You can’t blame Randy Orton for having a ton of confidence after winning the titular main event of the 2017 Royal Rumble pay-per-view. Not only did he promise victory at WrestleMania 33 and the WWE Championship around his waist, but he also suggested, with a few unprintable words thrown in, that the Super Bowl has nothing on sports entertainment’s “grandest stage of them all.”
On Sunday, the world will be tuning in to Super Bowl LI, as the New England Patriots face the Atlanta Falcons, and hope to win their fifth NFL championship with Tom Brady as their starting quarterback. Football fans will be checking out the action, while fans and non-fans alike will be staying tuned for the plethora of Super Bowl ads debuting during the Big Game’s commercial breaks.
Wrestling fans, on the other hand, have WrestleMania to look forward to in late March or early April, and this year’s iteration will be taking place on April 2 at the Camping World Stadium in Orlando. Last Sunday, Randy Orton got himself started on the road to WrestleMania 33 by winning the Royal Rumble match, though he’s far from being the only big name scheduled for that event.
— Alberto E. Gonzalez (@BadBoyy305) February 5, 2017
It’s often been mentioned that WrestleMania is pro wrestling’s equivalent of the Super Bowl – the biggest event of the year, and one of the few times that casual or lapsed fans pay close attention to the WWE. But Randy Orton had a bit of a twist on this oft-repeated analogy as he spoke to NBC Washington on Thursday following a meet-and-greet at the Washington Auto Show. And he wasn’t shy about sticking it to the NFL’s yearly championship game, and suggesting that it’s not as good as what WWE has to offer each year at WrestleMania. (Quotes h/t Wrestling Inc.)
“Screw the Super Bowl, we’re talking about WrestleMania. Super Bowl ain’t got sh*t on WrestleMania. WrestleMania is the biggest show on earth, the greatest show on earth, and I feel like everyone knows that. Worldwide.”
At this point, it’s far from sure whether Randy Orton will be facing WWE Champion John Cena at WrestleMania 33. On February 12, the SmackDown Live brand will have its first brand-exclusive pay-per-view of the year – Elimination Chamber – whose titular main event match is a six-man battle for the WWE Championship, with Cena defending his belt against five other men.
If rumors are to be believed, Bray Wyatt will win the WWE Championship from Cena at Elimination Chamber, thus breaking up his alliance with Randy Orton and marking the end of the Wyatt Family as we know it. This has been in the works even before Royal Rumble, as the Inquisitr had reported in January. Meanwhile, rumors suggest Cena and girlfriend Nikki Bella will have a mixed tag team match against The Miz and Maryse at WrestleMania 33. But since WWE isn’t a company to publicly tease future storylines, Orton was fully focused on dethroning Cena and becoming WWE Champion at WrestleMania 33 when he spoke to NBC Washington.
“I’m gonna main event that show, and it’s because I won the Royal Rumble. That’s why I’m here, to meet the fans and talk about that. Everyone congratulated me and they want me to beat John Cena, take the title, put the gold around my waist, and that’s what I’m gonna do.”
For a lot of us, comparing the Super Bowl to WrestleMania is like comparing apples and oranges – one is a championship game for a “legitimate” sport, one is a pay-per-view sports entertainment event crammed with pre-determined matches. But both events are undoubtedly must-see spectacles each year, and it’s clear which one of them Randy Orton prefers.
[Featured Image by WWE]