With the Royal Rumble behind us, the road to WrestleMania has begun. With injuries, talents requesting releases, and a fall debut on national network television in spite of sagging cable ratings, WrestleMania 35 has a lot of question marks with just less than 2 months until showtime. Here are five moments that look like they may happen at WrestleMania 35 and how WWE can get there. What do you want to see at WrestleMania 35?
Becky Lynch will lose to Ronda Rousey
Ronda Rousey's dominant rise to the RAW Women's Championship has made mainstream headlines around the world. Almost parallel to that rise has been the ascent of Becky Lynch. Lynch has finally stepped out of the shadows of Charlotte Flair, Sasha Banks, Asuka, and Bayley to announce herself as the top female competitor in WWE. Lynch's use of social media and newfound swagger have set the WWE on fire. Ronda Rousey looked mentally vulnerable for the first time in her feud with Sasha Banks. Rousey would lose focus while Sasha taunted or played mind games with her. In the months leading to WrestleMania we will see Ronda Rousey at her most vulnerable, as "The Man" continues to get inside her head. Much like her fellow Irishman, Connor McGregor, Lynch will continue to push Rousey verbally in the build to their match. Rousey is most physically vulnerable to strikes as opposed to grappling. In order to win, Lynch must not only get in Rousey's head, but toughen up and develop more brawling skills to be able to push Rousey to the limit. Sasha Banks looked to Drew Gulak to help her prepare for Ronda Rousey, but Lynch should take a different strategy and look to a brawler like Stone Cold Steve Austin, Fit Finlay, or Mick Foley to help shape her strategy of attack on Rousey. Charlotte Flair will continue to hang around this feud but it's unclear if she'll find a way to get into this match. Flair's involvement may be the deciding factor in who wins this one but the WrestleMania 13 feud between Bret Hart & Stone Cold Steve Austin really comes to mind when looking at this matchup. Rousey will likely walk away victorious this time, but Becky Lynch will walk away with more fan support than ever.
Seth Rollins will take Brock Lesnar's Universal Title
In 2015 Seth Rollins shocked the world by cashing in his Money In The Bank contract in the main event of WrestleMania 31 to steal the WWE Championship from Brock Lesnar by curb-stomping a prone Roman Reigns. Lesnar looked for revenge on Rollins at Battleground 2015, but their match was interrupted by the Undertaker. Almost four years later, we'll finally get a resolution. In the interview above, Rollins mentions that Lesnar has been vulnerable to smaller & quicker opponents like AJ Styles, Daniel Bryan, and Finn Balor. Rollins must develop some harder strikes and look to his aerial arsenal in matches leading up to WrestleMania 35 since those have been most effective against Lesnar as of late. Lesnar has appeared complacent in his reigns as Universal Champion, maintaining the same strategy and move set in his matches. However, Lesnar's simplified move set has given him tremendous success. Rollins will need to not only overcome the physical obstacle of Brock Lesnar, but also show that he can mentally overcome Lesnar's mystique and Paul Heyman's scheming. Rollins is known as the architect of the SHIELD and has played mind games in the past when he was aligned with the Authority. He needs to find some way to get inside Brock Lesnar's head in the build to WrestleMania. Rollins finally has Brock Lesnar right where he wants him and just under two months to execute his plan. At WrestleMania 35 Rollins will find his inner predator and turn the avid hunter, Brock Lesnar, into the hunted.
