1) Steve Blackman & Grandmaster Sexay vs. X-Pac & Justin Credible (Heat - 4/1/01) - 1
2) Rob Van Dam & Kane vs. Lance Storm & Chief Morley (Heat - 3/30/03) - 4
3) 29-Man Battle Royal (WM 21 dark match) - 3
4) 18-Man Battle Royal (WM 22 dark match) - 2
5) 24-Man Battle Royal (WM 24 dark match) - 3
We’re just hours away from the biggest show of the year, WrestleMania 25, and to get your in the mood for ‘Mania, I’ve tackled a few of the pre-show bouts from recent WrestleMania events. The first bout up was from Sunday Night Heat before WrestleMania 17 and was total junk. Blackman looked like a total goof trying to dance before the match and Grand Master was annoying as usual. The only thing he did right in my book was eat a giant clothesline from Albert, who was in X-Pac and Justin’s corner. Blackman got the tag and was pinned by a double super-kick moments later. Just a terrible way to start off one of the biggest shows in recent memory.
Next up, I picked the pre-show bout from WrestleMania 19, which was broadcast on Heat moments before the show. This was by far the best of any of the pre-show bouts. RVD and Kane I thought always had good chemistry as a team. Morley was subbing for Regal, who apparently was injured. The Dudleys were also hanging out around ringside. Kane hit a very sloppy cross-body over the top rope and the coersion of RVD. Lawler makes a crack at Morley’s previous persona by referencing Viagra. Morley and Storm worked well as a thrown together unit, despite having almost the same working style. RVD takes a sick bump into the rail after getting thrown off the top rope by Morley. The Dudleys get involved, give Storm a 3-D, throw RVD on top, and the Bubba drops a big elbow on RVD costing RVD and Kane the tag titles. I’m not sure where the finish led to storyline wise but I assure you it led to steroids and marijuana in the locker room.
The three battle royals were almost identical, especially the ones from WM 21 and WM 22, so let’s talk about those first. They were set up in the form of Raw vs. Smackdown with the wrestlers from each show wearing their respective show’s t-shirt. Heidenriech was a focal point of the WM 21 battle royal by trying to get Hurricane’s mask and shaking his hand before the bout, and then ripping up a turnbuckle and stomping on the aforementioned mask. Both matches looked like a bunch of red and blue guys beating each other up and the t-shirts made it really hard to tell who was who, especially the lower card scrubs that not even Cole and Tazz had any clue about. To close out, the battle royal from last year’s ‘Mania was a bit better than the previous ones as there was acutally something worth fighting for, a shot at the ECW title. Jamie Noble had a nice spot where he was thrown over the top and walked on people’s backs to climb back in the ring. Henry, Kane, and Snitsky were the last three with the victory eventually going to Kane. There wasn’t much action to describe as it was mostly just a lot of random people failing about. Hope these matches got you in the mood for WrestleMania 25 which is sure to be a fantastic show.