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WrestleMania XXX brings the beginning and end of eras
By NOLAN HOWELL - SLAM Wrestling


The new WWE World champion Daniel Bryan. Photos by Mike Mastrandrea


WWE WrestleMania XXX is here. As always, "The Granddady of Them All" brings the biggest and best the company has to offer. Tonight on WWE WrestleMania XXX, WWE COO Triple H and Daniel Bryan fight to compete for the WWE World Heavyweight Championship in the main event. Who will go on to battle champion Randy Orton and Batista? Plus, Brock Lesnar challenges for "The Streak" against The Undertaker and John Cena defends his legacy against Bray Wyatt! All that and more on this year's edition of WrestleMania!

The pre-show is LIVE from New Orleans, La.

Panelists Josh Mathews, Alex Riley, Booker T, Mick Foley, Trish Stratus, and Shawn Michaels preview matches, present promos, and discuss WrestleMania XXX.

Fatal 4-Way Elimination Tag Match One for the WWE Tag Team Championships: The Usos (c) vs. Los Matadores vs. The Real Americans (w/Zeb Colter) vs. Ryback & Curtis Axel

In pre-show action, Los Matadores were eliminated by submission due to the Patriot Lock. Ryback & Curtis Axel were eliminated by pinfall due to the Neutralizer. The Real Americans were eliminated by pinfall due to double splash.


Winners by pinfall and still WWE Tag Team Champions: The Usos

Rating: 3 out of 5 stars

Post-match, Jack Swagger locks in the Patriot Lock on Antonio Cesaro and Zeb Colter is forced to restrain him. Swagger is forced to offer a handshake to Cesaro and Cesaro uses it to perform the Cesaro Swing on Swagger.

The pay-per-view is LIVE from New Orleans, La. Michael Cole, John Bradshaw Layfield, and Jerry "The King" Lawler have the call for tonight.

WrestleMania XXX Host Hulk Hogan kicks us off. Hogan introduces the show and talks about the history of WrestleMania.

Glass shatters and "Stone Cold" Steve Austin heads down to the ring. Austin rattles off all his signature phrases and offers to open up a can of "whoop ass" on Hogan and asks if the fans want to see it. Austin praises the work and the things Hogan has done for professional wrestling and says tonight is about every WWE superstar putting on a show.

Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson hits the ring. The Rock declares that he has come back to New Orleans and WrestleMania. The Rock sees friends and legends in front of him, declaring them the two biggest names in WWE history. Rock details the histories he has shared with both men and the impact they have had on today's locker room. The Rock declares it an honor to be in front of the audience and the two legends. The three rattle off their signature phrases and crack open some beers to toast WrestleMania.

Video package recaps the rivalry between WWE COO Triple H and Daniel Bryan.

WWE Principal Stephanie McMahon introduces Triple H.

Qualifying Match Two: Daniel Bryan vs. Triple H (w/Stephanie McMahon)

Triple H offers a handshake to start. Daniel Bryan kicks it away and rolls him up for the first nearfall of the contest. Lockup sees HHH back him in the corner, but Bryan ducks out and starts striking. HHH moves outside to escape the head kick. Stephanie McMahon and HHH discussing outside.

Back inside, HHH with an arm wrench. Bryan twisting and turning out to land a dropkick. Side headlock takeover from Bryan puts HHH on the mat. HHH fights to his feet and knocks Bryan down with a shoulder block to the injured left shoulder of Bryan. Off the ropes, Bryan with a knee to the midsection and a side headlock takeover gets Bryan another nearfall.

Grappling exchange on the mat between the two is ended by Bryan uppercuts. Headlock for Bryan is ended by a rope break. HHH doesn't break clean and rams Bryan into the corner. HHH working the injured shoulder, but Bryan striking out. Kick caught and HHH with a dragon screw. HHH trying to wrap the arm around the ring post, but Bryan shoves him away. Dropkick sends HHH off the apron and Bryan jumps from the apron to land a tornado DDT. Up top, Bryan with a flip dive to the outside that lands. Both men down and Bryan brings HH inside for a nearfall.

