On April 7, 2019, the WWE will descend upon MetLife stadium in their home base of the New York and New Jersey metropolitan area for the eighth time in WrestleMania’s history. The company finds all kinds of new and exciting venues to run the big event in. But there is always something extra special about World Wrestling Entertainment coming home. The business has changed a bit since WrestleMania 29. The WWE isn’t the only company coming to town,as the entire wrestling industry will add to the already densely populated City That Never Sleeps.
The weekend will be filled with all kinds of events throughout the city. But the big quintuplet main event will certainly be the Hall Of Fame, TakeOver, Raw, SmackDown Live, and of course, the 35th Grandaddy Of Them All. Despite having no offseason, the event has long been thought of as the culmination of plenty of storylines and beginnings of several more. Obviously, the company is forever changing and not just at ‘Mania. Not just storylines either, the whole direction of the company can change throughout the entire year.
As the old adage goes - anything can happen in the WWE. Here are 10 big changes WWE has reportedly planned to take place after WrestleMania 35, and 10 of these post-'Mania changes that are already ongoing.
20 Ongoing – SmackDown Programming Changes On FOX
In 2018, Vince McMahon put on his shrewd businessman hat and orchestrated a deal with Fox to air SmackDown Live. The deal will see Vince and the WWE make at least one billion dollars for the right to air wrestling again on Friday nights, on a major network.
The company will certainly be keeping a tight reign over the production as they always have. However, with the kind of money that Vince will be making, Fox will allowed to have a say in what goes on their channel. Look for several changes to happen as the October 2019 rolls around. The main aspect that's been brought up is that Fox wants WWE to focus on the 'sport' aspect far more in sports-entertainment.
19 Reported – An Overseas PPV
In 1992, the WWE broadcasted SummerSlam from Wembley Stadium in the United Kingdom. The event had a flare to it previously unseen. The Legion Of Doom drove Harleys to the ring. It was one of the first times The Undertaker had a grand entrance to the ring, and it was also the night that Bret Hart and the British Bulldog had one of the best matches of all time.
While there has been a litany of specials to take place overseas since that time, the WWE has not had a proper PPV event overseas in 26 years. Look for that trend to stop in 2019, when the WWE tries to coordinate efforts to put on a proper WWE PPV overseas.
18 Ongoing – The Horsewomen Will Ride
From the very moment that The Queen, The Man, The Boss, and The Hugger started referring to themselves as the Four Horsewomen, fans’ appetites started salivating at the possibility of a dream match with MMA’s own quartet of deliverance - Ronda Rousey, Shayna Baszler, Marina Shafir, and Jessamyn Duke.
That dream seems like it will be a reality sooner or later, now that all eight of these ladies now live in the same house. Perhaps the marquee match takes place at the 2019 Survivor Series? At a certain point, the WWE simply can't let this possible dream match pass them by.
17 Reported – The Phenom Retires
When April 7th rolls around, and The Deadman comes around, he’ll be 54 years old. It will be his 26th WrestleMania. There probably isn’t a wrestling fan on the planet that doesn’t love the Conscience Of The WWE. Whoever he’ll be staring down this year will conceivably get to say he worked The Undertaker’s last match.
It happens every year now. Fans from all over speculate if this will be the last ride for The Undertaker. But in NY/NJ, in the WWE’s backyard, it seems more than fitting time to have a grand sendoff for the greatest superstar in WWE history.
16 Ongoing – Women’s Tag Team Titles
With nearly 50 current female superstars, the WWE roster is stocked more than its ever been with the fairer fighters. Not since 1989 and the Glamour Girls have there been a Women’s Tag Team Championship. But plenty of today’s roster has been clamoring for the day they’re reintroduced to the world.
While the men’s division is brimming to the lid with titles, the ladies only have one singles title per brand. 2019 has got to be the year that Raw and SmackDown Live brands introduce new ladies' tag belts to the world. We should see the inaugural champions get crowned by WrestleMania and in the interest of having a deep division, expect more call-ups and signings to be made.
15 Reported – Drew McIntyre Is The Next Top Star
He debuted as The Chosen One over ten years ago. After being released in 2014, it only took him three short years to not only be asked to come back but be the leader of the pack. He came in as a skinny kid and came back a monster of a man. Vince saw something in him then, and he clearly sees something far greater than just the Chosen One in him now.