Drew McIntyre will defeat John Cena
In a media call with Wrestling Inc. before the Royal Rumble, Drew McIntyre said: "The goal is win the Royal Rumble and go to WrestleMania for the Championship, but I might consider having a match with John Cena at WrestleMania just as big, because as was mentioned earlier, he might not have too many left and I do believe he is the greatest superstar of all time. So that would be the biggest notch in my belt if that was to go through." Cena was rumored to be facing Lars Sullivan at WrestleMania 35 but with Sullivan's debut getting pushed back, it seems that McIntyre may get an opportunity to face the 15 time world champion. McIntyre reinvented himself after his release from WWE in 2014, bulking up his physique and altering his move set to include more power moves that highlight his size and strength. Cena is more of an actor now than a wrestler. He has noticeably dropped weight since his move to China to work on a film with Jackie Chan. Cena has lost cleanly more often than not in his biggest matches over the past two years but he cannot stay away from the WWE. The spotlight of WrestleMania 35 is too alluring for Cena and he will walk into a trap set by Drew McIntyre. McIntyre will demolish Cena at WrestleMania 35, announcing himself as the #1 contender for the Universal Title. This won't be John Cena's final WrestleMania, but the sun is starting to set on the former champ's WWE career.
Shane McMahon will face the Miz and lose in a hardcore match
The SmackDown tag team champions have had a blossoming friendship since the WWE World Cup Tournament began. The Miz threw Shane McMahon a birthday party on SmackDown to cement their friendship and form a tag team. Shane returned the favor (after winning the SmackDown tag team titles at the Royal Rumble) by surprising the Miz with his father, who told Miz how proud he is of him in front of everyone on SmackDown. The Miz & Shane McMahon have both been the most hated men in WWE in the past. Both men are overlooked for their wrestling ability and have been known to double-cross their friends. This past fall, in a brief feud with Daniel Bryan, the Miz showed WWE brass that he could potentially work as a babyface and that turn may finally happen leading to WrestleMania 35. Shane McMahon's recent WrestleMania singles opponents have been The Undertaker & AJ Styles. A match against Shane McMahon could be a breakout for the Miz, a former WWE Champion. The Miz has been kept out of the main event for years since losing to The Rock & John Cena at Survivor Series 2011, but his work ethic and character over that time have endeared him to the WWE fans. Although WWE seems to be moving away from having evil authority figures, Shane's paranoia about the Miz will lead him to betray his best friend and lose the tag titles for the duo. Questions about Miz being "safe" and "boring" as a wrestler will likely be addressed as the Miz will find a new toughness and sense of reckless abandon that Shane McMahon is usually known for. It is likely the last piece of the puzzle for Miz to put together as he works his way back to challenging for the WWE Championship. Shane McMahon is known for taking big falls, but this year the one taking the big risk may be the Miz. Hopefully, no one gets seriously injured in what will likely be a new evolution of Miz's character on the biggest stage in wrestling.
Zack Ryder & Curt Hawkins win the RAW Tag Team Championships
Wrestling fans love a great underdog story and this year WrestleMania will have a few of them. Tag team partners, real-life friends, NY/NJ natives: Zack Ryder & Curt Hawkins will return home to Metlife Stadium and win the RAW tag team championships from The Revival in a triple threat match with Bobby Roode & Chad Gable while simultaneously breaking the biggest losing streak in wrestling history. With The Revival becoming the #1 contenders for the RAW tag team championships this past week, they are now on a collision course with Bobby Roode & Chad Gable at Elimination Chamber. Fans and Superstars alike have Tweeted about the amazing matches at house shows between The Revival and Roode & Gable. The Revival continue to open eyes around the company and (after taking the titles from Roode & Gable at Elimination Chamber) they will get their very own entrance as champions on the grandest stage in wrestling. Gable & Roode will very much be in the mix, but the focus will be on ending the losing streak for Curt Hawkins and giving the hometown folks something to cheer about. Zack Ryder provided the most memorable moment of WrestleMania 32 when he won the Intercontinental Championship in front of a live audience of over 93,000 people. With the Authors of Pain injured, the RAW tag division is very thin. Although Lucha House Party could also fit in this match, it's more likely that they'll be in the ARMBAR to add some aerial excitement to the battle royal. We got a preview of what The Revival can do with Ryder & Hawkins in a quick match 2 weeks ago on RAW. These teams will get plenty of opportunities to work together until WrestleMania with some emotional stakes behind the wrestling. At WrestleMania 35, they will put on a fantastic triple threat match that will have a memorable heat-warming ending.