Bryan again up top and McMahon talking trash. HHH crotches Bryan up top and sends him to the floor with a right hand. On top of the announce table, HHH looking for a Pedigree. Bryan stands up, but HHH jumps down and slams the injured arm of Bryan on the table. The referee beginning the count and Bryan slowly makes his way in. Elbows and stomps and strikes for HHH landing as he works the arm of Bryan with a keylock. Body shots from Bryan break the hold, but HHH with a knee. Looking to send Bryan out, HHH has the rope pulled down on him and he tumbles outside. Suicide dive from Bryan lands on the right hand of HHH. Suplex onto the shoulder of Bryan on the apron by HHH. The referee again beginning a count.

Bryan makes it back inside and HHH applies the crossface chicken wing. Dragging it to the mat, crossface locked in by HHH. Bryan inches to the ropes and gets there. Arm wrench drops Bryan. Corner work from HHH wearing Bryan down. Right hands coming back from Bryan and the two now trading. Ducking a clothesline from HHH, Bryan with a flying forearm. Both men down and Bryan up first to land roundhouse kicks to the midsection. Kick to the midsection from HHH stops it. Bryan flips out of the corner, but HHH has it scouted. Bryan takes the back and hits a pair of Germans for a pair of nearfalls.

Looking for the crossface chicken wing again, HHH with a tiger suplex that gets a pin attempt. Bryan sat up top and HHH looking for a superplex, but Bryan blocks. Punches landing and a sunset flip bomb plants HHH into the mat. Running dropkicks into the corner connect for Bryan, but a third sees HHH catch Bryan with a clothesline that turns him in the air. Pedigree from HHH countered by a Bryan jackknife cover for a nearfall.

Kick to the head connects for Bryan and he heads up top. Diving headbutt connects to the knee of HHH and crossface once again applied by HHH. Bryan fading as he makes it to the ropes, but HHH rolls him to the middle of the ring. Bryan struggles, but turns over for a pin. Turning into the Yes Lock and it is applied by Bryan. HHH inching from the center of the ring and he finally gets there.

HHH outside and Bryan connects with a suicide dive. Another connects and Bryan with roundhouse kicks to the chest. Back inside and up top, missile dropkick lands for Bryan. Kicks to the chest connecting for Bryan and he drops HHH with a head kick that nearly wins the match. Bryan in the corner and looking for the Running Knee. Spinebuster counter lands for HHH. Pedigree plants Bryan into the mat and Bryan barely kicks out. HHH consulting with McMahon and Bryan with a rollup for a nearfall of his own.

Right hands from HHH landing in the corner. Pedigree poised from HHH, but Bryan with the underhooks to bridge into a suplex for a nearfall. Bryan gets out of a Pedigree and lands a head kick. Running knee lands for Bryan.

Winner by pinfall: Daniel Bryan

Rating: 4.5 out of 5 stars

Post-match, Stephanie McMahon gets in the ring and smacks Daniel Bryan repeatedly. Triple H with a clothesline from behind and he wraps the left arm around the ring post before cracking it with a steel chair.

Match Three: The Shield vs. Kane & The New Age Outlaws

Dean Ambrose and Kane start off brawling. Clothesline knocks Kane down and Roman Reigns and Billy Gunn brought in. Reigns with a series of clotheslines and Road Dogg gets one of his own. Samoan Drop on Kane lands. Dropkick lands on both Gunn and Road Dogg. All members going at it inside and outside of the ring. Billy Gunn left in the ring alone with all three members of The Shield and he scurries out. Suicide dives from Rollins and Ambrose. Spears on all three men from Reigns. Double powerbomb on Gunn and Road Dogg from all three.

Winners by pinfall: The Shield

Rating: 2.5 out of 5 stars

Hacksaw Jim Duggan and Sgt. Slaughter playing with action figures. Ricky Steamboat soon joins them, but the play set is taken away. "The Million Dollar Man" Ted DiBiase declares that everyone has a price and lets out a laugh as he goes to play with his set. Ron Simmons comes in and declares his signature phrase.