2019 will be a breakout banner year for the Scottish Psychopath. It wouldn’t be out of the realm of possibility to see him with the Royal Rumble and head straight to WrestleMania. The crowds have unfortunately never been high on Roman Reigns as The Guy. Perhaps McIntyre should be the man to dethrone Brock Lesnar.
14 Ongoing – Global Expansion
While the company has always employed people from all over the world, for the first time in their illustrious history, the company is truly all over the World! They’ve run shows all over the world. They’re establishing a fourth brand - NXT UK. The brand just put on a successful special in TakeOver: Blackpool.
Clearly, The Game has a master plan in place to over time have some form of an NXT feeder system/brand in several hotspots all over the world. NXT Lucha, anyone? We certainly can't rule it out, as the WWE seems set on having the best possible stars from around the world working for them in some capacity.
13 Reported – NXT Official Third Brand
It started as merely a developmental territory for the next generation of WWE stars to hone their skills. Then, indy darlings who have traversed the globe for years began to come in. NXT went from being a feeder system to becoming a groundswell movement. Thanks to Triple H, Matt Bloom, "Black Magic" Norman Smiley, and the rest of the coaching staff, NXT is no longer just developmental.
NXT is a bonafide third brand of WWE. The thought has been tossed around that come Superstar Shakeup time, we might even see Raw and SmackDown Live guys get drafted to the Black and Yellow brand, as opposed to all of their talent getting raided.
12 Ongoing – Graves As The Voice Of WWE
Michael Cole will most likely still be around for another five years or so. But for the past few years, Corey Graves has been being groomed to take over for Cole as “the Voice Of The WWE.” He’s all over Raw and SmackDown Live.
It would be a surprise to see anyone else taking over the spot, considering how much of Graves we see every week. He’s part-throwback to old heel commentators and partly a new-school guy that constantly has Vince in their ear. Plus, he’s generally the go-to interviewer for Network specials. So fans better get used to hearing Corey Graves's voice week after week.
11 Reported – All Female Brand
The women of WWE have headlined PPVs, worked the same kind of matches the men have and have taken over the world as the popular and engaging presence in the company. Ronda Rousey has not only brought eyes to the Women’s Division, and perhaps the entire company. The same holds true for Becky Lynch. The Man is the biggest star in the company at the moment.
Combine all of this with the Mae Young Classic now being an annual event to introduce even more ladies and their own PPV. You have the makings of an entire brand of their own.
10 Ongoing – More UK TakeOver Specials
NXT UK has already had their very first TakeOver Special. The brand is doing pretty well for the Network, and "The Bruiserweight" Pete Dunne and "The Nightmare" Rhea Ripley have both been giving the brand its face as their first-ever men’s and women’s champs.
Names like Toni Storm and Mustache Mountain also complement the brand big time. It's quite amazing how the company has managed to keep expanding and of course, it's been Triple H spearheading the movement in developmental. As we mentioned earlier, this branch of NXT succeeding may lead to more branches around the world. One thing's for sure; NXT UK will continue to TakeOver.
9 Reported – More New Japan Stars
It goes without saying that New Japan is the second most popular and profitable wrestling company on the planet. Thanks to guys like the Bullet Club, Tetsuya Naito, Juice Robinson, Kazuchika Okada, Hiroshi Tanahashi, and a whole host of other superstars have helped to make NJPW the most exciting promotion in the world at the moment.
If you think these top stars and plenty more aren’t heading over to the WWE at one point or another, perhaps it’s your first day as a fan. All of these guys are coming in one day; it’s just a matter of when they want to and how they can fit into the current WWE product.
8 Ongoing – More Female Announcers
With so many positive changes being made to the Women’s Division right now, then there will be a need to bring in more and more female announcers if all the above changes take place. Earlier in 2017, Renee Young joined the Raw announce team full-time. She and Hall Of Famer Beth Phoenix called both the MYC and Evolution.
There’s also female backstage interviewers and ring announcers all throughout the company. As the Evolution continues, look for commentating teams to continue to add more females like Charly Caruso and Cathy Kelley to the commentating team. We should see some tremendous balance on both the roster and the broadcast talent.
