Next up on my WrestleMania Rewind series, we’ll be taking a look at WrestleMania 21, when WWE went Hollywood. With the announcement from WWE that WrestleMania 36 will be a 2-night event, starting on Saturday, April 4th, we’re now just 2 weeks away from night 1 of WrestleMania 36 and yesterday, my first edition of the series was posted, a review of WrestleMania 20, at Madison Square Garden, which you can find by clicking >HERE<!
Without further ado, let’s get into WrestleMania 21…
Date – April 3rd, 2005
Location – Staples Center, Los Angeles, California
Attendance – 20,193
- 30-man Inter-promotional Battle Royal – Booker T defeats Chris Masters, Paul London, Heidenreich, Spike Dudley, Nunzio, Funaki, Doug Basham, Danny Basham, Orlando Jordan, Mark Jindrak, Luther Reigns, Scotty 2 Hotty, Hardcore Holly, Charlie Haas, Billy Kidman, Akio, Simon Dean, William Regal, Tajiri, Rob Conway, Sylvain Grenier, Snitsky, Hurricane, Rosey, Viscera, Rhyno, Val Venis, Tyson Tomko and Maven
Headline – This was a match on the pre-show as the fans got settled into the arena. It was fun, not dragged out and had a few solid spots but ultimately Booker T would win by eliminating Chris Masters.
Rating – 2 out of 5
- Singles Match – Rey Mysterio defeats Eddie Guerrero
Headline – A rivalry like no other, 2 of the best in-ring workers in the business with a family bloodline to boot. This was the culmination of these 2 legends rivalry that ended with the pair shaking hands in middle of the ring after the match.
Rating – 3.7 out of 5
- Money in The Bank Ladder Match – Edge defeats Christian, Kane, Shelton Benjamin, Chris Benoit and Chris Jericho
Headline – The first ever Money in The Bank match took place at WrestleMania 21, little did we know it would become maybe the most-sought after match for WWE fans for the foreseeable future (after the Royal Rumble, of course) and would become it’s own PPV event, years later. This was the first match of it’s kind and as of March 2020, it’s stil the best match of it’s kind.
Rating – 4.4 out of 5
- Singles Match – The Undertaker defeats Randy Orton
Headline – A match which was dubbed The Legend Killer versus The Legend. The Undertaker put his 12-0 WrestleMania undefeated streak on the line against the clear-cut future of the WWE in the generational talent, Randy Orton. This was one of Undertaker’s best WrestleMania matches and Orton was a huge part of it. Orton may have been the future of Professional Wrestling, but on this night, Taker reminded him that it’s still the present.
Rating – 3.7 out of 5
- Women’s Championship – Trish Stratus (C) defeats Christy Hemme
Headline – This match didn’t offer much, nobody thought Hemme had a chance of winning and well…she didn’t.
Rating – 0.5 out of 5
- Singles Match – Kurt Angle defeats Shawn Michaels
Headline – This was one of the best matches in WrestleMania history. It was named the best match of 2005 by Pro Wrestling Illustrated (PWI) and rightfully so. Angle would win after making Michaels tap out with an ankle-lock submission. After the match, Michaels would be given a standing ovation from the fans in attendance, not knowing if they would ever see “Mr. WrestleMania” compete, ever again.
Rating – 5 out of 5
- Sumo Match – Akebono defeats Big Show
Headline – This match stunk.
Rating – 0.5 out of 5
- WWE Championship – John Cena defeats John Bradshaw Layfield (C)
Headline – John Cena would win the 1st of 13 WWE Championships in this one. He earned the # 1 contender-ship to the title by winning an 8-man qualifying tournament, earning wins over Orlando Jordan, Booker T and Kurt Angle. He’d earn his first WWE Championship by ducking out of the way of JBL’s finisher. the clothesline from hell and counter it into his own finisher, the FU to get the 3-count.
Rating – 2.5 out of 5
- World Heavyweight Championship – Batista defeats Triple H (C)
Headline – Triple H had one of his signature WrestleMania entrances with Motorhead live performing his entrance theme song while he made his way to the ring and it was a solid back & forth match between the pairing. Batista won his first World Heavyweight Championship after planting his former mentor with his patented Batista Bomb finisher.
Rating – 3 out of 5
WrestleMania 21 Rating – 3.4 out of 5
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Summary – Hollywood’s edition of WrestleMania certainly didn’t have it’s shortage of drama and huge moments. It was a solid show to start, then went to the next level with the Angle-Michaels all-time classic then went downhill with the 2 main events, but they weren’t the worst matches in the world.
Thanks for reading! Follow me on my new Twitter (@CJ_PSE) for tomorrow’s (March 22nd) installment of WrestleMania Rewind, where I will review WrestleMania 22 when WWE went “Big Time” in Chicago!
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