leading her to a great match. This should be evenly contest but ultimately Jade needs a huge win here and she should get it. Following that we get a 4-way tag match, the winner earning an opportunity at the Undisputed Tag Championships. We'll have DIY, Imperium, Pretty Deadly and British Strong Style. A tag team showcase for all 8 guys in here. Whilst I'd love DIY to win it I think it needs to be a heel team who can sooner than later defeat the Awesome Truth to reign as tag champs and I think Imperium have more than earned their spot at the top of the division. Hopefully they could introduce some new tag belt designs, pretty please? I'm sick of the smashed penny design.

Match 4, Gunther defends his Intercontinental championship against Sami Zayn. They had a really enjoyable match on Raw, but give these guys 20+ minutes and we have a Match of the Year contender on our hands. Zayn is the epitome of underdog and I think these two would work magic together. The valiant small man tries his hardest to chop down the goliath, refusing to quit but eventually he has no choice. Gunther continues his historic run as the IC champion, with no end in sight. The fifth match of the night is 6-woman tag action. Kairi Sane, Asuka & Dakota Kai taking on Katana Chance, Kayden Carter and mystery opponent. Of course this all depends on how fit Dakota Kai is, she might not even be ring ready but I'm hoping she is close. That goes for the surprise too, who I think should be Charlotte Flair. She only got injured a month ago, but her rehab progress has been insane, like John Cena levels of recovery. By Wrestlemania she would have been out just over 3 months and that was about the same amount of time it took Cena to return at the Rumble in 2008. This may upset some, but I really like Charlotte, she's a great wrestler. Charlotte leads her team to a big victory over Damage CTRL, a great moment for Carter & Chance to win at Wrestlemania.

We have Seth Rollins vs Drew McIntyre for the Heavyweight championship. Though Rollins is injured, it seems he is willing to rehab his injury until Mania to defend the title. I'd have Drew win at the Elimination Chamber to earn the match. Though we have seen this match up a few times already, I'm fine with it again since CM Punk plans are on hold due to injury. I plan on making things easier for Seth. Before the bell even rings, Damian Priest makes his way down with his Money in the Bank briefcase and cashes in. He grabs the microphone and says he is going to do what Rollins did 9 years ago but even better. This now becomes a triple threat match for the title. Priest and Drew can predominantly wrestle the match with Seth coming in every now and then to keep him protected from further injury. Priest eventually puts Rollins away to win his first world championship. Well earned and deserved.

We have another Kurt Angle host segment. He tries to say what he was going to say at the start of the show but he is again interrupted, this time again by Grayson Waller and Austin Theory. They want some payback for last nights beat down and start ganging up on Kurt Angle. On commentary, Pat McAfee (who is a Philly native) hops up and backs up Kurt Angle in the fight. Waller & Theory get the upper hand, they grab themselves some chairs to continue to punishment. Then we hear the familiar music, as John Cena appears and returns. He helps his old rival and friend Kurt Angle with Pat McAfee fight of Waller & Theory. Cena & McAfee do synchronised 5-knuckle shuffles and AA's. Then Kurt puts Theory in the ankle lock. Another segment to kill some time, keep the crowd energy up and wheel out some fan favourites. Waller & Theory can take the beatings without being harmed too much.

Our scheduled main event sees Iyo Sky defend the WWE Women's Championship against former ally Bayley. Bayley has been naturally turning face over the last few months. She still thinks she is a leader, but clearly Dakota Kai is the leader as she directs the rest of the faction and convinces Bayley to do what she wants. The plan is for Bayley to target Rhea and take her title. Bayley turns on her group, saying none of them would be where they are without her in the first place. She wanted everyone to succeed but they all got selfish and pushed her away. She chooses Iyo Sky as her opponent. Week after week Bayley falls victim to attacks by Damage CTRL. She has insurmountable odds to overcome. Match time and it is a very close match but every time Bayley gains some momentum, Damage CTRL are there to stop it. Then Charlotte Flair comes out and fights on the outside, she gives Bayley a nod as she helps her. Then, Becky Lynch comes out, again gesturing towards Bayley before helping her against the odds. Lynch, Flair, Kairi and Asuka all fight there way out but Dakota Kai is still in Bayley's corner. After a referee bump, Kai is in wielding a chair when all of a sudden, Sasha Banks returns and saves her best friend from the attack. She takes out Kai, Bayley finishes off Sky to win the championship to a huge ovation. After Bayley celebrates on her own, she is joined by the other 3 women on the ramp as the Four Horsewomen stand tall. It probably won't happen, but it would be a hell of a moment.

Kurt Angle is out and he is preparing to wrap up the show, he does the attendance announcement and thanks everyone for being here etc etc. The Rock's music plays. He comes down and says if the Tribal Chief wants a piece of the Great One, he can bring it, challenge accepted. It is game time. A very angry looking Roman Reigns comes out and we have an impromptu main event, anything goes between Rock and Roman. It starts as a match but it quickly spills out into a brawl on the outside. The match can't go too long because The Rock obviously can't go like he used to but it can still go 10+ minutes. Eventually Roman puts away the Rock with a spear and stands as the ultimate face of the Bloodline...for now.

I would have on the following Smackdown, Reigns' celebration cut short by Solo Sikoa who tells Reigns it is time for him to step aside as Tribal Chief, delivering a merciless beatdown on him and writing Roman off TV for the foreseeable. Now you can begin to build Solo as the next big force of the Anoa'i family.


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