Cesaro tosses The Big Show from the ring.
Match Four: Andre the Giant Memorial Battle Royal

Yoshi Tatsu is the first eliminated. Brad Maddox is the next eliminated as the brawl continues. Brodus Clay sent out after a Great Khali chop. Khali soon follows. Zack Ryder tossed out by 3MB. Darren Young next out as the ring begins to thin. All of 3MB sent out by Mark Henry, who is eliminated himself by Big Show. Titus O'Neil is the next to go, also sent out by Big Show. The Miz sent out by the Cobra and Del Rio takes care of Santino Marella. Disaster Kick from Rhodes soon sends Damien Sandow out. Justin Gabriel tossed out by Big E and David Otunga soon sent out by the same. Fandango and Big E fighting on the apron and Fandango kicks Langston out. Fandango playing around on the apron and Sheamus clubs his chest over and over before tossing him out. R-Truth sent out by Big Show. Tyson Kidd sent out by an enzuigiri by Alberto Del Rio. Enzuigiri sends Goldust out as well and Del Rio soon sends Cody Rhodes out as well.

Seven men left with Sheamus, Rey Mysterio, Alberto Del Rio, Big Show, Cesaro, Kofi Kingston, and Dolph Ziggler. Cesaro sends Mysterio out with a European Uppercut. Kingston pressed in the corner and he lands outside, but his feet stayed on the steps during his fall. Kingston clearing house now until he is put in the Cesaro Swing. Big Show soon Chokeslams Cesaro and Kingston sent out by Sheamus.

Ziggler, Del Rio, Big Show, Sheamus, and Cesaro left. Ziggler sent out by Del Rio and Del Rio now fighting with Sheamus. Rolling fireman's carry slam countered into a Cross Armbreaker by Del Rio. Sheamus lifting Del Rio up and both tumble outside.

Cesaro and Big Show left. Chokeslam attempt counterd by an uppercut from Cesaro. Cesaro clotheslining desperately, but he is unable to get Big Show out. Cesaro tossed to the apron, but he fights back with strikes. Up top, Cesaro lands on a chop from Big Show and Big Show looking to send him out. Cesaro drops down and body slams Show to the outside.

Winner of the Andre the Giant Memorial Battle Royal: Cesaro

Rating: 2.75 out of 5 stars

Video package recaps the rivalry between The Wyatt Family and John Cena.

The Wyatt Family theme song is played live.

Match Five: Bray Wyatt (w/The Wyatt Family) vs. John Cena

Bray Wyatt seated up top as the bell rings. Wyatt gets on his knees in the middle of the ring and tells John Cena to be the monster he is and finish him. Cena begs for him to get up. Wyatt gets up and charges into a side headlock takeover. Wyatt works him into the corner, but Cena with a side headlock takeover. Cena holding on until Wyatt lands an elbow and a right hand. Wyatt working Cena in the corner and drops him with another right. Wyatt brawling Cena down and puts him down with a shoulder tackle. Cena sent hard into the corner and he comes back with a clothesline.

Cena now angry and punching Wyatt down on the ground. Cena raking the eyes and punching Wyatt over and over in the corner. Cena choking Wyatt down in the corner now. Right hand in the center of the ring followed by a running knee connect for Cena. Luke Harper urging Cena to let it out at ringside. Wyatt urging Cena on and he lands a kick to the midsection before a suplex. Stomps putting Cena. Wyatt tries for a clothesline, but Cena ducks to land a dropkick.

Both men down and Cena sends Wyatt off the ropes. Wyatt comes around to lock in a sleeper. Cena breaks it, but Wyatt kicks the midsection to reapply the hold. Cena fights out with shoulder tackles and a side slam. Five Knuckle Shuffle attempt is met by Wyatt doing a crab walk. Erick Rowan up on the apron and an uranage slam from Wyatt gets a nearfall.

