From top to bottom, the overall consensus for WrestleMania 33 was that it was a solid show, which served its purpose of pushing the stars that the show was designed to do. For instance, the main event was the proverbial “passing of the torch” from The Undertaker to Roman Reigns, as the Deadman suffered only his second loss in WrestleMania history. Not only did Undertaker lose to Reigns, but he put over Reigns in the very best way that he possibly could. However, the WWE Championship match did essentially the very opposite.
The title match between Bray Wyatt and Randy Orton was filled with amazing production, as the ring was portrayed to be filled with worms, maggots, and roaches. However, similar to their matches in late 2016, the two oddly do not have the level of chemistry in the ring together as many expected before they started competing. As a result, the wide view, based on reflections of the event, was that Orton vs. Bray was unfortunately the worst match of the night.
Even Steve Austin on his podcast did not speak highly of the match, as he was expecting much more to come out of it.
“The crowd just really wasn’t there for these guys. Both guys worked hard. The effort was there, but just the result wasn’t that great. Randy wins the title, he’s the WWE Champion, but where do they go from here? I have no idea.”
On the same podcast, Austin stated that Bray Wyatt laughs too much, and not in a way that helps his character. He stated that his character greatly needs to draw more heat, because there is a disconnect with him and the fans. He stated that when Doink the Clown laughed when he was a heel, little kids were legitimately scared as a result of him playing him character very well. However, there is nothing at the current state of Wyatt’s career that people can latch onto regarding drawing heat for people to jeer him.
Moreover, Austin stated that Wyatt needs to adjust his in-ring style as a heel, as he does too much darting back and forth, rather than putting “commas” in his matches. Austin added, “The upside-down thing in the corner, someone says something and he starts smiling and laughing. He’s a god, he’s an eater of worlds, and it doesn’t add up to heat for me, or that I take the guy in a serious fashion.”
While the match most likely would have not been any better if there was more time, it was the seventh match of the night, and 10th counting the pre-show. For both the live audience, as well as those watching from the beginning of the pre-show, it was already approaching six hours of programming. This is why there has been speculation that the match was cut down to the 10 minutes the fans actually watched.
On the Pancakes and Powerslams Show, former WWE referee Marty Elias viewed the match from the lens of wearing a striped shirt, and could tell that there was a point in the match where it ended abruptly. For the viewers, the ending was quite odd, as a lackluster back-and-forth exchange between the two suddenly led to an RKO, and the match was over. From the standpoint of a referee, an audible was called, forcing the match to end.
With Orton at the helm of SmackDown Live, there are some feuds that could be interesting from a championship perspective. However, Orton has been known for not giving it his all at times. Hopefully, Orton can invest in putting someone over on the blue brand, especially as the current WWE Champion.
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