We are just three-weeks away from WWE WrestleMania 33. As the date approaches for wrestling's showcase event, WWE has been busy introducing storylines to set up WrestleMania 33. As recently reported by the Inquisitr, recent editions of Monday Night Raw and Smackdown Live, have been used to set up "grudge matches" for WrestleMania. We saw Royal Rumble winner Randy Orton refuse to face Bray Wyatt. That was swiftly followed by Orton setting fire to part of the Wyatt Family compound. Unsurprisingly Randy Orton vs. Bray Wyatt is back on.
Another match that seems to be a WrestleMania 33 certainty is The Undertaker vs. Roman Reigns. The build up to that match began when Reigns entered the 2017 Royal Rumble at No 30, despite having lost his world championship to Kevin Owens earlier in the evening. It's safe to say that the WWE universe was less than impressed when Reigns entered an epic staredown with The Undertaker. Even at that stage, it seemed The Undertaker's WrestleMania 33 plans were set.
Those plans were etched in stone on this week's Monday Night Raw. As reported in Bleacher Report, The Undertaker showed up, to intervene in a bickering match between Reigns and Braun Strowman. The segment ended with The Deadman executing a "choke slam" on Reigns, a move that left Reigns flat out in the ring.
If anyone has a right to be upset by the WWE's route to WrestleMania 33, it is AJ Styles. After holding down the SmackDown brand for most of 2016, Styles lost his world championship to part-timer John Cena. Bray Wyatt took Cena's crown at the Elimination Chamber, setting up a Wrestlemania 33 headline bout with former Wyatt Family member Randy Orton. That decision seemingly left Styles without a meaningful WrestleMania bout.
That situation remains the same, despite Styles winning the No 1 contender series, and then losing it again after Shane McMahon changed the rules.
Did WWE Snub AJ Styles And The Miz With Their WrestleMania 33 Poster?It has been widely reported that AJ Styles will take on Shane McMahon at WrestleMania 33, and Styles has every reason to be furious with that match. After losing his world championship to John Cena, AJ Styles reward, for being the face of SmackDown for 12-months, is a match against another part-timer at wrestling's showcase event. To add insult to injury the, WWE's official WrestleMania 33 poster has leaked. Give Me Sport reports that fans are not happy, primarily because the poster has a cluster of part-time wrestlers front and center. The WrestleMania 33 poster has six part-timers occupying the seven most prominent slots on the poster. Only Vince McMahon's "golden-boy," Roman Reigns, interrupts the part-time monopoly on poster space.
AJ Styles is barely visible in the background of the WrestleMania poster. Likewise, The Miz, he too is lost in the background of the poster, while Bray Wyatt and Randy Orton look like last minute add-ons.
Let's be realistic, part-time wrestlers like The Undertaker and Triple H are major draws for the WWE universe. The WWE needs those superstars to draw in the fans and to encourage the wider public to buy the PPV event. That's business, and most people understand that the WWE needs to make money.
That said, it seems like the WWE universe are not the only people upset by the WWE's road to WrestleMania 33. According to the Sun, Sami Zayn is pretty unhappy too. Zayn made it pretty clear that he thinks the WWE need to reward their consistent performers better, and that means bigger matches at WrestleMania.
"Selfishly, of course part of me thinks, 'Hey, get the hell out of here, this is our show, we work here every week'. It would be stupid to ignore that."Zayn clearly understands that it makes business sense for the WWE to have people like Goldberg, The Undertaker, and Triple H at WrestleMania 33. The trick that the WWE needs to pull off if it is to continue to be successful is to keep stars like AJ Styles, Sami Zayn, and The Miz happy until they are big enough names to replace the older crop of wrestlers. That also means rewarding those who perform every week with big matches at WrestleMania 33, and other premium events.
"But at the same time, Brock Lesnar or Bill Goldberg coming in… the fans like it, it's good for business, and if it's good for business, it's good for me in a roundabout way."
"Do I wish I was main eventing WrestleMania and not Bill Goldberg? Yes, absolutely. But you know, might it be better in some way to bring these guys in to help business. If it's helping business, it's helping me."
[Featured Image by WWE]