For over three decades, WrestleMania has been the biggest night in professional wrestling and the culmination of the WWE season. Any die-hard wrestling fan will tell you, however, that almost as good as the pay-per-view itself, are the months leading up to WWE's premier event. As such, this list will countdown 15 of the craziest things that might happen on the road to WrestleMania 34.
WWE likes to pitch this current period as crucial to building up the WrestleMania storylines, but as this list will illustrate, many of WrestleMania's greatest rivalries have been built up for over a year. Another major theme in this article is how important the Elimination Chamber pay-per-view should be. This is a Raw-only event, but don't be surprised if it is used as a venue to set up 'Mania matches across the board. The 2018 Royal Rumble created quite a stir in the professional wrestling community, and I am very excited to see how WWE builds upon it in the coming weeks. If you can think of any crazy events that you're looking forward to on the Road to WrestleMania that did not make our list, feel free to mention them in the comments.
15 A New Raw Women's Champion
Despite the fact that she is scheduled to take on five other women in the upcoming Elimination Chamber pay-per-view (including two who are former Women's Champions), it is widely believed that Alexa Bliss will emerge with her title intact. This is largely due to rumors that she will be challenged by the "irresistible force," Nia Jax, at WrestleMania. With these plans all but set in stone, it would be pretty wild for Bliss to lose her title at Elimination Chamber. With that being said, it is not impossible. At least some forces within WWE seem to be invested in Sasha Banks, and it wouldn't shock me to see her emerge victorious, thereby setting up some sort of Triple Threat situation at WrestleMania.
14 An Undertaker Program That Culminates At WrestleMania
For years now, this has been the time of year when WWE would begin setting up a major story line for "The Phenom", The Undertaker. Even after he stopped wrestling full time, a spot at WrestleMania was reserved for the Deadman to take on the likes of Bray Wyatt, Shane McMahon, and Roman Reigns. After his defeat at the hands of Reigns last year, however, many are asking if 2017 was The Undertaker's swan song in WWE. These next few weeks will be telling on this point, as WWE will have to start crafting a rivalry for him if they wish to feature The Undertaker at this year's WrestleMania. This year's Road to WrestleMania will be a road of "what ifs" for one of WWE's greatest Superstars of all-time.
13 The Yep Movement Becomes WrestleMania Bound
It amazes me that ever since the brand split that SmackDown has managed to dominate Monday Night Raw in terms of superior product. They are able to take superstars who have been totally forgotten on the other brand, and turn them in to stars. Such is the case with the leaders of the Yep Movement, Kevin Owens and Sami Zayn. These two have been hugely entertaining as a pair, and much of the WWE Universe is holding their breath, waiting to see what zany antics these two get into on the lead up to WrestleMania. If they are to truly make waves, however, they must be put in a position where they can fundamentally alter SmackDown. Perhaps a physical confrontation between these two and SmackDown's management is again in order.
12 Chris Jericho Makes His Return
It wouldn't be WrestleMania season without the self-proclaimed "Ayatollah of Rock n' Rolla" Chris Jericho. Though he did appear briefly on the 25th Anniversary episode of Monday Night Raw, Jericho has not been involved in a meaningful rivalry since his split, and subsequent battles, with Kevin Owens. As the biggest night of the year in wrestling approaches, however, I would expect Y2J to be itching to make his return to WWE. Jericho prides himself on putting over talented, younger superstars these days, so I'm curious to see who he gets matched up with should he make his return. He last left WWE as a face, but don't be surprised if Jericho can pull off a heel turn if necessary to fit with the storyline.
11 Dolph Ziggler Reclaims US Title
One of the most confusing moments of the Royal Rumble was when Dolph Ziggler did not answer Bobby Roode's challenge in an effort to reclaim his United States Title, and instead entered the Royal Rumble at #30, only to be eliminated shortly afterwards. On the Road to WrestleMania, one of the most important questions for the Smackdown Creative Team will be how they choose to feature the Show-off. After relinquishing the U.S. Title, the easy answer would be for Ziggler to challenge Roode. If the Royal Rumble is any indication, however, the company might have grander plans for Dolph. Even if this storyline has been disjointed at times, it will still be one of the most interesting to watch in the leadup to the WrestleMania pay-per-view.
10 Asuka Makes Her Decision
The storyline leading up to WrestleMania that WWE seems most invested in, is establishing who Asuka will challenge on the Show of Shows. Asuka won the first-ever Women's Royal Rumble and can thereby challenge either the Raw or SmackDown Women's Champion at WrestleMania. As is discussed elsewhere in this article, the first part of this question is who the Raw Women's Champion will be following the Elimination Chamber pay-per-view. Even after that, however, Asuka must choose between the Elimination Chamber victor and SmackDown Women's Champion, Charlotte Flair. Expect this continue until just a few weeks before WrestleMania, and expect it to be a major part of WWE program moving forward. The wildcard in this discussion, of course, is the recent signing of UFC legend "Rowdy" Ronda Rousey.
9 Special Guest Stars
One of the biggest parts of the buildup to any WrestleMania is the constant knowledge that anyone could show up at any minute. This often takes the form of a legendary superstar returning to be the host of that year's WrestleMania. In past years, such legends as The Rock and "the Immortal" Hulk Hogan have made huge returns to the WWE as the host of WrestleMania. Just like past years, this Road to WrestleMania is sure to include at least a handful of guest appearances. Hopefully they can at least rival some of the huge stars that have showed up in years past. Maybe even some of the names that I listed earlier. The level of excitement for a particular WrestleMania is largely based on these special guest appearances.