Corner splash from Wyatt lands. Cena cornered, but he gets the boot up. Tornado DDT lands for Cena and nearly steals the win. Cena up top and he looks for a leg drop, but Wyatt catches him for a powerbomb for a nearfall. Cena looks for the STF, but he hits a side slam and a Five Knuckle Shuffle. Wyatt up for the Attitude Adjustment, but he hits a gutbuster on Cena that nearly gets the victory.

Cena on the apron and Wyatt lands a right hand. Wyatt follows him out and Cena hoists him for the Attitude Adjustment, but Wyatt with a DDT on the apron for a nearfall. Cena cornered as the crowd sways and sings in favor of Wyatt. Cena sat up top and Wyatt looking for a superplex. Headbutts from Cena send Wyatt away and he jumps to the outside to take out Erick Rowan and Luke Harper.

Wyatt follows him outside and stomps him down before sending him into the steel steps. Cena laying on the lower half of the steel steps and Wyatt looking to crack him. Cena brawls back and sends Wyatt into the steel post on his shoulder. Cena now with the top half of the steel steps and he can't bring himself to hit Wyatt with him. Back inside, running shoulder tackle from Wyatt nearly takes the win.

The head of Cena cradled in the lap of Wyatt. Wyatt misses on the back splash and Cena waits behind to land the Attitude Adjustment. Wyatt barely kicks out and Rowan on the apron to distract the referee and Harper knocks Cena out. Back splash from Wyatt lands and nearly gets the victory. Cena outside and he spears Harper through the timekeeper's area. Wyatt stomping Cena down and brings him back inside. Sister Abigail almost lands, but Cena turns it into the STF. Wyatt crawls to the ropes and makes it. Wyatt catches Sister Abigail and nearly wins the match.

Outside, Wyatt takes the top off the Spanish announce table and brings a chair inside. Rowan follows Wyatt inside and Wyatt drops the chair in front of Cena. Wyatt begs for Cena to finish him and ruin his legacy. The referee imploring Cena not to do it and Cena takes the chair to Erick Rowan. Rollup from Wyatt nearly steals the win. Sister Abigail is turned out of by Cena and the Attitude Adjustment connects.

Winner by pinfall: John Cena

Rating: 4 out of 5 stars

Recap of the 2014 WWE Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony.

The 2014 WWE Hall of Fame Class is introduced.


Paul Heyman appears as shocked by Brock Lesnar's win as the audience.
Match Six: The Undertaker vs. Brock Lesnar (w/Paul Heyman)

The two face-to-face to start. Undertaker starting with right hands that put Brock Lesnar in the corner. Lesnar sends Taker into the corner with velocity and hits a belly-to-belly suplex. Clothesline puts Taker outside. Taker brawling from the apron and the two exchanging. Hangman's neckbreaker from Taker sends Lesnar reeling. Right hands landing for Taker and he stretches the left arm of Lesnar across the rope. Lesnar sent into the post on his shoulder.

Action moves outside and Taker tosses Lesnar into the post once again. Arm wrench in and Taker going up top, but Lesnar pulling him down to the mat. Corner work from Lesnar and he sends Taker into the opposite corner. Lesnar again meets the ring post and we move outside again. Taker sends him into the steel steps and continues with the brawling offense. Kick to the head of Lesnar as he hangs across the apron. Leg drop across the neck of Lesnar.

Back inside, Taker with snake eyes in the corner. Chokeslam attempt is wiggled out of by Lesnar and he tries an F5. Taker pushes Lesnar into the corner on his left shoulder again. Boot attempt from Taker misses and Lesnar goes to work on right leg by wrapping it around the post. Kick from Taker caught by Lesnar and he sweeps Taker to his back on the floor.