7 Reported – Heel Finn
Every so often, it’s time for a character to make a drastic change in how they’re presented. Had Finn not get injured during the inaugural Universal Title match with Seth Rollins, we might be having a different conversation. But after the injury, seemingly creative doesn’t have a lot of faith in a guy who Triple H pushed through the roof at NXT.
While the Chairman has been far from amicable on the possibility of Roman Reigns or John Cena ever becoming a heel, it might be Finn’s best chance to finally be successful on the main roster and be seen as extraordinary as we’re told he is.
6 Ongoing – New Agents
Usually speaking in WWE and in life, as people get older it’s always out with the old and in with the new. Even the most trusted employees of a company either retire or are forced into retirement. Backstage in the WWE, there is a combination of old and younger agents and a whole lot of new shows and brands that need matches being agenting.
Matt Hardy has been the newest agent to join the team. But he’s not going to be alone in the position. More agents may be needed for Raw, SmackDown Live, 205 Live, NXT, NXT UK, Main Event, Mixed Match Challenge, and various other tournaments, live specials, and PPVs. That’s a lot of agenting that needs to be done. And that means more work for Michael Hayes, Mike (IRS) Rotunda, Jamie Noble, Matt Hardy, Arn Anderson, and several others to handle.
5 Reported – AJ Styles To Raw
Since his debut at the 2016 Royal Rumble, no signing has been more important to the company than the Phenomenal AJ Styles. Every single match he has had has been nothing but what his namesake says. But so many of those matches have also been dream matches; whether they’ve happened before or not.
While he has ruled over SmackDown Live with a Phenomenal Forearm, the Superstar Shakeup will most likely bring back to Raw for the first time in nearly two years. He has been the WWE’s answer to King Solomon as of late, and it is on Raw is where he’s needed the most.
4 Ongoing – Triple H And Stephanie Keep Rising
On camera, the McMahons have recently taken back all of the power. They ousted Baron Corbin, Alexa Bliss, and Paige from their positions and have stated that the direction of the company is back in the hands of where it was always – the fans. Sure, they were babyfacing themselves and sooner than later, either the status quo will come back, or the McMahons will go full–heel on everyone.
Backstage, however, Stephanie McMahon and Triple H are the heirs apparent to the company. They have consistently been the face of the company and all of its major announcements both in the ring and in the boardroom. Unless something drastic happens, especially with the XFL starting back up, Vinnie Mac is going to continue to give up the reins.
3 Reported – WWE Buys Impact
Plenty of rumor mills from churning when it was reported that executives from Impact were seen at WWE Corporate in Stamford. No one knows for sure, but there are plenty of links online that say otherwise. No one on either side has spoken about what was actually said. It does stand to reason that after these talks, WWE now has access to the Impact tape library.
With the company seemingly always on its last legs, perhaps this will be the year that WWE acquires yet another promotion. Let's just hope if it does happen, that WWE lets the promotion run on its own.
2 Ongoing – A Physical Hall Of Fame
#WeWantARealWWEHallOfFame…let’s get it trending right now. Look what happened when #GiveDivasAChance was a thing – the Women’s Evolution began. Perhaps we can get the McMahons to finally get off their duff and either in Stamford, New York, Florida or Timbuktu break ground on a physical Hall Of Fame.
Besides the multitudes of items they can display on each and every inductee, the WWE has over 50 years of history stored in their warehouses. Especially when there are other Halls out there in Iowa of all places, it’s time for the WWE to start building one somewhere for fans to flock to.
1 Reported – More MMA Stars Coming In
It has been a long-standing tradition of wrestling bringing in athletes from other sports. But whenever it’s an MMA star, there is an instant feeling of danger and legitimacy stirring up. Ken Shamrock, Brock Lesnar, Matt Riddle, you name them, and the MMA star has done a great job of crossing over.
Ronda Rousey is the current crossover darling, but she’s certainly not alone. If you don’t think that the WWE isn’t clamoring to bring in names like Paige VanZant or Rousey’s MMA frenemy, Cris Cyborg, then you haven’t been paying much attention to the company and its initiatives.