8 Seth Rollins Storyline
As the WrestleMania storylines have begun to progress, the biggest question on my mind is "what are they going to do with Seth Rollins?" The talented superstar has worked for most of the past year as a member of a tag-team with either Dean Ambrose or Jason Jordan, but this seems like a waste of such a talented superstar, especially around WrestleMania season. If the WWE Creative team doesn't decide soon what to do with Rollins, the Architect might find himself shoved into some sort of filler match. For one of the first years in a long time it doesn't seem like the WrestleMania card has been predetermined, so hopefully the door remains open for Rollins to find his way into a meaningful match. That fact makes this Road to WrestleMania especially important for Seth Rollins.
7 Ronda Rousey Match
At the Royal Rumble pay-per-view, UFC legend, Ronda Rousey, shocked the world by making her WWE debut following the first ever women's Royal Rumble match. Despite making her debut at the Rumble, Rousey did not appear at the following Monday Night Raw, and the speculation is now that she will not wrestle until this years WrestleMania. All things in WWE, however, are subject to change. It may also be important to note that Rousey did not sign a Brock Lesnar type contract with WWE, and that instead she is schedule to be a full time wrestler with WWE. As such, don't be surprised if the road to WrestleMania includes a match featuring Ronda Rousey. This would be an immediate draw, and would instantly set the stage for her to have a WrestleMania moment.
6 Triple H Feud
As WrestleMania approaches, we can reasonably expect the return of the King of Kings to in-ring action. The craziest thing about Triple H's WrestleMania matchup this year is that we have been given little clue as to who his opponent will be. The Game has been mostly absent from WWE programming since his lost to Seth Rollins at last year's WrestleMania. In his limited appearances since, he has developed heat with Kurt Angle, Shane McMahon, Jason Jordan, and Braun Strowman. Any one of these competitors could be Triple H's WrestleMania opponent, and commentators online have even speculated that he could be headed for a mixed-tag match with his wife Stephanie McMahon against Ronda Rousey and a mystery male superstar. Pretty crazy.
5 John Cena Gets Marquee Matchup
With WrestleMania season approaching, it is only a matter of time before a marquee match-up is set up for the "Face that Runs the Place". After dominating WWE for over 10 years, John Cena has settled into a part-time schedule with the company that frees up time for him to film movies and pursue other interests. Cena has always been a big-time player though, and I would be shocked if he isn't involved in WrestleMania in some major way. Despite this, WWE has yet to set up a rivalry for its franchise player heading into its greatest pay-per-view. He is involved in the #1 Contender Elimination Chamber match, but I would be surprised to see him emerge victorious. As such, WWE only has a few weeks to find a suitable opponent for the 16-time World Champion.
4 Cruiserweights Find Themselves (Or Don't)
One of the most shocking developments on the Road to WrestleMania will be if the WWE, and especially its Cruiserweight Division, can recover from the Enzo Amore incident. Perhaps one of the best pure talkers in WWE, Amore was added to the Cruiserweight Division (following an underwhelming rivalry with his former partner, Big Cass) in an attempt to breathe some energy into the stagnant 205 Live. When Amore was accused of sexual assault, however, the company quickly cut ties with him. This was the right move morally for WWE, but it removed the man who had become the centerpiece of the Cruiserweight Division. 205 Live simply doesn't work without Amore strutting around and drawing serious heat from the WWE crowd.
3 WWE Introduces New Blood In The Tag Title Scene
In many ways we saw the culmination of the Women's Revolution at this past pay-per-view with the first ever women's Royal Rumble coupled with the debut of UFC superstar Ronda Rousey. While it doesn't take on the same social justice dimensions of the Women's Division, WWE's Tag-team division could also use a serious upgrade. A big part of this will be seeing how the various tag divisions are set up for WrestleMania. Both shows' tag-title scene had stagnated in recent months, with The Bar taking on teams involving Seth Rollins on Raw and the Usos battling Chad Gable and Shelton Benjamin on SmackDown. It will be important not only for WrestleMania, but for these divisions as a whole, just what preference these storylines are given on the Road to WrestleMania. Bludgeon Brothers, anyone?
2 Daniel Bryan Gets Cleared To Compete
I'm starting to believe that this is merely a pipe dream, but many WWE fans have kept the hope alive that Daniel Bryan will finally make his return to in-ring action, setting up a prominent match for this year's WrestleMania. Given the fact that WWE doctors have told Bryan that he cannot safely wrestle due to a debilitating neck injury, this would surely be one of the craziest moments on the Road to WrestleMania. With that being said, the possibility is there for him to easily transition into a prominent storyline. Shane McMahon has found himself opposed to the team of Kevin Owens and Sami Zayn for much of this year, could he possibly be looking for a partner in the leadup to WrestleMania?
1 Anyone But Reigns
With The Undertaker's retirement still a mystery, the marquee matchup for this year's WrestleMania will undoubtedly be Brock Lesnar versus his challenger for the WWE Universal Title. The biggest question on the Road to WrestleMania, therefore, is who his challenger will be. For over a year now, the assumption has been that perennial WWE powerhouse Roman Reigns will be that challenger. If WWE sticks with this route, it will surely draw the ire of many WWE fans. WWE set up this Lesnar-Reigns matchup three years ago, and the fan pushback was so bad that they had to insert Seth Rollins into the mix. If WWE was ever to abandon this plan, now would be the time. The #1 Contender Elimination Chamber Match is stacked with main event talent, so WWE will have no shortage of people to pick from, should it choose to shy away from Reigns.
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