Inside, Taker having his leg driven into the canvas and Lesnar stomping him down. Stomps and a choke with the boot keeping Taker down. Stomps and a leglock from Lesnar keeping the offense slow. Taker outside against the barricade and Lesnar kicks the leg out from under him. Taker brawling back, but he is sent into the barricade. Suplex from Lesnar connects back inside. Lesnar striking Taker over and over with strikes and now punches against the ropes. Taker sent off the ropes and he connects on a DDT. Taker moves to the corner and kicks Lesnar away. Right hands from Taker connecting and he sends Lesnar into the corner to land a clothesline. Another lands and Snake Eyes in the corner. Big boot puts Lesnar down and a leg drop gets a nearfall.

Chokeslam for Taker in and Lesnar put down for a close nearfall. Taker puts Lesnar up on his shoulders, but Lesnar falls out and hits an F5 that nearly ends "The Streak." Taker reeling on the ground and Lesnar lurks over him. Hell's Gate grabbed out of nowhere. Lesnar able to pick Taker up and slam him to the mat to break the hold. Lesnar again looking for offense, but Hell's Gate reapplied. Lesnar once again struggles and slams out of the hold. Both men down on the mat. Lesnar snatches a Kimura. Taker steps over and counters it into a Kimura of his own. Rope break finally caught by Lesnar as he drags himself.

Taker in the corner and Lesnar with shoulder rams. Lesnar charges into a boot from Taker and Taker wrenches the arm. Old School up for Taker, but Lesnar pulls him down into an F5. Taker kicks out with milliseconds to spare. Taker gets up and Lesnar lands a pair of German Suplexes. Lesnar stomping Taker in the corner and mounts him, only to receive a Last Ride. Tombstone Piledriver up for Taker and he gets Lesnar up and plants him. Lesnar kicks out. Taker has Lesnar up for another Tombstone. Lesnar turns back and puts Taker on his shoulders. F5 connects.

Winner by pinfall: Brock Lesnar

Rating: 2 out of 5 stars

The crowd is stunned into silence post-match. Brock Lesnar and Paul Heyman break the silence as they get booed at the top of the ramp. The Undertaker gets back up to "thank you" chants from the crowd and trudges up the ramp.

Match Seven for the WWE Divas Championship: Vickie Guerrero Divas Invitational

WWE Divas Champion AJ Lee and Tamina Snuka pushed to the middle of the circle of Divas. All Divas brawling around the ring. Suplex spot from all the Divas in the middle of the ring gets a series of nearfalls. AJ sends Summer Rae down in the corner, but is hit with a facebreaker from Cameron. All Divas being sent out. Eva Marie left and shoves Snuka down. The Bellas are left and they dropkick AJ out. Suicide dive from both Bella takes out all the Divas on the floor.

The Bellas inside and they get face-to-face. Nikki Bella with a backbreaker on Brie Bella for a nearfall that is broken by Alicia Fox and Layla. Natalya now taking out all the Divas. Snuka gets Natalya with a Samoan Drop. Snuka up top, but she is shoved off by Naomi. Aksana meets Naomi up and Natalya gets under Aksana for a powerbomb superplex combo for a nearfall.

Inside, AJ and Naomi left in the ring. Black Widow in for Lee and she stretches Naomi. Naomi brought to her knees in the ring and has no choice.

Winner by submission and still WWE Divas Champion: AJ Lee

Rating: .75 out of 5 stars

"Mean" Gene Okerlund joins Hulk Hogan backstage. "Rowdy" Roddy Piper and Paul Orndorff cut off Hogan. Piper pays Hogan a compliment, but Orndorff says that every day, he gets asked about the WrestleMania I main event. Mr. T joins Hogan and the two finally shake hands and bury the hatchet.

WWE Hall of Famers shown ringside.

Triple Threat Match Eight for the WWE World Heavyweight Championship: Randy Orton (c) vs. Batista vs. Daniel Bryan

Daniel Bryan immediately with a dropkick to Randy Orton. Hurricanrana sends Batista out and Bryan striking Orton. Orton takes advantage of the injured shoulder of Bryan and action moves outside. Batista sends Orton into the apron and bounces the head of Orton off the table. Whip into the barricade from Batista. Orton fighting back with headbutts and uppercuts. Orton has his whip turned around and Batista sends Orton into the steel steps. The head of Orton bounced off the steel steps. Batista Bomb attempt on the steps is turned into a backdrop from Orton on the steps.

Bryan now focused on by Orton. Bryan off the barricade and a backdrop suplex on the barricade from Orton. Batista gets the same on the other side and the action returns to the ring. Orton gets a nearfall before stomping on the legs and arms of Batista. Knee drop to the head connects for an Orton nearfall.

Bryan up top and lands a double missile dropkick that takes out Orton and Batista. Roundhouse kicks to the chests of Orton and Batista from Bryan. Head kick lands on Batista, but Orton catches a kick for a T-bone suplex that nearly wins him the match. Batista gets Orton on a powerslam for a nearfall.

WHAT YOU THINK
What did you think of WrestleMania XXX?
It was great - 39%
It was okay - 23%
Didn't like it - 12%
Didn't see it - 26%
Orton and Batista cornered and Bryan with corner dropkick after corner dropkick for both men. Orton sat up top and Bryan connects on a hurricanrana that nearly gets him the win. Shoulder ram on the apron from Batista sees him send Bryan out with a suplex. Batista up top and Orton meets him there. Superplex after a series of headbutts lands for Orton. Bryan from the turnbuckle and he lands a flying headbutt. Yes Lock put in on Orton.

WWE COO Triple H and Stephanie McMahon make their way out. Triple H drags the referee out and sends in Scott Armstrong. Batista with a spinebuster and a Batista Bomb that nearly wins the match. Bryan in the corner and Batista charges, only to land on his shoulder. Bryan punts Armstrong in the head and hits a suicide dive outside.

Bryan back in the ring and Triple H up. Sledgehammer in hand, Bryan sends reeling on the apron. Bryan grabs the sledgehammer and sends him out with it. Rollup on Batista from Bryan gets a nearfall as Orton breaks it. Orton and Batista double team Bryan outside and drop him on the barricade. Knee to the head of Bryan from Batista is followed by the steel steps to the shoulder of Bryan.

Orton and Batista clearing off both the Spanish and main announce tables. Batista has Bryan up for the Batista Bomb and tosses him into an RKO through the Spanish announce table. Both Orton and Bryan down and the medics come down as Orton came down on a monitor. Batista helps Orton up and clotheslines him down. Orton sent into the ring post.

Bryan is shown being stabilized on the stretcher as Batista sends Orton into the barricade. Back inside, Orton looks for the rope-assisted DDT. Batista backdrops Orton out, but Orton sweeps the leg and lands the DDT on the floor.

Bryan up from the stretcher and Orton sends Bryan into the steel steps. Back inside, Bryan is down and Orton drops down. RKO attempt is caught by Bryan and he locks in the Yes Lock. Orton flailing and looking bad, but Batista breaks the submission. Batista caught in the Yes Lock now and Orton gets to toss him down. Batista worked down in the corner by Orton. RKO attempt in the corner pushed away by Batista. Batista spears, but Orton leapfrogs and Bryan sent outside. RKO lands on Batista and he barely kicks out.

Batista crawling and now Orton looking for the punt. Bryan comes in and hits the Running Knee on Orton. Batista tosses Bryan out and covers Orton. Nearfall for Batista. Batista Bomb puts Orton down. Running Knee connects on Batista and the Yes Lock applied.

Winner by submission and NEW WWE World Heavyweight Champion: Daniel Bryan

Rating: 3.75 out of 5 stars

Daniel Bryan mounts the announce table and celebrates as the pyro and confetti goes off. Bryan's sister and niece join him in the ring as the show goes off the air.

Overall Rating: 4.5 out of 5 stars

RELATED LINKS

  • WrestleMania XXX Main Events Photo Gallery
  • WrestleMania XXX First Half Photo Gallery
  • More on WrestleMania 30
  • WrestleMania 30 photo galleries

    Nolan Howell can be reached at nth993@gmail.com for any questions or comments. Click here to follow Nolan on Twitter.